HowTo: Flickr Contacts, Permissions and Groups

Article three will give you a better understanding of the social networking aspects of Flickr.
These are what take Flickr from a simple photo sharing site into a wonderful social experiance.
You can make lots of new friends that share the same photographic, or other, interests as yourself from ALL around the world.
This is after all what the internet is all about.
Networking … 😉


Their are various ways to get contacts.
I will attempt to cover the two main ones.

Invited by Friends

If a friend invites you to Flickr you receive a nice email from them with a link to set up your Flickr account.
Once it is set up you get connected to your friend by Flickr.

From a Flickr users profile/picture

You have found a Flickr user who you want to add as a contact.
This could be someone who you know, or just someone whose pictures you like.
By looking at their profile and moving your mouse over their picture a pop-up appears that gives you the option to make a person a contact.
By clicking on the option text you will get another pop-up where you can select the sort of contact this person is.
You can select Friend or Family as well as just adding the person as a contact.
Selecting these options gives them privaledges when you want to make some pictures not publicly availble.

Anywhere in flickr where you see the Flickr users photo has the “Add Contact” pop-up available.
Just move you mouse over and click the text.


There are five different permissions options available in Flickr for your photos.

  1. Public: For anyone on the Net
  2. Private: For your eyes only
  3. Private + Friend: For your eyes OR those contacts saved as a friend only.
  4. Private + Family: For your eyes OR those contacts saved as family only.
  5. Private + Friend + Family: For your eyes OR those contacts saved as a friend OR those contacts saved as family only.

Tip: If one of your contacts can not see one of your photos it is usually because the contact does not have the privaledge to view the photo.
You could have saved the photo as private, or the contact may not be a Friend/Family as required by the permissions on the photo.
To change the privaledges of the contact just mouse over their picture and click the “Change?” pop-up that appears.
To change the permissions of a photo just select the photo and click the change permissions link, which is the first link in the “Additional Information” section on the right hand side of the pictures page.
You can then change the permissions in the “Who can view this photo” section.


Flickr really comes into its own thanks to groups.
There are groups for everything.
From Macintosh Fetishists to Zoo Lovers,
Click on the “Groups” link at the top of you page and you go to YOUR group page.
It lists all the groups you belong to and also the most recent and most popular groups on Flickr.
The search option allows you to find a group with your particular interest.
Say you love landscapes.
Just type in Landscapes into the search box and click “Search”.
The search result page then shows you all the matching groups.
There are lots of them.
Say you select the Landscape group. [It does have lots of members!].
In the Group Page you get the most recent pictures, a list of Group Discussions and on the right hand side a link to Add this Group to your groups.
After joining the Group you can add your photos to the group pool of photos.
On picture page of the photo you want to add to the pool click the “Send To Group” Icon directly above the photo.
You get an option to undo this if you have clicked it incorrectly. Which is nice.

Some groups are invitation only.
Some groups split int different sub-groups. [i.e. Landscape – Creative Commons for landscape pictures licensed under a Creative Commons license.]

And you can even create your own group if you want.
But ALWAYS check that another group with the same interests as you does not already exist before creating a new one.


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