First Impressions: Yogile
While established photo sharing sites already exist, Yogile is different because it lets multiple people contribute with ease. Once you create an album, you get a customizable URL and e-mail address to share with anyone who wants to add photos, either as e-mail attachments or uploads through the site. There’s no need for these users to register, keeping the process simple and hassle-free.
Take a wedding, for example. Dozens of attendees take their own photos, all from different cameras and angles. While you might try asking everyone for their shots afterward, Yogile offers a smart alternative.
There are many photo sites out there for where you can upload photos and share the URL with your friends and family but Yogile takes this idea a step further and enables anyone to be able to contribute their pictures to a public or private photo album.
You can upload pictures in three ways, via the web, via email or via MMS. The last two options are done via a unique email address which uses the name of your photo album URL. When you upload a photo via email the Subject line is the title of your image while I can only guess that any text in the body of your email would be the image description. Submitting an email via MMS also works wonderfully but any text included in the MMS will not get used at the image title nor for an image description but those can be added/edited via the web. You have the option, as the album creator, to receive notifications of new photos added to your albums and the nice part is that the email comes with image previews which is much better than a new image message with a link to your album.
After I uploaded images via the web, email and MMS I thought back to the example that Yogile spoke about, a wedding, and how this site could be useful.
Imagine being able to give all your wedding guests an email address and URL and all of your photos would be in one location. No need to have photos spread across multiple sharing sites or going around tagging people so that they would know where to see their pics you have access to one central location for all your pics!! There’s only one issue that I could see…the automatic URL when you first register is just some random characters (mine was yt8colz) and putting this string of characters in print would be rather ugly and telling all your guests these characters would result in no one remembering the email/URL. I thought it would be great if you were able to customize the email/URL and when I went to create a private photo album I learned that you could actually name your own photo album! By being able to name your own album you also end up creating a custom submission email and a custom Yogile URL, perfect!
It Could Break!
When I created my account on Yogile it automatically created an album along with an email that I could use to submit photos to, this album was yt8colz with an email address of email@example.com. When I discovered you could create custom album names I went back and edited the first album that was created with a custom name of GabeDiaz. So my public album could now be found at yogile.com/gabediaz and you can email pics to firstname.lastname@example.org but what happens to yogile.com/yt8colz and email@example.com? Well visiting my original URL yogile.com/yt8colz results in a page not found and sending emails to the original email of firstname.lastname@example.org disappeared into the internet without any bounce-back email…not good.
This issue of renaming your albums could cause issues if an excited user creates an account and starts to send out the email address to all of his/her friends for submissions and then later edits the name of the folder. Can a person’s URL be assigned to someone else or can a person switch back? I’m actually a little surprised that Yogile doesn’t forward or associate your old URL with your custom one.
Yogile is a site that simplifies group photo sharing and although there could be issues, specifically with the name changing of your own albums, the site works like a charm. Yes there are other sites out there which offer group photo sharing; with one that specifically that comes to mind, Posterous, but Yogile allows you to create an email to share with your group to upload to versus having to add others via their email address’. Think back to the wedding example, it’s much easier to give your wedding guests a single email to submit to versus trying to collect everyone’s email address and then adding them to your photo sharing site. Let’s be honest not everyone wants to register to a new service in order to submit pictures, so the email feature from Yogile is great and I wouldn’t be surprised if something similar gets rolled out to your favorite photo sites or if the Yogile team gets acquired and integrated into a larger photo site.
For anyone who comes across this post I just want to let you know that I was made aware of Yogile and it’s service by one of their team members. The above is my honest opinion upon first using the site. Unless otherwise noted by a Disclosure statement all of my other “First Impressions” are based on products that I personally use or come across.
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