November 12th, 2015
September 23rd, 2015
InstaAgent is a popular app that helps Instagram users track who’s visiting their Instagram account. It’s also, according to a investigation by a developer at Peppersoft, malware.
Evidently, InstaAgent is storing Instagram users’ passwords and usernames and sending them in plain text to a remote server. As MacRumors Julie Clover reports, the app is “also using the credentials to log into accounts and post unauthorized images. Instagram does not permit third-party apps to upload photos to user accounts.”
Since the revelation, InstaAgent has been pulled from both the iOS and Google Play app stores. If it’s on your mobile device, you should delete it ASAP and change your Instagram password.
How Photographers With Huge Followings Grew Their Social Networks
This Is the Most Liked Photo on Instagram
April 8th, 2014
Instagram isn’t the only photo app getting a facelift. Storehouse just released version 2.0, ushering in a major redesign for the storytelling-focused app.
One big change is the removal of social media features. Storehouse has purged followers, likes and timelines from its features. Instead, the app’s story creation tools have been expanded with the purpose of enabling users to privately share large batches of photos from their iPhone.
In a blog post announcing the new features, company CEO Mark Kawano wrote that the “follower model with a profile was subliminally making people decide what type of online persona they should be on Storehouse…As our community grew to over 1m active users and many of us started collecting thousands of followers, publishing stories started to feel different. This isn’t too bad if you’re just sharing a single photo, a link, or 140-characters of text, but it wasn’t ideal for Storehouse. Personally, I don’t know most of my followers and I don’t even know why they really follow me, so sharing personal stories felt awkward since I’ve never been the blogger type. I’m also far from a professional photographer so sharing public stories alongside some of the best photographers in the world felt intimidating.” (For more on how Storehouse works, see “Are Visual Storytelling Platforms Good for Photographers?” on PDNOnline; log-in required.)
With social media out of the way, Storehouse is now focused on group photo editing and private sharing. Among the new features in version 2.0 is “shake-and-edit” which sorts photos into a magazine-like design simply by jiggling your iphone. A “spaces” feature lets third parties add images to a given collection. The underlying app has been rewritten so it’s faster.
The app is also now optimized for the new Apple TV.
Here, according to Storehouse, is how the new version will work:
- Select photos and videos from your Camera Roll (or Instagram, Flickr & Dropbox) and Storehouse will automatically generate a page you can send to your friends.
- Send a link to each story you create by SMS, iMessage, or email.
- Customize a layout by pulling the handles on any photo or video; rearrange your images by simply dragging them around the page.
- Create spaces for friends and family to contribute their own photos around one theme — such as children, recipes, a wedding or vacation, or a new creative project.
- Privately share images among parents, grandparents and close friends, with each member simply viewing, or contributing via a “space.”
- Embed collections to a blog, or share specific stories to social media if you want to share to a larger group.
Storehouse is available free on iTunes.
Are Visual Storytelling Platforms Good for Photographers? (For PDN subscribers; log in required.)
January 23rd, 2013
Photographers have been asking for a mobile version of Adobe Lightroom pretty much since the first iPad launched four years ago and, for some eager folks, even prior to that. Well, everyone finally got their wish tonight, as Adobe launched the Lightroom mobile app, which lets you edit and organize your images on your iPad. (The company says iPhone and Android versions of the app are also in the works.)
While the Lightroom mobile app is free to download, you need to have one of Adobe’s controversial subscription plans in order to use it. The best current Adobe subscription deal for photographers is the Photoshop Photography Program, which costs $9.99 a month and gives you Photoshop CC and Lightroom 5, along with some other features including 20GB of cloud storage. You’ll also need the latest iteration of Lightroom, which is at Version 5.4, to run the app, but that’s a free update and available now.
TechCrunch is reporting that Apple removed the 500px app from the App Store due to “pornographic images and materials.” Apple says in an official statement that it has “also received customer complaints about possible child pornography” being accessible via the app. This action continues what appears to be Apple’s conservative attitude toward nude imagery, but also raises questions about how far the tech company is willing to go to curb access to photos it deems inappropriate.
The app, which is owned by the photo-sharing site 500px, allows users to access the images hosted on 500px.com via their smartphones. According to the article, Apple flagged a recent update for the app “because it allowed users to search for nude photos.” While this search functionality does exist as part of the update, 500px COO and co-founder Evgeny Tchebotarev tells TechCrunch that precautions were made so that the app would default to a “safe search” mode that would not display nude photos. In order to change the search mode, users would need to access the 500px website and make the change manually.
Tchebotarev says that 500px does not allow its users to post pornography. He notes that many professional photographers and photo enthusiasts use the site, and that there is a difference between artistic nudes and pornography. Currently 500px community members flag inappropriate images, though the company is in the process of developing technology similar to facial recognition software that would automatically flag questionable images.
Apparently, 500px had been working with Apple to make the necessary adjustments to the app update. However, the changes would take at least a day to implement and during the interim Apple chose to pull the app from the App Store. To date, nearly one million users have downloaded the 500px app.
Aside from the usual question about what constitutes “pornography,” we have to wonder how far Apple is willing to go in terms of regulating apps that would allow adults to view nude images. Does this apply to search engines as apps, a la Apple’s own Safari browser? What about popular photo-sharing sites like Instagram and Tumblr, both known to have their fair share of nudity? Furthermore, what about third-party apps such as Flipboard and Google+ that allow their users to easily access 500px’s content?
PDN Product Review: 500px
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