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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Dermatology Online Journal

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Dermatology on Flickr


Flickr, which was launched in 2004, is one of the oldest photo-sharing services online. The company, which was once at the forefront of the internet social media explosion, lost users and received criticism as its repeated acquisitions by other companies forced users to adapt to new owners. Now facing another acquisition by the online photo-sharing service SmugMug, the future is uncertain again for the once popular internet and mobile application service. Flickr, with its rapid rise in popularity, sudden halt in growth, and its gradual loss of users and popularity, has been repeatedly looked to as a lesson for other internet startups on the necessity of adapting quickly in the current internet age. Given the rise of social media use in the healthcare field, and the long-standing presence of Flickr on the internet, this study investigated the presence of dermatology-related content on Flickr and how the photo-sharing platform has applied to the visual field of dermatology, its dermatologists, and its professional associations.

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