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Flickr, Pinterest, and Instagram: my strong feels, as both a user and a publisher

I have some strong feels about photo hosting online, my friends. Over the last decade, I've watched the landscape of photo hosting websites shift, from a time when there was nothing decent, to a time when there was something amazingly awesome (Flickr!), to a time when there were tons of options, to time when there are a few front-runners (Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram) none of which work as well as the tools we used back when I got married in 2004.

This post is long. This post is probably overly emotional considering we're talking about web apps and photo hosting. But man… photos are my memories, and as a publisher, photos are part of my business model. So let's get out our hankies and our rallying fists in the air and talk this shit over.

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Offbeat Bride's year-over-year traffic: 80% more visitors in 2012!

Every month or so, I go into my Google Analytics and do some serious digging around to see how things are looking with the sites.

The big reveal today is that Offbeat Bride is KICKING ASS, with visits up 45%, visitors up 85%, and pageviews up 22%. All awesome (and all pointing to an impending increase in our ad rates).

But the most insane number to me is looking at referrals, ie websites that direct traffic to the site…

The Empire's policies: syndicating and attributing content

This post features what used to be an internal document I created for interns, outlining the general guidelines for posting non-original content on the Offbeat Empire. At this point, I don't see any reason why this shouldn't be public — especially since there's a lot of differing opinions about etiquette around these issues.

There's a lot of grey area with this stuff (I've broken my own rules many times — FOR SHAME!), and obviously we can't anticipate every scenario … but hopefully this post provides clarity on our general policies for sharing, linking, citing, etc.