BetterPhoto Q&A
Category: New Questions

Photography Question 
Kim  Kleinschmidt
BetterPhoto Member Since: 3/11/2009
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What happened????

I have been back for about 10 days now after some time away - before that I was complimenting POTD winners and old friends who had gorgeous captures - but it seems like no- one cares anymore.
No comments - no suggestions -
I am extremely dismayed by this lack of community support at a place which in the past had been so friendly. Just my 2 cents - but no wonder so many people have gone elsewhere........

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5/20/2012 10:31:05 AM

D Jensen
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/17/2008
  I used to think it was a professional courtesy to comment on someone's work if they had commented on mine. In the past several weeks, I have commented on many photos, but have received nothing in return. So pretty much I use BP to see if my images at least get an EP, and then I have some reassurance that my work has some merit in the world of photography. Kind of sad....this used to be my favorite site.

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5/21/2012 5:14:02 AM

Vicki Snow
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/24/2008
  Its summer time...busy busy busy....geez that doesn't mean people here are not friendly!!! I am sure if your image deserves a compliment you'll get one.

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5/21/2012 8:56:50 AM

Gregory LaGrange
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/11/2003
  Ebb and flow of all social/semi-social web sites.
Maybe it's time away like you said you took some time away.

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5/21/2012 4:43:13 PM

Dana Cullen
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/20/2012
  HI! I am new to this site and now seeing your posts I wonder if I made the right choice?

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5/21/2012 6:49:42 PM

Ken Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/11/2005
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  Hi Dana, there are many, many people on BetterPhoto with different likes/dislikes. It's a great site to learn photography and meet people...and the key words are "enjoy and have fun." The rest takes care of itself. You'll have folks that discover your work, and you'll discover others' work that inspires you. And definitely reach out and comment, or contact those photographers you like, as most are very friendly on the site and willing to help.

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5/21/2012 8:44:03 PM

Tiia Vissak
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/1/2007
  Some people comment, some don't. As time is a limited resource and commenting absolutely all photos would take too much time, some people only comment people who comment them. So, if you wish to get lots of comments, comment lots of photos. Not everybody will comment you back, but at least some people will, especially if you tell them what you like about the photo (not just 'great shot' but e.g. great colors, composition, clarity...).

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5/22/2012 3:53:42 AM

Christopher Budny
BetterPhoto Member Since: 10/3/2005
  Tiia's right on. I've been here for almost 7 years, and my own commenting style/frequency has changed dramatically. I used to enjoy a 2 hour window, just about daily, commenting on new entries, favorites galleries, etc. I no longer have a fraction of that time for image commenting... I'm lucky to carve out 30 minutes a week, to quickly skim & comment on some of my favorite photographers' very latest work; there's no way I can keep up with a month's worth of new entries from even, say, my top 10 favorite members. My main commenting now comes monthly, at Finalists & Winners stage, when I take time out specifically to review those.

But as Ken points out, and Tiia emphasizes, generally everyone here is quite friendly; if you have the time to comment a lot, do so---you'll likely start developing a group of folks who follow your images more regularly. But you really can't take it personally however, if you comment on 10 images by a photographer, or maybe 1 image each from 20 different members, and none ever comment back. (Some folks don't even reply to comments left on their own images... everyone is different.)

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5/22/2012 8:19:32 AM

Nicholas Semo
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/27/2008
  Guilty. I look at a lot of photos and many of them really make me go WOW!! But I rarely comment, I just don't like to be in front of a computer that much. Most of the time I don't even check to see if anyone has commented on my own photos. I would rather be outdoors. As a matter of fact if it wasn't pouring cats and dogs out right now, I would be out flyfishing for trout.

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5/22/2012 6:11:21 PM

Dana Cullen
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/20/2012
  LOL Nicholas! And everyone thank you for being so positive :)

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5/22/2012 6:49:44 PM

Jill Odice
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/1/2005
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  Just my 2 cents, but I also am wondering about the lack of participation? I have been a member here since 2005 and it seems that things have really changed since then. There was much more commenting and a feeling of community back then. Now there seems to be less interest in sharing critiques and friendliness...It is not just the summer....this has been going on for the last year or so.

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5/30/2012 1:10:31 AM

Christopher Budny
BetterPhoto Member Since: 10/3/2005
  My hunch on why participation has declined is two-fold.
1) with the demise of the perpetual free gallery at BP, we lost the ability for new folks (or even "lurkers") to actively participate in the forums and comment, slowly getting comfortable with BP and perhaps deciding to join up. Sure, there's a 30 day trial gallery, but that barely seems enough time to get your feet wet at BP, and if you don't opt to sign up for a paid gallery when that trial is over, the forums & commenting are no longer available to you.
2) the rise of social media, particularly Facebook, and photo hosting like Flickr. Facebook had only what, 3 million members when I started at BP? And now they have 700+ million?
BP reminds me (in a good way) of a BBS service I used to dial into (yep; dial-up modem, at 1200 baud!) way back in the early 90's, and chat with folks via a terminal window... it was very "community" based. Very friendly folks, polite, etc. But the online world has changed so drastically in the last 5-10 years, that nothing much remains of those early days, and the culture that arose around those early "pre-social media" sites. BP was born back in that same timeframe, some 15 years ago.
I still enjoy BP, especially the friends I've made here, the contest (though that too has undergone substantial, noticeable changes in the years I've participated.) I'm not on Facebook, and have no desire to join, so I hold onto BP as my equivalent of social media for now :)

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5/30/2012 5:38:00 AM

Monnie Ryan
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/25/2008
  You've hit the right buttons, Chris - and in particular the Facebook angle. Way more than a few BP friends now are my friends there as well, and most send their BP entries to FB. I admit that when I've commented on them there (even if it's just hitting the "like" button), I don't always feel the need to do it again here. That's neither praise nor criticism of either site - I enjoy them both - but rather a confirmation of your point about the impact of the rapid rise of social media.

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5/30/2012 8:04:26 AM

Carolyn  M. Fletcher
BetterPhoto Member Since: 10/6/2001
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Carolyn 's Gallery
  It's just getting harder and harder to keep up with everyone. A lot of my original BP buddies are long gone now, and I have problems with my arthritic hands and just don't feel like commenting a lot. I do look at a lot of stuff everyday, but mainly I only comment within my "morning group", those who upload around the same time as I do. We're gettin' old, my friends!

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5/30/2012 12:46:05 PM

tony w. austin
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/28/2010
  I have not been a member long but I have to say everyone here has been nothing but friendly and helpful. You only need to reach out and someone is there..

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5/30/2012 4:27:23 PM

Dayna Cain
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/9/2010
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  I haven't been on BP very long either but I have found the people on this site extremely friendly and helpful. As much as I would like to leave a comment on every photo that I like, time just does not permit it. I am lucky if I get to spend 10 minutes a day looking at everyone's beautiful work. So when I come across someone's work I really admire I will send them an e-mail and tell them I am a fan rather than comment on each and every photo. Heck, I wish I had more time to spend learning how to use my camera! LOL

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5/31/2012 5:37:19 AM

Peggy Pfister
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/2/2011
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  Another "newbie" perspective here ... I also find the site very friendly. I comment some, but not a lot due to time constraints, as others have mentioned.
There is another site that I frequent that has a forum that includes areas for various subject-related topics (like we have here on BP), but it also has a "lounge" area where folks go to chat about well, just about everything. The lounge is very active and enjoyed by many, as the folks are very friendly there as well. The downside is for the provider ... that it is another thing for the staff to monitor. (Someone please tell me if BP has a lounge, and I've missed it, LOL!)
Anyway, I like BetterPhoto a lot and plan to stick around!

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5/31/2012 9:53:16 AM

Dana Cullen
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/20/2012
  LOL I almost wish there were a LIKE button here because all of your comments have been great!!! I want more time on here to figure stuff out, I feel like there are soooo many pics to see still....

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5/31/2012 7:12:52 PM

Christopher Budny
BetterPhoto Member Since: 10/3/2005
  Has anyone heard back from Kim, who originated this post?

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6/4/2012 8:40:46 AM

Jeff E Jensen
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/8/2008
  Yup, Dana, you made the right choice. There's plenty of friendly people here that are more than willing to share their expertise and encouragement.

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6/5/2012 3:35:54 PM

Wendy M. Hansen-Penman
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/16/2011
  I'll give the recommendation that was given to me when I signed up about a year ago.....Join one or two of the clubs. It's much easier to comment and communicate with a smaller group of people who share the same interests as you. I also scan the EPs almost daily and if I see one I can't ignore, will comment there.

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6/6/2012 10:56:04 AM

Kathryn Wesserling
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/21/2005
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Kathryn's Gallery
  My reason(s)... Caught a flu bug that has had me wiped out for over a month. FB (sure wish we had a "Like" button here, too! lolll) is a connection with many of my BP friends, also.

Here is what brought me together with so many wonderful members here (online and on-ground now, too)...

Every month, Cheri starts a new thread to let us report our EP's. Those are the pix that I head for first on which to comment which leads to return comments.

Otherwise, you'll be looking at New Arrivals (all 12,000+ of them.) And, Dana - welcome! You did pick a great place to bring your photos.

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6/13/2012 3:47:47 AM

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