Flickr vs Vidigami
In the second instalment of our versus series, everyone’s favourite photo sharing platform Flickr will take on the underdog Vidigami. But don’t rule it out, as some of its features may just surprise you and how you could use each platform in your #ContentStrategy. We previously wrote a #DigitalJedi training guide on becoming the master of Flickr, check it out!
ROUND 1: OVERVIEW
To offer a bit of context, Flickr has over 1.1 million followers on Twitter and Vidigami has 390. So, we’re currently talking about a vast difference in size and reach. But let’s not write it off just yet...
Flickr describes its platform as ‘almost certainly the best online photo management and sharing application in the world’ - quite a bold statement! Founded in 2004, Flickr has long been used as the free image and video hosting service for anyone from beginners to professional photographers. However, after being bought by SmugMug in 2018, Flickr decided to change their pricing plans. Previously, users could share unlimited images/videos on the platform, but since the SmugMug takeover, Flickr limits users to a maximum of 1.000 uploads before having to pay for a PRO account. This may sound like a lot, but imagine a photographer coming in for a big event at your school, that could easily take up 200-300 images in one go! That said, it still works out a lot cheaper than other platforms.
Vidigami describes its platform as the ‘best place for storing and sharing school memories’. Unlike Flickr, Vidigami is currently designed exclusively for schools and does not offer a free version for normal users. Vidigami was founded in 2012 and is based in New Hampshire, USA, with offices in Vancouver and Canada. Most of the schools that Vidigami supports are based in the USA and Canada but is slowly but surely starting to pop up more across Europe and is definitely one to keep an eye on for the future. Vidigami’s website claims that it takes less than 15 minutes to learn how to use the platform and offers a demo to those who are interested.
There are essentially two sides to using Vidigami:
It can be used internally for helping schools and staff to organise their photos.
It can be used as a private social network for parents with the ability to share out some more public photos.
This feature will be discussed later on.
ROUND 2: TAGGING
Tagging on Flickr is relatively straightforward and easy to pick up. Tags can be added in 2 ways, either to individual photos, or to the album in general. It is very easy to add tags as this is just done at the same time as uploading a photo by writing them in to the TAGS section. Flickr also offers the ability to go back and edit old albums and photos so that you can go back and edit or input any tags that you may have missed. Hashtagging is very important to filter your content and for users to see the relevant related content that they desire.
Vidigami uses advanced photo-recognition software to make tagging a lot more automated. When tagging a person in a photo, if parents have the mobile application for Vidigami, they receive a notification that informs them that their child has been tagged. Parents with access/staff members can also go through and tag pupils in the photos. This way of encouraging parents to download a mobile app works as a good retention tool for both the school and for Vidigami.
Tags are automatically added to photos depending on the album that they are uploaded to. However, the platform also allows you to add your own tags, too. Tags added on software such as Adobe Lightroom can also be imported onto Vidigami making it much easier to curate and filter content.
ROUND 3: SHARING/EMBEDDING
For many schools, the ability to share out photos to parents can go one of either two ways:
Schools do not want to share out images for fear of safeguarding or backlash.
Schools would like to be able to embed their galleries onto specific parts of their site.
So which platform makes this easiest?
Sharing and embedding is again a very straightforward process on Flickr. First, click on the album that you wish to embed on your website. Click on the arrow button (shown in the image) and then simply copy and paste the link into your CMS to embed the album. These albums can be embedded anywhere on your sitemap and offer a great scrollable gallery instead of 20 images just blocking up one page. Check out how Radley College make use of embeds on their sport page.
You can also share a photo or album using social media or grab a link to it. Additionally, you could email a link to the photo page to those who you would like to view it.
Vidigami prides itself on being the private, secure, invite-only, photo-sharing platform. However, this can create a problem when wanting to embed an album on a website, so how does Vidigami get round this? Enter, sets. A set allows you to curate photos and put them into a set which can then be embedded on to your website.
Sets are more public than general albums and can also be shared put directly onto Twitter and Facebook. One pro to these sets is that they are on a live link which means that you do not have to re-embed the set if you add more photos. Does your school have digital displays around campus? Share out that embed link on those so that photos from your set are displayed around the school.
Another great way to use the set feature is to allow access to students/parents for a photo of the week competition. This way, those with access can simply add their photos to the set. Some roles can also upload videos up to a maximum of 30 seconds. However, this video upload limit rises to 5 minutes for admin roles. There is also the ability to share videos directly from Vimeo or YouTube. For more information on video platforms, check out last week’s blog.
ROUND 4: PRIVACY
It’s 2019 and online privacy is one of our biggest worries these days. These worries are only amplified once our beloved children are involved. So, let’s have a look at what both of these platforms do to protect our privacy.
Flickr offers many different possibilities when it comes to protecting privacy. Safety filters can be added to albums to make it either safe/moderate/restricted. Items can also be hidden from public searches to allow/disallow photos/videos to be found in search.
Flickr also allows you to choose who can see where the photos were taken and control transparency of your geotagging. Finally, Flickr also allows you to decide who can comment, add notes, and add tags.
Members are only given access to certain photo albums. This means that parents get a good user experience as the content that they see is only relevant to them. These parents can also be granted permission to upload photos to the sections that they can access. Most schools use this feature to separate out year groups/subject areas.
Roles are added to each group to determine what permissions a member has. These roles can be assigned to either the whole school account or to individual groups.
A big plus to Vidigami is that unlike Flickr, it is not blocked by Chinese censors allowing for access for parents wherever they are based. Although we mentioned before that Vidigami is mostly used in U.S.A and Canada, the platform is GDPR-compliant, so watch this space Europe?
And that is the fight! Both challengers put up a good fight but only one can win.
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