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Why I don't like to use the "attach photo" option

Let me first say that I appreciate the CH team's efforts to respond to user feedback since the second relaunch and that some changes have made a world of difference. Let me also say that, as an avid photo poster and general proponent of photos on this site, I also appreciate the efforts to add a photo posting feature. I tried to take advantage of this option in the beginning, but I've decided that I just don't like it and haven't been using it much for the following reasons:

1. The photos are all clustered on the bottom of the post. No option to embed within text.

2. The images are exactly the same size as the avatars. Since I don't have an avatar (or have chosen "white space" as my avatar), it's easy to overlook my photo unless I highlight it in some way so people will more likely notice and click to enlarge. Even if I had an avatar, it's easy to miss.

3. The max of four photos is limiting. I sometimes need to add more to illustrate a process or series of dishes within a meal.

4. Loading even two photos seems to take too much time on my computer. Much quicker to upload to other sites and then add those links in my text.

5. Photos seem to still be getting cropped. I posted one photo this AM on the HC board and it cropped off the sides. Not aesthetically pleasing...

6. No ability to add descriptive captions to photos.

There may be other reasons that I'm forgetting, but I'm having the most issues w/ the above. I'm fine to continue using my old method of linking to other sites, but it seems a shame that this feature can't be better utilized or improved upon. Thought you might like to know...thanks for listening.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
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  1. All good points, I second everything you said.

    1. Thanks, CL. I've noticed that you've been using photobucket, and wondered about that. I agree that all of the issues you've outlined are problems and would add one more: not being able to add a picture when editing a post is also a limitation.

      That being said, I love having the photos all in one place. Browsing them is a pleasure, and they've clued me in to great posts that I might've otherwise missed. Some examples:
      Rubee's tantalizing photos: http://www.chow.com/profile/10271/photos
      Carb Lover's food porn extravaganza: http://www.chow.com/profile/10371/photos

      12 Replies
      1. re: rose water

        Yes, having all the photos in one place as part of a user's profile is nice; I sort of forgot about that feature. That's why having captions would be nice, so people know what the photo refers to. This may be too difficult to set up, but it would be cool to click on the photo and not only have a caption but also a link to the original post. For instance, looking at my photo profile, one has no idea which are from restaurant vs. home meals and on which board to find more info.

        I've been enjoying your lovely photos too, rose water!

        1. re: Carb Lover

          Hmm...it used to work that way! That's very strange. Previously, if you clicked on a photo it would take you to the thread where the photo was originally posted. That's how I happened upon the Rubee's lovely Zuni salsa verde. If that function's gone, that's a big loss. Engineers, please bring it back. The decontextualized photos are pretty, but without connection to the original posts, they're much less useful.

          (And thanks, CL, re my photos. They'll never reach the photographic greatness of yours, but I'm having fun!)

          1. re: rose water

            Really?!! Photos linked to original threads at some point? I never noticed that. That would be wonderful...

            1. re: rose water

              If you roll over one of the photos in your My Chow, the word "source" appears. Click on that and it will take you to the thread where the photo appears.

              1. re: Melanie Wong

                It used to. Unfortunately doesn't seem to anymore.

                1. re: rose water

                  It's working for me right now on your page. Maybe there's a browser difference.

                  1. re: Melanie Wong

                    It would be really nice, if instructions on usage of photo features could be put into a FAQ or something. After reading your post, I went to CarbLover's page, clicked on her photos page, and sure enough, when you hover your mouse over the thumbnails, *some* of them reveal the phrase "source" along the bottom of the thumnail. Of course when "source" is in a white colored font, it is VERY hard to notice, at least to these old eyes.

                    So if you click on "source" within a thumbnail you get taken to the thread where the photo was posted, if you click on any part of the thumbnail other than "source" you get an enlarged, full view of the photo.

                    It is these kind of "hidden" features/functions that when never explained, but just deployed in to the software, raise frustration levels, and spur otherwise needless feed-back on Site and Technical Support boards.

                    1. re: ChinoWayne

                      Yep, I've stumbled upon a couple hidden features of this type on the site. Most recent was putting the zip code for a restaurant in the search box and popping up the piece in The Digest. And, the zip code was no where in the text, so it must be coded elsewhere. It doesn't work for every Digest article, so I guess there's just a test sample for now. Maybe these features aren't detailed anywhere for now because they're not fully deployed and we should expect some changes in how they work.

                    2. re: Melanie Wong

                      Strange. I'm using IE6 at work and cleared my cookies/cache (the extent to which i know how to troubleshoot). Still can enlarge a photo by clicking on it, but the white floating "source" link doesn't show up.

                      1. re: rose water

                        I use IE6 at home and work and never have noticed the "source" link. When I roll over a photo, there's just an img #.

                        1. re: Carb Lover

                          I am using IE7 and I see the "source" link.

                          1. re: Carb Lover

                            I'm using firefox now and the "source" link is back...now onto the buggy uploading issues...

            2. I stopped using it because it stopped working. Haven't felt compelled to try again since the tech support never bothered to respond or update the matter.

              1. The "attach photo" function doesn't always work.

                I've tried it three times - it worked twice. When it failed, there was no message or indication of what went wrong - the browser hung and I had to kill it. When I checked my post, the text was there but the picture wasn't.

                So, like ttriche, I've stopped using it. It's too flaky and hard to figure out.

                Anne

                1. Thanks for your feedback, Carb Lover--and everyone else! I don't think the photo upload is meant to be in its final form (especially since, as others note, it's sometimes flaky about uploading at all), and this thread has some great feedback on things to address in future iterations.

                  -- Jacquilynne, Community Manager for Chowhound

                  10 Replies
                  1. re: Jacquilynne

                    For whatever reason, I've been having better luck lately with uploading photos.

                    1. re: Jacquilynne

                      Thanks for your reply, Jacquilynne. Nice to know our input has been noted. Look forward to future improvements.

                      1. re: Carb Lover

                        just seeing if this works as I too am having problems with photos Thanks for letting me test

                        1. re: ccmurieta

                          Not only does it work, but it looks very interesting! What is it? :)

                          1. re: kattyeyes

                            That was my Crawfish Quesadilla with Corn Relish and Avocado from Bayona in New Orleans. It was delicious!!!!!! :)

                      2. re: Jacquilynne

                        Thanks for responding. Maybe when it's all shaken out, you might post something on the front page. I didn't realize that the photo upload/attachment thingy was still in development or I'd have been less harsh about my assessment.

                        Having the ability to include photos in posts would be grand -- especially for illustrating steps in a recipe, or techniques, or preparations. Being able to group images into albums, even if only for the purpose of ordering them sensibly or labeling them with a tag, would also be nice. The rollover-to-enlarge thing is nice, but IMHO needs work.

                        Anyways, thanks for the effort you're putting in to revamp the site. I've done this for other, slightly smaller sites and it's always harder than it looks. CH is doing a good job of it.

                        1. re: Jacquilynne

                          AHEM, that was almost a year ago and I had problems this morning.

                          I posted a reply with four pictures and some pictures were accidentally redundant so I deleted the redundant ones and had to add another post to add the missing pics (because you can only edit text, once you post it. Dumb! One pic uploaded and the other didn’t. Well, each time you try and upload pics it must be accomplished through a NEW post, which was getting tiring and leaving me feeling foolish because I had to add unnecessary posts just to get the pictures added! Then they are really not with my post and certainly not imbedded where I want them to be. The thumbnail size is ridiculous.
                          I heartily concur that there should be a FAQ (answer) for posting pics.I still don't know if the 550 X 550 PX is the max size without software intervention to modify it. I have stayed within the limits of 2meg for four images. Still one did not upload.
                          Believe me, I like Chowhound and don't see a good alternative for my chowish needs. I'm going to let this wish list continue elsewhere as this is about photo upload issues.....

                          1. re: Scargod

                            Yeah, I still don't use the photo uploading feature since nothing has changed.

                            I also think it's a shame that although the Places feature has a photo upload option, no one seems to be using it. I can see why though: one has to upload photos again to the Places page even though one may have already uploaded photos in the body of a post. There has to be a more elegant and efficient way to link all of this data...

                            1. re: Carb Lover

                              i just tried to upload a photo of a hacked recipe and it doesn't show up.

                              they really should find someone who knows a bit more about usability...

                              there really shouldn't be any 'hidden' things to find. under myChow-photos, you should be able to upload there and have a link for trouble; the reason you can't and lack-o-link, is beyond me.

                              1. re: adrianneleigh

                                The reason there's no upload directly to 'my chow' photos is that it's not meant to be a general image repository. You can upload photos to a specific post or recipe (and then they appear in your 'my chow' section), but the intent is not for people to upload photos and just have them in their profile -- it's to upload only those photos that are relevant to what they're posting about.

                                I've been trying to get more info on photos and problem solving for photos for our FAQ, but have thus far been unsuccessful.

                                Some people, though, have noted that if they can't upload the photo with the recipe, they can sometimes edit the recipe and successfully upload it after -- if you're still within the edit window for your hack, can you try that.