In search of "unlisted" galleries

jfriendjfriend Scripting dude-volunteerRegistered Users Posts: 8,097 Major grins
edited May 25, 2006 in SmugMug Support
I've noticed that whenever I create a new gallery, I get a bunch of hits on that gallery from links like this: http://www.smugmug.com/browse/index.mg?Cat=9&start=280. I don't want my galleries to be listed there. I also don't want my galleries available to Google or to a Smugmug search.

I know I could password protect everything, but I'd rather not subject my family and friends to that hassle. So, I'm looking for an in-between solution.

Here's a summary of what I want:

I want my family and friends to be able to go to my top level home page and browse all my public galleries/images without needing a password.

I don't want any of my images available in Google searches or Smugmug searches or any smugmug category browsing or new gallery listings or any of that. If you know about my home page, you can see my images, but I don't want anyone broadcasting or advertising my galleries or my homepage. Right now, Smugmug is putting my galleries out in public places that I don't want them. What I'm asking for is exactly how I could have it if I had my own web-site without doing any extra work other than making sure that I told robots to go away. That's all I want with my Smugmug site - just turn off all this extra stuff you're doing for me - I don't want it on my galleries.

Any idea how to accomplish this?

One idea for a way to expose this to users is to allow a gallery to have an additional property that lists it in your publicly browsable galleries from your homepage, but removes it from all other public access (smugmug searches, google searches, new gallery listings, categorized gallery listings, etc...). I think of it as semi-public.

It's kind of like an unlisted phone number. If you know my phone number because I gave it to you, then please feel free to call me. But, I don't want to publish my phone number because I don't want people calling that I didn't invite. Same with my familly galleries. I'd rather not have smugmug advertising their existence. How do I change that without taking on the hassle of a password?
--John
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Comments

  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    Does this difffer from the discussions we're having in the other thread?

    http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=6021
  • jfriendjfriend Scripting dude-volunteer Registered Users Posts: 8,097 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    Some similar issues, didn't see one
    Andy wrote:
    Does this difffer from the discussions we're having in the other thread?

    http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=6021

    That thread looks like it has many of the same issues in it. Was there ever a conclusion to that thread?

    I'm not sure that thread also discussed the fact that Smugmug advertises my new galleries in places like this: http://www.smugmug.com/browse/index.mg?Cat=9&start=280. So, in addition to telling Google I don't want to be indexed and stopping smugmug searches on my galleries, I also don't want Smugmug to advertise my galleries anywhere in it's own UI.

    I personally find this feature kind of bizarre. 75% of my photos are family photos that I have no desire to "share with the world". I joined Smugmug so I could conveniently share them with my family and have no interest in sharing them broader than that. It seems like a shame to have to subject all viewers to a password just to turn this unwanted smugmug feature off.

    If I was trying to sell my photos, I'd love this feature, but that certainly isn't the center of your audience, so I'm surprised it seems more important than respecting people's publicity wishes.
    --John
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  • StevenVStevenV Wake Up & Smell the Music Registered Users Posts: 1,174 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    jfriend wrote:
    so I could conveniently share them with my family and have no interest in sharing them broader than that.

    that's kindof the nature of the Internet, though. if you post to a public place, it's... well... public.

    I'm having the same discussion with many teens about MySpace. :D As I tell them, there are ways to request that search engines not "advertise" your content but nothing's guaranteed to be hidden (without a password-protected area, and even those aren't always 100% safe).
  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    jfriend wrote:
    That thread looks like it has many of the same issues in it. Was there ever a conclusion to that thread?

    I'm not sure that thread also discussed the fact that Smugmug advertises my new galleries in places like this: http://www.smugmug.com/browse/index.mg?Cat=9&start=280. So, in addition to telling Google I don't want to be indexed and stopping smugmug searches on my galleries, I also don't want Smugmug to advertise my galleries anywhere in it's own UI.

    I personally find this feature kind of bizarre. 75% of my photos are family photos that I have no desire to "share with the world". I joined Smugmug so I could conveniently share them with my family and have no interest in sharing them broader than that. It seems like a shame to have to subject all viewers to a password just to turn this unwanted smugmug feature off.

    If I was trying to sell my photos, I'd love this feature, but that certainly isn't the center of your audience, so I'm surprised it seems more important than respecting people's publicity wishes.

    Yeah, that's been discussed, too - here:
    http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=29468&highlight=browse

    This is excellent feedback, John - thank you very much for it! It's an unwanted feature by you - but wanted by many. We'll see what we can do about getting an ability to be public but "unlisted" so to speak.

    But to be clear, we do have a way now, via private galleries and passwords, to be private.

    Thanks again.
  • StevenVStevenV Wake Up & Smell the Music Registered Users Posts: 1,174 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    btw, while it's nice for us that you have your sm site in your dgrin footer, that's just adding to Google etc. finding your pictures.

    (nice swimming images)

    -S
  • jfriendjfriend Scripting dude-volunteer Registered Users Posts: 8,097 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    I actually have three parts with different privacy desires
    StevenV wrote:
    btw, while it's nice for us that you have your sm site in your dgrin footer, that's just adding to Google etc. finding your pictures.

    (nice swimming images)

    -S

    Yeah, that points to the fact that I really have three parts of my site with different security and publicity wishes for each.

    #1: A fully public part of my site (e.g. my portfolio). I don't care if that part gets indexed and I like people to comment on it.

    #2: A family/friends part of my site. I want to maximize convenience for my family/friends (particularly for the non-internet-sophisiticated folks) which is why I don't want to use a password, but I don't want these images indexed or promoted by smugmug or Google.

    #3: A school and kid's sports part of my site that I password protect each gallery in order to never make another parent uncomfortable about me taking pictures of their kids in school events or sporting events. This is a hobby for me and is much appreciated by many parents. But after getting a few requests to remove their kid's pictures from my galleries, I decided that it was just easier for everyone to always password protect these sites and I accept that some people will lose the ability to access the sites when they lose the password.

    Site or passwords ruin option #1 so I can't have #1 if I use a site password to solve #2 and/or #3.

    Requiring site or gallery passwords in order to get desired annonymity make #2 at smugmug less desirable than other solutions (competitive solutions that don't index or browse my galleries).

    Gallery passwords work fine for #3. In particular it's great that smugmug remembers the last password used and automatically applies it to other galleries with the same password. That makes this solution a lot more useful in a multi-gallery scenario.
    --John
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  • juliejulesjuliejules Grin-o-matic Registered Users Posts: 163 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    I agree that making galleries "unlisted" would be cool.

    I get around this by password protecting the family galleries with a password that family and friends should know and that strangers will not know, e.g. the name of a family dog. It's not a super safe password, obviously, but it makes the galleries private AND easily accessed by the inner circle.

    In fact, you could put the password into the hint. It will stop the gallery from being promoted, but would allow people you know to get in easily. Of course, random strangers who stumble onto your galleries would also be able to get in, but this is the same risk as having it unlisted.
    --juliejules
    http://www.juliejules.com
    Canon 70D, Canon EF 24-105mm F4L IS, Canon EF 16-35mm F2.8L, Canon EF 70-200mm F2.8L IS USM, Canon Ext 1.4x II, SpeedLite 430EX
  • DavidTODavidTO Mod Emeritus Thousand Oaks, CARegistered Users, Retired Mod Posts: 19,160 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    Andy wrote:
    But to be clear, we do have a way now, via private galleries and passwords, to be private.


    So John could have private galleries and give his family access to a sharegroup, without his galleries being listed.

    Maybe sharegroups is the answer for you, John. At least for now...
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  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    jfriend wrote:
    Yeah, that points to the fact that I really have three parts of my site with different security and publicity wishes for each.

    And, remember, your subscription covers all three of these parts. I'm saying, that's the more stuff that's asked and potentially added, the more that subscriptoin might or could go up. It's a very difficult balance...
  • dmcdmc Major grins Registered Users Posts: 427 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    No! to search and browse
    I always hear, "Lots of people like it" ... My vote is "I don't care if they like looking at my pictures"

    I envision some fat sweaty guy always trying to get the originals of kids on the beach, kids in the pool, I see it all the time with statcounter, creepy. Most of the time they come from smugmug browse. I'm thinking of moving all my photos out of "Family" category into something else because, for some reason, people are perusing the "Family" galleries.

    I don't think smugmug should be helping out "these people" with this searching and browsing.... and I can't believe smugmug doesn't give us the option to opt out.

    I get occasional hits from google, but usually the result of some search, they hit my site, and usually gone within seconds when they realize they are not interested. Not so with smugmug "browsers"... they go through page after page of pics... and like I said, mostly perverts when I see which pictures they try to zoom in on.

    I still don't believe that most smugmug users want this feature, you should take a poll of your customers (I know, you won't spam them) but hey, if you start your poll out with "did you know we provide easy searching and browsing of your photos to the general public ... do you like that?" I bet you get more no's than yes's
  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    dmc wrote:

    I still don't believe that most smugmug users want this feature, you should take a poll of your customers (I know, you won't spam them) but hey, if you start your poll out with "did you know we provide easy searching and browsing of your photos to the general public ... do you like that?" I bet you get more no's than yes's :splat

    dmc, why do you have to use the flame icon - that's just odd to me. I clearly showed that we're aware of your request. It's pretty harsh to see flames like this. My .02.
  • dmcdmc Major grins Registered Users Posts: 427 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    Andy wrote:
    dmc, why do you have to use the flame icon - that's just odd to me. I clearly showed that we're aware of your request. It's pretty harsh to see flames like this. My .02.

    yeah, your right, just got carried away with the fun icons... i fixed it iloveyou.gif
  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    dmc wrote:

    I still don't believe that most smugmug users want this feature, you should take a poll of your customers

    Hi dmc,

    We did do a survey. You may recall it. It was last fall/winter. "180 Seconds for a better SmugMug." We got about 2,000 responses or so. And the number of folks that brough this up was less than 20. Doesn't mean it's not important - but I need to be clear - we DO ask our customers. And our customers responded in a huge way.
  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    dmc wrote:
    .... and I can't believe smugmug doesn't give us the option to opt out.

    We do. Presently, you can have Private Galleries, Private and Passworded Galleries, and even a passworded site.

    Doen't mean that there aren't other options that we can look at - but there is in fact a way to opt-out right now.
  • ivarivar I'd be happy with a cookie Registered Users Posts: 8,395 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    I have smugmug, because i wanted to share photos with family and friends. I think all non-professional users have it for that reason. So if they can see them, why not others? I have no illegal or R-rated pictures on smugmug, it's all child-safe. Personally i just don't really care who looks at them.

    Also, i think it is kind of naive to believe that if you put pictures without passwords on the internet somewhere, noone else but the people you wanted them to see, see them. Even if they are not searchable, but still public, anyone can still look at them.

    Several of the posters in this thread have a link to their site in their signature or profile. People will look at it, no matter if you want it or not, people will go look. It's just people's nature to be somewhat 'voyeuristic' if you will.

    Do i understand it that people don't want pictures to be public, or searchable? absolutely, but untill there is an option to make them non-searchable, passworded galleries will have to be made. Make 10, give them the same password, and you can flick through them only typing in one password. It's really not that much of a deal. So what ways heavier? not wanting passwords? or not wanting the photos to be searchable?
  • DavidTODavidTO Mod Emeritus Thousand Oaks, CARegistered Users, Retired Mod Posts: 19,160 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    ivar wrote:
    untill there is an option to make them non-searchable, passworded galleries will have to be made. Make 10, give them the same password, and you can flick through them only typing in one password. It's really not that much of a deal. So what ways heavier? not wanting passwords? or not wanting the photos to be searchable?


    Private galleries and sharegroups are a great combo for this problem.
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  • ivarivar I'd be happy with a cookie Registered Users Posts: 8,395 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    DavidTO wrote:
    Private galleries and sharegroups are a great combo for this problem.
    15524779-Ti.gif yep, forgot about that one.... another great option.
  • jfriendjfriend Scripting dude-volunteer Registered Users Posts: 8,097 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    Unsure about sharegroups
    DavidTO wrote:
    Private galleries and sharegroups are a great combo for this problem.

    The reason I haven't used sharegroups is that I wanted my family to be able to browse all the family galleries from one easy to remember URL so they could always know how to get back to the list of family galleries without having to find some email with an obscure URL in it. I know I can share an individual set of galleries in a sharegroup with a hard to remember URL and that works for one-time sharing, but doesn't let me make a place that the family can come to anytime to see all the family photos.

    I guess it sounds close, but I'm not quite sure how I could make it into what I wanted. I'm happy to be convinced if it can do things I didn't know about.
    --John
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  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    jfriend wrote:
    I guess it sounds close, but I'm not quite sure how I could make it into what I wanted. I'm happy to be convinced if it can do things I didn't know about.

    Can you make a Vanity URL out of a sharegroup URL?
  • jfriendjfriend Scripting dude-volunteer Registered Users Posts: 8,097 Major grins
    edited March 30, 2006
    Interesting work-around
    Andy wrote:
    Can you make a Vanity URL out of a sharegroup URL?
    Yes, you could make a vanity URL to replace the ugly sharegroup URL. And yes, I could make all my family galleries by private. And yes, I could put them all in a sharegroup. And yes, I think that would stop browsing and smugmug searching though it's possible that a search engine might find the vanity URL.

    What I would have when it was done is a flat list of galleries for my family with no categories or sub-categories and several extra steps every time I make a new gallery. Presumably, it would not be browsable from smugmug.com and it would not be indexed for global smugmug search. Unsure about Google (but that's another story). So, I'd sacrifice a bunch of smugmug's features and extra setup steps to get a little more privacy.

    It's an interesting work-around. I'm not sure it's easier than just password protecting all family galleries and it's definitely more work and has fewer features. I'd probably be more likely to just use a family password than go to all this other trouble.

    I stand by my request for an "unlisted" option that's in my homepage but smugmug won't index and won't put in browse lists. All I want is for Smugmug to stop linking things to my galleries that I didn't opt-in for while not sacrificing any of the other features Smugmug offers.

    It would go right here:
    62246398-O.jpg

    The existing "public" option would control whether it's in your home page or not.

    You add a new option right below it that I'm calling "Unlisted", but you could call it whatever you want. "Yes" would mean that you won't index it for search and you won't display it in any public area other than the user's home page.
    --John
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  • zanthruszanthrus Big grins Registered Users Posts: 15 Big grins
    edited April 7, 2006
    Keywords
    One thing that hasn't been discussed so far is keywords. In my opinion they are the single best way to organize a collection of photos. They add so much functionality that they are hard to give up. I wouldn't want to switch to private or password protected galleries if it means losing them.

    Keywords work if site passwords are used, but they also make site passwords ineffective (see http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=6021&page=9). This is a bug that needs to be fixed, or at least mentioned somewhere in the help pages.

    As it is, I'm thinking of writing my own website that does exactly what I want. I can have all my galleries private on Smugmug, but with the smugmug API I can pull out all the information I need to show my pictures on my own website where I know they will only be visible to people that know the URL. Needless to say, thats a lot of extra work. It would take a long time to get a website as simple and stylish as what Smugmug provides. Why are you making me do all the extra work?

    If I ever get a project started, I'll let everyone here know about it. And hopefully I'll get a little help too. :):
  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited April 7, 2006
    zanthrus wrote:
    This is a bug that needs to be fixed, or at least mentioned somewhere in the help pages.

    Could you explain more about this bug?
  • zanthruszanthrus Big grins Registered Users Posts: 15 Big grins
    edited April 7, 2006
    Andy wrote:
    Could you explain more about this bug?

    I'm vague for a reason, I hate doing this. But, here it is with an example:

    Go to this Smugmug user's page http://nickname.smugmug.com/, and note that you can't get in without a password. Now, go to http://nickname.smugmug.com/keyword and have full access to all their pictures with passwords. But, don't look, cause they obviously don't want us to.

    There was a full discussion of this in the old thread,
    http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=6021&page=9. I feel like I'm beating a dead horse here. But, this is an issue, and it should be resolved.
  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited April 7, 2006
    zanthrus wrote:
    I'm vague for a reason, I hate doing this. But, here it is with an example:

    Go to this Smugmug user's page http://nickname.smugmug.com/, and note that you can't get in without a password. Now, go to http://nickname.smugmug.com/keyword and have full access to all their pictures with passwords. But, don't look, cause they obviously don't want us to.

    There was a full discussion of this in the old thread,
    http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=6021&page=9. I feel like I'm beating a dead horse here. But, this is an issue, and it should be resolved.

    I just wanted clarification. Thanks - back in a few.
  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkRegistered Users Posts: 50,154 Major grins
    edited April 7, 2006
    zanthrus wrote:
    I'm vague for a reason, I hate doing this. But, here it is with an example:

    Go to this Smugmug user's page http://nickname.smugmug.com/, and note that you can't get in without a password. Now, go to http://nickname.smugmug.com/keyword and have full access to all their pictures with passwords. But, don't look, cause they obviously don't want us to.

    There was a full discussion of this in the old thread,
    http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=6021&page=9. I feel like I'm beating a dead horse here. But, this is an issue, and it should be resolved.

    OK and now it's all refreshed to me....

    Thanks for bringing this up again, we appreciate it. You're right, it should be resolved. I've submitted this again to our engineers.
  • onethumbonethumb SmugMug CEO & Chief Geek Administrators Posts: 1,269 Major grins
    edited April 8, 2006
    zanthrus wrote:
    I'm vague for a reason, I hate doing this. But, here it is with an example:

    Go to this Smugmug user's page http://nickname.smugmug.com/, and note that you can't get in without a password. Now, go to http://nickname.smugmug.com/keyword and have full access to all their pictures with passwords. But, don't look, cause they obviously don't want us to.

    There was a full discussion of this in the old thread,
    http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=6021&page=9. I feel like I'm beating a dead horse here. But, this is an issue, and it should be resolved.

    This is a bug. A big one.

    We'll fix it.

    Don
  • shiffyshiffy Big grins Registered Users Posts: 23 Big grins
    edited May 25, 2006
    Bug fix
    Just wondering if this bug has been fixed and, if so, how? (a) can keywords be used with password protected sites without exposing the albums in it to smugmug and google searches? (my preference) or (b) by disabling keywords for password proteceted sites? (not as preferable, but at least, it will keep out unwelcome visitors).

    Thanks.

    Steve
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