Yahoo has had a busy week. On Monday, it announced the acquisition of blogging platform Tumblr for a reported $1.1bn and it launched a revamped version of its photo hosting site, Flickr. This was acquired by the company in 2005, and has been left pretty much untouched ever since. The redesign has changed the layout of the site and will give users the option of a free, advertising supported account with 1TB of online storage or a paid account that will cost $49.99/year and offers ad-free browsing. The current Pro account offered both unlimited uploads and ad free browsing for $24.95/year.
The rational for this change was laid out by Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer at a press conference in New York yesterday. She claimed that the company wants “to make Flickr awesome again”. She went on to say that: “There’s no such thing as Flickr Pro today because [with so many people taking photographs] there’s really no such thing as professional photographers anymore,” although she acknowledged that there are photographers with “different skill levels”.
It seems that Yahoo’s goal for Flickr is for it to be monetized by advertising revenue that it will receive due to its synergy with Tumblr. They obviously feel that “professional” content is not needed to drive the required traffic their way, in fact they seem to feel that this content doesn’t actually exist! Their plan seems unclear as to why people will visit a photo sharing site if there aren’t good images for them to look at when they get there? Perhaps Ms Mayer’s quote should read that there are no such thing as a professional photographer on Flickr anymore?