Photo by George

The Commons

Your opportunity to contribute to describing the world's public photo collections.

The Commons Your opportunity to contribute to describing the world's public photo collections.

Welcome!

The key goals of The Commons on Flickr are to firstly show you hidden treasures in the world's public photography archives, and secondly to show how your input and knowledge can help make these collections even richer.

You're invited to help describe the photographs you discover in The Commons on Flickr, either by adding tags or leaving comments.*

A random sprinkling of our participating institutions...

  • UW Digital Collections
  • Getty Research Institute
  • TWAM - Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums
  • Ljósmyndasafn Reykjavíkur / Reykjavík Museum of
  • Imperial War Museum Collections
  • State Library of Queensland, Australia
  • The Royal Library, Denmark
  • UA Archives | Upper Arlington History
  • Australian National Maritime Museum on The Commons
  • The National Archives UK
  • State Library and Archives of Florida
  • Fylkesarkivet i Sogn og Fjordane
  • Australian War Memorial collection
  • Museum of Hartlepool
  • LSE Library
  • Museum of Photographic Arts Collections
  • Smithsonian Institution
  • Swedish National Heritage Board
  • National Library of Ireland on The Commons
  • Musée McCord Museum
  • Bibliothèque de Toulouse
  • SMU Central University Libraries
  • The Library of Virginia
  • The Library of Congress
  • NASA on The Commons
  • Texas State Archives
  • National Media Museum
  • New York Public Library
  • Oregon State University Archives
  • Keene and Cheshire County (NH) Historical Photos
  • nha.library
  • DC Public Library Commons
  • Nationaal Archief
  • San Diego Air & Space Museum Archives
  • Biblioteca de Arte-Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian

A Commons Sampler

Woman reading
Woman reading
from National Media Museum

Young girl in Red Cross uniform
Young girl in Red Cross uniform
from Powerhouse Museum Collection

Great cedar tree, Stanley Park, Vancouver, BC, 1897
Great cedar tree, Stanley Park, Vancouver, BC, 1897
from Musée McCord Museum

A wet Angel Place, Sydney, 1930s / Sam Hood
A wet Angel Place, Sydney, 1930s / Sam Hood
from State Library of New South Wales collection

Grotto in an iceberg, photographed during the British Antarctic Expedition of 1911-1913, 5 Jan 1911
Grotto in an iceberg, photographed during the British Antarctic...
from National Library NZ on The Commons

Soldier's goodbye & Bobbie the cat, ca. 1939-ca. 1945 / by Sam Hood
Soldier's goodbye & Bobbie the cat, ca. 1939-ca. 1945 / by Sam...
from State Library of New South Wales collection

Aviatrix Nancy Bird and her new plane (Leopard Moth) the day before she left for Bourke with the managing director and manager of Vita-Lick Ltd - Sydney, NSW / by unknown photographer
Aviatrix Nancy Bird and her new plane (Leopard Moth) the day before...
from State Library of New South Wales collection

Thomas McCord's house "The Grange," built in 1819 and situated opposite Black's Bridge, at the first lock of the Lachine Canal, Nazareth Fief, Montreal, QC, 1872
Thomas McCord's house "The Grange," built in 1819 and...
from Musée McCord Museum

Ship Garthsnaid, ca 1920s
Ship Garthsnaid, ca 1920s
from National Library NZ on The Commons

More about The Commons

A new way to share photos on Flickr

The Commons was launched on January 16 2008, when we released our pilot project in partnership with The Library of Congress. Both Flickr and the Library were overwhelmed by the positive response to the project! Thank you!

The program has two main objectives:

  1. To increase access to publicly-held photography collections, and
  2. To provide a way for the general public to contribute information and knowledge. (Then watch what happens when they do!)

FAQ

I work for a cultural heritage institution that would like to be a part of The Commons. How do we do that?

Please let us know you're interested by registering here. It helps a lot if you let us know some background about your institution, and direct us to any online photo collections you already have.

How can I get involved?

We've already seen fantastic contribution from the Flickr membership. Your tags and conversations about the content in The Commons has been wonderful! The best way to get involved is to add a tag or two to the photos you see, and if you happen to know anything else about the subject, by all means add a comment.

What's "no known copyright restrictions?"

This new rights statement is being contained to the institutions participating in The Commons, at the account level. It is a requirement for participation in the program that institutions may rightly claim "no known copyright restrictions" on the content they share. More information.

*Any Flickr member is able to add tags or comment on these collections. If you're a dork about it, shame on you. This is for the good of humanity, dude!!