The New and Improved Flickr
Flickr Staff Pre Marissa Mayer
Flickr Staff Today
Look at the two screenshots above. I took the first one in April of 2012, a few months before Marissa Mayer became CEO of Yahoo. The second one I took earlier today.
Between pre-Mayer 2012 and today, Flickr’s staff has grown from 39 people working on Flickr to 109.
About half of the 39 working on Flickr in 2012 are no longer on the team, which means that over 80% of the new, much larger team has been built since Mayer took over at Yahoo.
After years of layoffs, CEO neglect, and lackluster product development, Flickr is back in a big way, firing on all cylinders.
Under solid new leadership by former Googler Bernardo Hernandez, Flickr is getting strong and competitive again in photo sharing.
All Flickr users have been given a terabyte of free high res photo storage.
Flickr recently relaunched a new and much better received photo page.
Flickr’s new mobile app is among the best of breed with a 4.5 star rating in Apple’s app store.
Marissa Mayer is the first Yahoo CEO to publicly have a Flickr photo page herself.
I’ve had a few different opportunities to interact with staffers at the new and improved Flickr over the past few months and have come away each time super impressed at the new life that seems to flow through the team.
Unlike the old Flickr, where staffers were demoralized over layoffs and hostile with users, the new Flickr feels incredibly positive and optimistic about Flickr’s future. A bright team of really smart engineers, designers and product managers are as enthusiastic as I’ve ever seen. The energy and morale at Flickr feels very high right now.
I think the future really looks bright for Flickr and am happy to see the sort of rebirth and revitalization that is taking place there. While there still is a ton of work that can be done to make Flickr even better, I’m more confident than ever that Yahoo is going about it the right way and that Flickr, for the first time since being acquired by Yahoo, is in capable hands.
Former Yahoo Jeff Minich recently wrote a post defending many of the ways that Mayer has improved Yahoo since taking over there as CEO. In it, he makes an important point that in order to really improve a tech company, you need to grow it. You can’t just lay people off to save money.
Minich makes the point also that even as Yahoo has hired/acquired many new talented engineers, they’ve also managed the slackers out. I think the growth and change in employee composition at Flickr is a visible example of this — and I think the improvement in the product (especially in mobile) shows for it.
If you are a photographer and have been neglecting your Flickr account, I’d encourage you to check back in and see where things are headed going forward.