Community Guidelines

500px is committed to building a safe, inclusive, and helpful
community for everyone to share their love for photography.

Letters from the CEO

Looking forward to an exciting 2018

December 22, 2017

As we look back at 2017, it’s clear that there are powerful changes underway in the global photography community.

More photographers than ever

Our data shows that photography has never been more accessible. Looking at our phone Gear Pages – iPhone 7 Plus, for example – we see more and more people are taking exceptional photos with their phones. Will smartphones ever be considered pro-level equipement? Tell us what you think via email, Facebook or Twitter.

Demand for 500px Classes continues to build

As access to photography grows, so does the interest in photography education. So far, we've had fantastic feedback from participants, and continue to see an increase in attendance for 500px Classes. As a result, we'll be investing even more in Classes in 2018, with the goal of giving more photographers exclusive access to expert instructors within the 500px community. Let us know what you think of the new Class features as they roll out!

500px Ambassadors help us serve you better

Our growing Ambassador roster not only helps us stay current, but it also keeps us honest with everything that matters to you. We’ve been actively recruiting female photographers for our Ambassador program (so far, approximately half of our recently-signed Ambassadors are women) to ensure we hear and see a variety of perspectives on photography. If you’re interested in applying, send us the link to your 500px profile and social channels here!

Respecting the experience of our peers

Our vision of 500px is a public and inclusive community that serves users of different ages all over the world. Moving forward, we’ll continue to take firm action in reinforcing our guidelines around NSFW content —immediately banning users, in extreme cases. To us, this is not a matter of prudishness, but rather one of respect for others’ experiences.

Shedding light on gender-based violence

Photography continues to be a strong tool for important social issues. Check out 500px Studio’s recent campaign, which sheds light on gender-based violence. If you’d like to suggest other topics for us to focus on, let us know.

Our favorite photos of 2017

Finally, there’s no better way to close 2017 than celebrating our favorite photos of the year. See the photos from 2017 that our Photo Editors loved and why. If we missed any of your favorites, let us know by sharing them on Twitter or Facebook with the hashtag #500pxFaves17.

We expect 2018 to bring even bigger changes to the world of photography—but we know the passion you bring to our photography community will remain constant. Here’s to you.

Sincerely,

Andy YangCEO, 500px

No photographer is an island

November 30, 2017

November is a busy time of year—we've been hard at work improving the tools that make 500px the most passionate photography community in the world. Here are just a few of the things we’re most excited about this month.

Discovering your style

Defining and sharing your style is one of the most important things a photographer can do to stand out. Our new For You feature helps you discover new styles based on your likes, while our Classes and Blog aim to help photographers hone in on what makes their work unique.

No photographer is an island

Professional relationships are crucial for growth and support. So we’ve compiled expert advice from pro photographers Lindsay Adler, Jared Polin, Jeremy Cowart, Andrew Kearns, Rehahn, Mark Del Mar, and GMB Akash in a new, free eBook to help you build your own networks. Download your copy here. I’d love to hear what you think!

Classes on the go

Not everyone has the time or space to join an online photography class on desktop, so we’ve brought 500px Classes to our mobile apps for iOS/Android. Paid members can now experience 500px Classes on the go—download the latest version of our iOS / Android app to get started.

Continuing to support diversity

We’re proud of our ambassador program —but we we want it to better represent the photography community. So we’re promising an equal representation of men and women in our Brand Ambassador program by March 2018. Do you think you’d make a great 500px Brand Ambassador? Learn more about the program here.

A stronger stance on NSFW

We hope that you’ve experienced less unwanted NSFW content in your feeds. We’ve been actively banning more users that break our NSFW guidelines, in a continued effort to be a more welcoming community. But this is a group effort—please do continue to report content that you feel crosses the line.

500px thanks you!

  • We turned 8 this year! We asked 500px folks to share the best parts of working here, to recognize the people, ideas, and connections that make 500px what it is.
  • Finally, 500px was named a Deloitte Technology Fast 50 winner. We do our best to make 500px the best community for passionate photographers, and every one of our 60+ employees thanks you for your continued support.

As always, reach out to me with your comments and suggestions. I’m excited to continue building the world’s most passionate photography community with you.

Sincerely,

Andy YangCEO, 500px

Connecting the photographer community

October 19, 2017

There is no shortage of online photography communities, so the kind of community you grow matters more than ever. Here at 500px, we want to hold ourselves accountable to the values we stand for and ensure we’re living up to them. With that in mind, it has become clear to us that we need to do better.

We want a 500px community that is passionate, diverse, and inclusive.

Passionate photographers all over the world are sharing new and exciting work with 500px every day, but the content we’ve been showcasing hasn’t reflected that. We've made some recent changes to help photographers discover new content and learn from each other more easily.

  • The new Discover

    To increase the exposure of all our users and to inspire you with photos that represent your interests, we've built a brand new Discover section on our website that surfaces the best photos, every day, from your favorite categories and the styles you like the most. Try it out now.

  • Places -

    Like many of you, we often plan trips based on where we can take awesome pictures. Now you can be inspired by photos taken at locations throughout the world with our new Places feature.

  • Gear Pages (In Beta) -

    Ever wonder who else shoots with your gear, or wanted to find the best photos taken with a particular camera? We’ve made discovering this information easier with our new gear pages.

  • Taking a stance on NSFW -

    We’ve heard you. Our Popular section is disproportionately celebrating nudes. To address this, we are changing our “Adult” content label to “Not Safe for Work” (NSFW), to include risqué photos that wouldn’t have previously been considered “Adult.” We’re also creating a new Boudoir category to ensure NSFW photos aren’t landing in the People category by default. We hope that these improvements will give all our photographers a voice while still faithfully representing our larger community.

We value photographers, their work, and a community built on learning and inspiration.

  • Classes

    New photography styles and techniques emerge all the time, and we want to help our community grow and improve their craft — so we launched our new Classes experience. Led by influential photographers in an interactive setting, our Classes allow you to learn new skills at your own pace.

  • Wide-Gamut

    We believe your work should always be showcased as well as possible. That’s why 500px is leading the industry by supporting wide-gamut images, which are more vibrant and true-to-life than older color-profile ones. Plus, we’ve rolled out WebP support for Chrome users, which results in less photo-quality loss while improving loading time. You can learn more about the latest technological advances on our blog.

  • Fighting Spam

    Like other online communities, 500px is not immune to spam. Rest assured that we are actively doing what we can to keep spam out of your viewing experience and will continue to face this challenge head-on.

I want to hear your thoughts as we crystallize our stance on the myriad issues facing photographers today. Building the world’s more passionate community for photographers doesn’t happen overnight—and we can’t make it a reality without you.

Sincerely,

Andy YangCEO, 500px

Connecting the photographer community

August 4, 2017

At 500px, we strive to build the world’s best community of photographers. Day in and day out, each one of our 50+ employees does his or her best to connect our 12M passionate members, find ways to help them gain more exposure, and showcase their work in the best light.

To that end, we have been focused on providing you with new ways to connect and support each other:

  • Critiques - There is no better way to improve your craft than to get feedback on your work from another photographer. Designed to be more in-depth than typical comments (e.g., “Nice shot!”), our Critiques not only provide rich and constructive feedback, but also help form connections between photographers. We have recently begun testing this feature with select members. If you’re interested in being one of the first to try it out, please click here.
  • Undiscovered - We understand that getting your work seen by others is challenging when you don’t have a lot of followers. We also understand that sometimes you want to see a wider variety of photos being featured. We’ve introduced a new filter to the Discover section that displays photos from photographers with very few followers. Now it’s easier to discover great new photographers as well as get your own work seen. Check it out here. It’s personally my new favorite way to view photos on 500px!
  • Friend Finder - Friend Finder - Photographers have circles of friends that span different cities, countries, and even social networks. We’ve made it easier to find and reconnect with your Facebook and Flickr friends who are already enjoying 500px. Don’t worry—we promise to never post anything on your or your friends' feeds or generate any sort of spam. Start finding your friends here.
  • Places - We’ve added a new section under Discover called Places. Now you can see your surroundings through a different lens by discovering all the photos taken near you or anywhere around the world.

We encourage you to try out these new features and tell us what you think!

Finally, I continue to enjoy meeting all of you at 500px CEO Meetups in cities throughout the world. It’s been a great experience not only to connect, but also to learn from you how we can continue to make 500px the place for photographers to connect and grow.

Here are some of the photos from recent events:

I hope to meet you at a future Meetup!

Sincerely,

Andy YangCEO, 500px

500px community and product update

June 8, 2017

Hi there,

Photography month may be over but here at 500px we continue to build and enhance our platform. Here are this month’s product improvement highlights:

1. Personalized Content. We have expanded our recommendation engine to provide more relevant and unique content just for you. Request similar photos directly from your Home Feed in the 500px mobile apps to explore more of what you like. Just press the Similar button and scroll down to see related photos. Having tested this on our mobile apps, we found that Recommended photos have been liked by users 20% more than non-recommended ones. This will help more photos get discovered and appreciated.
2. Direct @mentions. Many of you have asked for better ways to reach out to other photographers on the platform. You can now directly message any other 500px user simply by using the @ followed by their 500px username in photo comments and they’ll receive a notification that you’ve mentioned them.
3. Smart Keyword Suggestions. To help you grow your photo exposure and photo searchability online, we are now using advanced machine learning to recommend relevant tags when uploading via the desktop web. Simply select a photo to upload and you will notice the relevant keywords populate in the details panel. Go give it a try!
4. New Photo Categories. You asked, we delivered. We’ve added two new photography categories: Aerial and Night. With now almost 30 different categories, 500px showcases a wide range of the best photography anywhere. We are open to more suggestions , so expect more in the coming months!
5. Onboarding. We’ve revamped the process in which new users follow photographers. This will address feedback that a small number of users receive a significant amount of followers. This is aimed to help diversity of the content and the photographers that are followed.

I am also happy to announce that we continue to build the world’s most vibrant photography community. An amazing group of photographers just joined us as official 500px Ambassadors. There have also been very lively discussions in Groups on the Definition of Street Photography and Whether Smartphones Will Replace DSLRs - we would love to have you chime in on those topics. And to keep you up to date on photography news, we’ve started a weekly photography news roundup on our ISO blog.

As usual, if you have feature requests, please add them to our new 500px Feature Requests Group.

Sincerely,

Andy YangCEO, 500px

500px community and product update

May 11, 2017

Hello

May is photography month and we are celebrating here at 500px. We’ve been hard at work building new features and enhancing existing ones, all as a result of the feedback you’ve given us. Here are some highlights:

1. Recommended Photos To help you discover great new content, tomorrow we’ll be rolling out recommended photos on your 500px web home feed . Having tested this on our mobile apps, we found that Recommended photos have been liked by users 20% more than non-recommended ones. This will help more photos get discovered and appreciated.
2. New Popular Sorting. To address concerns about how photos in Popular are surfaced, we have rolled out sorting capabilities on the Popular page. You can now sort Popular photos by Pulse rating OR most recently uploaded. This again will help with discovery, and is a fresh and exciting look at the best content found on 500px.
3. New Site Menu To make it easier for you to navigate around 500px, we launched a new site menu 3 weeks ago. We have grouped our products under three headings of Discover, Learn, and Earn to align with the main ways 500px helps photographers to grow.
4. Student Pricing To support the next generation of photographers we have launched Student Pricing. Post-secondary students can now receive up to 50% off 500px Memberships . All you need is a valid student email address attached to your 500px account.

We are also celebrating some great activity within the community. Our last photography Class run by Marcin Sobas broke the record with 900 registrants, and with the introduction of Pro Profiles our members can discover great workshops led by their favorite photographers. You’ll also notice that our community management team has been more active in Groups, and I’ve personally been meeting more 500px members. If you’re in Toronto on Wednesday May 17th, come by the 500px office! We’ll give you a tour, and you’ll have the opportunity to discuss the platform with myself and other 500px staff.

We are constantly striving to improve the site and experience for all of you. Thank you for giving us your feedback through my Reddit AMA500px Live, and our surveys. As usual, if you have additional feedback please reach out to help@500px.com. And if you have feature requests, please add them to our new 500px Feature Requests Group.

Finally, a personal request for our community. A number of you have asked for more meaningful comments beyond “V+F” or “Great shot!” or “Nice, follow me!”. I’m asking each of us to write one in-depth comment on a photo each day - giving positive or constructive feedback.

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” -- Mahatma Gandhi

Sincerely,

Andy YangCEO, 500px

Important changes to Memberships and new product features

April 6, 2017

At 500px, we are committed to being the premier online community where photographers come to grow their skills, network, and businesses. Over the last year, we have taken your constructive feedback surrounding our product and used it to guide improvements to better serve you.

We are excited to share that on April 10, we will be launching several new features that better serve your passion—photography! These new features include Pro Profiles, which let you showcase your services and workshops; Advanced Stats, to help you analyze and grow your network; and the ability to create customizable photo websites, powered by industry-leader Format.

With these new features comes a change in our membership plans and pricing to reflect the value the 500px community offers users. Take a first look at our new plans below:

On April 10, you will be upgraded into a new plan at no extra cost, for the remainder of your active membership. This upgrade will give you access to new features in addition to your existing ones. Plus members will be upgraded to Awesome, and Awesome members will be upgraded to Pro.

If you would like to lock in the new features at existing prices for an additional full year, simply extend your current membership before April 10.

The following includes a more detailed overview of the new features that will become available to you on April 10:

Advanced Stats. Gain new insights into where your views are coming from, understand where your audience is located, and get tips on which of your images perform best in the community.

Pro Profiles. Increase your exposure within the 500px community by showing your best work with customizable profile tabs. Attract new clients by featuring your photography workshops and services right on your profile.

Customizable websites, powered by Format. Create a professional photography website using the full capabilities of leading photo website provider Format. Sell your products in your own online store, share up to 1500 of your best images, and add client proofing to your workflow. Plus, adding photos to your website is easy—you can upload directly from 500px.

In addition, you will have the ability to get a priority listing in Directory, and learn from photography experts in our online Classes. Upcoming instructors for Classes include Emmy-Award winning photographer Tanner Wendell Scott and pro photographer Joel Bear, who’s worked with clients like Lululemon, Netflix, and Google.

We’ve also implemented a streamlined payout system, which includes electronic payments to many more countries, guided online tax forms (no more faxing!), faster processing times for payouts, and lower fees for alternative payout methods.

For more information on the features, visit our ISO Blog.

We hope that these new changes are a welcome addition to your photography toolset. As usual, please do not hesitate to provide your constructive feedback at help@500px.com as we continue to refine our products. We would love to hear from you!

Sincerely,

Andy YangCEO, 500px

What 500px Stands For

March 9, 2017

When people think of 500px they think of many things, from a place to be inspired to a marketplace and a way to connect with others. While we are all those things, 500px is—first and foremost—a community. A community that helps photographers to grow their skills, their networks, and their businesses.

For our community to achieve these goals, it must be an environment that is safe and encouraging. I want to reiterate what we stand for here at 500px, explain what we expect of our community members, and describe some of the efforts we will be making to promote our values. Our community will be stronger if we all share these values and behaviors.

People, not robots. 500px is a place for real people to interact and grow. Unfortunately, the use of robots (“bots”) to try to get more attention by automatically liking photos or following large amounts of users-isn’t limited to 500px–it happens on every social media platform–but it’s not something we support or believe in. It’s really hard to conclusively identify these bots, but we’re tackling the problem in a number of ways. For example, you can now view how many users someone has followed or unfollowed, or how many photos someone has liked within a period of time. Please report suspected “bot” accounts.

Safe for work. Many of you have written to us regarding an increasing amount of adult content on 500px. While we welcome content that follows our guidelines, we require that users correctly flag adult content images when uploading them to the site. Any users not flagging these images as Adult content compromise the integrity of 500px and negatively impact our community and the exposure we can provide on other platforms. We want to create a safe environment for our all our users—photographers AND buyers who are viewing these images at work environments. We are also working on ways to automatically identify content that is “not safe for work” and filter it appropriately. The automated filtering won’t be perfect, so if you are uploading or viewing adult content, please continue to flag it appropriately. You can find more information on this support page.

Growth, not fixed mindsets. We believe people can grow, and 500px is here to help you grow as a photographer, no matter what your current skill level is. For those just starting their photography journey, don’t be intimidated by the photos on our site—we all started somewhere! And to the pros, please encourage those who aren’t yet at your level (remember your first upload?). This community only works if we all encourage and motivate each other to be our best—and not just best as photographers, but as people.

I hope you agree with the spirit of the 500px community. Let’s continue to lift each other up and support one another! If you see inappropriate behaviour on the site that is against our terms of service, please report it. And as always, if you have any constructive feedback related to these points, our Customer Excellence team will be happy to assist at help@500px.com.

Sincerely,

Andy YangCEO, 500px

Express yourself

Share your best work

PX doesn’t just stand for pixels, it also stands for personal expression. Great visual art is the result of having the vision, drive, and tools to bring a personal vision to life. 500px was created to be a home for that personal vision—those unforgettable moments that we want to share with the world.

Never stop learning

500px is a home for all those interested in visual art, both creators and consumers, regardless of skill level. We all strive to be better at our craft, and we can all benefit by learning from each other. Artists evolve. Your greatest image is the one you haven’t taken yet.

Inspire greatness

Our favorite images surprise, delight, inspire, and challenge us. They show us a new way of looking at the world. So think big, be bold, and try something new. Surprise us and delight yourself.

Celebrate visual creativity

Embrace photography in all its forms

Whether you shoot with a DSLR, mirrorless camera, smartphone, or any other device, you can and should share your work on 500px. Our community respects your creative vision no matter what device you used to capture it.

Recognize and reward quality work

Great creative work should be recognized and rewarded. Praise the work you love, share it with your friends through social media, and connect with the photographers you admire most.

Respect others

Do no harm

We strive to keep 500px safe and inclusive for all, and we do not support harming others in order to create. We reserve the right to take down imagery that causes or depicts violence or harm, or exploits those who have not given or cannot give their permission.

Support each other

500px is made up of photographers and photo enthusiasts who are all striving to improve. Meaningful feedback is enthusiastically encouraged, constructive criticism is welcomed, but abuse is unacceptable. We reserve the right to remove comments that are disrespectful or mean-spirited in order to foster a positive and uplifting community.

Respect copyright

You own your work. It’s 100% yours. It’s our job to help protect it. Because this is a community for personal expression, any work that is posted without copyright ownership will be removed.