Along with Instagram, Flickr is one of the most popular image sharing platforms with millions of active users. In an effort to stave off stiff competition from Instagram and Pinterest, Flickr has released a new update for its iOS app that adds hashtag support to the mobile version of Flickr. The hashtag feature will make it easier to categorize images and pick out popular trends. This new feature could improve the user experience of Flickr and could expand the user base of this photo sharing platform.
Inspired by Twitter
Hashtags are most commonly associated with Twitter and has been in use on the micro-blogging platform to categorize tweets and to display popular trends and topics to users. In the same manner, hashtags will help users find images easily on Flickr and will allow Flickr to figure out upcoming and popular trends so that they can capitalize on these trends. By clicking on a hashtag, users can obtain search results with pictures that have tags similar to the hashtag. Existing hashtags on Flickr will not be converted into clickable hashtags and will not be recognized by the platform.
Flickr now also includes a #FlickrFriday hashtag event modeled after a similar and extremely popular Twitter event called Follow Friday. The #FlickrFriday hashtag will be used to conduct a weekly photo competition.
Since the relationship between Twitter and Instagram soured after the latter was acquired by Facebook, Twitter and Flickr have started collaborating closely with Flickr launching its updated iOS app with full Twitter integration. Flickr has also already implemented the @username feature allowing users to refer to other users on Flickr and more Twitter-like features could be seen on the photo-sharing website in the near future.
Will the hashtags become common on all social media platforms?
Flickr is not the only social media platform to adopt hashtags. If latest news reports are to be believed, Facebook – Twitter’s bitter rival – could be introducing the hashtag feature in the world’s biggest social networking platform. Will other sites adopt hashtags too? We will have to wait and watch.