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Facebook is introducing shared photo albums where multiple users can add images under one topic or event. We’ve seen Facebook mimic Twitter with verified accounts and hashtags, but this is a step towards mimicking Pinterest.
Up to 50 people can contribute to an album and each person can add up to 200 photos, therefore each album can have a maximum of 10,000 photos. This is a major step towards curation and community building on Facebook, where multiple people can come together to create a wall of photos for an event or page.
Let’s say a group of eight college kids go to Daytona for spring break. Now they can pool all of their photos into one place instead of uploading eight different “Spring Break ’13!” albums. More than likely, several of those photos would be duplicates anyway – the picture of the crab they saw, the picture at the bar, the pictures from para-sailing, etc. Shared albums let users pool their images into one great experience instead one event posted eight different times.
Content marketers rejoice.
Shared photo albums turn social media managers into curators who can crowd source the content creation aspect. Fans are going out and creating their own photos, memes, etc. and sharing them with brands. The brands get content, the fans get recognition.
This could be great for small non-profits that can’t afford to constantly refresh their Facebook photos. An aquarium could create an album called “Otter Pups” when baby otters are introduced to the public and ask fans to contribute photos to the album. The result would be hundreds of pictures of fans interacting with the otters and watching them play. The fans can provide un-staged aww moments that social media managers have only ever dreamed about.
This is also a step away from shameless self-promotion on Facebook and a step towards community building. People won’t ‘like’ pages to see advertisements and promotions, they’ll ‘like’ them to see their friends post photos or to see interesting photos.
If Red Bull had a group photo album they could give contributor access to their Flugtag teams. They could upload photos from craft building, setting up at the event, and inevitably crashing. The main job of the social media manager would be to approve the photos and keep them on-brand. Meanwhile, fans get teasers of the Flugtag competition and sneak peeks.
Last year the university memes fad rose to popularity and almost every college had a page making fun of their rivals and celebrating their teams. Each university had a community.
Shared photo albums are another step towards building small communities on the Internet. These albums are groups of people who are coming together to share their perspectives and art. Facebook has given them a place to share where they’ll be celebrated by their fellow contributors and fans.
It’s not about the page, the product, or the event. It’s about the people.