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UX / Flickr pisses me off

My Flickr page

Yes, I appre­ci­ate Flickr. After all, it allows me to store my pho­tos online, share them with oth­ers, and dis­play them on my web­site. Yay. Thanks for that. Still, it frus­trates me dai­ly. Here's why:

Sequence of photo display is set in stone

If I drag a dozen pic­tures into the Flickr Uploadr, God only knows the order in which they'll appear on the site. But I care about the order in which they appear on the site, because the LAST pho­to uploaded ends up being at the top of my Flickr home­page, and in that posi­tion of promi­nence it says some­thing about me. It annoys me that I can't con­trol this more.1

Little control over homepage layout; no way to make stuff sticky

So, if I can't con­trol the order of upload­ing, can I con­trol what's dis­played on my Flickr page? No. Can I make a set sticky, so that it stays at the top of the list? No. Can I dis­play only sets? No. Of course, Flickr has intro­duced new lay­outs, but all of them are sim­ply ways of arrang­ing the most recent stuff. Not help­ful to me.

No concept of new-to-a-user

I'm think­ing of my grand­par­ents here. Wouldn't it be nice if a meta-set (or some­thing) was cre­at­ed of stuff that's new to the view­er? I could just cre­ate a book­mark here, and they could check for new stuff.

Tagging is a royal nightmare.

Maybe no one has total­ly solved this yet, but here's some­thing that would work for me: I usu­al­ly upload mul­ti­ple relat­ed pic­tures at a time, and these pic­tures tend to share a lot of the same tags. So I'd like to cre­ate small groups of tags for a groups of pic­tures, and then quick­ly drag and drop, or mul­ti-select and apply, a tag to a sub­set of those pic­tures.'s tag­ging inter­face is rudi­men­ta­ry, but it's vast­ly more help­ful than Flickr's:

What does well in tagging

The navigation confuses everyone except geeks and experts

Col­lec­tions? Sets? Archives? What's the diff? As my mom once asked me, "Where are the albums?" At the risk of sound­ing irre­triev­ably old-school, this par­tic­u­lar set of group­ing con­cepts is a frus­tra­tion to cog­ni­tion. (Also, if the dis­tinc­tion is made in this nav­i­ga­tion area, why aren't the things (sets) in the right col­umn labeled as such?)

Flickr secondary nav

No record of blogged pictures?

When I cre­ate a blog entry from a pic­ture, why isn't there some kind of record that the image has been blogged? A link? This just seems so basic to me. 1 Inter­est­ing side note: I bumped into some Flickr peo­ple at CHI, and I asked them about this. Their ratio­nale: The pho­to­stream is what Flickr is all about, and the strict­ness of the sequence is a use­ful gov­ern­ing prin­ci­ple. Umm, yeah. Flickr peo­ple may think of upload­ing as a con­tin­u­al stream, but I upload pho­tos in clumps — I don't always think about my pho­tos in the terms of the last pho­to uploaded, I often think in terms of the last group. I feel like I should have con­trol over the way those clumps are dis­played. If you force me to always show the most recent­ly uploaded indi­vid­ual pho­to, shouldn't you also give me some con­trol over the order of upload in your Uploadr?