Posted by Melanie Phung on Tuesday, March 17, 2009 at 8:55 pm
Although it’s been a while since I’ve been active on Flickr, my posts on Flickr Explore and the Interestingness algorithm still get steady daily search traffic. People want to know what Flickr Explore is, why photos got dropped from Explore, and what the secret to Flickr’s Interestingness algorithm could be.
But a consistent percentage of traffic seems to be asking the very basic questions: How do I know if my photo got into Flickr Explore? … and, How can I tell which of my photos are in Flickr’s Top 500 list?
If you’re trying to find out if you made Flickr Explore, the easiest way is to go to Flickr Scout, a tool created by Big Huge Labs.
Enter your username and click “Apply” to see which of your photos (if any) made the cut.
The default view shows you which of your photos is currently part of Explore. Click the link “Include dropped” (underneath the line of drop down options) to see ALL your photos that have ever been deemed worthy of Interestingness in the past.
And there you have it, the easy way to find if your photos got into Flickr Explore.
Once you’ve identified which of your photos made it into the Top 500 of any particular day, you can tag them with ExploreDDMONYR, where DD is the day, MON is the 3-letter month abbreviation and YR is the two-digit year the photo was uploaded (example: Explore16jul07) and Interestingness###, where ### is the position your photo achieved (example: Interestingness86).
And don’t forget to check your stats (you have access to stats if you have a Flickr Pro account) to see if which photos are drawing eyeballs and where traffic is coming from.
So what does getting into Explore/Interestingness mean? Hmm… nothing really. You might be able to monetize your Top 500 photos status somehow, but if you figure out how to do that effectively, please let me know because in my experience the attention you get on Flickr is fickle. The amount of effort required to get into Explore is really only worth it if you enjoy being active in the community, not if you’re trying to leverage Explore for some other agenda — which is exactly as it should be. Achieving Interestingness is really just about idle bragging rights and nothing more.