Flickr Co-Founder Stewart Butterfield on the Basics of “Participatory Media” – It’s not About the Photos – It’s About the People

By on 08/10/2006 6:12 PM @

We caught up with Flickr co-founder Stewart Butterfield in Manhattan last week. He was in town to announce the winners in Flickr’s photo contest ‘The Blink of an Eye’.

Stewart and his wife and co-founder Caterina Fake sold the company to Yahoo! last year. The were featured on the cover of Newsweek not too long ago.

Far from living a celebrity high life, Stewart is deeply involved with the success of the photo sharing site, working days and some sleepless nights too.

He confides with Beet.TV’s Kate Lyon that he is so consumed with Flickr that he sometime he has trouble sleeping and keeps a notepad by his bedside to jot down notes on all sorts of issues like scalability, spam and copyright abuse. (aack!)

He told Kate that the key to success in participatory media (a term he prefers over consumer generated content) is the people, not the photos or medium. The photos are just the “locus” for people bringing people together. You can’t have one without the other, and when you put it that way, calling it participatory media does make a lot of sense.

And, please rest well Stewart, we think you deserve it!

— Andy Plesser with Kate Lyon

Caterina_fake_125_1

Here’s Flickr co-founder Caterina Fake

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