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Squared Flower - A rant.

Yes, I refuse to use Kleenex until this mess is cleaned up.

Okay, okay. Another rant. Another small rant. Rants aren’t a common theme here but when they come they are hard to hold back. Kind of like the runs. Well now, THERE’S an analogy. But on to better things right now.

Glass Ceiling
originally uploaded by anyjazz65

This picture of Dale Chihuly's glass has been on Flickr since October 21, 2005. It was never a number one picture but it has ranked between number 111 and number 169 in Flickr’s Interestingness rating. It is still there.

This Sunset photograph from November 21, 2005 has been as low as 387 and as high as 162. It's never been higher.

Sky and Clouds
originally uploaded by anyjazz65

originally uploaded by anyjazz65

This Butterfly uploaded September 21, 2005, has varied from number 75 to as low as 149. It is still on the list in the top 500 Flickr photographs for that day.

Squared Flower
originally uploaded by anyjazz65

This picture, Squared Flower has been on Flickr since November 5, 2005. It was assembled from photographs from personal cameras taken over a period of a couple years in two or three countries. They are all flowers except for one, the center, which is a mushroom. But you knew all that.

The frame was assembled in Photoshop (not FD's Flickr Toys) from carefully selected photographs from my own archive.

After it was uploaded to Flickr, it enjoyed a number of comments from important Flickr members which was appreciated. Then Flickr member mimbrava commented: Congratulations!

view profile mimbrava says:
Congratulations. This is currently number one in Interestingness!

Posted 18 months ago.

This was the SAME DAY it was uploaded. It was the number one picture in Flickr Explorer “Interestingness” for that day.

Now for those of you who are recently arrived extra-terrestrials or have just been introduced to computers or have just awakened from a thirty year coma and/or reside beneath rocks, here is a bit of explanation. Explorer “Interestingness” is the best 500 pictures uploaded EACH DAY into Flickr’s vast collection of photographs. Their formula for measuring this is Flickr’s guarded secret but supposedly composed of view counts, favorite counts, comment counts, rapidity reckoned in relation to the uploaded moment and probably some other things, all compounded into an algorithm that calculates a kind of physical popularity of the photograph. This photograph was number one for November five, 2005. Number one.

As time went on, this photograph settled down to number 160 out of Explorer 500. It fluttered between 167 and 158 for several months.

This fluxuating phenomenon occurs when other photographs in that top 500 group get continued attention beyond their initial posting. This is due occasionally to shifting the photo around among photo subject groups or linking with other photographs or blogs. This will often net the photograph continued views and comments beyond its initial introduction. Some photographers are just plain good and their subsequent uploads encourage people to view their entire archived stream, netting even more views and comments on their popular postings.

By August of 2006 this flower picture had drifted up and back between number158 and number 173 for its posting date of November 5, 2005. In October of 2006 it jumped up to number 122 for about a week and then dropped back again to a groove between 145 and 158.

Then, on October 21, 2006, nearly a year after the original posting, it disappeared from Flickr Explorer completely. No downslide, no notice, just gone in one 24 hour period. It had started as a number one. It had maintained a position between 145 and 180 for nearly a year. Then it was gone.

Okay. Explain that. Did about 350 OTHER photographs uploaded way back on that date, suddenly become more popular than this one? Did Flickr just lose it? Did it get some mysterious ‘negative’ votes? How is it possible that a photograph can suddenly drop from about 145 to a number greater than 501? It had not varied more than 20 points in ten months; now it drops more than 350 places in a one day?

Take for instance the picture currently at Explorer position number 462 for the date November 5, 2005. It is a video capture NOT originally taken by the owner of the site; it has had two comments, has been elected as a “favorite” once and has been visited 225 times. It’s an interesting capture and deserves to be ranked highly.

The Squared Flower has 39 comments (yes, including some of my own); has been favorited 50 times and has been visited 1,705 times.

The picture ranked 240 is not even a photograph. It is a water color painting.

So Squared Flower has been deleted from Explorer. Is it because it was assembled in Photoshop, a composite of several photographs? If it is suddenly unqualified for the top 500 of that day because it is not a presentation of a single photograph, or that it has been re-worked in Photoshop, then there are several Explorer submissions that should lose all ranking. Is it because Flickr’s toys were not used to assemble the composition?

Or is it just because someone does not like flowers?

Please understand, this is not a complaint. It is not expected or desired that Flickr DO anything about this. But, it would be nice to know WHY. How about a nice note to me explaining "We changed the rules..."

“We shall be waiting for your answer.” - Klaatu

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