Digital cameras are now increasingly common, but as most users of them know, the memory cards on most are far from large, and many users find themselves with thousands of unorganized photos all over their PC. This becomes a problem when people would like to easily share photos with each other. Because emailing photo files can be troublesome - the files are large, and sending them to a large group of people can be a hassle, services such have flickr have been created, which make this process easier for the average user.
Flickr is a free service, and it is designed to allow people to easily store, organize, and share photos with others. To use the service, a user must go to flickr.com and sign up for a free account, in much the same way that someone would sign up for a free email account. Once an account is created storage space is allocated for the user at flickr.com, and they may use this space to upload their digital photos and to organize them.
One of the nicest features of flicker is that it makes it very easy for people to share picture with large groups of friends. A flickr user can simply point a friends to their flickr account where they may view the photos they have posted. What this means is that almost anyone can have a sort of photo blog or photo website without having to pay for webspace or having the technical knowhow required to build and maintain a website. Once a flickr account has been set-up it's easy for users to compare their best flickr photos with each other by directing people to their best flickr pages.
The flickr website is part of a larger growing trend in digital media: sharing. One of the most fun things about conventional photography is that all pictures are always developed, and so sharing is simply a matter of physically showing the recipient the desired photos. In the early days of digital photography, it was difficult to share in this way because photo printers at the time were very expensive (and even today most many PC users have no printers at all). Photo files tended to be large by normal standards, and thus emailing them (especially before the advent of email accounts with large amounts of storage space like gmail etc. . . ) was often a difficult task. But recent development, of which flickr is a prime example, have finally closed one of the last remaining gaps between digital and traditional photography: the ability to easily share and store photos. Rather than digital photos being scattered randomly thought the users hard drive, as the case used to be, they can be well organized and displayed on a flicker account.
Flicker, obviously, has attracted the attention of many hobbyist photographers, but it also servers a purpose for the occasional picture snapper: you only need one photo to set up a flickr page, and by quickly setting up an account someone can easily share even a single group photo (from a party or event for example) with his or her friends.
Right now, flickr is the most popular site for the storage and display of photos, but as this trend continues to grow, only time and the fickle nature of the internet will tell if the situation remains that way.