The Photo Sharing Service That Killed Google and Flickr

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tl;dr The service I found for unlimited storage of and easiest sharing of embedded photo albums is, quite surprisingly, the service best known for ridiculous meme photos. I’m moving my 12 Terabyte of photos and videos there as you read this…

That’s the bottom line. Now, to explain myself and how this incredible turn of events came about…

A bit of background - Dixie and I quit our jobs and hit the road four years ago. We thought of it as a mini-retirement, but we ended up settling down in Mexico for a few years. We will begin traveling again at some point in the future, but in the meantime we’ve compiled a massive set of photos and video, from Alaska to New York City to Costa Rica. I’m pretty sure we are approaching 12 Terabyte of files. That’s like 500 Gigabytes. Yes, that is a ridiculous number.

Y U Post Too Many Pictures? {: .img-right } I will have things set up for Dixie to be able to finish sorting, deleting, editing and uploading all of our photos, a task we abandoned early on in our travels. It’s a lot of work, especially if your tools and storage solutions aren’t ideal. At different times we have stored photos on Google (Picasa) and Flickr and Facebook, and a few temporary uses of Photobucket. But we have way too many files to simply dump on our web server where our blogs live. The cost would quickly go through the roof. The one solution we used most frequently was Flickr, usually alongside various WordPress plugins to make things easier to insert and embed. And since Flickr is now free for up to 1 Terabyte of space, it seemed like the best solution going forward.

A few days ago I started seeing a lot of talk about Google’s announcement at their recent I/O conference. Evidently Google Photos is now unlimited for free. I doubt we’ll ever need more than a Terabyte online, but I did a quick review and a comparison between the new Photos service and Flickr. And that’s when I hit a big snag…I couldn’t figure out how to embed a photo album from either one! And we’re not talking about a tech noob here - I’ve built dozens of web sites! And if it’s something I find difficult, I really worry about how difficult the workflow will be for Dixie. Right now it appears to be actually impossible to embed photo albums from either service, and that appears to be by design. They really want you to visit their site. You can embed slideshows, sort of, but sometimes maybe you want to stop and look at a photo without having it slide off the screen. Sometimes maybe you want to skip some photos and go to a specific one. That’s my preference, and that’s what I went looking for. And I found my solution in a very unlikely place.

Imgur 'good boy' meme {: .img-left } For those of you who aren’t familiar, Imgur has long been the realm of memes, the cute, crazy images with funny captions, similar to the one I used here. It was an early favorite with the kids on Reddit and Digg. I’ve used the service before, mainly as a quick way to share a screenshot, but that’s about it. So you can imagine my surprise when I discovered the following facts about Imgur:

  • You can create a user account
  • You can upload unlimited photos!
  • You can choose several different ways of embedding albums.

Of course, I should show you an example. I haven’t uploaded anything yet, except for one album which is basically pictures of grass with some stone walls peeking through. Not particularly entertaining. So here’s a much better example of what you can do with Imgur. Enjoy!

Copyright © by Glenn Dixon