Clean Up Your Photo Library

by Randy Murray on December 24, 2013

Today I reviewed the stream of photos that I’d taken using my iPhone over the last twelve months. I’ve found that I use our dedicated camera less and less and my phone more and more to take pictures.

But I also noticed something else. My photos are littered with little pictures that don’t need to be preserved for eternity. Many of them are product snapshots, instructions, screen shots, and other things that I have taken to send to someone else as part of a tweet or text message or some other type of personal or group communication.

These pictures may not be worth a thousand words, but they can be very effective. When you’re at the store and unsure of what you’ve been sent to purchase it’s easier to send a picture and just ask “This one?”

In the pre-iPhone era I didn’t text. It was too much effort for me to translate the number pad on those early phones into letters. I’d often write notes, take a picture of the note, and send that back in reply. It was surprisingly effective and typically got a laugh. And it’s still very effective to do the same thing to illustrate a point or to add clarity to a message .

Many of us older than thirty still have a mindset that a photograph is something expensive. You had to pay for the film AND then to have it developed. To us, you simply don’t throw out pictures. But digital cameras and ubiquitous internet access makes it possible to talk in pictures and then simply throw them away (digitally speaking). They have served their purpose. To keep them is pointless. But you have to make an effort to get rid of them and they do accumulate like dust bunnies under the bed.

I’m cleaning up my recent photos. There are a lot of these little photo messages in there. When I see them I can sometimes remember their context, but I find that I don’t need them. The other photos are important. I want to keep the others clear of the chatter.

It’s a useful exercise. Clean up your photo stream and remove the little notational images that you no longer need.

Clean Up Your Photo Library by Randy Murray, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

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