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4. Using Flickr

Flickr is a photo sharing web site which enables you to store your photos, direct others to them and utilise the photos of others. It’s a place where you also edit photos, organise and create from them too.

Start by going on the Flickr Tour – http://www.flickr.com/tour/. This will explain how to:

  • Upload photos
  • Edit – using Picnik (another program)
  • Organise your photos logically and tag them to find them easily.
  • Share (or not) – you can also set up a group to share (use the tag emailed at the beginning of this course)
  • Use your images to create things (like cards, albums, etc.)
  • And allow people you know to keep in contact and comment on your private photos.

After viewing the tour, you can either simply browse through the photos and images of others, or begin to upload and organise your own collection.

Tag Clouds WordPress Featured Blog

Tag Clouds WordPress Featured Blog

Image above from Flickr

While care needs to be exercised when selecting images from Flickr to make sure you give credit to the work of others:

  • you can include Flickr images on your blog.
  • always give credit when you include photos taken by someone else in your blog – which is easy if you use some of the tools provided by Flickr.
  • be careful what images you upload – especially with students in mind. Do you have permission to show their images online? (Child safety considerations included).


To find different photos you have uploaded, you can use tags. This is like a subject heading, which you make up, to help you locate things later. Do this when you first upload, or edit these tags in later. It can be anything you like, so it is personal to you, though sometimes it is useful to try common terms used by others also. (or perhaps concepts in use in class)


Using Groups allows easy sharing amongst a group of people – simply join a group, then double-click on a photo from your own collection, and click on send to group icon above the photo. If you don’t belong to a group, you can join from this point (if you know a group name) and then add your own images or comments on those of others.

N.B. Personally I would not use the Flickr upload to a blog, as it requires Flickr to have your username and password. Why not just upload your image from the original source to your blog? (I welcome your comments on this.)

# Exercise:

  1. Sign up to Flickr, and upload at least one photo. If you upload more than one photo, you can try organising your photos into different sets. Click on the Organise tab, and you can edit a single photo, or many at one time.
  2. Send one photo to our group (15 Things) after adding some comments about why you shared this as a group photo. (It will be set up as a private group and won’t come up on a group search.)
  3. Write a comment on your blog after uploading an image from Flickr.

# Extra Information (worth reading)

  1. Complete guide to using Flickr – comments on the ways to use Flickr.
  2. Flickr Safety – discusses some issues to be aware of when using Flickr search with students (This is also a valuable site to watch with other Web 2.0 issues covered from an educational perspective).

One comment on “4. Using Flickr

  1. Flickr definitely looks like it could be lots of fun to use. Though I haven’t worked out what I would do with it from a Maths point of view yet. Perhaps it could be useful as a way of say getting students to look at their world from a mathematical viewpoint and taking photos which have a mathematical relevance. (Maybe I have just had an idea about a photograph competition for maths).
    I find it difficult to come around to the idea of having lots of personal stuff out there on the web.
    I don’t know if it’s because I am paranoid about privacy – but the other question is who backs it all up?

    Now I already use gmail, which means that I don’t control the storage of or access to my email. But I don’t think I’d use flickr except for something like a class project. Maybe I’m just old…

    (I agree, Ruth. I too worry about the cyberfootprint we are leaving, and therefore tend to avoid things that want to link together. Not that I have anything to hide, but I am wary about the information (too much) some kids like to leave on things like Facebook etc. I think you should provide minimal information on places like that – and that you need to be aware of how some sites might link together. But it’s also good to look at some of the Web 2.0 options…)

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