“3 Best Ways to Scan Your Old Photos (And Why You Should)”

With 177 thousand followers on Twitter and a web ranking under 1,000 as the most popular sites, MakeUseOf a top tech site for trending articles, tutorials, and reviews.just published the ultimate primer on how and why to digitize your photos.


Are you staring down at boxes in your attic filled with old photos? The memories are priceless, but the practical aspects of keeping, maintaining, and sorting through old photo albums can be daunting.


Thankfully there are a number of great solutions out there for digitizing prints. But what’s the best way to scan old photos? Well that depends on the number of old photos you have, your budget, what you intend to do with the photos, and how much free time you have.



Among the recommendations are at home and using an app to help digitize your pictures. With one billion photos ruined just from last year’s hurricanes and wildfires, this preparedness advisory is extra timely. As the average household has 5,500 pictures to scan, the arduous DIY project can become nightmarish. The article also profiles bulk photo scanning services, including ScanMyPhotos.


Option 3: Photo-Scanning Services: Of course, the easiest way to tackle this project is to simply hire a photo-scanning service. While this is an amazing way to decrease the amount of time involved in this project, it does come with some downsides.

 


ScanMyPhotos

Cost per photo: 16 cents per photo, but additional services (e.g. image rotation, higher dpi, color correction) are extra.

Formats Supported: Printed photos, film, negatives.

Additional Services: Option to pay $145 for a prepaid photo scanning box, international shipping, rush services.


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A Primer on Tagging People in Pictures for Photo-Sharing Apps

Unlike anything we’ve seen since the convergence of digital photography, an historic threat is underway. It is causing the leading photo-sharing apps to be embroiled in, and under fire by tagging people in pictures. Facebook ‘faces’ an escalation in the multi-billion dollar class action lawsuit over whether the photo-sharing social media app illegally violated users’ privacy by sharing pictures without explicit consent. 


As a nearly 30-year technologist innovator and disruptor in the photo imaging industry, ScanMyPhotos champions the need for MORE data collection restrictions, algorithmic controls and auditing transparency requirements for Facebook on how it harvests photo data [“Why Not to Upload Pictures to Facebook]. But, in the case of photo-tagging, we stand with Facebook. 



ScanMyPhotos

ScanMyPhotos.com digitized more than 400 million pictures, many are uploaded to the popular photo-sharing sites

ScanMyPhotos.com supports the benefits and legitimacy of biometric image-recognition tools. This guest commentary in Adweek by ScanMyPhotos’ CEO, Mitch Goldstone explains in detail why this matters.


Storytelling cannot be accomplished without implementing photo-tagging, image recognition technology.  This technology is the lifeblood and centerpiece of sharing and tagging pictures.


Since the dawn of photography, analog photo tagging predated biometric facial-recognition.


While the practice of “photobombing” has become a social and cultural phenomenon lately, the practice itself isn’t anything new. Since the advent of the camera, people have either intentionally tried to appear in someone else’s photos or have accidentally stumbled into the frame. Now, with biometric facial recognition (BFR) algorithms, companies like Google, Apple, and Facebook are able to identify these “photobombing” faces across the web—yet, this smart way to organize and share pictures is dredging up privacy concerns.


Peter Blumberg and Stephanie Bodoni at Bloomberg wrote: “Facebook Has a Long History of Resolving Privacy Claims on the Cheap.”


“When you consider the 3.5 trillion analog photos and billions of more recent digital pictures in existence, our images—in some form or another—may be entrapped in a stranger’s photo album without consent. If a person walks through the background of a tourist’s snapshot, facial recognition software may recognize the face and tag the person’s name to that picture. That photo can then be shared across the internet—with the person’s name attached, and without their permission to share it,” said Mitch Goldstone, president & CEO, ScanMyPhotos.com.



Many countries are already using deep data collection using facial recognition without the risk of litigation. Take the surveillance cameras sitting atop over 100,000 lampposts in Singapore to instantly recognize faces in crowds, or similar systems in place at casinos, yet privacy concerns abound.


While the privacy implications are concerning, there are also more incontrovertible benefits to this technology. The ability to detect a person’s image in the background of a photo could help historians make a number of connections. If, for example, an individual is researching his personal family ancestry, facial recognition could help him find photos of his great, great-grandmother smiling in a (seemingly) complete strangers’ photo.


“Helping to electronically organize photographs is a critical issue. It is enjoyed by millions, and the benefits are staggeringly beneficial. With facial recognition technology, we can vastly improve tracking history through photos. This is why we are rallying consumers, the tech and photo industries to also support this advocacy campaign,” said Goldstone.


This (Sept 21, 2017) Chicago Tribune story by Ally Marotti, provides smart insights and an update on the litigation against Shutterfly. Excerpt:


That has been one of the most-watched suits taking on the biometrics issue. Three Illinois men allege Facebook was collecting, storing and using biometric data without consent. Facebook’s attempt to get the lawsuit dismissed was denied. Some say these types of lawsuits allege damage without evidence of actual harm.


As these antiquated privacy laws are being challenged, leading tech-industry giants like Facebook and Google Photos hail new facial-recognition tools to help identify pictures. Restricting this collection and storage of biometric “faceprint” data falls outside the margins of intellectual property rules. The image-recognition tools are scanning photographs, not actually biometric face and body scans. It is just identifying people, places and things within vintage photographs.


This is different from other uses of biometrics, such as iBeacon which uses smartphone transmissions to identify people and send them marketing messages. Tagging a person in a photograph should not be considered in violation of privacy rights. There is no malice or intent to harm anyone by identifying physical characteristics, but rather a fun and easy way to organize your lifetime of photo memories.


Yet, while we could argue both sides of the debate, there are several smart solutions that could be used to protect people’s privacy.



5 Solutions to the Photo-Tagging Controversy




1) When collecting and retaining biometric identifiers, people should have an easy way to opt-out. A simple one-touch button should be accessible on every electrically stored picture to permanently and universally remove and untag your images if identified within that photograph.


2) Strengthen the terms of service and privacy policy and transfer any obligation to those uploading pictures rather than the utility hosting them.


3) Have a manual, rather than automatic opt-in/opt-out enrollment policy for people to easily select using a facial-recognition program.


4) Prohibit the trading, selling or profiting from any biometric information that violates Terms of Service privacy provisions.


5) From the new class-action litigation regarding photo-tagging, Facebook and others must provide an option for free data wiping to resolve this photo tagging issue.


While we are advocates of biometrics and the capabilities it has to offer—particularly in terms of photo organization and history preservation—we are opening up the dialogue so others can voice their support as well.


About the author: ScanMyPhotos, founded in 1990, is an e-commerce photo digitization service that scanned more than 500 million analog pictures. To help organize and identify these lifetimes of newly digitized pictures, people are widely enjoying photo-sharing services and the magic-like assistance from image-recognition tools, and which we fully support its use.


It is nearly magic as we digitize upwards of 300,000 each day. Here is how our banks of professional photo digitizing equipment scans your photos from our Irvine, Calif headquarters. Click to watch.


 

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Photo Scanning Price Rollback Celebrating David Pogue’s Review

Photo Scanning Price Rollback at ScanMyPhotos.com | 10th Anniversary Celebration From The 2008 New York Times Review


Pay just $125 for social media, archival and professional prepaid fill-the-box orders with an added bonus of free same day scanning*

PAY ONE PRICE FOR ANY PHOTO SCANNING RESOLUTION — JUST $125*

Click to View the New York Times  Review


All photo scanning resolutions are just $125 for the next 45 orders at ScanMyPhotos.com for your prepaid fill-the-box photo scanning.*



Choose from standard 150dpi social media scanning (regularly $145), 300dpi archival scanning (regularly $259), and 600dpi professional scanning (regularly $299). Pay just $125 each. Many popular add-on featured services are available to enhance your order experience.

Why: It’s been 10 years since the iconic tech columnist David Pogue put the urgency to digitize pictures on the map. Since then, we’ve digitized 500 million pictures.


Something Special: Enjoy this price rollback celebration to commemorate the futurist and visionary (formerly at) The New York Times’ Pogue review on ScanMyPhotos. David was on to something big way back in 2008 by identifying how we pioneered affordable and easy bulk photo scanning — and that was before many of the photo-sharing apps (including Google Photos) were widely available for easy uploading to preserve and share all those nostalgic memories.


Hurry! This flashback price will end in hours — once the next 45 orders are received. To apply this instant price rollback discount, enter this promo code: “POGUE



*Fine print to instantly pay just $125 for any of the three photo resolutions:

  • Expires once the next 45 orders are placed, or midnight PDT 4/30/18, whichever comes first.
  • BONUS: Type “free same-day scanning” under special instructions to receive expedited next-up scanning. If you enter that message on the check-out page your photos will be scanned the same day it is received under most circumstances if received before 12 PM
  • Only applies to individual prepaid photo scanning boxes. Many premium add-on services are available to enhance your photo preservation project
  • Online orders only. Not valid towards slide, negative scanning, film, VHS digitization, Family Generation boxes or any other services or any already discounted items
  • Excluding eGift certificates, prior orders, sales tax
  • Not prorated. Sorry, cannot be applied to prior orders
  • Certain restrictions may apply — if the discount wasn’t applied it means we already reached our limit of 45  orders.  This is our first time doing this game-changing sale, so please hurry, as we don’t want you to lose out.
  • Not valid towards VIP Photo Pack, Family Generation Collection, Pay-Per-Scan photo service, and anything not mentioned above. Choose the desired photo scanning resolution from 150dpi, 300dpi, or 600dpi and pay just $125 each.
  • MUST ENTER “POGUE” promo code at checkout to validate



 

Most Popular Photo Scanning Stories

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5 Tips for Indoor Photography

Are you feeling frustrated with indoor photography? Here are some ideas to help make your indoor photos look better:indoor photography

 

Take advantage of daylight.  Shoot your photos wherever sunlight is available, whether that’s by a window or a doorway. Take note of what kind of light enters each room throughout the day. You’ll notice that sunlight has a warmer look at sunrise and sunset. At midday, it has a cooler or neutral color. Use this to add different effects to your photos.

 

Use a reflector!  Not only is this one of the cheapest pieces of equipment you can buy, but it is also one of the easiest pieces of equipment you can make yourself! Here’s how you make a reflector:

Step 1: Get a blank piece of white poster board or paper.

Step 2: Have someone reflect it on your subject!

That’s it!

 

Blank white paper can provide you with a lovely, soft fill source for any shadows on your subject, and helps give your photograph a professional look. If you need something stronger, use a piece of tinfoil to cover that piece of paper.

 

Avoid direct overhead lighting. Make sure your subject takes a few steps away from the light source so that it bounces from the floor onto your subject instead. Direct overhead lighting often casts unflattering shadows.

 

Turn off your flash. This is along the same lines as the previous suggestion, because the flash on your camera can result in a washed out, unflattering photograph if you use it indoors.  Avoid it at all costs, even if you need to raise the ISO.

 

Pay attention to the details.  Whether you’re photographing a group of friends in your living room or working on a paid architecture gig, the details matter!  Look at the countertops — are there pens and paper that belong in the shot, or can they be stashed somewhere else? Are there dishes in a sink? Is a lamp coming out of someone’s head? Take the time to stage your photograph.

 

Do you have other questions about indoor photography? We are big fans of Digital Photography School, so be sure to check out their site from some of the best photographers in the world. 

 Happy photographing!


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