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ScanMyPhotos.com, founded in 1990 has digitized 600 million pictures and shares these tips, news and customer stores with you. Enjoy

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Poll: Divorce #1 Reason People Digitize Family Photos

Stack of photos, bulk scanning[update Oct 9, 2018]


Cheryl Strayed and Steve Almond wrote this in New York Times Style Section about: “I’ve Shed the Emotional Baggage of Divorce. But What About All This Stuff? When a bonfire is not an option.” Read more.


For us at ScanMyPhotos, the business of supporting people during a divorce is emotional, highly delicate and sensitive. When it comes to who keeps the family pictures, we share how you can observe civility and evenly share those memories from happier times?



The only thing inexpensive and amiable about a marital split is who gets to keep the memories pictured in photographs. The in-laws, “outlaws” and everyone in the family can easily get archived digital copies from all their photos.


All too often, we hear about friends, relatives, and celebrities calling it quits to their marriage, which evokes a very common question, who gets the family pictures?


In today’s all-digital world, the answer is as simple as a press of the button to easily share everything electronically. But, what about those decades-past analog photos, 35mm slides, and film negatives? That task is much more arduous, and often enters a caustic battle over who gets to retain the family pictures.



During the past two months, ScanMyPhotos.com has conducted an outreach campaign asking people why they digitize pictures? The answers from 940 respondents were across the board– from the expected family reunions, anniversaries, and even memorial services. The second most popular reason why people digitize pictures is due to all the popular photo-sharing apps, like Google Photos, Instagram, and Twitter.


However, in a heavy-hearted reaction, the most common reason people digitize pictures is due to a separation, where a couple needs to divide their possessions. This is often followed by combative discussions, which occasionally end up costing thousands in legal fees. And, that is before a single picture is digitized. It is highly emotional. Reexamining pictures from yesteryear and happier times is a particularly sensitive undertaking.


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Scanning My Travel Photos: The New York Times

From Stephanie RosenbloomTHE GETAWAY, The New York Times Travel section (Dec 19, 2016). Tips for everything to do with your decades-past travel photos includes a profile on ScanMyPhotos.com

 

Before joining Travel, Stephanie was a New York Times staff reporter for many sections including Business Day, Real Estate, and Styles. She was part of the team that helped create Thursday Styles; the lead reporter for the Metro desk’s Neediest Cases series; and a member of the Continuous News Desk, which provides breaking news content to NYTimes.com



Excerpt:

 

Scanning Services

 

Once you’ve turned the best of your travel photos into art, it’s time to store the rest. If boxes of prints are taking up closet (and psychic) space, there are plenty of sites online that will scan your old photos (as well as negatives, slides and videos) so you can store them digitally. But there are several things to keep in mind.

In general, these sites are a pain to navigate. They’re cluttered with too much text and fine print, and they offer so many options — Do you want your photos scanned in order? Do you want both sides of the photo scanned? — that if you don’t have a goal in mind before you go in, you can quickly be overwhelmed. Decide ahead of time what exactly you want to scan, how many photos you have and how you might use whatever you scan. Also, note that some of these companies by default send DVDs or CDs of your digital files. Not everyone has a CD or DVD player. If you want a thumb drive instead, be sure to select that option (if it’s offered) or call the company and see if it will provide one. Be aware, too, that it’s not unusual for these companies to have long lead times. A number of them digitize your photos in other countries, so it can take weeks to get your images back.


For affordable bulk scans, ScanMyPhotos.com is an old standby (you can read David Pogue’s review on nytimes.com). The company will scan about 1,800 photos at 300 dpi for $145 at its headquarters in Irvine, Calif.; the cost of sending the photo box to you, as well as the shipping of the box to ScanMyPhotos and back to you again is included in the price. That’s one of the least costly and most uncomplicated deals around. Other companies charge for shipping photo boxes. I asked a photo editor at The Times if 300 dpi is sufficient for scanning and she said that to print photos at larger sizes, a higher dpi is preferable. ScanMyPhotos has such an option: a prepaid box for $259 for the same number of scans at 600 dpi instead of 300 dpi. A thumb drive is an additional $15.95 a box.


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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.”


phototagging biometric facial recognition story by ScanMyPhotos.com 2 300x200 - A Primer on Tagging People in Pictures for Photo-Sharing Apps“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.



Excerpt by the IQS Directory: Are We Really Okay With Facial Recognition?


  • When most people think ‘facial recognition,’ their minds probably drift to the latest iPhone security feature, which lets you unlock your phone by looking at it (and theoretically makes it impossible for anyone but you to unlock). But, facial recognition appeared long before it debuted on iPhones, and now its applications are much wider–and potentially more controversial.

Think back to the time you logged into Facebook and learned that it would now automatically ‘suggest’ tags in photos uploaded onto the social media website. It was an uncanny, giddy moment– “How does it know that’s so and so?!” And it did it consistently, quickly, and with scary accuracy.


The new-tech euphoria quickly wore off as you realized that, somewhere in Silicon Valley, there were developers, apps, and computers that could quickly scan a photo and determine exactly who was in it.


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.


phototagging biometric facial recognition story by ScanMyPhotos.com 4 300x201 - A Primer on Tagging People in Pictures for Photo-Sharing Apps“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.


phototagging biometric facial recognition story by ScanMyPhotos.com 5 300x200 - A Primer on Tagging People in Pictures for Photo-Sharing AppsAs 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




phototagging biometric facial recognition story by ScanMyPhotos.com 1 300x203 - A Primer on Tagging People in Pictures for Photo-Sharing Apps
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.


ScanMyPhotos.comLogo 300x100 - A Primer on Tagging People in Pictures for Photo-Sharing AppsAbout 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.


screenshot 300x169 - A Primer on Tagging People in Pictures for Photo-Sharing Apps

 

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Don’t Let Politics Ruin the Holidays (Again)

thanksgivingtable 300x200 - Don’t Let Politics Ruin the Holidays (Again)In the age of Trump, how to create healthy discourse during the holidays by sharing nostalgic family photos, rather than waging a political minefield of bellicose bickering


A family is thicker than water – except in this post-2016 election era. How many of you walked away from nine punishing rounds of political “discourse” during Christmas last year, vowing never to speak to your once-favorite cousin or idiotic brother-in-law ever again?



If the data is any indication, a lot of us cut visits short or avoided Christmas, Hannukah and the holidays altogether. In a paper, M. Keith Chen of UCLA and Ryne Rohla of Washington State University, politically divided families avoided each since the election. Using smartphone data, the researchers determined where people live versus where they spent Christmas – and how long they stayed. Then they collected 2016 presidential voting data at the precinct level to approximate political leanings.



pic6 300x199 - Don’t Let Politics Ruin the Holidays (Again)The results were startling. Compared to 2015, Democratic voters were about 5 percent less likely than Republicans to travel for Thanksgiving in 2016. Those who did travel did not significantly shorten their visits to Republican hosts. Republicans were more likely to travel to a distant for Christmas and holiday dinners, but they shortened their visits by over 40 minutes. Visits were also shortened proportionally to the number of political ads aired in the traveler’s home media market. For every thousand political ads, visits were shortened by 1.5 minutes. In Florida, that resulted in a 1.2-hour reduction in holiday time for politically divided families.



Given the divisive political climate, we continue to live in, things might not be much different this year. So, the big question is, how do we cross that divide? How do we enjoy a calm and (mostly) Merry Christmas, happy Hannukah and holiday season dinners? How do we get through Christmas without resorting to sword fights with rolls of wrapping paper? How do we survive – and maybe even heal – our broken families?


The effect of partisanship and political advertising on close family ties


Agree ahead of time to focus the conversation on what binds you together: your shared family history. Revisit photos and home movies from yesteryear. Put together a slideshow of digitized photos and display it on your TV. Ask everyone to bring their favorite family memories to share over dinner. If you have a family historian, request that they tote along the big photo album that contains images going back generations. (And let them know that they don’t have to bring along great-grandma’s fruit cake recipe this year.)


Our photo scanning company has digitized more than 600 million family photos, and we often hear from customers about how much these photos mean to them, how many memories they conjured, how many new stories they got to hear from great-grandma because the photos jogged her memory.


  • Pull out the photos
  • Share the stories from the past, but not politics
  • Maybe instead of shrieking and whooping at each other, reminisce
  • Instead of lunging at each other, laugh
  • Instead of screaming at each other, cry together
  • How far would you travel for that kind of togetherness?

* Source:


Published by, Mitch Goldstone, President & CEO, ScanMyPhotos.com

 

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The U.S. Photo Imaging Institute Founded by ScanMyPhotos.com

US Photo Imaging Institute - The U.S. Photo Imaging Institute Founded by ScanMyPhotos.com

U.S. Photo Imaging Institute to spotlight and promote photo industry policy and technology

The U.S. Photo Imaging Institute [USPII] was formed today as a marketplace of ideas to promote and share all things photography and as a photo industry policy and advocacy forum.


To showcase tech innovations, amateur photography, and visionary new ways to use pictures in an all-digital world, the USPII celebrates the best of new photography innovations. It is also a political and policy forum as a reactionary aftereffect to address the unrelenting data breaches and privacy issues from social media platforms like Facebook.



“The fallout from Facebook’s privacy breaches has become a national concern, where impenetrable and safe procedures to police how pictures are used is a priority,” explained. U.S. Photo Imaging Institute chairman, Mitch Goldstone.


Founded by ScanMyPhotos.com, the catalyst for creating this national institute is due to the urgency to protect photographs, while showcasing new innovations to inspire and boost the technology behind pictures.


INITIATIVES AND NEWS UPDATES:



Mitch Goldstone, CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com and Chairman of The U.S. Photo Industry Institute has decades of very large advocacy campaigns. From winning the largest antitrust litigation in U.S. history against the banks and credit card companies to battling Facebook over its data breaches and photo privacy. Background on ScanMyPhotos.com. Last year, ScanMyPhotos was involved with the national campaign to draw attention to CES’ diversity problem: “With No Women Keynote Speakers, Does CES Have a Diversity Problem?” (Adweek: By Lauren Johnson | December 5, 2017).


Full details and website updates will be available shortly.

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