Flickr's fourth birthday "adults only"

Interesting, next week Stewart Butterfield will return to his post at Yahoo as founder of photosharing site Flickr after taking several weeks off for maternity leave.

But, if he were to try to bring his family to Flickr’s fourth birthday celebration tonight he would have gotten turned away at the door like we were.

The official Flickr invite email didn’t mention this. Hmm, at least I got a T-shirt out of it.

Anyway, competitor SmugMug invites families to its parties (and even holds camping trips for families). When we interviewed SmugMug there were even babies in their workplace (along with dogs). Both of which I thought were very cool. I guess Yahoo doesn’t allow the integration of family and work life at this level.

Competitor Zooomr is run by a 20-year-old (who was 18 when he started the company).

Some of my favorite photographers, Matt Roe being one, are even younger.

Oh, well, this motivated me to copy all my photos to SmugMug finally (which started a while back when I got a good interview with the CEO). Now I understand why thousands of people pay SmugMug to host their photos.

UPDATE: I’m not dumping Flickr, just copying my photos over to SmugMug so I can talk about SmugMug more often.

Being family supportive is important in this world, particularly with photography.

The team from Flickr blamed the venue, saying that they have insurance that only allows adults.

That’s OK, next time Flickr asks me to come and cover a new feature or something I’ll say the same thing: my venue only allows family-friendly sites.

So, what do we do when we’re kicked out of parties? We eat sushi (which we hear was a lot better than what they were serving at the Flickr party anyway).

Heheh, I did get some news from Gabe Rivera, the guy who runs TechMeme.

Comments

  1. Heh, this happened to my wife and I at another tech company’s party last year when we tried to come in with our 4-month old. The venue informed us no minors. The laws in California apparently require a venue to serve food in addition to alcohol if they want to let kids in..

    I can kinda see it when it comes to a teenager, but a 4-month old in a bjorn?

  2. Heh, this happened to my wife and I at another tech company’s party last year when we tried to come in with our 4-month old. The venue informed us no minors. The laws in California apparently require a venue to serve food in addition to alcohol if they want to let kids in..

    I can kinda see it when it comes to a teenager, but a 4-month old in a bjorn?

  3. So you’ve moved to SmugMug, because you couldn’t get into a party. Doesn’t really make much sense. It’s not like the website changed, and no longer invites families. The site is still the same

  4. So you’ve moved to SmugMug, because you couldn’t get into a party. Doesn’t really make much sense. It’s not like the website changed, and no longer invites families. The site is still the same

  5. Robert, I don’t don’t know about the official Flickr invitationtion but the event description on upcoming.org clearly stated that this was a 21 and over venue:
    http://upcoming.yahoo.com/event/428084/

    “Please note that this venue is 21 and above. You’ll need photo ID to gain admittance at the door.”

    Was this inconsistent with the official Flickr invite?

  6. Robert, I don’t don’t know about the official Flickr invitationtion but the event description on upcoming.org clearly stated that this was a 21 and over venue:
    http://upcoming.yahoo.com/event/428084/

    “Please note that this venue is 21 and above. You’ll need photo ID to gain admittance at the door.”

    Was this inconsistent with the official Flickr invite?

  7. Moving to SmugMug, on account of a party dis-invite? Callous display of ego, as most events DON’T cover families, insurance costs are too high, blame the sue-happy lawyers, plus easier per drinks and all, no ID checking. And don’t blame them if you didn’t read the instructions, I didn’t even go or care, yet I knew, I saw it on upcoming like everyone else.

    Check that ego at the doro too.

  8. Moving to SmugMug, on account of a party dis-invite? Callous display of ego, as most events DON’T cover families, insurance costs are too high, blame the sue-happy lawyers, plus easier per drinks and all, no ID checking. And don’t blame them if you didn’t read the instructions, I didn’t even go or care, yet I knew, I saw it on upcoming like everyone else.

    Check that ego at the doro too.

  9. SmugMug seems to be a great service and I sure like their business profile. It’s good there’s an alternative. But I’m far from dumping Flickr. I love Flickr.

  10. SmugMug seems to be a great service and I sure like their business profile. It’s good there’s an alternative. But I’m far from dumping Flickr. I love Flickr.

  11. Sorry to hear you didn’t make it in, would have liked to say hi.

    Actually, the cupcakes at the flickr party were fantastic. Don’t slag the flickr food.

    Though hardly dinner. We also went for sushi later.

  12. Sorry to hear you didn’t make it in, would have liked to say hi.

    Actually, the cupcakes at the flickr party were fantastic. Don’t slag the flickr food.

    Though hardly dinner. We also went for sushi later.

  13. Thomas: they gave us cupcakes and T-shirts as consolation prizes. The cupcakes were pretty good, have to admit. It’s probably good that they didn’t let me in, cause I would have had three of them, at least. Not good for my weight problem.

  14. Thomas: they gave us cupcakes and T-shirts as consolation prizes. The cupcakes were pretty good, have to admit. It’s probably good that they didn’t let me in, cause I would have had three of them, at least. Not good for my weight problem.

  15. everyone who could read knew it was for people over 21 so it seems uncool that you choose to slag them off when you made a mistake

    but they gave you cupcakes and t shirts even tho you had made the mistake.

    yeah what a horrible bunch of people i’d ditch flickr for that
    what a hprrible company for holding a free party with cupcakes and tshirts, for users, not tech people but users of a product.

    oh and stewart has been away for months not weeks

  16. everyone who could read knew it was for people over 21 so it seems uncool that you choose to slag them off when you made a mistake

    but they gave you cupcakes and t shirts even tho you had made the mistake.

    yeah what a horrible bunch of people i’d ditch flickr for that
    what a hprrible company for holding a free party with cupcakes and tshirts, for users, not tech people but users of a product.

    oh and stewart has been away for months not weeks

  17. supervery: I’ll send you the email invite they sent me. I didn’t know. If I had known, I wouldn’t have driven to San Francisco. My son gets access to lots of parties and events. This is the first time he’s been sent packing.

  18. supervery: I’ll send you the email invite they sent me. I didn’t know. If I had known, I wouldn’t have driven to San Francisco. My son gets access to lots of parties and events. This is the first time he’s been sent packing.

  19. For instance, MySpace invited me to a concert party in San Francisco a couple of weeks from now and they said Patrick could come.

    I used to plan conferences and one year we even had a 12-year-old pay his own way for a programming conference and attend with his dad.

  20. For instance, MySpace invited me to a concert party in San Francisco a couple of weeks from now and they said Patrick could come.

    I used to plan conferences and one year we even had a 12-year-old pay his own way for a programming conference and attend with his dad.

  21. Like everyone said above, looks to me like you just want an excuse to pump your new site and dis another. Although you may say no hard feelings towards Flickr you sure are trying to make a mountain out of a molehill and bring more press to your self. Glad to see you’re on the “Ego” list over at
    Alltop
    .

  22. Like everyone said above, looks to me like you just want an excuse to pump your new site and dis another. Although you may say no hard feelings towards Flickr you sure are trying to make a mountain out of a molehill and bring more press to your self. Glad to see you’re on the “Ego” list over at
    Alltop
    .

  23. Did it ever occur to you, that there are folks who don’t want to attend “family-friendly” events? As someone who made a choice not to have kids, I’m glad for the few opportunities I get to go somewhere and have adult conversations, and even a drink, without having small children run around.

    Sorry you were offended, but personally, your comparison of Smugmug’s office with the Flickr party makes me much more likely to use Flickr. (It actually makes me want to never work for SmugMug)

    Not everyone is looking for the ability to take their kids everywhere.

  24. Did it ever occur to you, that there are folks who don’t want to attend “family-friendly” events? As someone who made a choice not to have kids, I’m glad for the few opportunities I get to go somewhere and have adult conversations, and even a drink, without having small children run around.

    Sorry you were offended, but personally, your comparison of Smugmug’s office with the Flickr party makes me much more likely to use Flickr. (It actually makes me want to never work for SmugMug)

    Not everyone is looking for the ability to take their kids everywhere.

  25. Mike: did you realize that Ansel Adams two best photos were taken with his kids in tow?

    If you want an adult night out, go to a Playboy party.

    Photography should be a family affair and you should expect to have kids involved.

    Not to mention that my son isn’t your usual kid and is very respectful of adults. Even last night he didn’t get involved in trying to get into the party and waited quietly outside.

  26. Mike: did you realize that Ansel Adams two best photos were taken with his kids in tow?

    If you want an adult night out, go to a Playboy party.

    Photography should be a family affair and you should expect to have kids involved.

    Not to mention that my son isn’t your usual kid and is very respectful of adults. Even last night he didn’t get involved in trying to get into the party and waited quietly outside.

  27. Robert,

    So you’re suggesting that my desire to not have children around means I want to go to something like a Playboy party? Nice of you to make that assumption about me, really. I appreciate that.

    As for the rest of your comment back, well I have counter points, but I’m not going to waste my time here any further if that’s the way I’m going to be treated.

  28. Robert,

    So you’re suggesting that my desire to not have children around means I want to go to something like a Playboy party? Nice of you to make that assumption about me, really. I appreciate that.

    As for the rest of your comment back, well I have counter points, but I’m not going to waste my time here any further if that’s the way I’m going to be treated.

  29. Mike: yes, that’s exactly what I’m suggesting. Playboy is a brand for adults. If you say you don’t want my son around because you want to be “child free” then that’s an attack on me and my family. Have a nice day.

  30. Mike: yes, that’s exactly what I’m suggesting. Playboy is a brand for adults. If you say you don’t want my son around because you want to be “child free” then that’s an attack on me and my family. Have a nice day.

  31. Know what… that’s Flickr’s loss (and one more negative bit added to their brand imho). Flickr lost me, for good, when they continued to make boneheaded decisions about copyrights of others and kept taking the wrong side of the arguments. (yes, learned about these first through Thomas H)

    Now, I just put my stuff up on my .Mac gallery and call it a day. I don’t need a bunch of social umpf behind my photo sharing. Just access control and latitude to do what I want to (within reason). Still wishing for RAW support… someday maybe.

  32. Know what… that’s Flickr’s loss (and one more negative bit added to their brand imho). Flickr lost me, for good, when they continued to make boneheaded decisions about copyrights of others and kept taking the wrong side of the arguments. (yes, learned about these first through Thomas H)

    Now, I just put my stuff up on my .Mac gallery and call it a day. I don’t need a bunch of social umpf behind my photo sharing. Just access control and latitude to do what I want to (within reason). Still wishing for RAW support… someday maybe.

  33. To attack Flickr for having an “adults only” party is pretty ridiculous, especially since it sounds like it was initially advertised as 21+, it was a venue policy, and even after you went anyway they gave you cupcakes and shirts. I’m not sure what else you want Flickr to do to accommodate you. If Flickr wants to have their party at a place like that which serves alcohol and disallows minors, then they can do so.

    You shouldn’t expect to be able to take children everywhere, that’s the reality of our society. To suggest that someone who wants to have a party without children should go to a Playboy party is pretty ridiculous. That’s the same as me telling you to go to Chuck E. Cheese if you want to have a party with Children involved.

    People often like doing things with other adults for a variety of reasons.

    It is not an attack on you to INVITE you to a child free event. You don’t have to go. It’s their event, you may be an “A list” blogger, but not everything is created with your specific interests in mind. Just because someone doesn’t want to spend their leisure time hanging out with other people’s children doesn’t mean they dislike them or are attacking them or dislike or are attacking the parents of said children.

  34. To attack Flickr for having an “adults only” party is pretty ridiculous, especially since it sounds like it was initially advertised as 21+, it was a venue policy, and even after you went anyway they gave you cupcakes and shirts. I’m not sure what else you want Flickr to do to accommodate you. If Flickr wants to have their party at a place like that which serves alcohol and disallows minors, then they can do so.

    You shouldn’t expect to be able to take children everywhere, that’s the reality of our society. To suggest that someone who wants to have a party without children should go to a Playboy party is pretty ridiculous. That’s the same as me telling you to go to Chuck E. Cheese if you want to have a party with Children involved.

    People often like doing things with other adults for a variety of reasons.

    It is not an attack on you to INVITE you to a child free event. You don’t have to go. It’s their event, you may be an “A list” blogger, but not everything is created with your specific interests in mind. Just because someone doesn’t want to spend their leisure time hanging out with other people’s children doesn’t mean they dislike them or are attacking them or dislike or are attacking the parents of said children.

  35. You’re missing the point. The invite I got didn’t say a damn thing about being “adult only.” And, it’s inappropriate for a photo sharing site (that bans adult content, by the way) to only appeal its marketing to adults anyway. Photography is a family affair. If this were a Playboy party, I’d understand. Flickr is something that is bigger than that, in my mind.

    If the invite I had received said “adults only, thanks” then I’d probably agree with you. It didn’t. Should I send you the email?

  36. You’re missing the point. The invite I got didn’t say a damn thing about being “adult only.” And, it’s inappropriate for a photo sharing site (that bans adult content, by the way) to only appeal its marketing to adults anyway. Photography is a family affair. If this were a Playboy party, I’d understand. Flickr is something that is bigger than that, in my mind.

    If the invite I had received said “adults only, thanks” then I’d probably agree with you. It didn’t. Should I send you the email?

  37. If flickr bans adult content, they do a very poor job of it. There’s porn all over the place there

  38. If flickr bans adult content, they do a very poor job of it. There’s porn all over the place there

  39. In fact, having read the community guidelines and yahoo’s TOS, I see nothing to back up your claim. More spouting about things you’re not sure about?

  40. In fact, having read the community guidelines and yahoo’s TOS, I see nothing to back up your claim. More spouting about things you’re not sure about?

  41. Hmm.. I was kinda laughing along with you at the beginning of the comment thread Robert, but you are fighting so hard on this that I am in disagreement with you. When it comes to companies and their parties, the DEFAULT is that its not kid-friendly, and I am surprised that you don’t assume this…

  42. Hmm.. I was kinda laughing along with you at the beginning of the comment thread Robert, but you are fighting so hard on this that I am in disagreement with you. When it comes to companies and their parties, the DEFAULT is that its not kid-friendly, and I am surprised that you don’t assume this…

  43. Jeremy: I’ve taken my son to dozens of events and this is the first time he’s been unwelcome (or I wasn’t warned ahead of time). I guess the brand promise of Flickr just made it sound like something where kids would be celebrated. No biggie, it got me off my ass to look at the competition again (which is VERY nice) and it also got me to realize I’m going to have to ask every time to avoid wasting time. Either way, I had a nice evening with my son and saw a movie I wouldn’t have seen if they had let me in.

  44. Jeremy: I’ve taken my son to dozens of events and this is the first time he’s been unwelcome (or I wasn’t warned ahead of time). I guess the brand promise of Flickr just made it sound like something where kids would be celebrated. No biggie, it got me off my ass to look at the competition again (which is VERY nice) and it also got me to realize I’m going to have to ask every time to avoid wasting time. Either way, I had a nice evening with my son and saw a movie I wouldn’t have seen if they had let me in.

  45. I guess I’m missing why having a corporate/users party at a “21 & up” venue is a misstep. When the invite was posted five weeks ago, it was pretty clear — 21 and up.

    I think it would be a mistake to infer some kind of wide-ranging anti-family agenda.

  46. I guess I’m missing why having a corporate/users party at a “21 & up” venue is a misstep. When the invite was posted five weeks ago, it was pretty clear — 21 and up.

    I think it would be a mistake to infer some kind of wide-ranging anti-family agenda.

  47. Deciding unilaterally that “Photography should be family friendly” seems like a big jump. I’m sure more than just “families” use “photography” for things.

    You sound like a petulant jerk: “It wasn’t the way I wanted it to be, so it sucks and should be changed.”

    Honestly, you’re becoming more histrionic by the day.

  48. Deciding unilaterally that “Photography should be family friendly” seems like a big jump. I’m sure more than just “families” use “photography” for things.

    You sound like a petulant jerk: “It wasn’t the way I wanted it to be, so it sucks and should be changed.”

    Honestly, you’re becoming more histrionic by the day.

  49. Just a reminder: adults only is not enough. It should explicitly say 21+ – because for international visitors this may come as a surprise if they do not know about the strict requirement to be 21.

    In Germany one is considered adult by 18 – and I know more than one story where people had a bad time in their visit to the states because they could not enjoy their time because suddenly they where “childreen” again.

    Wether or not an evening pary (it was, right?) is the right space for somebody like Patrick, it should have said so on the invitation just to avoid problems even with some older guys who are like 20. :)

  50. Just a reminder: adults only is not enough. It should explicitly say 21+ – because for international visitors this may come as a surprise if they do not know about the strict requirement to be 21.

    In Germany one is considered adult by 18 – and I know more than one story where people had a bad time in their visit to the states because they could not enjoy their time because suddenly they where “childreen” again.

    Wether or not an evening pary (it was, right?) is the right space for somebody like Patrick, it should have said so on the invitation just to avoid problems even with some older guys who are like 20. :)

  51. Have we seen a copy of said invite?

    Since you push Upcoming to know where to find you, when marking “attend” on the event, did the invite change from what’s there now? Pretty clearly states “Please note that this venue is 21 and above. You’ll need photo ID to gain admittance at the door.”

  52. Have we seen a copy of said invite?

    Since you push Upcoming to know where to find you, when marking “attend” on the event, did the invite change from what’s there now? Pretty clearly states “Please note that this venue is 21 and above. You’ll need photo ID to gain admittance at the door.”

  53. I’d be happy to email it to you. I don’t remember it saying 21-and-over when I clicked Approve on Upcoming. I add dozens of stuff to my Upcoming calendar every night and might have forgotten. The email was the one that was in my face, and was on my calendar.

  54. I’d be happy to email it to you. I don’t remember it saying 21-and-over when I clicked Approve on Upcoming. I add dozens of stuff to my Upcoming calendar every night and might have forgotten. The email was the one that was in my face, and was on my calendar.

  55. Nicole: it was a Saturday evening party, which threw me off even more. I thought they were doing that so families could celebrate Flickr’s Fourth Birthday. The fact that it was a birthday party threw me off, too. If it were a press conference it’d have been on Tuesday evening and I probably would never have wanted to bring Patrick to it. Patrick loves Flickr, so we thought it’d be really fun to go.

  56. Nicole: it was a Saturday evening party, which threw me off even more. I thought they were doing that so families could celebrate Flickr’s Fourth Birthday. The fact that it was a birthday party threw me off, too. If it were a press conference it’d have been on Tuesday evening and I probably would never have wanted to bring Patrick to it. Patrick loves Flickr, so we thought it’d be really fun to go.

  57. @Robert, come on man, this is ridiculous. You said:

    > “If you want an adult night out, go to a Playboy party.”

    Wow. So when my wife and I leave the baby with the in-laws and head out with another couple to get away from the kids for a while, the only viable destination has to be sponsored by Playboy? Or when I want date night with the wife, the movie we see should be softcore porn? That’s beyond foolish, and hopefully you don’t actually mean it.

    “Photography should be a family affair and you should expect to have kids involved.”

    This seems fairly obvious, but you know that Photography and Flickr aren’t one in the same, right? That’d be like saying the Facebook party at SXSW equates to the use of social networking.

    (As a side note, I didn’t hear you complaining about kids not being allowed at the FB SXSW party…)

    “Not to mention that my son isn’t your usual kid and is very respectful of adults. Even last night he didn’t get involved in trying to get into the party and waited quietly outside.”

    Bravo. You’ve taught your kid great manners, congrats. Seriously. But beyond that, A-List power doesn’t (or shouldn’t) equate to different treatment.

    The craziest thing in this thread, however is this line:
    “If you say you don’t want my son around because you want to be ‘child free’ then that’s an attack on me and my family.”

    Absolutely, unquestionably false. Wrong, wrong, wrong. This is an aggressively foolish argument to try to make – no one is “attacking” you, your son, or your family by saying they want to attend an event free of kids. They’re simply saying that at a bar on a Saturday night, there’s an assumption by *most* people that kids are not included.

    I honestly can’t believe we’re having this discussion…

  58. @Robert, come on man, this is ridiculous. You said:

    > “If you want an adult night out, go to a Playboy party.”

    Wow. So when my wife and I leave the baby with the in-laws and head out with another couple to get away from the kids for a while, the only viable destination has to be sponsored by Playboy? Or when I want date night with the wife, the movie we see should be softcore porn? That’s beyond foolish, and hopefully you don’t actually mean it.

    “Photography should be a family affair and you should expect to have kids involved.”

    This seems fairly obvious, but you know that Photography and Flickr aren’t one in the same, right? That’d be like saying the Facebook party at SXSW equates to the use of social networking.

    (As a side note, I didn’t hear you complaining about kids not being allowed at the FB SXSW party…)

    “Not to mention that my son isn’t your usual kid and is very respectful of adults. Even last night he didn’t get involved in trying to get into the party and waited quietly outside.”

    Bravo. You’ve taught your kid great manners, congrats. Seriously. But beyond that, A-List power doesn’t (or shouldn’t) equate to different treatment.

    The craziest thing in this thread, however is this line:
    “If you say you don’t want my son around because you want to be ‘child free’ then that’s an attack on me and my family.”

    Absolutely, unquestionably false. Wrong, wrong, wrong. This is an aggressively foolish argument to try to make – no one is “attacking” you, your son, or your family by saying they want to attend an event free of kids. They’re simply saying that at a bar on a Saturday night, there’s an assumption by *most* people that kids are not included.

    I honestly can’t believe we’re having this discussion…

  59. Jake: it wasn’t a bar. I looked in and it looked more like a museum to me with more than 2,000 photos being displayed. It wasn’t a “drinking fest” it was a celebration of four years of Flickr.

    But, no matter, I’m not arguing with you guys anymore. The real mistake is the invite didn’t say anything about it being 21-and-older and I didn’t think that it was going to be adult-only, so I didn’t ask.

    Funny enough, MySpace is throwing a party with a band and a DJ and a bar and all that and they said “all ages welcome.” I guess you better not come to that, since people who want to live life without being surrounded by kids won’t be happy there.

    Kids weren’t allowed at the Facebook party? Hmmm, I saw many 18 year olds there. The one thing I should have complained about is not being able to take my backpack into that one. But, I couldn’t really complain because I got an email that said “don’t bring bags.”

  60. Jake: it wasn’t a bar. I looked in and it looked more like a museum to me with more than 2,000 photos being displayed. It wasn’t a “drinking fest” it was a celebration of four years of Flickr.

    But, no matter, I’m not arguing with you guys anymore. The real mistake is the invite didn’t say anything about it being 21-and-older and I didn’t think that it was going to be adult-only, so I didn’t ask.

    Funny enough, MySpace is throwing a party with a band and a DJ and a bar and all that and they said “all ages welcome.” I guess you better not come to that, since people who want to live life without being surrounded by kids won’t be happy there.

    Kids weren’t allowed at the Facebook party? Hmmm, I saw many 18 year olds there. The one thing I should have complained about is not being able to take my backpack into that one. But, I couldn’t really complain because I got an email that said “don’t bring bags.”