Yesterday Dave Winer announced the release of FlickerFan. FlickrFan (see FlickrFan.org for product details) enables Flickr users with a MacMini connected to their TV to display photography from their Flickr Contacts. This automatic feed is actually very cool and the type of use is a really nice way of displaying some great photography in a larger format. Robert Scoble ran a quick demo and fielded questions about FlickrFan yesterday evening see the two parts of this demo on Robert’s Qik page.
There is one catch that concerns me though… one of the key behaviors of the software that Dave has produced is that photos from one’s Flickr friends are downloaded from Flickr without sensitivity to the copyright license chosen by the photographer. The last thing I want is to rain on the parade of this cool application after all the program functions only for those specified as your friends on Flickr. Even still friends also have to abide by copyright license restrictions also and the lack of logic to address this is troubling. I suppose if the images were displayed directly from Flickr it could potentially be a non-issue, but since the files are actually being copied and stored outside of Flickr on to another persons computer this becomes a problem. This also is not the only application that does this. I’ve discussed this very issue with other fans of my work on Flickr before and its an on going topic of discussion.
FlickrFan is just getting off the ground so I’m eager that Dave will be able to address the questions relating to this that I’ve sent him via Twitter. He did hear my question during the Scoble demo last night, but opted to end his call before answering. All in all I’d like to see this application get some traction as I think its very cool and would like to see it expand to other types of hardware platforms, but would like to see the licensing issue addressed first.
Dave if you’re out there I’m available to talk about this to help you out. For photographers just catching wind of this, this is a perfect example of how new delivery mechanisms tied to photo sharing sites make it a critical step to pay attention to your licensing preferences whether you’re sticking with an “All Rights Reserved” license or using a Creative Commons license.
More reviews on FlickrFan can be seen here on Dave’s web site.
[tags]Flickr, photography, Dave Winer, FlickrFan, copyright, license, photos, MacMini[/tags]