New Duel Ban Alogorithm - some samples

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  • Updated 5 years ago
In an effort to vastly improve the quality of the rankings on Pixoto, this week we added a new feature which flags users who have suspicious or seemingly careless voting patterns. For the first 24 hours the images we selected were a bit too close in quality and we also unnecessarily warned members if they were getting close to being flagged (and we took some well deserved heat on this community). After correcting this we've still been taking some heat from photographers who have had their duel privileges temporarily revoked. Some people see this as a sign that our system is making things worse.

I want to say unequivocally that we believe this new system is the largest single improvement that we have made to Pixoto voting since we started nearly three years ago. It is true that some people have been flagged when they should not have been - but overall we feel that that the system has very high success rate. In order to demonstrate why we feel this way I am going to post some of the duels that people voted on that got their accounts flagged. In each case below the user clicked on the image on the left.

I'm interested in your feedback. Do you think that votes, such as the ones below, overall are productive in our efforts to find the best photos? You be the judge.
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Jason Kiefer, Official Rep

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Posted 6 years ago

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Jason Kiefer, Official Rep

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here's a link to the duels: http://blog.pixoto.com/imageduel-flag...
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Steen Lassen

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Somewhere in my mind youre getting flagged for trying to decide/influence the voting. A photo does not have to be clear or stand out in sharpness to be good. You do not have the right to decide wich photo I vote for. It all comes down to taste, and that is not your job to flag taste. Taste is differnt from person to person. Most of the images in your example, I would have voted for the wrong image, in your opinion. I do not like images that have clearly been through photoshop, or have to much added color, so I do not vote for such images, and for that I am being flagged. That is not allright. You are judging my taste as an individual, and again thats is not allright. In my opinion it is not allways the technical perfect image that are the best. Why vote if you still want to determine what is right or wrong, the meaning of the voting disappears.
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Amol Verma

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I think it is voting, which is a subjective choice. do i need think and make choice according to what you think. then i think you people should have panel who looks at the pics like other sites do. then there is no need of community voting. how can you mend my sense of voting and judge based on your choice?
And what is the case if i am voting and all the pics or say 5 or 10 pics in row coming on one side and i like.

or no one should click on RANDOM images without looking at images, so that he/she dont become victim of this algo which is a code not a human without any sense of liking and disliking. this way you think people will be making right sort of choices. come on this is not expected from a site like you have.
Over that this is sole my choice that what should i vote and what should i not. i am not sure but are there any standards came out anywhere in the world regarding concepts of beauty. come on..this is always a subjective choice and always will. you just cant mend it like that..
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Nicu Buculei

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actually i DO consciously downvote some images in the right column: the redundant purple water lilly with drops, excessive HDR, the copy of bull race from World Press Photo 2013, the boat in sunrise etc.
6 "goood" images from your sample are examples of what i find boring and redundant on Pixoto. when i see one of these, if the alternative has any redeeming quality, i vote for it. if not, skip the vote.
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Kelly Murdoch

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Can I ask why one of my images were in the link above ?
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Ingrid D Anderson-Riley

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I joined Pixoto two days ago and really enjoyed the feel of and using the web-site, but quickly picked up a problem where I cannot select an image for ImageDuel and am still not able to vote. I reported the problem and got a reply to try to resolve the issue from a Pixoto employee, but nothing has changed this- I've even re-started my computer twice cleared it and scanned it, but am not able to vote or therefore add to my portfolio or do anything; which kind of defeats the object of ImageDuel. Is there a problem with Pixoto?
It was such a fun web-site for the first day: I LOVED it! But after that it's been a constant problem trying to vote. I've only been using Pixoto for two days and if this is going to carry on I'll have to scrap my page and join a more user friendly picture sharing site... which is a pity because I really like the Pixoto concept.
SUGGESTION:
If there is a problem with the algorithm in flagging up so-called voting patterns, why not make the 'duel' between three images instead of two.
Keep in mind that different people will have different reasons for selecting which picture they prefer, taking into account the difficulty in obtaining the shot as well as lighting, technical clarity etc.- a computer algorithm cannot do that... that's why voting is a personal thing, not a robotic or mathematical formula. :-)
I'd really like to continue with Pixoto, but don't have time to battle against a programming glitch.
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Mark Zouroudis

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I'm assuming that the "correct" choice is the one on the right. It may be due to the small size of the examples but there is a couple of the pairings there that I might go either way on.
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Jason Kiefer, Official Rep

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I'm sure there will be people that take issue with some of the parings (personally I think they are all strikingly clear). That said - we don't flag unless a member gets a pretty high percentage of them "wrong". Certainly 80% is acceptable and wouldn't get a member flagged (i.e. choosing the left image in 8 out of the 43 pairs above)
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Dipali

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I think the images on the right are definitely the better images but some of them are of high color (some people do not prefer that), some are highly processed (some people do not like HDR) and some are not liked by the majority here (eg. the water lily) and some of them are signature images of the photographers (you can tell who the photographer is) therefore the voters would choose the one on the left.

Voting should be fair but it is very difficult to make people choose the right one without being biased. Sometimes the voters just choose the inferior image just because they do not like the other one (reasons mentioned above).

In my opinion a voter can choose either of the images in the Crab and the white Rose pairs.
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Jason Kiefer, Official Rep

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I'm not sure I condone voting for an inferior image because you are sick of the other one or don't like the photographer - but regardless - you have to choose the left image a pretty high percentage to get flagged. So these are here to add perspective.
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Dipali

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Agreed.
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Sandra Veech

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I don't like the overly processed flowers you chose- BUT compared to the snapshot/poorly lit images they are paired against, I would either skip- to avoid voting for a photographer I recognize, or grimace and vote for the water lily...lol. Most of the pairings are fairly clear... although interesting that it shows a CLEAR ratings preference among voters for the highly saturated photoshopped images. Even the two photos of women you chose have overly sharpened eyes and smooth skin.
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Sandra Veech

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Also, after voting for the lily, I honestly might seek it out and carefully scrutinize it to make sure it isn't a duplicate...lol. OCD much?
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Dipali

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lol, though I like them a lot.
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Lenore

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Very interesting sets ... I am on my iPad right now so I don't know if that makes a difference or not. Near the bottom, I don't see anything wrong with the birds, for example, and birds are harder to photograph than a giraffe looking at you at the zoo. I take that into consideration when I vote -- a sleeping child (or animal) is easier to photograph than an active, awake one, for example.

Some of these duels could go "wrong" simply because subject matter is subjective and unless photos are vastly different in quality -- and some of these duals don't appear to me (I am on my iPad, as I said, so I may feel differently tomorrow when I am on my laptop) to have vastly different images in quality -- people go with what they like. So, if folks like little dogs more than big dogs, if they like oceans and beaches more than mountains and forests, if they like pictures of women more than men, if they like butterflies and bugs more than lions and tigers, they'll probably vote that way.

Also, on the right, I see a number of the controversial photos -- the water lily, the veggies falling into the water, the models we see over and over again, the water drops. Those are Red Flag photos for many voters. You're only missing the pencil crayons and the woman wearing a Native American headdress :-)
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Lenore

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I forgot to mention .... I think Pixoto is definitely on the right track and I'm pleased you're taking active steps to improve this process. There was a definite hiccup over the weekend and while some of these pairs could certainly go either way, they are much fairer than the examples people were posting.
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Martin Dunaway

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so is the only answer to SKIP SKIP SKIP? until you find the image you feel wont get you gigged for voting incorrectly? it seems that all this math and global PC ness is removing the ability for the HUMAN to be just that!.IMHO...
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Nikola Medjugorac

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I am 100% on this with Pixoto if i compare these sets of images. However, obviously there are so many people in this community that doesn't know what to look for in images. But this is the way to learn i guess and improve their knowledge about photography, if Pixoto provide them constructive feedback why they are wrong in their selection then it would be helpful otherwise just creates unpleasant experience.
Why people hate to see similar object matter? I am bored with it but i don't hate it, i would still vote for better quality image. There are basics that every image should get right like focus, brightness, contrast, saturation etc. and if don't then it simply doesn't have qualities to be great image no matter how interesting and unique the subject matter is. People need to learn how to correct the image, it was done before in darkroom now its done digitally.
There is nothing wrong with strong colors, it can suit the image if doesn't start destroying the quality of the colors. Also heavy processing, yes many people don't like it but many images are done right even if they look unnatural.
There is no point looking at image and thinking what potential can it have, if is not done/captured properly then it's just another snapshot in my opinion.
So yes, please ban people on voting "early" if they can't distinguish between good and bad image, who cares what they like or not, it should not be subject to that because this happens most likely in first 20-30 duels, after that i am sure image duels are more square and fair.
Advice for Pixoto ... you don't have to ban people to vote, rather allocate duels that are at higher stage where differences are smaller, so that spitefulness or ignorance or poor knowledge doesn't kick in.
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Melody Black

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I do not believe I am ever wrong when it is my CHOICE to pick what photo makes me feel good!!!! I feel as though you are conforming me and if I don't vote for what you think is the "RIGHT PHOTO" punishing me and I pay to be here!!!
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Jason Kiefer, Official Rep

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Melody - the intention of this system is to find people who are not paying attention while voting. It is absolutely not to dictate to you how to vote. If you feel that you have been flagged inappropriately please email imageduel@pixoto.com and ask for us to review your votes.
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Melody Black

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You just did it again to me I was flagged! I WANT MY MONEY BACK! I CAN'T VOTE FOR 24 HOURS AGAIN.... YOU NEED TO FIX THIS!!!
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Jason Kiefer, Official Rep

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Melody - your money has been refunded and your pro account canceled.
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Melody Black

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I am very sad about this! Vision one means my vision of it not yours or anyone elses!
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Heather Cob

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a few of these i would choose left also
ex; i dont like fire works photos so i would go with heart at least its original
some i feel are equally not good like the yellow plane or purple boat, would choose plane because of bright color, again the landscapes below heart and fireworks i dont think either is good or the 2 trees comparison,,, but i can skip without fear now so at least pixoto is trying to stop blind voting
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Heather Cob

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and that eiffel tower photo is terrible
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Susan Hogan

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I think the "right" choice is clear in most of these images, but still questionable in a few. But that's on my PC monitor... As Lenore mentions, this might not be as clear on a smaller screen, like a phone or tablet.
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Dean Thorpe

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There are two on the left I would definitely vote for and a couple of others I would be tempted with voting for. Moods change, for example if I have just voted for a dozen pretty sunsets then I get tempted to vote for something different,especially with the duplicate images on here, if a picture looks slightly different, but virtually identical to one I have just voted for,then voting for the other image is tempting. I know people with strange phobias such as fireworks, so they probably wouldn't vote for a photo of them, no matter how "nice" the photo is. Last night I uploaded a photo that I thought was great, but some would find scary, so it didn't do well and I deleted it, technically I think it was a good photo, but being something scary it put some people off.
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Lucky E. Santoso

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Bravo! Way to go, Pixoto!
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jbowers

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I look at the category and if it is clear that one pic is not in the right category for the challenge I will vote for the one that is correctly categorized. I also look at things like in portraits if you photoshop a woman until she looks like a mannequin and then put it up against someone that is shown realistically I will vote for the real looking one every time. And if you take a crappy shot and then think because you made it b & W or added selective coloring that it is now great, I will usually vote against it. lastly if I see similar pics come up again and again, I just vote against them. They should be removed but we all know how that goes and I am only on my second week here.
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jbowers

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Oh and if you post naked kids I also will not ever vote for it. It may be ok in some cultures but it sure isn't here.
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Lenore

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Jason, just an update on my opinion from last night to today: Last night, I viewed these images on my iPad 3, this afternoon I have had a chance to view them on my laptop.

BIG difference!

Last night, some of these pairs looked close in quality. I mentioned the birds, for example, which dueled with the giraffe. However, looking now, the quality difference is much more obvious. Pairs that I thought could reasonably go either way I now see differently: they probably shouldn't. The images on the right are superior.

This, I think, is important. Of course, I don't know how these images would have looked in duels on my iPad, with the dark grey background and the slightly larger size, I only know what the thumbnails looked like. But it certainly shows that the device you're using to access Pixoto does make a difference.
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Jason Kiefer, Official Rep

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After your comment I did change the link so that they are more than 2x as large so you weren't looking at the same images on your laptop as you were on your ipad. I saw what you meant about the birds but after looking at it larger you can see they are out of focus and underexposed.

We are going to analyze how well people do on these based on the size of image they are viewing and the device they are viewing on and may make some changes based on this. Stay tuned.
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Dinesh Pandey

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What would also make a difference is the settings of brightness, contrast etc on individual monitors. Ones own eye-sight? Could it be another grey area? How do we tackle that? There are also software related issues. There are times when the images do not load simultaneously. Which may result in a voter voting in relation to another image, while software is recording it in relation to a different one. And to add to it, there is no way to correct it.
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Susan Hogan

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While you are contemplating this, Jason, your team might also contemplate creating a function to allow the voter to view an image in full size, as has been suggested elsewhere on this forum. If you are truly seeking the best images, this really can only be determined by viewing a full sized image, as the smaller views we are currently afforded can hide quite a bit.
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Graham White

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Why are Pixoto obsessed with Stupid, Pointless, Unworkable Algorithm's instead of sorting out the problems with the rest of the site, for pity's sake focus on what is important instead of trying to fix things that are not broken.
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Cailin

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Agree with you completely.
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Ingrid D Anderson-Riley

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Heartily agree.
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Cailin

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One concept the Pixoto team don't seem to grasp: appreciation of a photograph is a very subjective thing. Personally, I would have voted for many of the photos on the left simply because they were less "cliché", more original, or simply provoked a more emotional response than the ones on the right, even if those might be technically better (though even that notion is subjective).
I don't see how you can possibly decide or judge who has been voting fairly or not. It's just as fast to click on the photo you like better than to click randomly, so stop this witchhunt, and as Graham says, concentrate on other more obvious flaws...
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Ingrid D Anderson-Riley

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I agree whole heartedly with this comment. Sometimes a picture taken from an unusual perspective that is difficult to shoot is more pleasing on the eye than a brilliant but static shot of technical greatness. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
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Steen Lassen

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Somewhere in my mind youre getting flagged for trying to decide/influence the voting. A photo does not have to be clear or stand out in sharpness to be good. You do not have the right to decide wich photo I vote for. It all comes down to taste, and that is not your job to flag taste. Taste is differnt from person to person. Most of the images in your example, I would have voted for the wrong image, in your opinion. I do not like images that have clearly been through photoshop, or have to much added color, so I do not vote for such images, and for that I am being flagged. That is not allright. You are judging my taste as an individual, and again thats is not allright. In my opinion it is not allways the technical perfect image that are the best. Why vote if you still want to determine what is right or wrong, the meaning of the voting disappears.
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Nikola Medjugorac

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You are all right that what you see and what you like is very subjective. Obviously many of you never tried any social photographic club in your area and see how is to be judged by educated photographers from your country's association. If you did you will understand what standards need to apply to image that is considered of great quality. Those very same principles applies to the stock photography too.
By the way this is stock photography website who is trying to select premium images according their unique voting/dueling system. Therefore they need to draw line what is good and what is bad otherwise they will not sell many images as stock because of noise, out of focus, compression etc. It would be great if they have two different systems for those who just want to compete and those who also wants to sell some images but that would be impossible to make. So same rules need to apply to everyone.
To be banned from voting it means that you most of the time vote for those images that are of poor quality in general. That is very selfish towards Pixoto and other people who are trying to make some money from the sales, because you are trying to down-vote their work. By complaints here it seems that any type of device that can capture image is good enough and that knowledge about photography is not criteria for great photography. Well, if you getting married soon please give your point and shoot camera to your grandma to capture your lifetime event :), i am sure there will be few good ones there.
Those that are banned are trying to justify themselves here how photography is subjective thing .... how they see art where other don't ... how great image is covered with crap but you have to look deeper to actually see its quality ... please stop complaining and help with fair voting or be banned. Choice is yours!
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Cailin

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I wouldn't call the people who vote for the most popular photo "idiots", but I can understand that someone (including myself very often) prefers a less "classic" beauty in a photograph. I'm not talking about commercial "quality", because since we can't see full-sized photos in duels, it's hard to judge that, but I'm not really here to sell photos and I would hope that Pixoto doesn't only consider suitable the pictures that could bring them profit! Personally, I don't think that I have any photos that could be exploited commercially, yet I'm still getting good results on some of them, does that mean that the people who have voted for me have voted "wrong"???
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Amol Verma

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I agree with Marie..
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Jason Kiefer, Official Rep

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I would like to re-iterate that our goal is NOT to force you to choose a specific kind of image. We absolutely believe that if you truly prefer a lower rated image that it is your prerogative to vote for it. We are not stopping you from voting on the image you like.

HOWEVER, our system is in place to find people who are voting carelessly. As it says in our notice you should email imageduel@pixoto.com if you believe it was a mistake. If you do that we will send you a list of some of the votes that you made that got you flagged and ask for your feedback. In the vast majority of cases when this happens the member apologizes and realizes they were in fact voting carelessly. BUT there have been two cases where the photographer has had clear reasons why they preferred the other photos and in those cases voting privileges are restored and we apologize for our mistake.

Nikola is right. Some people try to vote against the best image, some people vote randomly and some people vote against or for certain photographers. Our system does a great job in catching these voters but unfortunately sometimes it also "catches" people who have done nothing wrong. If this has happened to you we apologize and invite you to email us so that we can set things right.
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Nikola Medjugorac

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There is no right or wrong here ... we vote how we see images and some people get banned, some don't. It is up to Pixoto to decide what they want to do and i am not trying to change their business model. I have sold 0 images here and not really interested in that but i do understand what they are trying to achieve and i respect that. I also do respect other people's opinions and i am really sorry for those that are banned innocently.
Last year when i joined i complained that i couldn't zoom into images on iPhone4 so i can vote appropriately. They fixed it but for me it was too much effort to do that, so i don't vote via cellphone anymore. If i can't see image properly and in reasonable size, i simply don't vote. When i can't decide i skip.
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Garces & Garces

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I support this system in place. Yes, photography appreciation is subjective, but sometimes it's obvious what's better image. We can't say a sh_t tastes better than a cake.
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Charlie

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Just create a category "Pure Photo" no photoshop just direct from the camera.
That's what i see with the photos on the left, sorry. But for the photos from the right that's what people are looking for, just a thought.
And well, people still vote what they want just to satisfied their "boringness".I never get bored looking at people's work 'cuz i learned from them. and the reality is if you get bored looking at others photo i'm sure you will also get bored looking at your photos. I agree when pixoto flagged someone.
Let just enjoy.
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Jason Kiefer, Official Rep

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Charlie - thanks for your feedback. Our fundamental belief is that post processing is a critical part of photography. It is the combination of capture and refinement post capture that define a great photograph. As an example Ansel Adams' photos gained wide appeal as much for his phenomenal capture as for his innovative darkroom techniques.

Essentially we feel that capture without post is like a birthday cake without the icing.
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Charlie

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You're right Jason i just quote this term "people still vote what they want just to satisfied their "boringness" 'cuz there are people here that they are not contented if they don't get what they want. And i agree cake with out icing. you mention it 'cuz my wife bakes cake naturally w/o icing but her friends requested her to bake a cake with icing. You can't please everyone just stick to what is right.
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Daniel Boavida

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I dont Understant, Maybe I'm a bad photographer, but help me in my Judgement
This is Mine

http://www.pixoto.com/images-photogra...

And The Duel

http://www.pixoto.com/images-photogra...

And now please someone Explain to me, Is my image Bad??
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jbowers

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Your image is awesome, but lets face it, how often do you see a dude taking his turkeys for a walk down the street? Just strange enough for people to click it. I would've voted for yours but not without giving it a second look.
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Daniel Boavida

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Ok, I Understant your point of View, maybe its my mistake put that photo in that Cat, maybe what we need is duels on the same Sub Cat and not in the main Cat, i Think would be better i think, but again, i put my post because some of my picts are constantly lose with pics taken by phone, unfocus, with bad colors I dont know. I respect the work of all even with bad quality but lets be fair on the Votes. Best Regards to all
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Lenore

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My opinion is that the turkey photo, while I liked it and it brought a smile to my face, is in the wrong category -- this is not a general street scene but a photo where the subject is the person out with his turkeys. I've reported it as being in the wrong category, so we'll see if Pixoto moves it or not.
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Heather Cob

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i agree i think they voted the turkey photo because it was funny and different, also possible that they just choose the "brighter" image since yours is a night photo
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Augie Juliano

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Jason that's was so well said. I am keeping your statement to remind me.

"Our fundamental belief is that post processing is a critical part of photography. It is the combination of capture and refinement post capture that define a great photograph. As an example Ansel Adams' photos gained wide appeal as much for his phenomenal capture as for his innovative darkroom techniques".

"Essentially we feel that capture without post is like a birthday cake without the icing."
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Daniel Boavida

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Ok, It's Democracy, I understand That, like i said Above i Respect the Others, ok Less technical Photos. But I think there will Be always some people who will try to make bad votes and good ones also. The point is the frustration of good Photos been voted against no quality, unfocused , bad colours, bad cuts, no technique. I understand the ppl who said my photo is better that one for sure, yes and i agree, it Happens to me, one of my photos was voted against a person who was driving and take a photo on his cell Phone,the picture was Unfocused, Dark, trough the watered glass (it was raining), awful picture and even then that picture win mine. So I perfectly understand.

Best Regards
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Janette Ho

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I am unable to vote now
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Jasenka, Official Rep

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This is a great conversation that's separate from the main topic, so I created a new topic to continue the discussion. Please reference the new topic here: Not able to vote
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Janette Ho

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I guess maybe it is time to leave although I love photography as a hobby. When I run out of credits then it is time to say goodbye.
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Ingrid D Anderson-Riley

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I'm feeling exactly the same- It's frustrating to say the least.
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Janette Ho

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I always vote carefully. Sometimes the choice is obvious and sometimes both images are equally good so I have to take a longer time to decide. Sometimes I have my own preference and sometimes I vote a particular image because I am expected to vote for it.

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