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Using PhotoFriday to Get Into Flickr Explore

Posted by Melanie Phung on Sunday, August 19, 2007 at 11:54 pm

Traffic alone can get a photo (back) into Explore.

Odd Egg Out

This photo dropped out of Explore late last year; it reappeared after I submitted it to Photo Friday, which resulted in new traffic, but no new comments or faves. Conventional wisdom has it that views alone are not enough to boost a photo’s Flickr Interestingness — a strong proportion of people viewing a photo need to leave comments or mark the photo as a favorite — but clearly that’s not true.

In September of 2006, the highest position that particular photograph achieved on Flickr’s Explore was #33. Now that it has reappeared, Flickr Scout is telling me that the highest position it has held is #41. I’m tempted to believe this discrepancy has something to do with why nearly all of my photos dropped out of Explore last November. Back when Flickr implemented a major change in the Interestingness algorithm, it seemed to have blacklisted a lot of photos that appeared in too many forced-commenting groups. Maybe the slate has been wiped clean and there’s opportunity to get some of my old photos back into Explore… perhaps I should just submit all of them to Photo Friday!

The only other explanation for this photo’s reappearance is that Flickr is using something like Google’s PageRank to determine that PhotoFriday, a strong third-party site, is linking to the page… and rewarding the photo for it. But it wouldn’t make sense for Flickr to incorporate off-site links into the Flickr algorithm. That can’t be it. It’s got to be the increase in views. Got to be.

BTW: “Photo Friday Spamming” is (until this page gets indexed) a bone fide Googlenope.

For more about Flickr Explore (e.g., how to get into Explore, why you dropped out of Explore), read my other Flickr posts.

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Comments (2)

Category: Flickr


Comment by Let Teddy Win the Presidents Race!

Made Monday, 28 of January , 2008 at 1:58 pm

2 issues:

1) Up until some time last year, Scout had a time limit on its archives. So if a photo dropped out of Explore and stayed out for more then a month or two, it would disappear from your historicals. That’s why it “forgot” your #33 ranking. This has been changed, but not retroactively.

2) Around the beginning of this month, Flickr suddenly lifted the “black list” on several of my photos that were obvious Explore candidates but for whatever reason were being ignored by Explore. Maybe the blacklist is really just a grace period with an annual time stamp, or perhaps Flickr just made a New Years resolution to be nicer to its members.

Comment by Melanie Phung

Made Monday, 28 of January , 2008 at 3:41 pm

Hey buddy! Thanks for dropping in. Leave it to you to have the answers to my Explore mystery. You probably know more about Flickr at the in-the-weeds level than anyone I know.

What do you think about my traffic volume hypothesis?

Maybe you can do a guest post about Flickr Explore here (debunking everything I’ve ever said! Ha). The Interestingness Algorithm is one of the most popular subjects on this blog, according to my analytics.

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