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Social Media Research: Photo Sharing

A guide to conducting scholarly research on social media.

Social Media

Social media encompasses a broad variety of websites, including social networking sites, blogs, wikis, photo sharing, social reading, and more.

Most of the sites on this page fall into more than one category, so it is important to keep that in mind when conducting research on social media.

Photo Sharing

Photo sharing sites allow you to upload and share photos with other users.

  • Flickr (a Yahoo! subsidiary) is a prominent, long-running example of a photo sharing site that allows users to "tag" each others' photos to help facilitate access and classification.
  • Pinterest is a type of "social collecting" (Zarro & Hall, 2012) website, which allows users to "create and annotate surrogates of digital objects found on the Web, such as photographs and webpages. These surrogates are then saved in personal collections, called 'pinboards' on Pinterest" (p. 417).
  • Imgur is a photo hosting service that allows users to upload images, which it then ranks by popularity and other metrics. It is particularly known for "memes," or viral images that spread quickly.
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