Yahoo Merging Yahoo Photos Into Flickr Valleywag Says
[I'm CEO of Zooomr]
From the more bad news for “old skool” Flickr users department. Valleywag is speculating (and has upgraded their news from rumor to unannounced “fact”) that Yahoo Photos will very shortly be rolled into Flickr.
“Flickr may indeed stay on the same evolutionary path, but Yahoo Photos will almost certainly disappear in the very short term, with its users and content migrated to Flickr gently but forcibly.”
First off, I have no idea if this is true or not despite the fact that Valleywag calls it “unannounced fact.” I have no idea who Valleywag’s sources are on this and so I’m sticking with labeling it rumor and speculation until I hear better confirmation.
I will say though for what it’s worth that I think that this would be a horrible idea. I’m sure I’ll be attacked because how dare I work on Zooomr and say any idea coming out of Yahoo be bad… but… a couple things.
First, Yahoo’s been taking a pretty painful beating from their “old skool” members in the past few weeks over their (in my opinion bad) decision to force “old skool” Flickr users to merge into Yahoo. For some “old skool” users this is no big deal — emphatically, no big deal — but there are many other “old skool” members who are very upset about this to the point of canceling their flickr service.
From a timing perspective, it would seem off to now try to push another surely controversial decision with the current “old skool” users.
Even if Flickr wanted to do this, probably better to wait later into the year when hopefully more of the bitterness over this recent change blows over.
Second, Yahoo Photos and Flickr are two totally different places, with totally different communities. Flickr is an edgier place where the focus on social sharing of fine art photography is extremely important. I’m just not sure that a merged Yahoo Photos Flickr does anything at all to enhance or make Flickr a more interesting place.
Again, all of this could simply be a moot point. Stewart Butterfield, after all, recently called Valleywag out by name as reporting inaccurate facts about Yahoo.
As recently as 8 months ago Flickr Chief Stewart Butterfield responded to the idea about merging the two properties with:
“But the larger point is that there are NO plans to merge Flickr and Yahoo! Photos. (I work on Flickr at Yahoo!) They have different audiences, serve different purposes have different goals and support different parts of Yahoo!’s overall strategy.”