Well, Flickr really messed up this time. They deleted Micro Wilhelm’s account, he is an IT Architect. He has been on Flickr for 5 Years and had 4,000 photos, they are now all gone. Yesterday, he was unable to log on to his account. So he asked Flickr what was going on. Early this week he reported a Flickr user for having “stolen material” on his account. When Flickr went to remove the user’s account, by accident they removed his account. This is the email they sent him.
Unfortunately, I have mixed up the accounts and accidentally deleted yours. I am terribly sorry for this grave error and hope that this mistake can be reconciled. Here is what I can do from here:
I can restore your account, although we will not be able to retrieve your photos. I know that there is a lot of history on your account–again, please accept my apology for my negligence. Once I restore your account, I will add four years of free Pro to make up for my error.
Please let me know if there’s anything else I can do.
Again, I am deeply sorry for this mistake.
Well this news probably just ruined his day. This very bad on Flickr’s part, they should be a little more careful next time they delete an account. Surprisingly, Micro Wilhelm was quite calm. This is what he had to say:
It is kind of nice, getting an additional 4 years of service subscription for free… but I already received free Pro subscriptions for the next year just by taking part in some events and competitions.
So how can this really compensate losing close to 4000 “linked” pictures from my web albums? I have to recreate most of these links manually, which will take weeks, if not months of my free time! Not to mention, external websites that had linked these images (including some official Yahoo! and Flickr blogs).
Since Flickr had deleted the account an all the related object, they cannot reactivate anything more that the account itself, leaving me with an empty shell of what I did during the last 5 years. This would be acceptable, if I had a free account. But since I’m a paying customer, I would expect a bit more that”
It doesn’t seem right that Flickr could do this. Most sites that have account, deactivate it not delete it completely. They should have a backup system, especially for there paying customers. Flickr’s Zack Shepard had to say this:
We’ve been working on the ability to restore accounts for a while and hope to have it completed early this year.
We have been in contact with Mirco and may be able to restore his account. The partial work that has been done so far may make it possible to retrieve the account. It’s only a maybe but we want to try and do everything we can to rectify this mistake.
Just as people have stated above, we also believe this is an important feature to have in place for cases like this when there was an error. As many of you know we usually do not discuss features before they are released but because of the community concern we wanted to let you know in this case.”
So, that’s the story for now. How is that Flickr has not had a backup plan since it was Founded. This is very unprofessional for a company like Flickr not to have this in place. Zack Shepard is trying to make up for it, but remember he said “maybe”. That maybe should be a definite. Ah but, it is not because of Flickr not having a Backup system in place. They better get a system soon before, this starts happening to more people.