For those of you who are back from a vacation and are looking for an easy way to store and share photos and videos, or those planning a vacation soon, some websites eager to host your pictures or videos can be a safe option. Using these sites is wise also because they help reduce expenditure on memory cards and storage drives. A Web-based service provides offsite storage — your photos and videos are protected and there is ample storage space for free.
If you are someone who likes to click pictures or shoot videos from your mobile phone, the easiest way to share them would be to transfer to a PC first, using a data cable (pre-bundled at the time of purchase). Once the pictures or videos are on a PC, you can upload them on websites or share them with your friends by email. If you have a digital camera, there is no need to transfer to a PC, you can directly use any website that hosts pictures and videos online to store and share them. The top sites for this purpose, in India, according to online media tracking service Vizisense, are Facebook, YouTube and Flickr.
A whopping 65 per cent of people all over the globe share pictures online using Facebook, according to web-analytics comScore. No wonder, Facebook has become a popular photo-sharing tool in India, too .
You must have a Facebook account. It is similar to signing up for a new email account. Once logged in, click on option ‘Profile’, it will take you to your own Facebook profile page. On the left hand menu, you will notice a series of tabs, click on the tab that says ‘Photos.’
Click the option which says ‘Create a Photo Album’ and you are on your way to uploading and sharing pictures with friends and family. Remember, the pictures are controlled by Privacy or Sharing settings, which control who can or cannot see your images. While users have the freedom to upload up to 200 images in a single album, photos on social-networking sites are stored at a decreased resolution (so don’t delete the original pictures on the camera yet).
Another way to upload images is to log on to Facebook, below the status message box is the attach tab with options for attaching photos, videos.
Anyone who wants to add a video to YouTube needs to sign up for an account and create a profile. You may choose to make the video public or private and even customise how the video is shared (whether or not people can leave comments, voting and video embedding options, etc).
People are not just watching videos like crazy, they are also uploading like crazy. Uploading videos on YouTube can be like a walk in the park, with just these simple steps.
If the video files are on your PC, simply click the upload button indicated at the bottom of the page. Depending on the file size and number of videos, it could take a couple of minutes to an hour to upload.
If you are uploading from a digital camera or camcorder, you will have to transfer the files first to a PC or, if you have one of those easy-to-share camcorders or digital cameras, the files can be directly uploaded on YouTube using the camera’s in-built image-management software.
You don’t have to worry about what file formats are supported by YouTube, as almost all kinds of video formats like MPEG, MPEG4, WMV, 3GP, AVI, etc, are supported by the site. You can upload videos of the size between 1KB and 1GB.
To see all the videos you upload, click on the Option ‘My Video.’ You can add subtitles, music or tag your videos, too, in the Settings menu. There’s also a web link that YouTube provides for the videos that you can use to share it with your friends.
It is hard to be unaware of Flickr even if you don't use it. Not only can you host your uploaded images on the site, but you can also link and view them from a number of online sites and applications.
To get started, you will either need a Yahoo account or create a Flickr id. Then, click on the ‘Upload photos’ link on your home page for those who have stored pictures on a computer or an external storage drive.
Flickr users have to store images in ‘Sets’ — free Flickr accounts can create up to three sets, while upgrading to a Pro user status gives you unlimited photo sets. You can also give each photo a title, a short description and tags (keywords you use to describe each photo). You can search your photos by tag.
The site allows organising up to 200 free-to-upload photos in several different ways for easy searching of titles, topics and photo themes.
Flickr lets you upload through email by providing a unique email address to access your account. This allows you to both email photos to Flickr from any computer and from your mobile phone. Once you have your unique email uploading address, you can mail any photo to upload to that address (you can only email one photo at a time).