Suppose you were a guest in someone’s home. You notice a lovely painting hanging on a wall in the living room. Impressed, you tell your host, “Oh, what a lovely painting!”
Instead of simply saying, “why thank you,” and then asking after your health, suppose your host sternly said, “what a lame comment. You must tell me why you believe this painting is – as you so inanely put it – lovely,” then sneered at you, clearly expecting a more suitable response.
Some people on Flickr seem to have the same rude attitude. They post their pretentious photos on Flickr then try and control the level of commentary they receive. “Please no graphics or short comments like: ‘this is great’.” It is as if these folks are teaching a class in photographic composition and you are a somewhat dull student and must defend your judgment.
Every week or so I post a graphic on dozens of photos I like (“your photo is IMPRESSIVE!” in fancy gold type, made in Photoshop). The image links to a long explanation of what I like in photos. The majority of the time the recipients of my “award” respond favorably. Every now and again, however, I get an indignant response objecting to my comment. I got a response once from someone who explained to me – in a somewhat angry tone – why his photograph was actually a piece of shit and totally unworthy of any award.
Of course it is outrageous that just anyone at all can post an inane comment. Flickr needs to alter its comment rules to allow members to restrict who may comment on their photos. Or, as with groups, allow the member to approve a comment before it appears. Such a change would insure all visible comments were suitably intelligent and knowledgeable (in the photographer’s opinion). Maybe Flickr needs to test all members to insure they have enough discernment to post proper comments.
Why, after all, should just anyone be allowed to demean my wonderfully artistic photograph with an inane comment like, “oh, what a lovely photo!”
Here’s my photo with the most Flickr comments:
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