The shutter finally closes on Fotopic – 15th March 2011
On Wednesday 9th March, Fotopic, a photo storage website went offline.
This wasn’t entirely unusual given it’s performance over recent weeks and months had been increasingly unreliable and creaky.
What was more annoying, was the fact that I had been using Fotopic to store and display all my photos since 2003. In total, I had over 15,000 images displayed on the site. These had been built up over the years and included all those taken since the birth of our three children.
As well as thousands of family photos, I had also maintained a photo blog since June 2004 adding a new photo a day for almost 6 years.
Of course I have all of these photos stored on laptop and external hard-drives and of course I know that nothing online lasts forever, but I wonder whether I can really be bothered to spend the countless hours needed to start again from scratch, reload and relabel them all on a new site.
Fotopic was unique in many ways and to some degree far more customisable than many other sites such as Flickr.
In 2009, Fotopic went offline for a few days and I joined a Google Group full of Fotopic users to discuss the situation. Back then, Fotopic came back online after a few days following a major technical issue.
Now the same group is once again alive with correspondence concerning the demise of Fotopic. It is even mentioned on Wikipedia!
One ray of hope rests with the original creator of Fotopic, Joel Rowbottom, who is currently building a new site – Pikfu. This is being created along similar lines to Fotopic, but with various modernisations.
Until this gets off the ground, or until Fotopic miraculously returns, I, like thousands of other dissatisfied Fotopic users, must try to patiently wait in a photographic no mans land.
We’re working on it Phil, we hadn’t quite expected to launch portfolios until June so it’s a bit of a dash!
Thanks for the comment Joel. Looking forward to seeing what Pikfu has to offer!
As I have been loading pics on to Fotopic both personally and for the Rotary Club of Glenelg for some years, and payong annual subs, I would like to know if Fotopic has “gone down the gurgle”, and if so where can I now place my photos ? It would be nice to know what really has happened, as all my queries have gone unanswered.
Thanks for the comment, Brian.
It looks as though Fotopic has probably gone for good. I’d suggest you give Pikfu at try.
Continuing our chat from Twitter… it is a shame, especially as (having read the wikipedia entry) very little thought seems to have been given to the fotopic user base over the last couple of years by the “new” owners. In fact it seems that only Joel, who looks like he has had nothing officially to do with fotopic in recent years, has made any sort of effort at keeping people informed with developments/downtime/reasons behind it, etc. Kudos to him, at least.
I had a large number of photos on the site myself, and even though I hadn’t used it for new photos for a good five or six years, and even though I do have the photos backed up locally (er, I hope!), it was still useful to have access to them online and I would still link to them from various locations. If nothing else, it was nice to know they “were there”, if I ever needed quick access to them. Even worse for you of course with Daily Images, and having put so much work into that over the years. A real shame.
Alternatives? Well if you want to continue in a pure photoblogging style there are various other options out there but most requiring self-hosting and a small degree of familiarity with HTML coding etc.
Pixelpost is one option, and there are a number of WordPress plug-ins and photoblogging themes you can install to do the job. My choice is, and would continue to be Flickr. It’s not that customisable, as you say, but it is reliable, robust and you are highly unlikely to ever experience a loss of service such as with Fotopic. It also has a great community aspect to it and in terms of getting your photos out there and seen, I don’t think it can really be beaten.
But I can understand your reluctance to reupload and catalogue everything again from scratch! You could, however, just add old photos slowly to your Flickr page. You have a vast and high quality back catalogue to choose from!
Joel has certainly been vastly more helpful than anyone at Fotopic (and I’m not just saying that because he commented on here! 😉
I know what you mean about just having photos ‘there’. I guess it’s easy to take these things for granted.
I know that I’d got rather behind with Daily Images, but I was hoping to at least post on there occasionally, if not every day – and of course Phils Pix has about 10 years worth of photos on.
I do have a Flickr account which I started when Fotopic went down in 2009. I’ll probably keep this for certain shots for Daily Images and look to see what Pikfu comes up with when it comes online.
Time will tell, I guess! 😉
Appreciate your thoughts and taking the time to comment!
Pingback: A day in Bournemouth – 18th September 2010 | A Few Ramblings…
Fotopic was great for transport enthusiast like myself but like many others after it went, we went to Flickr.