Anil Dash, top blogger and SixApart (the company which offers MovableType, TypePad, and not-so-recently, Livejournal) Vice-President, is asking why Yahoo-owned Flickr isn’t paying its users who churn out the most interesting content among its uers. Part of his argument would be:
…Yahoo’s not sharing the wealth with me, even though I’ve created a draw. Flickr’s plenty open, they’re doing the right thing by any measure of the web as we saw it a year ago, or two years ago. Today, though, openness around value exchange is as important as openness around data exchange (source)
Flickr co-founder Caterina Fake responds, and the heart of her entry can be read here:
Everyone needs to get paid, businesses need to thrive. I don’t begrudge blogs like Anil’s their AdSense links, or Flickr displaying ads on free accounts (I may have a bias there). But monetization strategy or no, the culture of generosity is the very backbone of the internet.
If there’s a need to take sides though, I’ll have to echo some points that were raised on the comment thread in Anil’s post:
- If you’d want to make money from your photos, don’t use Flickr.
- Since Flickr is essentially a social networking platform, users with the most popular output garner very worthy social capital.
This is indeed one mighty interesting discussion by blog luminaries I’ve known since my Movable Type days circa 2001. There hasn’t been much heat in the non-major players on the web services field for a while -however, as pointed out earlier, Yahoo does own Flickr- and this is a welcome breather from the lull.