POTD Guide: Input, Please

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Designer Dale, Feb 23, 2010.

  1. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #1
    Hi, folks. I have been approached by a forum member to assemble some sort of user guide for POTD. I ran the idea past some of the regulars and they think it would be a good idea. The current thread started in May of 2006 and has one rule. Guess what it is?

    We need to have two components to something like this to make it effective. One is policies (what to do) and the other is procedures (how to do it). Saying " large images" won't help the person who doesn't know what an [IMG] tag is to start with. No joking here.

    So, what do you think? Here is what has been brought up for starters.

    [I][U]Policies[/U][/I]
    One photo per day. Not one post with a gazillion photos per day…
    Images must be SFW (Safe For Work-environment computer).
    [img] tag all quotes.
    Use multi-quote.

    [U][I]Procedures[/I][/U]
    How to link images from online sources (Flickr, etc.).
    How to [img] tag photos.
    How to use multi-quote.

    I can put all of the last section in a PDF with guidelines and screenshots that could be linked to the post. Either one PDF or seperate ones for each topic. Perhaps titled The Visual Guide to Photo of the Day.

    So what have I missed? What would you like to see? Would you even like to see something like this? It could be either a sticky or just a post to copy and paste to the first page of each month like the Desktop thread.

    The floor is yours.

    Dale
     
  2. Ruahrc macrumors 65816

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    #2
    Here's one suggestion:

    As a thread which would expect to contain a lot of images, it might be good to enforce a pixel dimension limit just so that people won't post very large images and ruining the scrollbar of the thread, as well as keep some consistency within every image. Linking to an off-site larger version is fine but the one shown in the thread should be a standard size (say 800 or 1000px wide, maximum) so that it cuts down on the scrolling.

    In light of this, forcing everyone to TIMG everything might not be a good idea though because then one would have to click every image in order to see them at a reasonable size. But keeping a standard size limit will allow you to view all the photos in a consistent manner, and if the poster so chooses they can link to a larger version off-site in order to show off a greater amount of detail.

    Ruahrc
     
  3. NathanCH macrumors 65816

    NathanCH

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    #3
    Hmm yeah, there needs to be an in-between of and [img]. Tiny image is just way too small for a thread like this. But I guess it's not a big deal if we just make sure to resize our images. One useful method is to use FlickR which automatically resizes your images for you.

    Another thing that we should encourage (but not require) is a background story of the image, and maybe even how you took it. To me it adds a lot to the photo.
     
  4. Designer Dale thread starter macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #4
    I ment that image quotes should be TIMG, thus quotes can have the visual reference but not take up so much screen space. I agree with limiting pixel dimensions. I find that any vertical dimension of a file that is greater than 800px forces me to scroll on my 23in widescreen. I watch that when I prep an image to post. I use ImageShack and they allow you to set a resize for posts. I size mine for 15in screens.

     
  5. pit29 macrumors 6502a

    pit29

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    #5
    I haven't contributed much to POTD yet, but followed for some time now. I definitively plan to do so once I find some more time to shoot, so I'd find a guide helpful.

    If I understand the /[img] issue correctly, this applies only if I want to link to pics that are already online somewhere. Is there a best method to post images that are not online? As attachment / inline? Any preferred dimensions here?

    Probably a "how do I post an image" guide would make for a nice sticky in this forum even on it's own!
     
  6. mtbdudex macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

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    #6
    thoughts:
    • Is POTD DSLR only or any digital image?( P&S, scanned film, etc)
    • Should there be any time limit on how "old" an image can be for POTD posting? I've tried to keep mine there "recent", say up to 30-45 days old.....I can hear arguments for not restricting but want to have some guideline
    • 100% SFW rule agreed
    • Personally I like to see the picture to absorb it's imagery into my mindset, then read the "story behind the image" if the poster feels worthwhile to post. Sometimes its best to have just the image. Posting some story should be optional, with it after the image if posted.
    • If people want to share more picts I've seen people post a whole series of picts, 1 a day. This something to keep or suggest they post them in an online album and post link to album or even a separate thread here. Example: I made a "moon shot" thread to keep those out of POTD.
     
  7. kallisti macrumors 65816

    kallisti

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    #7
    Thanks Dale :) I think this info will be very helpful for this forum.

    I think the TIMG thing is intended for quoting other images in the thread, not as a requirement for an original image post. Hitting the quote button to comment on an image reproduces a full size image instead of a thumbnail--which makes the thread tough to read. I've been guilty of this before I learned about the TIMG thing. Multi-quote is similar. Makes the thread easier to read though it can be a bit tricky to figure out how to do it.

    As far as size for original images, I link to the "large" size on Flickr. Seems to be about right.

    Thanks again Dale. You got yourself into this by posting that you already had a PDF with instructions for posting and linking images from online sites.

    Once you know how to do all this, it's easy. But it isn't intuitive when you are trying to figure it out.
     
  8. Ruahrc macrumors 65816

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    #8
    Yeah I understood the OP as written. I was just heading off in advance the obvious response to pixel limiting which in my mind was "well then why don't we just force everyone to TIMG their pics" :) I do agree that quotes should be TIMG'd, or if possible hidden altogether. On another forum I browse the have
    and
    tags which will hide anything between them unless you press the "spoiler" button that gets put inline with the text.

    Ruahrc
     
  9. Designer Dale thread starter macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #9
     
  10. oblomow macrumors 68020

    oblomow

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    #10
    I think you should quote the original post by the godfather of this thread: iGary. many moons ago. To give things a historical perspective.
     
  11. Designer Dale thread starter macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #11
    This is the original POTD post. Do you mean include it in the Guide I'm working on or just quote it here for reference? Arn converted it to the Monthly format we use today.

    Dale
     
  12. Designer Dale thread starter macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #12
    Here is my current draft.

    Welcome to the Photo of the Day Users Guide. The POTD thread was opened by iGary in May, 2006 and converted to a monthly thread in November 2007 by Arn. It continues to be one of the most popular picture groups in the MacRumors forums.

    Photo of the Day is meant to be a showcase for your best pictures without limit to your gear, just your creativity. P&S and film cameras are welcome along with DSLRs. There is no time limit or theme as in the Fortnightly Challenge and Weekly Contest. No winners (or losers), either.

    This Guide consists of two components, Policies (what to do) and Procedures (step-by-step guides on how to do those things). Procedures is a work in progress at this time. Here are the Policies.

    *One Photo per Day - Don't post multiple images in one message.

    *Make your Photos Accessible - Post images that are sized so that they can be viewed without scrolling on most monitors. Size them to around 1024 X 620 pixels before upload to MR or use the Large/Medium links available on Flickr. ImageShack allows you to Size for Monitors. Pick 15 or 17 in.

    *SFW (Safe for Work) Only) - This is a family environment, it you wouldn't have it for view in a public place, then it's NSFW (not safe for work). Think before you post.

    *Quote with Thumbnails - If you want to quote an image with a question of comment, feel free to do so. If the image has tags, convert them to [img] tags before replying. This will post your comment with a thumbnail of the photo and save space.

    [U][I]*Use Multi-Quote[/I][/U] - If you want to comment on several photos, click the Multi-Quote button to do so. This will put all of your comments in one post. The Moderators like that. Observe the [img] policy here, too (especially).

    [I][U]*Observe Copyright[/U][/I] - The photos seen here are the property of the photographer. Don't alter or use an image without permission.

    That's six. Too many?

    Dale
     
  13. Ruahrc macrumors 65816

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    #13
    I think 680 vertical is a little harsh for those who are posting portrait-aspect pictures. Then their tiny 400x600 shots begin to pale in comparison to the next guy's 1000x600 panorama. One alternative is to go 800pixels (or whatever) maximum dimension? I also am a little biased in that I often browse on a monitor rotated to portrait mode so tall pictures bother me less than wide ones :).

    A note about not copying people's pictures is a good idea, although I'm not sure it will have any real effect other than to show visitors/participants to the thread that creative integrity is to be taken seriously here.

    Regarding the EXIF, which is a great idea, I can see it going in two ways. One would be to limit the EXIF to relevant shooting data only, in the interest of keeping things on topic and not devolve (too often at least) into discussions about gear rather than the pictures. Focal length, shutter speed, aperture, and perhaps ISO are all that is really needed. Otherwise if you start listing you might get a lot of descriptions of gear like "5DMk2 (loaded with custom firmware) with 70-200L on a gizto tripod using a manfrotto ballhead and RRS clamps, color balanced with a colorchecker passport" etc. a lot of which really does not add to the photo or its description. That is not to say that more detailed info cannot be shared when appropriate (example if you shot a multi-frame panorama, or underwater, or a technically challenging shot, etc) but by encouraging everyone to keep it brief it might help steer conversation away from too much equipment talk.

    The other way is to allow gear mentions more like the original POTD listing in order to stave off the inevitable "Ooh 70mm @ f2.8 now was that the 24-70 or the 70-200?" type replies that might otherwise unnecessarily clog the thread. I guess perhaps the best solution might just be to not really require a given format but remind posters that the spirit of the thread is mainly to share and discuss pictures not to talk gear. There are plenty of other threads for that :)

    Ruahrc
     
  14. Designer Dale thread starter macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #14
    Yes. I use 800 for my portraits, too. I don't pay much attention to my landscapes.

    Yes, folks will mess with noses anyway. I just think people should be reminded/informed that photos belong to people. Even of the Net...

    Yes, I forgot about that in my draft. That's why they call it a draft, it will get blown away:). Camera data is nice but can get way too detailed. I have a program called EXIF Viewer. Before I post an image I drag it to the app and copy/paste the following line: EXIF Summary: 1/125s f/8.0 ISO100 46mm. I can find more info from a photo using this, but that's all I'm interested in. A summery. Maybe we could define "summery" to these parameters and alloy users to post what they want, like pdxflint.

    The original was:
    Camera: Canon EOS 20D
    ISO: 400
    Focal Length: 220mm
    Shutter/Aperture: 1/1000 @ f11
    Lens: EF 100-400L f4.5-5.6 IS USM

    Maybe establish this as a maximum.

    Dale
     
  15. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

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    #15
    Yes, you probably can leave out the requirements that are already in place for all MacRumors forums (e.g. must be safe for work, use multi-quote, etc.).
     
  16. pdxflint macrumors 68020

    pdxflint

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    #16
    Speaking of the exif information... I usually try to include the basics as a matter of habit. Usually it's the camera, ISO, exposure/f-stop, focal length. I used to include the actual lens used, and think that would also be acceptable without being too much "gear" information. If it's done using the size 1 type and gray text color it doesn't intrude much - at least that's my goal. But I can think of many times when I have been curious as to what was used to make a photo, and this keeps me from having to ask the question. This information can be very helpful for people thinking of what equipment to buy, or to understand what certain types of lenses are capable of.

    I don't think we need to make this a rule, but simply encourage people to share a bit more information. I do think many pics stand on their own as images (Doylem, Designer Dale, Phrasikleia, Maxxamillian, theReef, and countless others.) But plenty of folks do write a bit about their photo which can provide additional interest.

    In a nutshell, try to think of questions people might ask about your picture, and answer them ahead of time in the original post. It might cut down on a few extraneous posts along the way...

    I want to commend Dale on taking on this little (maybe not so little... ;)) project. Cheers.
    -phil

    Edit: I also think the one-pic-per day rule should be a bit flexible, and if someone has not posted a pic for several days, we should accept perhaps a couple of pics on a given day or so, just not in the same post, or one right after the other - but during the same day should be okay. Basically you can see if you're overdoing it by counting how many photos you've posted compared to how many days the threads been running. Almost nobody ever posts 30 pics a month anyway. I'd say a limit of an "average" of 1 pic a day would keep things in the spirit of the thread... The bottom line that we gently self-police, not enforce some mandated rule. Maybe the "rule" could be: Only one photo per post, no consecutive photos posted, and total pics posted not to exceed the current number of days the thread has been running (running average.) Whew! It just sounds so complicated as I try to write it, when it's really an easy concept...:eek:;)
     
  17. Designer Dale thread starter macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #17
    I can cut it to this by striking the things people won't pay attention to anyway and the MR site-wide rules. I can still include multi-quote in the PDF. Some people need to be shown where those button are and how they work.

    R-2

    *One Photo per Day - Don't post multiple images in one message.

    *Make your Photos Accessible - Post images that are sized so that they can be viewed without scrolling on most monitors. Size them to a height no greater than 800 pixels.

    *SFW (Safe for Work) only)

    *Quote with Thumbnails - If you want to quote an image with a question of comment, feel free to do so. If the image has tags, convert them to [img] tags before replying. This will post your comment with a thumbnail of the photo and save space.

    [COLOR="Silver"]*Use Multi-Quote

    *Observe Copyright[/COLOR]

    That's three.

    ATT Phil: Where do you get your EXIF from? Do you fill it in by hand or is it copy/paste from an app?

    Dale
     
  18. pdxflint macrumors 68020

    pdxflint

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    #18
    I have been linking to images from Picasaweb, and it's an easy copy/paste from one webpage to another. I'm gradually moving things to Flickr and it's not anywhere as straightforward, so it's almost as fast to just type it. I'm looking at the exif from the app as I do this. LR 3 (beta) which I'm playing with has great exif displayed, but I haven't figured out how to copy/paste from it yet.

    Note on Picasaweb albums: The biggest sized image I can link to is 800px (either wide or tall, depending on orientation) and it's in the url image code. I tried changing it, but it defaults to 800 or smaller. Flickr lets me link an image at 1024px (long side) as many of you already know. I think that is a much better size for certain types of photos, so I'd go along with a size limit of 1024px in the longest dimension. It should display okay on a 13" screen and looks great on a 15.4" screen (1440 x 900.)

    I also wrote a rambling edit to my previous post, just some thoughts on the 1 a day limits...
     
  19. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

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    #19
    That seems like a nice, pithy list, Dale.

    As for the EXIF data, I only ever post it as text if for some reason my image doesn't have the info intact (which is very rare). I make sure that my camera data is in there, and then all someone needs to do is run the image through an EXIF viewer, and they can get more info on it than they would ever want. "Jeffrey's" EXIF Viewer gives the exact lens used, the focus distance, and all sorts of gory details. So in my view it's redundant to post that info if it's already in the file, and doing so just clutters up the page.
     
  20. Designer Dale thread starter macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #20
    ^^^ Regarding your quote, I still think we should stick to one per day. I can see situations where someone has two to post for comparison reasons, and they will probably do that anyway. If we get to flexible things can get out of hand. My vertical size in 1080 and a pic over 850px forces me to scroll. Take into account the other stuff on the screen and 800 high is about it for me.

    ^^^ Pithy? I had to look that up to be sure I wasn't offending anyone. You sure do keep me from going vocabulary deficient :)

    I'm a bit up in the air...elevated to the upper reaches of the troposphere over the need for including the details by which the camera and lens...optical element configuration collaborated to yield the ...ummm picture.

    Those of us who post it will. I think we should leave that as a personal choice. We need to recognize the thread starter, but not necessarily continue all of the traditions. A lot of the images in the original thread have camera data, but it looks like it's added as an afterthought and doesn't enhance the photo.

    Dale
     
  21. mtbdudex macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

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    #21
    Side note:
    Prior I could upload picts larger than s800 to Picasa but Google Picasa seemed to limit pict size displayed to s800.
    Recently (and quietly) seems they have allowed posting up to s1600 size picts.
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?p=9337721#post9337721
     
  22. pdxflint macrumors 68020

    pdxflint

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    #22
    That's fine... if you assume everyone already knows the information is embedded there, and how to get at it... which seems like more of a "geeky" thing than just seeing a few lines of basic info right under the photo. Not all folks will think of this, and the mere idea of having to continuously answer the questions about, "How did you get that information... etc., etc..." seems like more cause for clutter than any posted exif info. Heck, most photography magazines include this kind of info about the photos right there on the page, and it seems like something most photographers (as compared to just folks looking at photos who don't actually take photos) might already be quite used to seeing, and find useful.

    Then there's the issue of whether or not the exif is even embedded there. Try using Exif Viewer on my posts - you won't find anything there. It's not anything I did, it's just that it gets lost somewhere between my computer, picasaweb.google.com, and macrumors.com. There is no consistency there at all, so I include the most basic information as a courtesy because it's something I would find interesting to know myself. Sometimes I include a few words about the photo or the process (maybe the journalist coming out... ;))

    If we want to talk about clutter... let's talk signatures, which go with every post, and are about as redundant as can be. Heck, I've even got one. :eek:
     
  23. Designer Dale thread starter macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #23
    I'll include guidelines for exif data, what it is and how to find it, but I think it should be optional.

    Dale
     
  24. oblomow macrumors 68020

    oblomow

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    #24
    Both I guess. Adding a small description to the photo and exif looks like a good idea. And quoting it as a reference how it all started is interesting for historical reasons. ( if we look back at this thread and your guide when we're old and wise).
     
  25. Ish macrumors 68000

    Ish

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    #25
    I think this is a great idea, Dale, and thanks for taking it on! I'd leave the list the length you originally made it: 1. it keeps all the information together in one place, 2. someone might not have looked at the MR site-wide rules 3. We can't assume it will be ignored. If it's not in the sticky, then they certainly won't be paying attention to it! At least they will have read it and know what's expected.

    Suggest that when you're talking about multi-quote you show a little pic of the button. This guide is for people who haven't done this much/before so we can't assume they know how.

    I like the request to use tags when quoting. I prefer this to not showing the photo at all unless posting immediately after. Occasionally someone will comment on a picture that's a way back and then you have to start hunting if you want to know what they're talking about.


    The 'How to post a picture' is another great idea and I think they'd both be good as stickies in this thread.

    I'm currently psyching myself up to start posting in this thread but my efforts aren't up to the quality of most of the pics on there. The sky's been grey for ages too and I'm waiting for a bit of sparkle!
     

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