Mangled / Inconsistent Image Results: Frustration with Facebook, Twitter…

“I’m using the same pictures I used before on the website and they are turning out blurred or gone when posted.  I’ve noticed the last 3 weeks or so that the pictures we’re posting on the website YouTube broadcast are blurred as well, they used to be crystal clear.  I suspect the settings have somehow been changed to cause this.”

I have to keep reminding myself sometimes — computers only do what we tell them to.  At least so far, that is! Lord help us if / when actual thinking machines crowd in on things…

There are two pieces of information that ‘measure’ images. They are related mathematically.

1.) Pixel dimensions (x and y coordinates)
2.) Size of the file.

Px X Py = Size. Sort of.  Because: The relationship between these to is governed by the Pixel Density of the image. Some images exist with “higher resolution” — meaning more pixels per dimensional measure.  Photo at 3X5 taken with a 5 M-pixel camera is less dense than a 3X5 taken with a 13 M-pixel system.  But once these reach a computer — refactoring the image dimension and pixel density is possible. Various tools do this.  Some are free (like “Preview” on a Mac) others are expensive. Adobe Photoshop.

resolutions-ultra-hd-4k-1080p-720p-dvd

An image that is 1024X768 (VGA – the old computer screen pixel size) is much different that those you’ll find in HD.

An Ultra HD image 8.1Mb in size will look good (great!) in an image frame of 300X500 pixels.  But an image of 300X500 pixels will not look good in a frame designed for 600X800.

There are bunches of different file formats.  I suggest you use .JPG.  Simply the most universally exchangeable. WordPress is cool with .JPG.

Randomly selecting pictures with no consideration of these issues leads to inconsistent results.

Often — images that were used previously have been reformatted (or resized.) The original no longer exists. You might have to go get a new one.

I have often tried to illuminate the “Publishing Workflow” — and this area of interest (Photos, captioning, metadata, etc.) is one of those that fit into the “Editorial” aspect. Simply put:

  1. Contributors collect content
  2. Authors create posts
  3. Editors form posts into messages (considering the details such as discussed here.)
  4. Publishers modify messages to conform to various conventions — controlling branding, to use an industrial term.

I know you’re wearing all of these hats.

REMEMBER — you should always “preview” your posts to assure the quality of what you’re aiming for … That URL should work with:

https://developers.facebook.com/tools/debug/  (This does not work with WordPress.com shared hosting sites. See below**)

The debug tool will help you understand how your post / images will be configured at FB.

https://www.facebook.com/help/community/question/?id=10200708365214182

Is a link to a dialogue (one of thousands) that discuss such issues.

Two options — work with serious intention (to get your messages to conform to your expectations)

Or!

Run and Gun.  Then enjoy the surprises as much as you can. Over time you’ll get the hang of what works and doesn’t.

This is, essentially, “Learning on the Job.”  I like the second option.

If nothing else please accept this encouragement.  KEEP POSTING!!

And this one:  If you want to know how to best leverage your site — spend time testing ideas with your personal blogs, reading the wordpress.com help site and all of that.

*** For WordPress.com Blogs: Testing posts published in a dummy blog is a work-around – if you want to work with the FB debug tool. Publish your post at a dummy blog. Then test it with the debug tool.

Fiddling with dummy blogs is great: In your “vast quantities of spare time” of course!

The answer to “Can we do this?” is yes. But it takes something …  If keeping a site, blogging and integrating to facebook, twitter — having a forward leaning / looking posture with respect to tech — has meaning?… there is cost.

If the need for these things isn’t there? Dialing back is always an option.  Simplification is often best.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s