Flickr’s Explore page is one of the most beloved features for lots of photographers in the Flickr community. Many of you have spent hours trying to reverse engineer the algorithm to improve your chances of appearing on Flickr’s front page.
Explore, at its best, is a way to seek inspiration and discover amazing talent from the community, or to follow the photographers who share similar interests. (Hello, Blythe aficionados! Hello, LEGO fam! Hello, long-exposure shoreline friends from the UK! Hello, dive-bombing kingfishers! We see you!).
However, Explore at its less-than-best leaves many of you puzzled and frustrated. Why does it always seem like the same folks appear there? Why aren’t my photos showing up? WTF is with all the yellow school buses, dude?!
Now that we’ve completed migration from Yahoo infrastructure to our new home on AWS and we’re seeing Pro members step up to keep Flickr financially strong, we can dig in and improve Explore for you. We’ve rebuilt the infrastructure that powers Explore from the ground up in AWS and we’ve made a number of improvements to the algorithm.
We’ve now moved 100% of traffic to the new version of Explore. The qualitative and quantitative feedback from our testing has been good, so we want to get everyone into the same experience again.
We’ll continue to test and iterate in the near term, but the adjustments are likely to be less significant than the primary overhaul we’ve done to the feature.
We’re quite excited about this project, as we’ve wanted to see Explore improve for years. Thankfully we are able to focus on this important work now.