Even before my son was born, I was stuck with the dilemma of how to show everyone who wanted to see photos, the photos I took. I’m a very security minded person, and the last thing I want to do is put my son in the public eye. It is fine if I do it, but my son, should have at least a choice. Children born in the Facebook era, are in the public spotlight from when they are born. By the age of thirteen, when they are finally able to use the internet, most of their milestones have been publicly documented (including the answers to their security questions).
I am really against all the moms and dads that lost their individuality because they want to everyone to see photos of their kids. I’m friends with the adults, not the child(ren). I don’t mean to sound harsh, but I when there are facebook extensions to remove baby pictures, I think it cross the line into a ‘thing.’
With security being the enemy of convenience, I have to manage both. I need to make it easy for people to access and easy for me to post, but I make sure it is secure. I don’t want the photos easily accessible by people I don’t want. Rolling my own photo service makes viewing photos a burden, but I control who sees it. Using an ubiquitous service makes it easily accessible to all, but not secure. With all the public services, I am aware that nothing will do everything what I want, nor will they not be stealing my (child’s) information.
The other issue that I have is I don’t want all my ‘friends’ seeing the photos. I only want a certain subset of them (close friends and family) to see the photos. On an aside, I find it strange by how many people want to see baby photos. Maybe I’m weird. I understand babies are cute, but I don’t need millions of photos. I really want the control. Control is more important that simple.
I’ve decided to use Google+, not because I’m a fanboy. I decided because I think Google took the right approach in sharing. The circle concept has been very successful, and from privacy settings were apparent from the start. People who want photos can get it, and those who don’t won’t. The photo editing has only been getting better, and the album view has really improved. I can also share out of Google+ without a hassle. I can take an album and set permissions to only people with said link.
Not to mention that Google Glass integrates very well with Google+. The photos get backed up, and easily allow sharing from all my devices.
Dropbox has also emerged as a competitor in a different way. I give family a link to the shared folder. In the meantime, any photo my wife and I upload we stick in dropbox. My family can then see all the photos. I can sort of do the same with others, but it gets to be cumbersome.
If you have spoken to me at all regarding my social networking habits you know that I am not a fan of Facebook. I’ve gotten to a point that I some photos, some public knowledge information, and almost no details about myself. I purely use it for Facebook Messenger, and to keep in touch with friends. I don’t have my favorite books, or movies. I don’t have more than a handful of photos. I reject most tags of myself, and refuse to allow anything other than some innocuous posts. I just don’t trust Facebook. There were always security and privacy concerns that have always rubbed me the wrong way. With that said, I don’t want pictures of my child on there.
Because I have to use Facebook if I want my friends and family to see my photos, I will link the G+ album to a Facebook post. It is the easiest way of posting on facebook, but leaving it without content. Facebook to my knowledge doesn’t scrape the photos of a link.
Twitter is just not an option. The feature set does not allow albums.
Instagram also has the same problem as twitter.
Flickr was an option, and a decent one at that. However, I was never a Flickr fan, nor are any of my friends. Plus the pro account, costs money. So while Flickr should be the obvious choice, nobody, not even me uses, Flickr. So many years of neglect, didn’t help either.
My personal site was an option, but there is too much overhead for me. There is too much work for me for a photo here or there.
After rambling, it is important to remember that I want to keep the photos and exposure of my child as controlled as possible.