(Questioning the) criteria for featuring photos?

Travel Forums Travel Photography (Questioning the) criteria for featuring photos?

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21. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Taste is such a personal thing that it's pretty hard to make guidelines that really take that aspect into consideration. I kind of like the idea of keeping them short too :)

Although the issue of the quality of someone's camera is a good one, I don't think that really should play a part in a moderators decision and I'm happy to see just about any (non-adult) photo uploaded (which reminds me of one I need to upload from my phone!)... Moderators will be looking at the photos and go, 'great, this displays something about this destination in it's own beautiful way' . The photo doesn't have to be taken on a great camera at all, but it's the feeling that that snapshot really brings out something that is unique/known for that destination. All of this is very touchy/feely though

Just to make sure it's clear, I have no problems with people uploading just about any photo they want to. That's what the system is there for!! Heck, I upload screenshots all the time (although I usually don't put them public to save the moderators from having to go through them).

22. Posted by Q' (Travel Guru 1987 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Short (list of criteria) is good. Going through dozens or hundreds of photographs with a fine tooth comb will be a very tedious and time consuming process I think. Personally, I don't have time to do that. Having said that, I'll immediately contradict myself, and say I usually am able to scan, go with my immediate gut feel and the photos that jump out at me first are almost always the ones I feature.

The problem with my short list is the definition of "good travel photo". Pardus had a good guideline, which is if the photo makes him want to go there, then it's good.

There are also two basic composition rules that might make sense, and I'll let everyone debate this.

1) Photo is properly focused.
2) It is clear what the subject of photograph is.

I don't think we should go so far as to include all the formal, schoolbook, rules of composition!! That would just cut too many photos of interesting places out of contention. I don't think that would be fair (or as interesting).

On a side note, we went to a lecture last Tuesday given by Christopher Anderson, award winning war photographer, member of Magnum & former member of Seven. Google these agencies if you don't know what I'm talking about. Anyways, the guys STILL shoots 60% B&W film, with basically a point & shoot cameras (due to the places he goes to) and has not taken a photography class since a short class in highschool. So don't think it's all about the gear !!

23. Posted by Taffski (Travel Guru 182 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Hi Guys....

um..... Had a good laugh at the post... having spent about $2 in an internet cafe to read them all too !

Sander.... good on ya for posting it also (opening up a whole world of pain in the process :) !

my opinion (for what it counts... not a lot!)

Think those of us that post piccies regularly like it when they´re featured... means we´re doing something right.

Then again, you do get comments from complete strangers once in a while which is even better.

Depends on why you´re taking the pictures....

Kudos or Kicks.......

I take them for kicks as I enjoy it.... however.... a little Kudos always helps.

For that reason...... Everyone deserves a bit of Kudos (if only to take more photos in future and hence get better as time goes by) and Everyone should get a kick out of taking the picture in the first place!

Whatever the reasons.... Best left alone I reckon.

Could I be any clearer as to my opinion on the matter ??????????? ;)


24. Posted by jl98584 (Respected Member 114 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Sheesh this post is getting long, so I hate to add anything else, but I do have a question:

I've been leaving all my photo's marked as 'public' - I prefer not to restrict things if I don't need to. (I always try to ask people if they'd object, if they do I don't upload those). My focus has been strictly on my blog, so I wasn't even considering the featured photo's section.

Would the moderators prefer we mark any 'sub par' photo's as private so they don't have to review them? If I do that, will it cause any problems if people read my blog who aren't travellerspoint members (e.g. being able to see photo's that aren't marked as public)?

25. Posted by Hien (Travel Guru 3906 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Quoting jl98584

Would the moderators prefer we mark any 'sub par' photo's as private so they don't have to review them? If I do that, will it cause any problems if people read my blog who aren't travellerspoint members (e.g. being able to see photo's that aren't marked as public)?

Marking a photo as "private" doesn't really mean totally blocking it from public's view, member or not. It simply means that the photo will not appear in public gallery. However, it is still accessible by anybody who knows the direct link to the photo.

Photography moderators have a different viewing mode on the gallery. If I'm not wrong, they are able to see all public and private photos. If this is the case, it doesn't really matter if you marked it as private as they will see it anyway. Plus, I think they would not mind looking at "sub-par" photos. :)

26. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Sorry for the confusion, think it was my post that led to it. Moderators are/should be able to see all photos as they need to ensure inappropriate content isn't uploaded. So you can discard my post about unticking the options for their benefit.

The photos that are set to both 'not allow as featurable' and 'not show in profile' still will show if you add them to your blog. That's what I usually do with screenshots like this one. But I could still insert it into a blog with no problem and as you can see by following that link, everyone that has a direct link is still able to see the photo. It just removes it from view in my public gallery (it would have been the top one otherwise).

In short, I use those buttons to make sure some images which really have nothing to do with travelling don't show in my gallery but I still use them for my blog. And yes, I obviously forgot to untick the boxes for some of those shots in my gallery

27. Posted by Peter (Admin 6614 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Ok, my turn to weigh in :) I try to look at every photo that is uploaded and apart from maybe a handful, I'm pretty sure I've seen them all. I haven't looked at any in a week though, so falling behind somewhat. I'm very thankful to have some active fellow moderators in that area, because darn.. it's a lot of photography to get through!

Last year when we were pulling together the shortlist for the competition we ran, I looked through all the featured ones again. In the process I actually noticed I had featured quite a few that I didn't really consider featureable on second viewing. In particular, I was noticing quite a few shots that were blurry. The reason I was noticing these blurry shots was that on second viewing I was actually looking at them all in the "medium" size (M link in the gallery), whereas when I originally looked at them, I just looked at them in the standard small size. It's quite easy not to pick up on a somewhat blurry shot in the small size. To my fellow moderators, perhaps this is something I should have brought up -- that it is worthwhile to make sure you are viewing the gallery in the medium size to avoid featuring shots that are a little blurry. Personally, I think that is really the only thing that has affected the quality, because I have utmost faith in the taste of my fellow photo-moderators ;)

Regarding the subject matter.. I do try to keep a balance. If a photo is of an ordinary subject, but is extraordinary in quality, I would probably feature it. If a photo is of an extraordinary subject, but not really an extraordinary photo - I usually think twice, but will often still feature it. Of course, I do like to ensure that the photo is at least sharp and somewhat recognizable. I think the pink dolphins probably fit into that category for me.

Finally, while the photo gallery does indeed need to reflect a high quality of photography, I also like to not be too serious about it, because I notice that members really are quite encouraged when their photos are featured. I like to see that! Then again, it is a balancing act - because if it is too easy to be featured, then what's there to be proud about? :)

In the medium term, I think we probably will need to devise a better system to handle this photo featuring thing. The volume is growing very fast (particularly with bulk upload now being an option) and I can only see it growing quicker as time goes on. I'm not sure if a public voting thing would work though, as it is not as reliable in my opinion, but I do wonder if we can find a way whereby more people can be involved in picking out the photos, while still not compromising the quality of photos chosen..

With all that said.. I'm off to browse the last week or so of photos and see if any more can be featured ;)

28. Posted by snorklebum (Budding Member 13 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

I agree with the comments on the selected photos.

I read the moderators criteria and tried to think of why a badly cropped picture of a duck fit them.

It's not a great travel photo..it's a duck on water.
It's not going to attract people to the site...if they see it they're already here.
AND the duck is nude.

So I agree with the OP...I don't get it.

29. Posted by Peter (Admin 6614 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Ok guys, I think the point has already been noted enough by now.

In any case, most of the specific photos mentioned have already been un-featured to ensure the overall quality remains high. I've also regularly been unfeaturing photos throughout the gallery that were featured ages ago and now don't really seem up-to-scratch any more.