About

Glass is a community for photographers to share and collaborate with each other. It's an application that provides a best in class experience to view and discuss photography. It focuses on the specific and unique needs of photographers instead of a generic social network.

You can share photos on other sites for free, but all your actions and data are used to target advertising. That creates a weird incentive for the services you use. They want you to want to come use their product, but ultimately, they want you engaged. They want you hooked. They measure what keeps you on the site and using it and base their decisions upon those metrics. They’re not serving your best interests; they’re ultimately serving the business that pays them — advertisers.

These services have also become places to promote. Influencers and marketers are all there to use the service, organically advertise, and grow a business. Writing inflammatory items creates engagement loops that incentivize people and the system to push limits, not to connect with others and be part of any sort of community.

We believe there’s another way.

We will be laser-focused on what this community is (a private, interest-based community for photographers), what it stands for (great discussion, sharing, learning, and growth as a photographer), and consistently upholding those values for everyone. We know we're not perfect and may make mistakes, but by making structurally different choices in the foundation of this community, we believe it can thrive.

Our principles:

Community

Glass provides a valuable community where photographers can share, discuss, and learn about photography.

Transparency

We create a space that tells you its business model up front and makes you our customer — not advertisers. That means you pay to use our product, so we can put all our focus into making sure you’re happy and not just engaged and mindlessly scrolling for your next dopamine hit.

We plan to do this in three ways:

  1. Asking you to fill out surveys and doing user interviews. By truly listening to what you want, we believe we can build a product all of us will love using. Hopefully, for years to come.
  2. Anonymous usage metrics in very limited amounts with straight forward data usage and privacy polices.
  3. Not taking on venture capital. Venture capital expects exponential returns, and thus exponential growth. We don’t expect (or want) to do that. By not taking on outside capital we won't have to pivot our business to meet that sort of demand. That means we may have to move slower since this won't initially be our full time jobs, though we hope it can be. We plan to iterate and improve, but based on customer needs and wants, not what investors tell us we need to do in order to grow faster.

Focus

By focusing the entire experience on photographers and photography, we can build a better product for photographers needs. Highlighting the lenses you've used to take a photograph, making sure we're optimizing for quality of your images, creating a space completely dedicated to the conversation around images and their creation are all things we can do when we're not a general purpose social network.

We can also explicitly remove content that isn't meant for the platform. Things like political speech, brazen self-promotion, hurtful or harmful speech, lies, and inappropriate imagery our community doesn't feel belongs can easily be removed. By being smaller, this should be easier, but also we just want to be better. As we grow, we hope to find new ways to engage the community to help it be a place all of us love using daily.

This relentless focus on our community and its needs — not advertisers — is how we see Glass becoming a truly special community both online and out in the real world.

Craftsmanship

The way a Leica feels in your hands, the way an SLR shutter sounds, that hike at 3am to get that sunrise shot, the three hours spent in a dark room and as the image appears in the wash as a smirk appears across your face. We want Glass to be a space that treasures the craft you took in telling a story with your photography. A place where like-minded photographers and enthusiasts can discuss how best to capture light, work with models to capture a portrait, or just where to find that truly special place to capture something you love.

We're striving to build something that you love to use but that also gets out of your way and lets your photographs truly shine on all screens and devices.

Conclusion

We hope this gives you more insight in what we're trying to build and gets you excited to be part of our journey. We're getting close to opening things up for a private beta and we'd l,ove for you to be a part of it.

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