Matthew Rothenberg, the man who most believed ran Flickr for Yahoo!, announced his departure in a Tweet today. He was there when before Yahoo! bought it and he was the last leader in the company to remain.
While Yahoo! said in a press release that it was a “personal decision,” there is speculation that Rothenberg and others are leaving Yahoo! properties because of the future of the company. With so many services entering into the realm of their “sunset” at Yahoo!, who could blame them?
Why Facebook Should Buy Them
Clearly, Flickr has its flaws. Facebook has its limitations. Adding Flickr into the collective can make both stronger.
There is already a strong Facebook integration that allows logins and cross-posting. Why not make it official? If the only social site that actually grew under Yahoo! is having troubles, preserving the service through Facebook would be a win-win.
Facebook would get the much-needed quality improvement to their image interface. For many, it works because it’s all they know. The versatility, sizing, and sharing options on Flickr make it an ideal choice as a premium service to enhance or eventually replace the current method of photo-sharing that Facebook employs.
The HD upload feature on Facebook is quirky at best. Flickr isn’t perfect, but it’s much better and brings with it a batch of users who may or may not already be using Facebook.
For Flickr, the need is clear. They are already starting to lose to Facebook in the photo-sharing realm and services attached to Twitter make it easier to share and upload on that platform. Fans of Flickr are avid but dwindling. The writing is on the wall – if they don’t adapt and improve they will be crushed under the weight of the more diverse social sites.
At Yahoo!, chances are slim that they will adapt and it’s nearly impossible for them to improve. Facebook, please step in.