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Flickr exec bails, renews concern for the site

mrothConcern for Flickr has been brewing ever since Yahoo began slashing its Web properties. But according to the company itself, the photo-sharing site has been safe and in its own words “We love this product and team; on strategy and profitable.” So why do worries persist?

Insiders have complained that Yahoo is plagued by mismanagement, and now the massively successful online image host is finding itself in a similar situation. According to multiple outlets, Flickr head of service Matthew Rothenberg has jumped ship. Rothenberg has been responsible for the site’s daily functions, and has been involved in Flickr since day one.

Yahoo’s official statement makes it clear Rothenberg left on his own accord, to downplay any uncertainty surrounding the site’s future. But recent buzz hasn’t been good, and ex-employees have noted that attempts to develop a strong mobile platform for Flickr have been killed because of internal disagreement. If Rothenberg’s personal reasons for bailing were because of this unharmonious workplace, that doesn’t speak well to any innovation coming out of the site.

Just last month, Rothenberg spoke with the New York Times, affirming the quality of Flickr and speaking to its projects. He claimed upgrades were on the way and that user registration was increasing. And now Flickr has lost one of its most vocal proponents, throwing it into an uncertain future.