The Seminal Web 2.0 Service

I wrote the following about YouTube the other day:

I went through a period where I wrote about YouTube a lot. It was
fascinating to me to watch web video take off and the lessons we all
learned from YouTube’s success were important.

I am an afficianado of web services. I love using them, figuring out how they work, the neat stuff you can do with them. I learn so much from using the web. And I try to write about it as much as I can.

For some reason I woke up this morning thinking about Flickr. And it occured to me that I’ve learned more about how to create a great web service from using Flickr than any other service. By a long shot.

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Here are 10 things I’ve learned from using Flickr:

1) Making online content default to public instead of private creates community

2) Every web service needs to have a profile for every user

3) Users should be encouraged to comment on other user’s posts

4) Tagging content is better than foldering content and the tags should be public

5) Users should be encouraged to tag their content when it is posted to the service

6) Widgets should be used to make content available off of the service

7) Content on the service should be "bloggable" with one click

8) Engagement metrics like comments, favorites, views, can and should be used to drive discovery (the most interesting algorithm)

9) Geotagging is great but we’ve yet to see a great interface for geotagging

10) Machine tagging (autotagging) is the next big thing in web 2.0

I whipped off this list in about three minutes so I am sure I’ve missed a bunch of other stuff I’ve learned from Flickr.

Many people will say "Google is the seminal web 2.0 service". But I don’t think so. I’ve learned a bunch of things from Google too, but Flickr has pushed the envelope in so many ways at such an important time (’04 and ’05) that it gets my vote.