A newly designed Facebook shared photo albums feature will allow up to 50 different users to upload photos to a single photo album.
For example, if Mom, Grandma and Uncle Joey all take pictures at Mary's graduation ceremony, then Mom could create a shared Facebook album. After Mom invites Grandma and Uncle Joey to be contributors, then Grandma and Uncle Joey can upload their photos to Mom's album. Each contributor can share up to 200 photos for a maximum of 1,000 photos per album.
Instead of looking at Mary's graduation photos by scrolling through three separate albums from beaming family members, Mom can share a single graduation album after deciding on how visible she wants those photos to be. She can choose to share access with the public, with friends of contributors or with contributors only. Also, she can allow contributors to invite viewers, or she can retain control of who gets to see Mary in her cap and gown.
Facebook will roll out the feature to a small group of users on Monday, Sept. 2. Then, the feature will become available to all English users before it rolls out internationally.
To transform an individual album into a shared album, Facebook users will select an album that they've already created and click "Make Shared Album" in the top left corner. Then they will choose their contributors and select an audience. The album will appear on the creator's timeline, and it may also appear on the contributors' timelines.
Shared albums were developed during a company hackathon led by software engineers Fred Zhao and Bob Baldwin. According to Pedram Keyani, a manager of engineering for Facebook site integrity, hackathons occur at Facebook about every six to eight weeks.
Employees join a Facebook Group called "Hackathon Ideas." About a week before a scheduled hackathon, Facebook employees start forming ideas. Organic groups of interested employees then form around those ideas.
While many hackathon ideas go nowhere, some, like Facebook Chat, have changed the direction of the company.
"The thing around here is, code wins arguments," explained Keyani. "You could argue something for two days, or you could just make it and prove your point in an hour."
Edited by Alisen Downey