I have had major photo sharing anxiety lately. Obviously, I love to take photos but I’ve increasingly gotten nervous about where to share them. I dislike watermarks and refuse to put them on my photos, even though I know it “protects” them. Visually, I love Flickr, but the new rules about their rights to photos make me a little nervous and I don’t understand the creative commons attribution. Articles like this one about a mom’s photo that went viral really send me into a tailspin. I would flip out if there were ugly comments about my child on Reddit (or anyplace else.) However, the only unusual thing you could say and be truthful about my child is that he is unusually good-looking. (I say it like it is, ok?)
I’m not sure what I’ll be sharing in 2015 on this blog, as I’ve started other blog projects with more of a focus that are less personal but still allow me to be creative (you can read about them here and here), but I absolutely love this blog to journal our moments.
Which brings me to a recent discovery that has made me so, so happy and I declare it to be the best online photo storage and sharing site available: ThisLife.com.
What makes this one different from all of the others I’ve tried is that the photos are all private and organized in ways to make them easy to browse. The best part? It aggregates the major photo sharing sites and pulls in your photos from Flickr, Facebook, Shutterfly, Smug Mug, Instagram and Picasa and puts them all in an easy-to-browse timeline organized by date. Your tags are also imported, especially with Facebook, your friends’ faces are already tagged. You can create “stories” from these to create photos books or share albums. Posting a photo from your timeline to Facebook posts the photos directly, and not a link. The best part, for me, is the auto uploader feature I set on my desktop, so anytime I add the finals to a specific folder on my desktop, they are automatically uploaded.
Since I use Lightroom, I just export when I want to share, but the problem is… this year, when I wanted to create a photo album, I didn’t have everything organized or saved properly (my computer crashed in the middle of the year) so to create a photo album, I would have had to select & edit most of the photos I wanted to include. This year, I’m planning on exporting the finals and not just saving the originals on my ridiculously large 4TB hard drive. These finals will be automatically added to my timeline – all organized by date.
From ThisLife.com, I can share what I’d like to share with friends and family by text, email, add to a Shutterfly share site (which I don’t love the functionality, they need a serious redesign), Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter, or just a link. This is a Shutterfly service, so you can create photo albums and gifts from the site.
I signed up for the $60/year plan which includes 25,000 photos. I have about 14,000 currently in my library. The next plan is about $140 and it includes 100,000 photos. If you have more than that, you can email them and they will send you additional rates.