FOREVER - The Best Place to Store Photo Metadata!
We are having an amazing spring at FOREVER as more and more memory keepers and organizers join our FOREVER community and use our complete memory keeping platform! Despite all the good news, I have learned in recent weeks that there is confusion among some clients and professional photo organizers about how we save, add to, and download metadata at FOREVER. So, I am writing today to clarify our current approach to photo metadata and to announce important future functionality pertaining to metadata.
First, here are the current facts…
When you upload a photo to your FOREVER Account, we save the original photo with its original metadata in our database. Unless you choose to delete it, this information is saved for your lifetime plus 100 years guaranteed (with a goal of many generations beyond) in your permanent FOREVER Storage® Account. When you add or modify information such as descriptions, stories, tags, and dates, that new information is saved with the original photo and metadata in our database.
So, to repeat: at FOREVER, when you upload a photo, all the original metadata uploaded with your photo, as well as any new information that you add to your photo from within your FOREVER Account, is saved in our database. And all this information is saved for generations, so it can be used and enjoyed for many, many years into the future.
Unlike online printing competitors like SmugMug and Shutterfly, we do not hold your photos hostage. We make it easy to download photos because you have complete ownership of your digital property at FOREVER. And, at present, when you download a photo from your FOREVER Account, you are downloading the original metadata with the photo. “What went in comes out.”
But here is the one limitation you need to understand: currently we do not “write” the new information you have created for that photo within FOREVER onto the photo before download. The reason for this limitation is that “writing” the new metadata onto your photos would slow down your download and the performance of your FOREVER Account. However, you own your data and all the new information you add within FOREVER is saved with that photo within the FOREVER database. This is true for the first photo uploaded to FOREVER almost five years ago, it is true for photos uploaded today, and it will be true for photos uploaded generations into the future. The information and stories associated with each photo are saved and can be shared and enjoyed for the very long term. This is, and has always been, an incredibly important part of our mission at FOREVER.
Feedback from photo organizers
Last week, I met with several professional photo organizers who love FOREVER but indicated to me that they want to be able to download photos from their FOREVER Accounts with the option to include updated descriptions, stories, tags, and dates as part of the metadata attached to that photo when they download. In short, when it comes to metadata on the photos they download from FOREVER, they want “what went in plus any new or changed information to come out.”
If you have followed FOREVER for any length of time, you know two things about us. First, my team and I are dedicating our lives to helping our clients (including professional photo organizers) to save, organize and share their memories, now and for generations into the future. The depth, sincerity, and seriousness of this commitment is one of the key reasons we are focused on the long term and can make the FOREVER Guarantee. The second thing you know is that my team and I listen to our community and respond to your feedback. Last year, I promised that in 2018 we would add “sort by name” and “photo de-duplication” functionality to FOREVER. And by early May of this year, we had delivered both!
Now my big announcement!
Today, I am making a new commitment to our community. In 2019, we will provide all the members of our community with an additional choice when you download photos from FOREVER. If you want to download photos only with the original metadata, you will still be able to do so. Or, if you want to download with complete metadata (original plus any new or changed information you added within FOREVER), you will be able to do that as well. “Writing” all the new metadata onto a photo or photos will take a little time, but we will maintain the speed and performance of your account by making the complete download option a choice rather than a default. And this choice will be available for all the photos in your FOREVER Account – even photos you uploaded when we launched back in 2013. Yes, nothing has or will be lost. FOREVER is the ultimate story keeping and telling platform! I am confident that this new, more robust metadata feature will make many photo organizers and other members of our community very happy!
Thank you for reading this and please never hesitate to provide feedback to me and my team. We value your input because we are dedicated to serving your needs and making FOREVER the ultimate memory keeping and organizing platform for you, your family, your friends, and your clients.
Founder & CEO
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