Flickr new account policy – the “Flickrpocalypse” is coming

This year, Flickr was bought from AOL, er, I mean OAth by SmugMug.

The new Flickr is changing their account policy for free accounts to a limit of 1000 photos/videos. The original Flickr was at 200. No problem, they want us, the users, to be the customers and not the product. They also need to operate in a way that is sustainable, and by do so they are giving an incentive to get a paid account (they call it “Pro”).

But there is one important detail, hidden in the fine print of another page:

Free members with more than 1,000 photos or videos uploaded to Flickr have until Tuesday, January 8, 2019, to upgrade to Pro or download content over the limit. After January 8, 2019, members over the limit will no longer be able to upload new photos to Flickr. After February 5, 2019, free accounts that contain over 1,000 photos or videos will have content actively deleted — starting from oldest to newest date uploaded — to meet the new limit.

After February 5 they will delete content, just based on date. What about these projects of the commons? What about these accounts of people that left us? They will be erasing a large cultural heritage, just like that, not taking the responsibility of stewarding the content they acquired. I think this is a bad move for them. It feels like a breach of trust ; it is perfectly ok to prevent upload on any unpaid account over 1000, but deleting it, it is not. Also they are voluntarily crippling something they need: inertia that the traffic drives, making the service more popular.

Just as a side note, my Flickr account is still under the threshold, there is currently no risk, until Flickr decide to change the limits later.

Creative Commons are working with them to mitigate the loss of some much Creative Commons material:

Flickr is one of the most important platforms to host and share CC licensed works on the web, and over 400 million of the photos there are CC licensed – representing over a quarter of all CC licensed works on the web.

And I know the Internet Archive team will be working hard on trying to mitigate the disaster.

Please, please, Flickr, don’t delete the content.

Update: it seems that there is a program to exempt institutions from this. Don MacAskill, SmugMug CEO donated 100-years of Flickr Pro to the Internet Archive, even though it is covered by the program. Also Cory Doctorow agrees with my suggestion. This is not a reversion of the delete policy, just a mitigation for the Commons.

Nikon Z7 teardown

LensRental, after doing it for the EOS R, tore down a Nikon Z7 to show what’s inside:

This is not marketing department weather resistance. This is engineering department weather resistance. Anything that can be sealed has been sealed. I’m impressed, and I will say for future cut-and-paste blurbs: this is as robustly weather sealed a camera as we’ve ever disassembled.

Remember this is a ~USD$3,500 camera body, which the build quality impressed.

What’s inside the EOS R

Lensrentals has a teardown of the Canon EOS R Mirrorless Camera. Nicely engineered camera, albeit nothing out of the ordinary.

It was rather a boring disassembly, really, about what we should expect for Canon doing a Canon 6D Mark II quality mirrorless camera. It’s neatly laid out and nicely engineered inside. One thing that struck me is that it’s not very crowded inside there, or as we like to say ‘they left a lot of air inside’.

Yashica is not back

As I guessed a year ago, Yashica isn’t back. Petapixel has reports that Yashica’s ‘Unexpected’ Y35 Camera is Worse Than Anyone Expected

While the concept may be novel and fun for people yearning for the look and feel of film cameras while having the convenience of digital, execution appears to have been lacking.

I personally didn’t believe the idea was any good. It seems that it is not even good in its making.

Instax hacks

PetaPixel has two articles about hacks on top of the Fujifilm Instax instant camera.

An Instax Camera with the Leica M lens: a prototype using the SQ10 as a base, where the M lens mount replaces the lens, to produce square images. The hybrid model of small sensor and Instax printer make this work, as the coverage of an M lens is insufficient for even Instax Mini. Still the image quality is seriously limited by the quality of the sensor and the “printer”.

Combining a Hasselblad 500 and an Instax Mini 9: the Instax mini act as a film back for the Hasselblad.

We were really happy with our first tests. The full frame of the film is exposed and the images are sharper than we’ve ever seen on this type of film. There are still a few ongoing issues with light leaks and with focusing because of the slight difference in focal plane length.

Interesting to see the creativity in that area.

Sigma & L-mount

As previously stated, Sigma is part of the L-mount initiative. Not only as a lens vendor. In a press release, Sigma state they’ll develop an L-mount camera:

All future interchangeable-lens camera systems developed by SIGMA will feature the L-mount. SIGMA does not plan to develop new cameras equipped with an SA-mount.

Whether they’ll use the Foveon sensor technology or not is a question that is not answered there. I think they make the right choice here to not create their own mount.

About that EOS R control ring

One of the new features of the EOS R is the control ring. Similarly found on the Canon PowerShot G7X, a ring that you can use to control things, at the tip of the lens. Like the G7X, the ring does click when rotated and can be heard. According to Canon you can get it disabled (YouTube):

“This clicks will make a slight audible sound as you rotate the ring. For critical video shooters concerned about the possibility of recording this sound, Canon service technicians can modify your RF lens and remove the click stops for a fee.”

That’s right. Not with a button like on the G7X MarkII but sent back to the service center.

The meaning of ISO

DPReview tells usYou probably don’t know what ISO means – and that’s a problem to explain what ISO (sensitivity) mean in the world of digital photography, compared to film, and why it is different.

This brings us to the biggest problem with using a clumsy metaphor for film sensitivity as the way of setting image brightness in digital: it means we aren’t given the tools to optimally expose our sensors.

Digital photography cameras are built on film photography. While some things are similar, when it comes to the image capture, things are totally different leading to a design that is often suboptimal at best.