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Flickr Hacks by Jim Bumgardner, Paul Bausch

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Hack #36. Clean the (Group) Pool

Cleaning the pool is all in a day's work for this bot.

As moderator of some large groups on Flickr, such as the Squared Circle (http://www.flickr.com/groups/circle/) and Flowers (http://www.flickr.com/groups/florus/) groups, I've found it helpful to make some power tools to assist with moderating them.

In a large group, several hundred new photos might be submitted to the group photo pool each day, so it can be cumbersome for humans to weed through them all. Furthermore, some enterprising individuals might try to add huge batches of photos to a group's photo pool all at once. When this happens, new photos submitted by other users quickly get buried under the avalanche, and no one gets a chance to really appreciate them.

Some large groups deal with this problem by posting an upload limit in the group description, such as "No more than three photos a day." However, many contributors either don't notice these rules, don't speak the language they are posted in, or simply don't care. Manually enforcing upload limits can be a chore; if there are tons of people submitting photos, it's difficult to keep track of who has submitted what. And unfortunately, Flickr has no mechanism for limiting uploads to group pools.

The Flickr API, however, provides a method called flickr.groups.pools.remove that can be used as the basis of a group robot, or bot, designed to do just that. The bot is a script, tied to one of the group administrator's accounts, that automatically ...

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