Previously, I had joined the Seller Buzz team as a correspondent of sorts. I've been working on a blog series about Photo Hosting and Image Optimization, which we had planned to debut on the site as it began to take shape. The timing was perfect... and we were able to use my blog series as part of the show!
If you missed last Thursday's episode, you can listen to the archived show by clicking this TalkShoe link. We talked about how there are numerous choices for sellers today, as far as hosting and optimizing images. (Did you know that according to Wikipedia there are 62 sites to Share Photos and 32 sites to Host Photos?) We stressed that each seller needs to research their options, read the Terms of Service, test the features, and choose which site meets their needs, as each choice may or may not be the right choice for you. What you expect from a service such as a photo hosting site may differ slightly from the expectations of your peers, and it may certainly depend upon what features are provided, or not provided, by your venue. In my research, I investigated the pros and cons of popular sites, like Photobucket, Flickr and Picasa for photo hosting, as well as the editing software offered at IrfanView. Last week's show covered both Photobucket and Flickr, while next week's show will include Picasa and Irfanview.
To summarize, I must first say that I normally like to look at both the good and the bad when critiquing a site. I like to join, use it and comment based upon experience. Flickr, however, has Terms of Service that state precisely what you can and cannot do, and it seems quite clear to me that using them for commercial purposes would be a violation of their terms. I did not test their image hosting. So I will caution any seller who chooses to disregard those terms... do so at your own risk. I will say though, that I think Flickr has most of the popular features that the other sites do, and users rave about how great their service is, so I would recommend it as a site for personal use.
Photobucket has long been my image hosting site. Obviously I am biased, but with good reason. You can upload your titled photos quickly and easily, add titles within the site for advanced album organization, add tags for photo optimization, and Photobucket hands you coded tags for use in websites, blogs, chat rooms and email. Making a slideshow is a breeze, as is loading and sharing video. Their editing software is as good as any other I have used, and they offer perks like glitter text, borders and watermarking. Users from OnlineAuction.com who are just starting out at Photobucket should know that you can pre-set your sizing when uploading, and size 320 x 240 is perfect for both the OLA auctions and the OLA chat room.
As a sneak peek into next week, I'll tell you that Picasa is fast becoming another favorite of mine. As a loyal Photobucket user, I balked at change, but thanks to our OLA programmer, I decided to give Picasa a try. Sure enough, Picasa does everything that Photobucket does, without needing to upload my photos to a hosting site! You can use the Picasa Web Albums, of course, but to use this great service, with the tags that are so important to image optimization, you only need to download the program to your desktop. I've been using this for several weeks now, and am familiar with the features, so please, stop by the radio show next Thursday, listen to our review, and look forward to an upcoming Webinar on how to use Picasa. (Stay tuned to the OLA chat forums for more info!)
Lastly, I know a lot of you are wondering... why was IrfanView included in this series? Well, simply put, IrfanView, while not a photo hosting site, has features that some of our OLA users may enjoy. (Ok, anyone can enjoy!) It is the resizing options that I like. They're simple. The program loads onto your desktop, you open a photo in the Irfanview editor, click on resize, and viola! More advanced users may benefit from the feature rich options, which include video and sound effects, as well as images. We'll talk about this next Thursday, too, so I hope to see you in the chat room at Seller Buzz during the show!
Until then, stop by Fleapirates Plunder and take a peek at some of the new items I've added!