Giles Turnbull, In defence of Flickr:
The thing with Flickr (and I say this as a declared Flickr lover) isn’t that it is no longer awesome (because it most definitely is), but that it is no longer fashionable.
The web has matured a lot in recent years, to the point where websites have become brands. Brands that can advertise and market themselves, brands that work hard to influence the minds of the younger internet users.
Wrong. The problem with Flickr is that Yahoo forgot about it while the web moved on with better tools, better presentation and context for the explosion of mobile devices, and, yes, better socialization.
Turnbull has half a point with his criticism of “free” services like Facebook eating Flickr’s lunch with “the promise of free stuff and social networks, in return for personal information.” But I wonder if he’s had a paid account for so long that he forgot Flickr does the freemium thing, and in fact always has. Many Flickr users, probably a good majority, are in the same boat as Facebook users: they see it as a free, ad-supported service that collects their personal information in exchange for a place to store and share photos online.
I’m not saying there’s no hope for Flickr to turn around. If anything, I’m a little more hopeful now that Mayer is at the helm. But the web and the devices we use to explore it are experiencing an unprecedented period of growth, and Yahoo stopped growing Flickr. That’s all there is to it.