Flickr Explored: Things I Don’t Understand

Posted by Viktoria Michaelis on January 26, 2016 in Internet, Photography |

Everyone knows Flickr. the site where people can upload hundreds of photographs for all to see, have them rated, favorited, shared and – when the Creative Commons license is used – use themselves elsewhere. Most people also know that it has an Explored page: a selection of photographs picked out each day which are considered better than the rest, or worthy of notice at the very least.

This is what I don’t understand: how do they decide which photographs are the best of the best for inclusion? It clearly isn’t a person, a real human being, making the choices. It must be a piece of software, and one where a human does not have oversight.


Photo Source: Stick KimCreative Commons

Or perhaps someone can influence what appears. I have seen so many sets of photographs – or images, not all are photographic – from a wide range of different people, which all follow the same theme. A little while ago it was buttons. Ordinary buttons which you’d find on a coat, a shirt, or piled up in second-hand shops waiting to be sifted through.

There is always a cat – in reality, there are always many cats – or an owl. There is always landscape, derelict buildings, people walking along the street. And something else which really puzzles me because I cannot see the artistic excellence which would normally make such a photograph stand out from the rest: Lego boxes.

Just a photograph of a box of Lego blocks, exactly the same as the image I’ve used here – although this one didn’t make it to Explored – with nothing added. Good, if someone had made a really complicated Lego set, or designed one themselves, that would be understandable. But a photograph of the box lid?

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