What You Don’t Know Can Hurt Your Photographs

How to fix and protect your photographs

phototagging biometric facial recognition story by ScanMyPhotos.com 4 300x201 - What You Don’t Know Can Hurt Your PhotographsA photographic image looks like something that will last forever, but even the most modern prints are not designed to last for more than a few decades.

Black-and-white photographs made up of light-sensitive silver salts known as silver halides, last longer. But color photographs and slides, which are made up of dyes and plastics, are more fragile.

Still, any photograph will eventually succumb to the effects of a hostile environment and a host of natural enemies. Photo restoration services are the pound of cure, which can be avoided by preserving intact photos today.

image1 300x143 - What You Don’t Know Can Hurt Your PhotographsBefore reading this report. An update. ScanMyPhotos.com professionally digitizes all your photos this fast.

While we have scanned six hundred million images, it is news stories like these that made us so popular, but no order is more precious or important than yours. We are here to help. For loads of photo tips, news updates, and crazy-discounted deals, sign up to receive free updates.



  • High temperature and relative humidity: The emulsion layer of a photograph, the light-sensitive component that actually captures the image, is made up of organic materials, including gelatin. That makes the emulsion susceptible to mold and fungi, especially when subject to the combination of heat and moisture. Photographs should be stored in a cool, dry place, below about 68° Fahrenheit and under 50% relative humidity.

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  • Ultraviolet Light: Go ahead. Tempt the fates. Hang a color photograph on a wall in your house where the sun hits it every day, and you can start watching it fade within just a few years. To prevent fading, keep your photographs out of direct exposure to sunlight. If you absolutely must display that picture in that perfect spot, you buy special filters to protect the photo. Another good idea is to make one copy for long-term storage and a second for display. Take intact photos into a photo professional to be scanned and archived to disk. If you’ve recently had a photo restoration done, make sure to have a digital copy on file.

  • Wood and Paper Products: What could be more natural than a tree. That may be true, but many wood and paper products contain harmful acids, bleaches and other chemicals that can damage the emulsion of your photograph over time. Use only acid-free paper products. When shopping for “archival” products, make sure you are getting what you pay for – there is no accepted “archival” labeling standard.

  • Adhesives & Rubber: Remember those easy-to-use sticky-back photo albums. Bad news and we all know it. But most adhesives, including the rubber cement often used in so-called “magnetic” photo albums, contain harmful chemicals such as PVC that will eventually destroy your photographs. Rubber bands can have the same effect. That makes them both a big no-no.

phototagging biometric facial recognition story by ScanMyPhotos.com 1 300x203 - What You Don’t Know Can Hurt Your Photographs

  • Air pollutants: It may come as a surprise, but even the fumes from household cleaning products and fresh paint can damage photos. You probably won’t notice the effects right away, but in time they will become painfully obvious.

  • Metallic Objects: On a more practical level, metallic objects such as keys and paper clips can scratch the surfaces of your prints and negatives. Don’t clip your photos together, and try not to store them in the same box as your screwdrivers.


Preserving photographs, which are organic and temporary by their very nature, may seem like an uphill battle. But with smart decisions about storing and displaying your photos, it doesn’t have to be.  Photo scanning and digital restoration is our business, but preserving precious family photos is our mission.


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Today’s Top Tech Pick: Google Nest is the smart home automation device

Nest is a brand of Google LLC used to market smart home products, including thermostats, smoke detectors, and security systems including smart doorbells and smart locks.

From Lifewire: “Google Nest is one of the most popular smart home automation companies, and it is gaining more followers with devices designed to make homes smarter. In addition to the Nest Learning Thermostat, the company also produces a smart smoke detector (which is also a carbon monoxide detector) and a series of cameras for both indoors and outdoors.”

From Google: “The Google Assistant is a voice-controlled personal
assistant. With it, you can tell your Nest products to do
things and ask questions about their status. If you have a
Google Assistant-enabled speaker (like Google Home) or
smart display (like Google Home Hub), it can also play
certain notifications from your Nest products.”

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How to Get Photos “Back To The Future”

How To Stop Your Pictures From Being Erased From Existence

ScanMyPhotos corpoate headquarters in Irvine 1 300x138 - How to Get Photos "Back To The Future"

Welcome. How to literally travel back in time? Do you remember the scene with the fictional character and the main protagonist in the 1985 hit film “Back To The Future” where Marty McFly’s group picture of his family was fading away?

Why you don’t need a Ouija board or “Back To The Future” DeLorean to travel back in time.

Now you can literally travel back in time. Just as the family photo in the 1985 hit film was being erased from existence, so too are everyone’s pictures if they aren’t digitally protected.

The question is how to preserve and revisit your past family history from fading away to see ancestors from decades-past with newly scanned pictures?

ScanMyPhotos is here helping. And we have a “humble brag” announcement today marking a big milestone. From our Irvine, California headquarters, the bulk photo scanning business we pioneered just scanned our 600 millionth picture. We are grateful to all who trusted us, but there is much work ahead as there are 3 1/2 trillion still-analog pictures to scan before they too are erased from existence.

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Why lessons learned from the MoviePass® debacle are scoring critical raves

This may be the first time anyone said “BRAVO MoviePass!”

ScanMyPhotos corpoate headquarters in Irvine 300x138 - Why lessons learned from the MoviePass® debacle are scoring critical ravesAt ScanMyPhotos.com, having digitized 600 million photographs, we know a thing or two about pictures.

From the new Regal Cinemas’ monthly subscription plan called “Regal Unlimited,” we noticed it is teeming with restrictions.

1) Range of pricing depending on the theater location;

2) A convenience fee of $0.50 for every movie you book through the app;

3) Surcharges for special features;

4) Must subscribe for a year.

The best lesson learned by the origins of MoviePass was simplicity and a price so crazy-low that it went viral and scored millions of subscribers. While it became a marketing disaster, it was a ‘teachable moment’ case study in what not to do. According to CNN, it is now “IMG 1044 300x200 - Why lessons learned from the MoviePass® debacle are scoring critical ravesgoing dark.”

But, MoviePass did create opportunities. It inspired and taught many — from AMC Stubs A-List, Regal Unlimited, Cinemark Movie Club and us.

There was an unintended benefit from MoviePass. The dream for every business is to create something so disruptive and unique that it changes an industry.  Every business needs to spark questions like “Wait! What? How can you provide a service so inexpensively?” The trick is it must be profitable rather than trying to make it up on volume.

Having pioneered bulk photo scanning, ScanMyPhotos scored years of media coverage for our prior innovations. But the newest sequel is more than magic. It is real and helping to digitally preserve millions of pictures THIS FAST so no more nostalgic family memories are destroyed like what happened in this past Weather Channel news story.

IMG 1042 300x199 - Why lessons learned from the MoviePass® debacle are scoring critical ravesHow This One-Cent Photo Scanning Tech Innovation and Disruptive Pricing Model Was Motivated By MoviePass:

  • One cent photo scanning became a thing due to lessons learned by MoviePass and from feedback after this Oprah Magazine profile

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Are Your Family Photos Prepared For Any Disaster?

If your house caught fire tomorrow, what’s the one thing you would save? Before you decide on that difficult answer, you should know that by participating in National Preparedness Month this September, you might be able to save a lot more than just one thing.

Sponsored by FEMA, National Preparedness Month was created to encourage everyone in our nation to prepare for emergencies—whether it’s a terrorist attack, fire, earthquake or flood. Our intrepid CEO, Mitch Goldstone, is a big believer in being prepared, and it is something he has ingrained in all of us here at ScanMyPhotos. To make sure you are fully prepared, head over to Ready.gov, where you will find plenty of resources.

In addition to survival preparation, let’s take a step back to that fire question—are all of the irreplaceable items in your home safe? Most material items can be replaced, but any item with an emotional attachment could be lost forever if a disaster occurs. These items often include those old boxes and albums of family photos—it’s impossible to replace those moments in time once they’re lost.


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Well Connected Mom Shares Tips to Digitize Pictures

New report shares how to digitize your pictures


Do you have tons of photos sitting around that you wish you could digitize? It’s easier to digitize old photos than ever before. We’ll tell you how to get started. Yes, that’s me, probably around 5 years old. There’s a lot you can tell about a person in a picture…or perhaps, in this case, my parents!

Scan Your Photos MAIN - Well Connected Mom Shares Tips to Digitize Pictures

Photo credit: Well Connected Mom

 Use a scanning service. The Internet is full of scanning companies who will scan your loose pictures.  A company like ScanMyPhotos, has been around for 30 years, located nearly in my backyard in Irvine, CA.

They’ll send you a 11″ x 8.5″ x 5.5″ box to fill with your pictures (can fill with nearly 1,800 photos).  Send it back and they will scan them all and send it back in 300 dpi True Color for $278.95, including shipping your pictures along with the DVD back to you.



If you’re nervous about mailing your photos, you can go directly to ScanMyPhotos in Irvine, CA, if you live nearby.



If this price sounds high to you, just for kicks, I visited Costco.com to see what their pricing would be for 1,800 photos.  I did the math and their price came to over $576!  Yikes.

ABOUT: Lori Cunningham, digital lifestyle expert, and editor at WellConnectedMom.com is always looking to find new ways technology can help her with her over-scheduled life. She started Well Connected Mom to share her passion for technology with other moms who love technology or may be intimidated by it. WellConnectedMom.com reviews gadgets, websites, and other technology products to decrease the learning curve of using these products while increasing interest for moms. Click to subscribe.

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Why The New York Times’ “1619 Project” on U.S. Slavery is a Must Read History Lesson

The History of slavery in the U.S. is a compelling narrative about our nation’s history and how 400 years later it still impacts society.

image1 300x270 - Why The New York Times' "1619 Project" on U.S. Slavery is a Must Read History Lesson

One of the most impactful articles we have ever read was from The New York Times Magazine. If you have been reading about the “1619 Project

“Since January, The Times Magazine has been working on an issue to mark the 400th anniversary of the first enslaved people arriving in America. Now, it includes a special section, a multipart audio series and more.” We have been widely sharing it on Twitter and providing commentaries in the hope many will read about the “1619 Project.”

The New York Times Presents The #1619Project.

Four hundred years ago, on August 20, 1619, a ship carrying more than 20 enslaved Africans arrived in Virginia. Tonight, we remember this anniversary with an evening of conversation and performance featuring Nikole Hannah-Jones, Wesley Morris, Jamelle Bouie, Tyehimba Jess and more.


Remember to look out for our “1619 Project” on August 18 which examines how the legacy of slavery continues to shape and define life in the United States.

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Podcast: The Simple Mistake And The Long Lost Letter

Tales From The Pictures We Saved – The Simple Mistake And The Long Lost Letter

Download file | Play in new window | Duration: 5:37 |


tales from the pictures we saved

Welcome to the world of photo scannings Tales From the Pictures We Saved podcast.

We’ve spent the past 29 years helping our customers preserve tens of millions of happy memories, milestones, achievements, and events—all of which have incredible stories behind each and every photo.

And now we’re eager to share these stories with you.

smphometo 300x200 - Podcast: The Simple Mistake And The Long Lost Letter

In this episode, we explore the story of ScanMyPhotos customer Melissa Mayberry.

As Melissa went through the photo scanning process, she found that a simple mistake led to a beautiful and touching moment in her life.


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