Sunday, July 05, 2009

Thanks to Flickr, I Got Schmapped...And So Can You

This is a screen shot I took of the link that schmap! sent me, that shows my jellyfish photo and how it will look if it is accepted for online publication.

Another screen shot showing the licensing options page on Flickr.

I had never heard of Schmap, a worldwide online map and trip planning site that provides directories, suggested tours, reviews of restaurants, museums, events, etc., and printable maps and directions. That was, of course, until last Friday, when I received an e-mail that a photo I had uploaded to my Flickr account of a school of jellyfish from the Monterey Bay Aquarium, was a finalist for publication in the Monterey area guide. Yay, particularly since this is in the category of an "unintended benefit." And a little extra online exposure these days is a good thing.

So how it works is that you have to grant permission, and then if the photo is used, the publisher provides you with an attribution and photo credit, a 150-pixel web version of the image, and a link to the high res image from Flickr.

But that's just the first half of the story. Here's the second half. I got to thinking...I'd already been using Creative Commons to upload other people's photos and give them attribution for a while now. And here I was possibly getting some credit for mine. So what about the rest of the photos I had already uploaded? I did a little research, and learned that I could change the licensing on all the photos I had already uploaded so that others could download them and use them as well, giving me the attribution. Here's how:

1. Go to your Flickr account (assuming you have one set up.)
2. Click on "You" and use the drop down menu to "Your Account"
3. Click on 2nd tab from the left, "Privacy and Permissions"
4. About halfway down the page, there is an entry called "what license will your content have?" with an edit bar to the right.
5. Click on the edit bar, and you will see a menu listing 6 options. If you don't understand the options (I had to look up the descriptions myself as it is a bit confusing), click on the link that explains what each option means.
6. When you have made your selection, click on the appropriate menu item, and you get a screen that both shows you what the icon will look like next to your selected image, but also the HTML code, which you can add to your blog or web site and shows others what kind of licensing you are using.
7. That's it. Note that you must ensure that your image does not infringe on any 3rd party rights (it must be original).

Note that you can also change the licensing on photos already uploaded to your account, by going into "Batches." Click on "Organize your Photos, and then "Batches" from the drop down menu. Select all your photos and drag them all into one batch. Then, click on Permissions from the drop down menu, and you can access the licensing screens there. Happy viewing.

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