FYI: Photo and Video Sharing

What is it?

Photo and video sharing is a process of transferring digital photos or video from a camera or video recorder to a computer and then to an on-line service so that users can organize, print and/or share the photos/video with other users. This process is facilitated by using photo/video management software and by accessing a website that will host the uploaded photos/video.

Most personal computers come with photo and video management software, such as Adobe Photoshop or iPhoto and there are dozens of photo and video hosting websites. The hosting websites vary greatly in terms of services and some are free and others are subscription-based. There are more sites for photo hosting although many offer both video and photo sharing services. Most sites offer photo printing via mail order and some offer the option of picking up ordered prints from local retail outlets.

Photo/video sharing can provide a convenient way for clients and colleagues to share multiple photos via the Internet. Sending photos and video via email is often a problem due to the large file sizes. The images can also be difficult to view if the receiver does not have the proper software. Using a photo/video sharing website allows for password protected viewing and the ability to organize the photos/video for easy access. It is not necessary to be highly computer literate to use this technology because the websites offer easy to follow instructions for uploading, organizing, sharing and ordering photos.


  • Shooting & Sharing Digital Photos for Dummies
  • How to Use Flickr: The Digital Photography Revolution


Free sites include:

  • Dropshots - organizes photos by date, supports video and photo hosting
  • Flickr- supports many modes of downloading and sharing
  • Photobucket- supports photos and video
  • Shutterfly - focus on organizing and storing photos, offers free Windows based software
  • Snapfish - focus on ordering prints and other products at competitive prices
  • Vimeo - Video hosting
  • Paid sites typically offer subscription-based services and do not have advertisements. Most subscription based sites offer a free limited time trial offer.

  • Webshots - offers free and upgraded memberships, supports photos and video
  • Phanfare - supports photos and video, rated by USA Today and PC Magazine, pricing at $6.95/month, $54.95/year or a $200.00 lifetime membership
  • Smugmug - rated by USA Today, The Wall Street Journal and PC Magazine, priced at $39.95 a month, very attractive site

Other Resources