Google as Photo Editor

My mom forwarded me an article (thanks Ma!) about Google+ adding some new photography features.

One of the new features is an automated photo editor:

Given an unedited batch of photos from a recent family vacation, Google+ can narrow the images down to what it determines are the best shots.

So you can fill up your memory card with a bunch of crappy photographs, upload them to Google, and have the "best" ones chosen for you, no personal input required.

Vic Gundotra, the guy in charge of Google+ says "I don’t have time to pick them out (myself) because my vacation is over." I wonder if he has time to review the automated selections that he expects his social network friends to wade through.

I can see conceptual artists salivating at the prospect of being the first to do a project that uses Google+ as an editor. Maybe someone has done it already. Write an obtuse artist statement about how your project explores the implications of technology in art and you could be the next Doug Rickard!


  1. This looks like more features for amateurs to keep being amateurs. How can one expect from a machine to select the “best” photos in terms of feeling? I guess it is just for the lazy people that take so many images they don’t even know what they are pointing at.

  2. Thank you for your comment Romina.

    I consider the editing process to be an integral part of photography as an art. However, people who are not engaged photographers might appreciate the Google service as a way to save time on what could be viewed as a tedious process.

    I believe that people can have personal, instinctual connections with images based on the subject matter and formal elements. Delegating the editing process to an algorithm is likely to diminish individuality in favor of homogeneity and reduce the chances of personality showing through in photographic selections.

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