It could be so good 19 August 2013 Reviewer: Mandl from Canada
148 of 263 people found this review helpful
Quality of Sharing Features:
Range/Quality of Prints and Gifts:
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Overall Star Rating:
Try viewing the albums of someone who uses Phanfare and then leave some comments on their photos - NOT! You will have to enter your name & email for each and every comment you leave. This apparently can't or won't be changed.
Some very basic things are not available - your albums for the year are listed in random order - there is no way to change it! The transition effect between slides is on or off and only pan and zoom are available (I think there are more options with higher level memberships).
When you invite people to see an albums they have access to ALL your albums - one password for everything. So if you have photos of kids for example, and don't want them published far and wide, you just can't put them on the site. Apparently you can have individual passwords for individual albums - if you pay the higher fee. I guess my kids are not as important as those of the Premium or Pro members.
I give the prints and gifts a single star since there is no link to the store on the home page, or any page. As far as I know you have to access it thought the help system.
The help function is very sad. The most basic thing any help system needs is an index. It helps both the user and the designer. Phanfare does not have a full index. Most of the terms used on the site that confused me when I first joined are not found or explained in the help section. Enter just about anything in the search field and you will be presented with the same bunch of suggestions mostly to view the tedious 'how to' videos or be given a non-pertinent explanation. As an example - Enter "transitions" and you get no result, enter "pan and zoom" and you are presented with four pages of irrelevance, starting with - How to log in !!! (If I didn't now how to log in I wouldn't be here!) At the end of the last page you get this:
"Pan & Zoom: The pictures will pan and zoom as the slideshow plays if checked." - I never would have guessed that!
Read This - it's the good part: The shame of all this is that the site provides THE MOST SPECTACULAR way of presenting your photos by far. Full screen presentations in a slide show (with embedded videos if you want), with music (your choice). Other sites surround your photos in a reduced size with the debris of their site and/or adverts. Phanfare leads the crowd by miles in this category.
Another plus is the reports they provide on the number and sometimes the names of viewers of your albums.
It would appear that what management have done is to cripple the site for the basic members so that the higher paying members will get better value for their money. What they have done instead is to make the site unattractive at the basic level so they will loose what should become their bread and butter.
I've had a lot more positive comments on my photos on Phanfare than on any other site I've tried. I believe this is due to the fabulous presentation they provide. However I am going to keep looking to see if I can find a better, more user responsive site to work with.
In summary, I would not recommend Phanfare to a friend.