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NZ National Library Review One Year Of Flickr Use

Flickr: An early watercolour painting depicting whaling activity on Mohaka BeachAnd they like it according to the brilliant LibraryTechNZ post* from Courtney Johnston, Awesome photo – thanks!! Or, what I've learnt from our Flickr pilot

She takes you through the learnings, fun parts, usage and recommendations of using a social networking site such as Flickr. I especially liked the way Courtney linked to the interesting comments people have made which had me revisiting a lot of the photos they have uploaded, excellent work.

The recommendations are ones all organisations can learn from:
What I've learnt

1. It feels really good when people talk to you on Flickr. It's one of the most enjoyable parts of my job.

2. Sort out the permissions stuff BEFORE you start loading images. Find the most unencumbered images in your database, then make them available in the most open way possible.

3. The trickiest challenge we've had during the Flickr pilot was a request to add this image to a Whaling group. It was a request that generated quite a lot of debate among staff of the National Digital Library, some of whom felt joining the group would reflect badly on the Library. However, the decision was made to add the photo, following the Turnbull's attitude that it is not their place to make 'moral' judgements on how people wish to use collection images.

4. Flickr is a good way of dipping a toe in the social media water - a lot less time and energy has to be invested than in, say, oh, I dunno, blogging? Compared to this blogging pilot, there's also been less work with creating policies, administration, and in replying to comments / commentary.

* and not just because I'm mentioned

Picture: Alfred John Cooper (d 1869), 'Cutting the blubber off a whale on Mohaka Beach', c. 1860
Watercolour on paper, Reference: A-235-010, Drawings, Paintings and Prints Collection, Alexander Turnbull Library