Best and Worst Photo Hosting Websites

by Reads (9,058)


Unless you’ve specifically purchased the copyrights to all your photos, you probably don’t ever want to put them on Facebook with the exception of attracting business. The reason for this is because of their terms of use which have many loopholes and allow them to use the photos (and all data that you publish on the social networking giant) for whatever reason they may want. Facebook also backs up your photos to other hard drives for this purpose.

If you’re a beginner, you may want to keep the photos off of Facebook as even deleting them still means that Facebook has it backed up and may still use it. Once you buy your copyrights to the photos though, you may enjoy posting them on Facebook and having potential clients, friends, etc. comment and appreciate your artistic talent.

Once again, proceed with caution. The last thing that a photo enthusiast will want is seeing a photo that they uploaded being sold as an ad or used somewhere.

Does anyone even use Photobucket anymore? Well, if you’re considering it, know that Photobucket is the ultimate platform to allow a user to send their photos out everywhere. In this way, it can easily share your photos to your Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, forums, etc. The site includes a simple photo editor and in many ways one can think of the site as a friendly octopus to allow for total and ultimate sharing and communication.

So what’s the problem? There is very little to privacy control. All your photos are either private or public with no in-between option. On top of this, there is very little storage space and Photobucket pro accounts aren’t worth the price when you weigh it against its many competitors.

With its cute name, Shutterfly offers a bounty of wealth to free users. Freebies include unlimited storage and 50 free 4×6 prints if you so choose. The homepage offers users loads of options such as photo books. Behind that though is something hidden away in the Terms of Use under the submission section that can come back to bite you in the behind. According to the Submissions section,

“You will retain ownership of such Submissions, and you hereby grant us and our designees a worldwide, non-exclusive, sublicenseable (through multiple tiers), assignable, royalty-free, fully paid-up, perpetual, irrevocable right to use, reproduce, distribute (through multiple tiers), create derivative works of, and publicly display and perform (publicly or otherwise) such Submissions, solely in connection with the Service (including without limitation for purposes of promoting the Service).”

Not so wonderful, huh? Use Shutterfly at your own risk.

If you’re still starting out, then Flickr is hands down your best free option. If your wallet can afford the beatdown, Smugmug is the best paid option for you. However, what students need to keep in mind is that their amazing photo may be circulated around the internet and used and sold without their knowledge. Because of this, privacy and protection of your photos is paramount. Though Facebook is an extremely popular social network that allows you to host your photos there, you have almost no protection against theft. Make smart decisions about your photography in the early stage of the game and they will stick with you later on.

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