Why does photoSIG ... ?

Frequently Asked Questions
The Rules

General Help
Help on specific photoSIG features

photoSIG User Guide Wiki
Community standards and tips written by photoSIG users

Frequently Asked Questions

Tutorials on how to make the most of photoSIG

Listing of photographic (and SIGrelated) terms and definitions

Why do you have advertising on photoSIG?

The truth is that it costs money to run photoSIG. The revenue generated from Premium memberships is not enough to cover the costs of running photoSIG. This means, in order for us to provide free usage to people, we need advertising.

Premium members do not see ads. If you are a Premium member and you are seeing ads, your paid membership has lapsed or you have been signed out of your account.

For those of you with basic accounts, we understand that you might find some ads intrusive; however it is the price you pay for receiving a free service. By signing the Terms when you joined photoSIG, you agreed that we could run advertisements any time and in a manner and extent determined by us.

If you think an ad on photoSIG is acting in a malicious manner, trying to install something for example, first ensure your machine is not infected with malware. If it isn't, please get a screen shot of the ad and a link if possible and email it to Don't post in the forums about it, as your fellow users cannot resolve the problem.

Complaints in the forums about advertising will be removed.

Why do you allow obviously pornographic photos to be displayed on photoSIG?

One person's fine art is another person's erotica is another person's pornography.

photoSIG has always published photos that some people might consider pornographic. Our policy is that we will publish that which is legal to publish in the USA. photoSIG has a content rating system and we encourage users to make use of it. Administrators determine what is suitable to be published by photoSIG. Users do not decide what is appropriate and what is not.

If you do not wish to view photographs you might consider pornographic, you can set your options to display only General rated photos.

If you have a problem with our policy on these matters you should not post in the forums about it, nor should you address it in critiques, or in the comment section of photos, but you should seriously consider your membership in this site because these types of photos will continue to be posted to photoSIG. If you no longer participate in the site except to hang around and agitate about photoSIG policies you disagree with you're on the fast track to being banned. People who lobby against what they consider pornography on photoSIG (whether by commentary, critiques, forum posts, or by rating down photographs) will find their accounts with us terminated forthwith.

photoSIG is self-maintaining; photos are not reviewed prior to publication, hence X rated photos will occasionally be posted in the G category.

There is only one acceptable way to raise a legal concern about a photo/photos and that is with an email to

Why do you allow photos to be deleted?

Originally, the only option to remove a photo was to delete it. After a software change to prevent this, and subsequent user feedback, it was decided that photographers would retain their right to delete their photos but that a second option would be given them, to withdraw their photos instead. That would leave a thumbnail representation, their photo points earned, and all the subsequent helpful points critics had earned. However, if the photo was deleted, all points would also be deleted.

That remains the current situation, although a future (unscheduled) software update may change this. Photographers have full control over their photos. Critics lose points when photos are deleted.

There is no easy solution to balancing the desire of photographers to delete their work with the desire of critics to not to have their critiques deleted. For now this is what we have to work with. We don't ask that you like it, but we do require that you accept it. Constantly grousing about it will not change it.

Forum posts complaining about photo deletions will be removed. If you have a suggestion how we might meet both groups' needs please email it to

Please read The Rules, then check this FAQ carefully before asking questions in the forums - thanks!

Joining or leaving photoSIG
What are the differences in membership types?
I registered some time ago. Why haven't I received my password?
How do I receive a refund for my Premium Membership purchase?
How do I change my photoSIG name
How do I delete my account?

Viewing photos
Why are some photos and forum posts locked?
Why do some photos have a lock on them, and how do I view them?
Why are some thumbnails locked?
What if I don't want to view adult content?
Why am I seeing locked thumbnails even though I've set my rating to view "any content"?

Writing critiques
How many thumbs should I give?
How should I deal with the subject in a critique?
How do I critique a photo?
Why is critiquing the same user more than twice a week discouraged?
How do I include clickable links, paragraph breaks, bold text, etc, in my text?

Submitting photos
What are the photo submission limits?
My submission quota is negative! How can this happen?
What are the photographer's comments for?
Why has the film/format/camera/etc. that I saved with my photo been changed?
What are photoSIG assignments, and how do I enter?
Why do my photos or thumbnails look different on photoSIG than on my computer
Why am I getting an Invalid ICC Profile Data Error?

Removing photos
What is the difference between deleting and withdrawing my photo?

Receiving critiques
What are the qualifications required to critique photos on photoSIG?
How can I find out which of my photos have new critiques?
How can I get some/more critiques?
Why was my photo given a thumbs-down?
Why do nude photos get so much attention?

Rating critiques
Helpful/Unhelpful. What does it mean?
How does the three thumbs down rating work?
What can I do about an unhelpful rating on my critique?

What does the number after my name mean?
Hey, why did my points suddenly drop?
Wouldn't it be better to ...?
Why are most of the highest rated photos several years old?

Featured photos & critiques
How are the Featured Photographer, Critique, and Photos chosen?
How can a non- conforming critique be featured on the main page?

The forums
How do I include clickable links, paragraph breaks, bold text, etc, in my text?

photoSIG Policies
Why doesn't photoSIG ... ?
Why does photoSIG ... ?
How do I complain about someone?
What happens if a photo is suspected of being stolen?
Don't I have a right to my opinion?

Other Q & A
How is photoSIG managed?
Why haven't you answered my email?
How do I report a bug or system problem?
Why are photos slow to load or showing as red Xs?
Why is photoSIG trying to install something on my computer or give me a virus?
Why can't I browse or search for photos by focal length?