Last night, I came across an article discussing some flaws in Flickr’s design. It mentions that some users are starting to check out alternative photo-sharing services, such as 500px. So naturally, I figured I’d review it myself and see what the hype was about. I was definitely not disappointed.
500px.com was founded in 2003 by Oleg Gutsol and Ian Sobolev. It’s currently run by a team of four, based out of Toronto, and has a user base of 67,000. Around 27,000 of those joined in the last two months alone. Obviously, word of mouth is starting to kick in.
I’ve only spent enough time on it to edit my profile and upload about 50 photos, but from what I’ve seen, I’m pretty impressed. The overall feel of the site is just so nice. Everything is sleek and they don’t skimp on features. With a pro account for $50 a year, you can create a customizable portfolio, which is compatible with Google Analytics for checking your traffic. Standard features include a wall (think Facebook), a blog, and an “activity” page where you can see who’s commented on your photos or added them as favorites. There’s also a rating system where users can like or dislike another user’s photos, which directly affect the rating that’s posted in big numbers on your photo. I’m still not sure about that feature yet. It kind of reminds me of “Hot or Not."
At any rate, the site is pretty solid and I think Flickr finally has some decent competition. With only 0.14% of Flickr’s total user base, 500px has a long ways to go, but they’re definitely on the right track. They seem to have focused on the right aspects in developing this site, and the users that are currently signing up seem to be legitimate photographers of the professional sort. It kind of reminds me of Vimeo vs. YouTube.
So check it out and see what you think. It’s free to sign up, after all.
Here’s my 500px page.