Back in February I signed up to the photo sharing website Youpic to try out another outlet to share my images. In that blog post I outlined what was good and bad based on the user interface. Interestingly the article has been the most viewed page on this website.
My last posted image on the service was about 4 months ago in May 2015. Comments on the original Youpic blog post pointed out some very valid points mostly around who owns the images once they have been uploaded considering there are no adverts and they don't charge to open an account to support the website. Other services I use such as 500px and Flickr charge for a pro account to remove the ads.
I stopped using the service mostly because the newer updates introduced a ranking and points system which felt to me the service was becoming like a videogame where you would get more points for uploading images as if you were killing an enemy or completing an objective which I don't like. I take images for fun and not for meaningless points or scores. A potential solution if I were to start using it again were to upload in low resolution like 2048px on the long edge with a dpi of 90 to make it not usable in print. I always upload to Flickr and 500px in high resolution, partly as a form of an online backup.
Sharing my images is very important to me which is a core attribute to a photographer and I assume it also applies to any other a artist. Protecting your work is important and with a medium such as photography that is being shared on the internet it's easy to lose control.
My current attitude as a very keen ameture photographer who is aiming to generate some income with my work is that I have to be prepared for someone to use my images without my consent. I occasionally get enquiries from people and organisations who see my images on Flickr for example that turn into sales which I hope outweigh the risk of people just taking my images.
Without sharing my images online I wouldn't have build up my relationship with the Wildlife Trust or my local business association were initially I give my time and/or images to be used (non-profit/editorial use) without payment (and I still do) that has lead to paid work.
Please add your thought and comments below or to me on twitter @nealtraf.