Panther beach fireworks , originally uploaded by snakebite2.

While I was at the UKLA Conference I went to listen to a symposium led by Julia Davies about the photo sharing community Flickr. It was fascinating to listen to Julia, Sigrid and David Barton talk about the different ways that people engage with the website. The gaming and play aspect is something that I’d never considered before, which led me to think about my own engagement with Flickr and what it means to me.

When I look at Flickr I always get slightly envious of the photography skills on show and could never hope to equal some of the shots that appear on the site. Besides that I mainly visit the site as a visitor and have only uploaded about 10 photos to date. I tend to enter the site and search for photos that help me to relax and take me to a place where I want to be. Flickr offers me escapism from the real world. I have a huge thing for sunsets and blue skies, especially on beaches, and if I find a photo showing a combination of these it makes me feel happy and relaxed. I can just imagine myself sat on the beach in the photo above with a cool summer’s breeze, watching the fireworks and listening to the sea. Bliss.

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