If you use the popular photo sharing website 500px, there’s a big change some of you might not have noticed. Free accounts used to be allowed to upload 20 photos per week. As it appears, this number has been reduced to 7 uploads per week, and if you want to upload more, you’ll have to pay.
When you go to the “Fair Storage Policy” section of 500px Terms of Service, you’ll notice that it reads: “Free accounts are limited to a maximum of 7 new photographs/images per week and 2,000 photographs/images in total (approximately 60Gb of storage, and 1Gb of data transfer from profile and portfolios per month).”
As PetaPixel reports, this section was changed about six months ago. According to them, at the end of June, it still read that free users were entitled to 20 uploads per week. At the beginning of July, the terms were changed from 20 to 7 new photos per week.
In addition to the new rules, 500px has also updated the Help page to justify the change:
We’ve heard from our many users the desire to see an even higher level of quality of photos on our platform. At 500px, we constantly strive to showcase the very best photos from our community. We have always encouraged our users to share their very best and to focus on quality over quantity. With that said, we’ve decided to take the extra step of lowering our upload limit for free users from 20 to 7 per week. Based on our analysis, this should impact a small minority of users and benefit the entire community.
This page also reads that the users will be notified with a message of the number of uploads they have left for the week: “You have “X” photos left this week. Upgrade to Awesome, Pro or Pro+ for unlimited uploads!”
I have a free 500px account and I use it once in a blue moon. So, I didn’t even notice the change. After reading the new terms, I uploaded a new photo, and indeed, there’s a message notifying me how many uploads I have left:
Some of the users were unhappy with the change, and have posted about it on Twitter:
.@500px So, you encourage free users to upload more with your 'free access to stats' challenge, but then limit the uploads to 7/week. Bit of a conflict there pic.twitter.com/9YdELGUvsy
— Rich Harle (@RJHarle) November 23, 2017
As far as I’m concerned, I don’t think it’s a problem that 500px reduced the number of uploads in order to focus on quality over quantity. Although, just because someone pays for the Pro membership, it doesn’t mean they’ll upload more good photos. But that’s another story.
What I see as a problem is that they didn’t notify their users. Their own Terms of Service read: “Basically, if these terms change, we will notify you.” So I wonder why they made such a big change without any prior warning.
As I mentioned, I haven’t even noticed this change. What about you? And how are you going to deal with it?
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