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A buck load of photos

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Photobucket is a website that allows It’s users to host images, videos, photo albums, create slideshows of the photos that have uploaded and photo sharing. It was funded back in 2003 by Darren Crystal and Alex Welch. In 2009, it was sold to a Seattle company called Ontela. Today, it has more than 23 million unique users every month in the US who upload more than 4 million images and videos on the website.

Why use Photobucket?

Most people who have access to online forums will know very well about the pictures displayed on their avatars. Photobucket allows the user to host image files (normally resized or scaled down to fit the requirements of a small file size) onto the forum’s website, displaying the picture that the user intends to deliver to its audience. This transferring of image files from Photobucket applies to forum posts as well.

What it does basically is that after the user has uploaded the picture that he or she wants Photobucket to host, an image tag or code will be generated and this is tagged to the picture. With this code, the user can go to the forum and simply paste this link which will retrieve the image from Photobucket and display it. Below is an example of an image code:


[img] and [/img] are the opening and closing tags while the link inside represents the image being hosted by Photobucket user which was uploaded by the user.

Of course, Photobucket’s services are not only limited to online forums. Social networking platforms such as MySpace and Facebook or eBay, blogs etc. are integrated with Photobucket.

Key Features:

  • Upload pictures/videos
  • Photo editing
  • Create and organise albums/slideshows/scrapbooks
  • View photo and video stats such as number of views
  • Share data with friends/families and other websites

So how does Photobucket contribute to the harnessing of collective intelligence?

Users add value to the website. Uploading of all types of pictures such as advertisement covers, photography albums, animated GIF files, avatar images, wallpapers etc. There will be a wide selection of pictures being shared throughout Photobucket where users can view the slideshows and albums of other users.

The more users they have, the more pictures we can find. Therefore the website creates a large network or pool of image files for its users to share. Photobucket also benefits from having multiple platforms such as mobile apps. Users can access the images on their smartphones.

Photobucket involve users explicitly. Users can add, remove, tag and edit the photos they have uploaded. Creating scrapbooks, albums and slideshows are examples of how they can organise, edit and share their photos.

It also  involve users implicitly. Other users can see what the uploader of the picture has been up to, where he went or what he did. It can also be a case where the user showcases his designs or creative talents through those images he has uploaded.

Lastly, it rewards the user. Purely and simply, it is free to store your pictures upon initial signing up. They can get going as soon as the registration of the account is done with no charges. Users achieve its primary goals with no fuss at all.

Video demo on Photobucket:


6 responses »

  1. darkwaterhorses

    Neat blog post.

    ‘Photobucket’ is definitely a neat application and I wouldn’t mind using it extensively to share it amongst my online peers as well as keeping a collection of photos. I simply see this application as a direct competitor to ‘Flickr’ which I believe provides more access to photos and connects with more online users.

    I had a browse around both ‘Photobucket’ and ‘Flickr’ applications and greatly noticed a comparison between each application when signing up. ‘Photobucket’ only link with people who are connected with ‘Facebook’ but ‘Flickr’ takes a more diverse approach by linking with ‘Facebook’, ‘Gmail’ and ‘Yahoo’ account users.

    ‘Photobucket’ doesn’t have that leverage to attract more users and when it does find that connection to a broader audience, then you would probably more user involvement and hence more photos being uploaded. At the moment, ‘Flickr’ does still have that marginal lead over ‘Photobucket’ but they still have a good portion of the photo sharing market.

  2. @darkwaterhorses: thanks for your comment! i have to agree with you that flickr does have the upper hand right now. Currently it is still playing second fiddle to flickr and the potential to overtake them remains to be seen.

  3. Theres alot of photo sharing application around. Eg Flicr, photobucket,google piccasa. Which one u think has better potential to attract more people to use it?

  4. I tried looking for the Southwest Airline tweet. I had some difficulty in my search. I liked your topic of discussion. I am new to twitter. So it is motivational to some of the big players using it.


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