People in Photos: The API Methods

I’ve been racking my brains for a while trying to think of something informative to tell you about the API methods we’re releasing today, but all I keep coming back to is a venerable British advertising slogan for a brand of woodstain: “It does exactly what it says on the tin“.

What does the tin say, then?

photo by 5500

First off, we have a simple accessor method which will return you a list of people for a given photo. It’s called, and it takes a photo ID as its sole argument.

But what about the reverse – finding all the photos of a given person? Fret not, that’s why we have flickr.people.getPhotosOf. This method takes a user ID, and since it returns a Standard Photos Response, you can also specify any extra data you want through the extras parameter.

Sometimes, simply consuming data isn’t enough – you will feel a need to create some. If you want to add a person to a photo, simply use This method takes a photo_id and a user_id, and can optionally take another 4 arguments (person_x, person_y, person_w, person_h) to specify a “face boundary” for that person.

If you decide you don’t like the face boundary later, there’s always to remove it entirely, or to update.

Last, but not least, you can remove someone from a photo with

Obviously, all of the above methods require that the calling user is permitted to perform the action in question.

Why so late?

We’re aware that some people have been clamoring for access to these methods for a little while now. And while I’m not generally one for making excuses, I do have a pretty good reason for the delay this time – I broke my leg snowboarding a month ago.

What’s more, I have evidence, in the form of a photo which I marked as containing me, using the Flickr API…

So, yeah, sorry about that.