So, a few months ago, Flickr decided to change their terms and conditions so that they could sell your Creative Commons photos. This got a lot of people’s goat, myself included since I’m a paid user, and have been for a while (as an aside, had Yahoo done it as a profit share, it would have been awesome for everybody, but noooo…)

Because self hosting in this post Snowden world is only ever going to be a good thing, I don’t want my family photos used in corporate branding without a cut, and because I wanted to be a good #indieweb citizen, I thought I’d take the plunge and move to self hosting.

I’ve tried this before with Trovebox Community Edition but didn’t have much success – while their Flickr data export seemed to work, the import didn’t. They’ve probably got it working by now, but I pretty much gave up.

Anyway, since I’m a contributor to Known, I thought I’d dogfood and hack together an importer.

Flickr Importer for Known

The importer works by calling the Flickr API using credentials stored in your linked Flickr account. To do this, it uses the Flickr syndication plugin to do the donkey work of linking your accounts.

Once activated, and your Flickr account is linked, you are given the option to run an import.

The import job will run in the background, and will import all your photos and videos into your photostream (using the Photo and Media plugins which should also be activated), preserving timestamps, titles, body and tags.

At the time of writing I’ve not got it importing photosets and collections, since Known currently lacks a logical mapping, but I’m keen to at least record this information for later processing. The script will import sets and collections as generic data items, which you can expose by writing support into your theme.

The plugin records state, so it should recover from crashes, and you can re-sync safely at any time.

Have a play and let me know what you think! Pull requests are of course welcome.

» Visit the project on Github...

So, I’ve been using Known to post to post status updates for a little while now, the latest of which you can see in the sidebar on the right hand side (which is displayed using a WordPress plugin I wrote).

Known also lets you reply to messages directly from your site (replying to other sites that enable webmentions, twitter, or even Github), but unfortunately, while Known has a configurable timeline (so you can choose what content to display by default) the standard Known status message plugin doesn’t differentiate between posts and replies.

Because it was bugging me having my timeline filled with reply messages to various places (which were out of context for most people) I wrote a patch for the Status plugin that will allow you to differentiate between messages and replies in both the content type selector and the homepage configuration tool.

My timeline now shows everything by default, except replies (you can still see those if you select “All Content” from the selector), and this is also reflected in my sidebar!

I’ve submitted this as a pull request upstream which has yet to be merged, but in the mean time you’ll need to apply the patch from my development fork.


Known comes bundled with a Firefox plugin that, using Mozilla’s Social API, allows you to add a Known share/reply button to your browser.

This is pretty cool, but sadly only works for Firefox.

While other browsers, including Chrome, can use the bookmarklet to access the same functionality, this is rather clunky – for one thing, Chrome’s bookmark bar is hidden by default, for another Chrome has an extensive API and it’d be a shame not to use it!

A Chrome plugin for your site

So, I had a go at putting together a Chrome plugin… partly to scratch this itch, but also to learn how to write Chrome extensions (which turns out to be fabulously easy).

Install and activate the plugin, then go to your settings page to download a chrome extension which has been customised to your site.

Go to your Settings -> Extensions page, and then drag the archive into the list; all being well, you’ll have a new icon next to your address bar!

» Visit the project on Github...