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Review of ViewBug

ViewBug reviews

38 reviews
Categories: Photo Sharing, Photography
4502 CASS ST
SAN DIEGO, CA 92109-2802
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38 Reviews From Our Community

Rating Distribution

Detailed Rating Summary


Review Highlights


I didn't join it to win prizes but to have a platform for displaying my photos. (in 21 reviews)

All Reviews

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1 review
1 helpful vote

I love Viewbug. . I have been a member for 6 months. I have 400 photos and almost all of my photos have rewards. The community is friendly and help full. I am just a beginner photographer, so I get inspirations from all the great photos that are on there. Their is people from all over the world posting photos so completion is high.. I have never won a contest but I am hopeful . This place is free to join and that's how I started out. If you are wanting to get some praise on your photos and get inspired this is the join.

Tip for consumers: Great sight and I like it.

Ask Cynthia about ViewBug
1 review
2 helpful votes

Not overly impressed with the service as some of the winners of the contests are not by any means the best within the community and or the contests. They seem to do very very little as far as running the site. They have two categories for there contests those who payed and those who did not. they do have a points system with unlocking badges but thats all they do is unlock they're useless trinkets. The biggest problem with the site as i see it. is anyone who puts up the money can enter even the worst of quality or even no where near what the contest was about. so in order to vote for a favorite you have to go through thousands of pics by those not serious about photography what so ever. if the useless badges unlocked contests and then allowed you to the next level people might actualy talk and ask more about the pics and how they were done or want to grow as photographers. in todays age of cameras you certainly dont need to spend 10's of thousands to get a good shot. But to have all levels competing depending on the almighty buck is frustrating and very time consuming. even when the voting is open or the second round theres still a ton of crap to sift through.

Ask s about ViewBug
3 reviews
10 helpful votes

I joined after a friend shared his photo for me to vote on in the nature photo contest and I immediately got hooked. I am addicted to choosing which photos to award and to the voting. Still trying to win a contest but still learning how to become a better photographer so not looking great. I do recommend it if you are a serious photographer or even if you just enjoy photography.

Ask jenniferj about ViewBug
1 review
5 helpful votes

I never won anything and never even made the finalists list, but I like this site. I didn't join it to win prizes but to have a platform for displaying my photos. This is a very friendly community that encourages everyone through positive feedback. I did enter several contests to see how I would do in a competition. The photos that made the finalists are incredible. It just tells me how much I need to improve to make it to that level. Even if I don't make it there, I can still enjoy displaying my photos and getting some positive comments. I am happy that I found Viewbug. If I have a gripe, it's the number of women's photos, many times the Adult version. Even though I have opted out of the Adult content, some photographers don't mark them as such and I find those pictures offensive. There is no Ignore feature on the site. Other than that, this is an excellent community for all levels of photographers. I joined 6 months ago and I have already learned a lot, just by seeing some beautiful photographs. For me, an amateur photographer, this is for fun and learning .

Ask Vash about ViewBug
1 review
6 helpful votes

Brilliant, given me a new lease of life. The members are, from my experience, the friendliest and most helpful people you could wish for. I don't see a problem with Photoshopped photos or HDR, they are just another way of presenting your photos, I don't use either but appreciate the effort that goes into providing viewers with a good experience. Thank you Viewbuggers, you're fantastic

Ask Peter about ViewBug
1 review
3 helpful votes

I think it's a fun site, to see where you're at personally in the world of photography, mostly. One of the drawbacks is that most of the time the photos that win are the most edited and altered. It's a bit of a bummer that in that way, that a great, more pure image isn't held in the same regard that a good image that has been extremely modified is. But it's a good place to get some feedback and see lots of great photos and photo illustrations.

Ask Greg about ViewBug
1 review
5 helpful votes

I have been using it for like five or so months now. at the begining i was so happy with it. uploaded photo, taking part in contests that are free... I have gained 45 trifecta prize over the last months and it was amazing untll oneday i cant loginn anymore to the site.

They show me This >> You are no longer an active user in Viewbug. Please contact us to reuse your account. Code: 178868 <<

I was shocked to find that my portfolio has been erased and all my photo has been deleted. I tried to contact with them but i gave up after four email. one facebook inbox masssage and one tweet.

They dont response at all.

This site maybe a good place for beginner photographer, with all the free contests and good encouraging comments from community, but for serious people, its not a place they should waste their time on.

Ask Istiak about ViewBug
1 review
2 helpful votes

I joined after a friend shared his photo for me to vote on in the nature photo contest and I immediately got hooked. I am addicted to choosing which photos to award and to the voting. Still trying to win a contest but still learning how to become a better photographer so not looking great. I do recommend it if you are a serious photographer or even if you just enjoy photography.

Ask Sophia about ViewBug
1 review
4 helpful votes

be honest I have not as yet made up my mind and am skeptical about it. On the plus side they offer some free contests without entry fee and without joining fee, which offer some ok prizes, allegedly. Also they gave one free premium contest entry; possibly an attempt to suck me in to pay their premium joining. I have seen some excellent work by other members, but also some not so good, but the not so goods are paying the premium membership; but so are some of the good ones. Consider that larger reputable publication like PDN that promote their own major contest and the curator contest also charge entry fees to pay into the prize pool and to allegedly discourage frivolous entries; yet National GEO contest does not ; even small contests like popular photog monthly does not. Viewbug as expected does promote their annual membership for their premium buy to join; but as yet they have not solicited buy their book or buy your own award. Some things they do are suspect, but so far they have not tried to really push or force anything though they do try to sell the membership which is suspect. So far I have only paid them about $30.00 in individual contest entry fees that "offer" significant prizes and one free contest for a decent prize. They have offered a free trial premium contest, and some free ones wi various prizes. If they still offer the free trial one premium contest and the free ones, your safe and can't be forced to any monetary commitment which they will try to promote and encourage you but can't force you, so just stick to your guns and maybe if your comfortable try one or two individual premium contest entries for the individual roughly $10.00 fee each; this does not obligate or require any membership purchase or major investment. You can always stick to free safe contest wi National GEO; POP photog; better photo; digital photo pro mag, but regardless be sure your clear on retaining your ownership and copyright rights n their terms and conditions stipulation. The most suspect are the ones that solicit you to buy their books with your photo in it and you have won an award that you have to actually buy; so far viewbug has not pulled this as far s I know. Viewbugs members seem nice but it does raise a question that as long as you buy their membership they will accept poor work as long as you pay them to; I'm curious to see what quality work actually wins their $3000.00 and $1000.00 prize contests; as said you can try them wi low or no financial risk and don't go any further then their free non-premium contests or one or two entry fee premium contests without paying any joining fee or committing to any further purchase. For now I have gone as far with them moneywise as I intend to unless and until I am convinced otherwise; I will look at their free nonpremium contests and prizes; but for now until I see some really convincing facts or results, that's as far as I go. But you can stick to the legit free contest I have listed or the large upfront entry fee pro-level, contests sponsored by PDN but regardless read and understand the terms and conditions of ownership and copyright rights and publishing; and once more stay away from the ones that solicit you to buy your own work in one of their books and buy/pay for your own award certificate, trophy or anything else. View bug is not the only join our membership photog contest site; in fact they are pretty common like fanartreview ,others. So do your research, use your best judgement and don't jump in too deep,and even though viewbug may turn out to be a we just want your money scam like others or maybe not), just be cautious limit your financial commitment to minimal so as not to get burned really bad or stick to the tried and tested free ones.
gary auerback

Ask gary about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

Joined this site some few weeks back and love it..its inspiring and the members encourage each other and appreciation for work is received. Also a good learning opportunity for newbie as well as experts from all over the world.

Click it, share it and love it :-)

Ask Manish about ViewBug
1 review
4 helpful votes

I joined ViewBug in 2009, coming over from PhotoBucket, which I still have an open account that I use and have used since 2004 or so. I went to VB for the full resolution uploads for free, though limited in number. It was so much better to have my original resolution to view on the web. VB has its faults, make no mistake. It has always been, though, about the very great photographers who also happen to be very great people as well there for me.

I'm a long time analog photographer using a Point and Shoot digital and I think the overall quality of images I compete with in the contests make me work that much harder to overcome technical or qualitative limitations and pushes me to be even more creative with the tools I do have. I have yet to find another Photographic website that allows all levels, skills and technical classes to compete openly. And I have yet to find another single website that provides cheap bastards like me plenty of free contests to enter with a wide array of subject matter themes. Once again, this forces me out of my comfort zone and pushes me into exploring subjects and themes I don't normally consider on my own.

How does it get any better than that for anyone wishing to improve their craft?

Cons: Forums hosted ON VB would be better than the hosted by PhotoTalk new forums. Even if it were as clunky to navigate as PhotoTalk's open forums, it would be better to have it on ViewBug so VB members themselves could communicate without having to figure out if or how many members they know from VB even made it to the PT forums. This is a big con to me as a photographer who believes pictures really are worth a thousand words. :)

Other cons: A) No contests that provide Class levels (Amateur, DSLR only, Point/Shoot only, etc.,) to allow folks to compete on even footing as well as their already excellent Open competitions. I think such ideas foster better competitions by matching equipment of similar technical levels and their photographers to compete in similar vein to NASCAR or other sports where the equipment is standardized to make the athlete the deciding factor. In photography I think this is essential to providing a more growth oriented atmosphere. B) Small technical issues nearly continuously crop up every time changes are made (which I accept as "normal" these days in general) and oftentimes, even though they have AMAZINGLY FAST technical response times, it takes a good while to sort the issue on their end -- in most cases these issues resulted in a complete inability to either upload photos at all or to even view my account in proper graphical display.

VB has a few warts on it, but nothing is perfect. For all that, I strongly recommend it for any level of photographer if they wish to showcase their efforts and commiserate with other enthusiasts of all levels and interests with one thing in common: A Love of Photography.

Ask Christopher about ViewBug
1 review
4 helpful votes

I am an amateur photographer and by no means as good as many of the people on the site but what I love most about it is the comments and peer recognitions. It tells me what pictures people ready do like and helps boost my confidence as a photographer as well. The chance to win some pretty cool prizes doesn't hurt either.

Ask Ethan about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

I find the site excellent but the new method of voting the trifecta I find is difficult to see the photos that you are viewing properly and is very frustrating but otherwise love viewbug!

Ask janice about ViewBug
1 review
2 helpful votes

I have been a member for almost 2 years. last month I took a photography course and finally I feel comfortable entering photo contests, have to say never have I seen such a cool contest site so I decided to upgrade my account and now I am joining all contests and I have received such positive feedback that I am more addicted to photography.

Ask Hannah about ViewBug
1 review
2 helpful votes

I tried viewbug because a few months back a friend won a brand new camera bag by being the most voted photo is a contest. Then I joined and slowly but surely started getting more into it. the members are very welcoming and all of a sudden.... my photo is featured on the homepage and viewbug's facebook page. Made my day, week, month! so many positive comments I was overwhelmed. I hope I get another feature soon, it lifted my spirits so much and it was an instant push to go get more shots.

Ask George about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

nice to get comments on my photos and it is good to see photos of such a high standard ,gives me something to aim at .my pics are as taken.I understand why people use photoshop and if it enhances a photo then that is all well and good technology is marvellous and well done Viewbug

Ask GWYN about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

I'be been a member about a year and like any site, it has its good points and bad points. People are friendly and I've found customer service response time to be excellent - usually within a couple hours. There's a variety of contests always going on and they've just started having more and more professional photographers as impartial judges.

As far as the contests go, the worst part is the member judged contests. He who has the most friends wins, regardless of what the pic looks like. One reviewer talked about the points system and how it was spam just to rack up points. To be fair, I recall that reviewer being atop the monthly and weekly points board the whole time they were there. They also had a mega load of groups they created, most of which were redundant. And you earn points for that so yet more easy points for that reviewer and quite hypocritical IMO. I can understand why they changed that rule.

This site is for all types of photographers. I believe if you're truly a professional, you wouldnt be wasting your time at photo sites anyway. I believe the site is more known for the contests and not for selling. There are plenty of other sites for that. I find it's easy to upload and consolidate my pics into albums. The site is easy to maneuver thru. I do not like that they allow minors and have highly sexual adult contests and pics without being able to verify a persons age (like requiring a credit card or driver's license at sign up).

All in all, I've been happy with it. You'll always find someone that doesn't like a particular site and sometimes it's just sour grapes. The only way to know is to try it for yourself.

Ask Edward about ViewBug
1 review
5 helpful votes

This site has one thing only going for it...good members. As for a site it is shocking, and they say the words you want to hear, but care not at all for it's members, they just want to make money..DON'T JOIN. I was in contact with many members, that had said it needs change, and they had been telling VB for 3 years, and nothing had been done. Yes they may offer 150 dollars but that is broken up for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, which is lousy money prize. They have got others to join them now, and have a 10,000 contest. HOWEVER ...what crap it is, for it is said in the rules it is open for all world wide, BUT you must have a address to send prizes to in the U.S. and that they might charge you taxes...WHAT CRAP. This clearly shows a non professional approach for a site to say that. "You must have U.S address, and taxes can be charged. Face the facts, they say to have a U.S address, so they don't have to pay for postage and shipping, but for the winner to have to pay it. I confronted them about it, and their answer was.. "it has nothing to do with us". Seriously people, yes the members are nice people, but as for the site it's self...STAY AWAY FROM IT. It isn't worth the joining fee, their prizes are extreamly poor quality, the continually lie to their members, and think of nothing but making more money for themselves. I have asked them to make thing better, given them ideas, told them how to be a fantastic site etc... and all i get is, "they will look into it" Their contests also run for like four months at a time, and IF you win, you might get like 40-50 dollars for first place...BIG DEAL!. If you really want to be informed properly and truthfully about two sites NEVER TO JOIN...View bug is definitely one, and the other is Fan art review. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE HEAR ME when i say DON'T JOIN, DON'T JOIN, DON'T JOIN. Also if you question them about their methods in contests or anything to do with the site, they will reply is sweet talking you, and saying how special your are, makes you sick. Every time i confronted them, funny but i would then have one of my photos picked by a viewbug judge/staff member etc... ...funny that. Save you money. They even state, they are the "number one site" what aload of crap....they offer nothing, and take all. Also to prove what i say is true, look at the comments here with 4 and 5 stars, they all mention the good members, just what i said. However not much being said about the actual site...the contests, the staff in a positive there?. So please just remember my two words to you..........DON'T JOIN.

Ask jason about ViewBug
1 review
7 helpful votes

Expensive up grade, the odds are to great, to much of the same thing. Nothing selling . To much HDR. chances of winning Slim. To many specialising in photoshop and not true photography.

Ask Gary about ViewBug
1 review
4 helpful votes

I personally think it's ridiculous that you can't display on the cover page the pictures you wish. They say that only certain pictures are allowed to be displayed.
If I am paying to have my pictures displayed than I should be able to choose the pictures I want to display, not view bug.

Ask Patrick about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

I am so happy i found view bug. I have felt truly encouraged to not think of myself as totally useless at photography but been really received a lot of praise for my work which i was not sure i deserved. Its a friendly and easy to use site and whats more one can see all those amazing photos that others who are so gifted have taken. Anyone who is starting out in photography or is a professional will enjoy being a member of viewbug and i have absolutely nothing but praise for the very user friendly way it has been designed. Anyone complaining is to my mind not understanding its purpose.

Ask yvonne about ViewBug
1 review
3 helpful votes

I love the site its a great opportunity to get my shots out for others to see, but... I am becoming a little discouraged about the competitions. It raises a red flag when the last 3 contest (perhaps more) were won by people who have joined JUST BEFORE a contest submission period ends...if you go back and review several recent contest, you will find this is becoming the norm and these "activities" seem quite questionable.
Case in point:
>> Winter Photo Contest - The latest winners' "portfolio" consist of 2 shots, which just happened to be the maximum # of shots for the contest; they won 1st place (a BX2 Backpack plus a BX2 Holster) (new member)
>> Thunder Photo Contest - 12 photos in winners portfolio (new member)
>> Natural World Photo Contest - - 15 photos in winners portfolio (new member)
>> Joy photo Contest - 2 photos in winners portfolio (new member)

Now don't get me wrong, the "winning" photos are great shots... and I've placed a few "Judges Favorite", "Featured Shots", and even a few "Featured Store". 8 "Awards" in all... just enough to keep me enticed....

As others have mentioned, the sight really lacks proper critiques from peers and seems to be post/point driven. It (the site) also lacks the meta data to "see" how the shot was taken and/or what software was used to edit the shot. There are also still "bugs" with the site that will place images in the wrong category. I don't know how when or why it happens but I've had on several occasions shots where I went in to edit the title or description and found B&W in color category. Landscapes (Nature) in animal category etc...

Bottom Line: I will continue to use the site perhaps past my subscription... but will continue to keep watch over the powers that be... the "contest" prizes are variable from inexpensive 120mm Holga cameras, gorrilla pod tripods. or the likes to several $1000 prizes. You be the judge.

Ask Rodney about ViewBug
2 reviews
2 helpful votes

Share and make our world better. Take away all the madness and bring the light here through photo lens. Thanks viewbug for being with us and offering to upload our art:)

Ask Markus about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

Absolutely love it. Great experience with it.

Ask Kimberley about ViewBug
1 review
3 helpful votes

I love this site. I have won a camera and actually did receive it : ) The photos are great and the interface better! Definitely worth checking it out even if you are an amateur or a professional

Ask Liza about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

I just found this site, i happen to like it... "rigged" or not. i think its a good way for people to get their artwork out there to get it looked at, besides using flickr, Viewbug is pretty good, simple to use, and not too many bells and whistles... and as for the Redbubble statement.. redbubble is for selling your photos.. not just getting them viewed.. if you have that much of a personal vendetta against viewbug i got an idea.. how about just don't use it, say whats wrong with it.. where it goes wrong, what its good for, but don't make it seem so personal.. just makes you look like a twat.

Ask Richie about ViewBug
1 review
2 helpful votes

i am thinking someone on this review site has issues and cant stop complaining about things.... hmmm

Ask Angel about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

I joined viewbug because a friend recommended me to check out the contest. I was very much impressed with the contests, they are fun and with great prizes.

I had a small glitch in the sytem but customer service was very quick and friendly. I truly enjoy my time at ViewBug and recommend it to other photographers.

Ask orland about ViewBug
3 reviews
6 helpful votes

Viewbug has no concern for it's members. When the site was free, it was much better because there was no limit on anything. I created 140 groups. Now each member is limited to 3 groups. Contest prizes used to be as much as $500. Now you received t-shirts and worthless stuff instead. On rare occasion there may be a prize of 50 or 100 dollars. There are at least 250,000 entries. Most winning photos are horrible, the results of unskilled photographers, and/or just downright nothing.

For those of you that are new to the site, and think it's so good, just give it time. Many of my friends thought it was great at first. Now they are on other sites that are at least honest and don't draw winning contest photos out of an electronic hat. Seriously, anyone would know 300,000 photos are not going to all be looked at.

As a general rule I'm very positive, and am a happy person. However, it has been a nightmare the way Viewbug has ignored problems and ignored members. About 100 of my friends are more than disenchanted with the site. Most of them have awesome photos yet never win contests or have a photo featured. I'm doing this for them. Many have had to block other members that harassed them. They can at least feel some consolation that a friend is telling the truth about Viewbug.

A free site that focuses on selling your photos is RedBubble. If you hope to sell your photos on Viewbug, it is unlikely it will happen. Out of 300 Viewbug friends, 2 have sold one photo each. Viewbug focuses on getting the $60 membership. Everything else is secondary.

Ask Janice about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

Very friendly and welcoming Photographers community. I saw an ad for photo contests and joined. Right away I upgraded to get the additional perks and so far I'm addicted to it. The site keeps releasing new cool stuff and since I'm a mid level photographer I'm getting the best of both worlds: teaching and learning. I have not yet won a contest but I've been in touch with a couple of winners and apparently they did get their prize and have been on the site for a while. The contests makes me go out there and try different subjects and techniques.. I highly recommend it with a free and a paid membership.

Ask Misha about ViewBug
2 reviews
12 helpful votes

Serious photographers need not apply! Been a member for about 4
months and have to say this is one of the most disappointing sites I
have signed up to. The platform they use is weak good photos get
buried by members bulk uploading snap shots from their party the night
before. Members of the site post spam comments on photos to gain
points which give them the chance to spam more members.

For a photography site design to promote better photography all they
seem to care about is getting the 60 bucks from members who have very
weak portfolios! Just another flickr site with a gimmick. If you
have the time to waist its a great place to go if your looking for
examples of what not to do related to photography. The contests are a
great idea however the management has proven time and time over its
failure to enforce any kind of standard. Members enter photos of
animals in abstract photography contests which proves they lack the
basic understanding of the fundamental of photography.

Any person who is serious about photography will see the flaws of this
site on day one! Members comments are nonconstructive and done mostly to gain points which seem to be some kind of measure of success on the site. This site IMO does nothing more than encourage weak photography making it more difficult for the serious photographers to get the recognition for the time they have invested trying to better themselves and the industry.

NOT Recommended!!

Ask Mike about ViewBug
1 review
1 helpful vote

Love sharing my photos with other ViewBug member's! Great site to meet fellow photographers, learn from others and have fun participating in contests.
If you are a photographer, this site is a must!!

Ask Mike about ViewBug
3 reviews
9 helpful votes

easy to use - this site is a great place to share photos and is relativley user friendly. It also has contest and cash prizes.

Ask Tamara about ViewBug
3 reviews
9 helpful votes

A great site for sharing your Art! - So far from what I have seen from the site its going to be fun! Lots of really cool images and people with great talent!

Ask Lisa about ViewBug
9 reviews
27 helpful votes

online sharing - Here is another site that I've come across. This is similair to the Site Jabber site in many ways, yet different. I like it, like I like this site, as you  get feedback from other photographers. It's very user friendly and recommended by me. Take a looksie.

Ask Sabra about ViewBug
5 reviews
20 helpful votes

Amazing Site - I loveit. They has review of your pic and let you known by email. They a lot of challenger about photos, videos and diferent community.

Ask MAyra about ViewBug
1 review
5 helpful votes

this sight pays 150.00 - <strong><em>I like this sight because you can upload as many as 100 photos ,videos or music files at a time, plus they have photo challenge contests and you can win cash prizes up to 150.00 they also have doodle contests, and weekly contests,its a great sight to store some of your photos ,and when theres a challenge you want to enter its easy just to upload from your photos,already on the sight. you even get reward points for uploading your photos andmany other things, check it out.</em></strong>

Ask valerie about ViewBug
3 reviews
3 helpful votes

Viewbuggers are great people - This is a photo site that has great contest and communities . The site is easy to navigate . Would recommend joining to anyone.

Ask david about ViewBug

1 Questions & Answers

Below are questions from consumers with answers from the ViewBug staff and other consumers. Do not write reviews in this section - click here to write a review
Ask a question
Q: I just got a email saying my photo was selected to be featured in the store. Is this a scam so that you will join. I am just trying the site.
A: i wanted to ask a question about the photography website viewbug. i just got an email sayin they want to publish one of my pics. this is exactly what it says "We have chosen to publish your photograph in our acclaimed "Best Of 2012 Photography". Your photograph was selected out of many entries. Your work below was appreciated for its structure and composition As a Contest Finalist and for a limited time, enjoy the manuscript for only $49 (regular price is $69). This offer expires on May-18-2012 (or until stocks expire) and the next contest will only be in November 2013." is this a scam? are they just tryin to get money outta me? im thinking yes?
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