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I'm working on a free image hosting service for communities like ConceptArt.org. It should be live in a week or two. It'll probably be in beta for about a month after that, while more advanced features are added.
The idea behind the service is something quick, clean, and simple. Ease of navigation will be a must. I am thinking of the following list of features:
- 1-click anonymous uploads
- Easy-to-browse user galleries for registered users.
- Registered users get 100MB of space
- Group galleries (one user starts a group gallery and adds other users to it)
- 1MB maximum file size, no bandwidth limits (tentative)
- Automatically generated thumbnails and HTML / BB code
- Image ratings / comments (can be disabled when uploading)
- Optional large preview thumbnails (tentative: 225 x 255 px or so)
- No pop-up ads or crap like that, of course
- Uploaded images are not scaled, watermarked or modified in any way
- Using full-size images remotely (eg. hotlinking the full image directly into a forum post) will probably not be allowed.
The hotlinking issue is one thing I am not absolutely sure on. IMHO, I don't see why someone would want a 1000x1000 image in a forum thread anyways, when they can post convenient thumbnails that link to the full image. Also, if hotlinking is allowed then more stringent bandwidth limits would have to be instated, and that would suck.
Anyhow, I will be extremely grateful for any input or suggestions anyone may have.
On art forums, hotlinking is a MUST. It's all about the images. Clicking on a thumbnail or link is too much of a hassle for a lot of people. I see no reason to use your service, when there are others like imageshack ect, who allow hotlinking. There's Flickr, which is huge, with usergroups and user galleries..
Conceptart has it's own image upload, too.. so people here won't be too enthuasiastic about yet another image hosting service.
Thanks very much for the reply, nacho.
Already I have much to meditate on.
nacho is right.. I don't care if it's Justin Sweet posting exclusive sketches that only we can see, if it's all in thumbnails (a fairly hefty body of work that is), I wouldn't waste my time clicking through all of them.
Also, rating systems are usually a waste of time IMHO, on this forum while stars on threads -usually- indicate quality, it is quite often a form of competition, it depresses some people even. Craig Mullins' site has a rating system. All of his pieces are rated 2.8 out of 5. Everyone knows that more than half the people looking there like the work and click '5', but some jealous bastards feel the need to set a really low bar I guess.
But yeah, hotlinking=must