I currently use the built in publish to Flickr service in Lightroom 5.7. If I add a keyword to a picture in Lightroom and publish it to Flickr, the keyword is added as a Flickr tag. This is all well and good and works as it should.

However, is the reverse possible ? I.e.,

  • publish picture from Lightroom to Flickr with keywords
  • modify the set of tags for the published picture on the Flickr website (add new tags, delete tags etc.)
  • if I republish the picture again from Lightroom, does Lightroom pickup the changes made to the tags in Flickr ?

I didn't see this happening and was wondering if this is the way things are meant to work ?


No I don't imagine there is any way that ought to work. Either Lightroom or Flickr logically has to be the "master". In LR if you tag an image with A, B and C, then publish to Flickr, where you then remove tag B and add D, then you now have A,B,C in LR and A,C,D in Flickr.

When you publish, LR isn't going to "see" existing tags in Flickr - it's merely going to copy the image and metadata and you'll lose changes you made in Flickr. So it's not going to see that "D" tag and preserve it. Even if it did attempt to read the Flickr tags, it doesn't have any basis to guess which set of tags are correct.

For example that "D" tag. If you just added it in Flickr, then you want it kept when you republish. But if that tag had existed in Flickr and LR, and you've now just removed it from the LR copy, then when you republish you'd probably want to drop it from Flickr.

So if you publish and re-publish, that's a one way sync. If you want to sync back and forth, then you might be able to use the plugin in Bart's comment and import the image back into LR from Flickr (so you'll have the up-to-date metadata in LR), make your changes and re-publish.

Better is to manage all your tags in either LR or Flickr, not both.

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