How photo-sharing services work

Instagram

Instagram is a free program that allows users to apply digital filters to photos and then share them through social networking services. Instagram is now owned by Facebook.

Instagram can be used to promote your latest product via photos and can be an excellent way to attract customers and market your business, especially when you are selling a visual product such as food or clothing.

Instagram allows captions, hash tags (similar to Twitter) and tagging that can be used as part of your online marketing campaign or even to run a competition.

Flickr

Flickr is an online photo management and sharing application that belongs to Yahoo. Flickr lets its users:

  • view photos
  • upload photos
  • provide explanatory information about each photo
  • organise photographs into 'sets' of related images
  • tag photos with searchable keywords
  • name people who feature in photos
  • comment on other people's photos
  • upload videos up to 90 seconds long.

Photos can be easily exported from Flickr to blogs and other social media. You can also ask Flickr to automatically update Facebook or Twitter each time you upload a new image.

Pinterest

Pinterest is a free social media site that allows members to 'pin' digital images to online 'pinboards' and share them with other members and visitors.

Unlike most other photo-sharing services, Pinterest is dominated by images not created by its members. While Pinterest members can post original photos, most images are sourced from other websites, so it is important to observe copyright and attribute source material.

Members who view an image can comment on it, and commenting is an important part of creating a sense of community on Pinterest. Members can also click on buttons that allow them to 'like' the image on Pinterest or Facebook, tweet the image to their Twitter followers, embed the image in a blog, or 'repin' the image on one of their own Pinterest pinboards.

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