Do you have a Facebook account?  Do you sometimes see a photo from a friend or family member and wish you had a copy of it for yourself?  Continue reading to learn about a few of the issues with saving,  printing and sharing photos from Facebook.

I’ll use a sample photo throughout the article to help explain the different issues.


The biggest issue I have with saving photos from Facebook is the quality.  When someone uploads a photo to Facebook it reduces the file size.  Therefore, when that photo is saved (or downloaded) from Facebook you are getting the smaller version of the photo.

Let’s take a look at this sample photo; something I used to experiment with coloring a while back.  The original file size is 3.32MB with dimensions of 4544×4000 pixels.    When the file is uploaded to, then downloaded from Facebook, the new file size is now 259KB with dimensions of 2048×1802 pixels.  That’s a huge difference.  Look at the comparison to the right (or below) of the two photos side-by-side.  So, now if you want to print this photo saved from Facebook, the quality of the print will not be good.


Not sure what Metadata is?  Check out one of my previous articles about this awesome topic.  It’s a life-saver when it comes to organizing digital photos.  Using the above photo again.  I named the file “Markus-MR.jpg”.  However, when the photo is uploaded to Facebook, Facebook strips the file name and just about everything else associated with the photo.  When I downloaded the photo from Facebook, it was given a new name of “21122688_595012740622881_6110136051979453513_o.jpg”.  Keep in mind, the topic of Metadata itself is very technical, and can cover several days if you attend a workshop.  Here I’ll give you a taste of the difference in the technical details between the two photos.

When you look at the property details of a photo you gain a lot of information about that photo.  What type of camera was used, when it was taken.  You can even tag people in the photo and add copyright information.  However, when the photo is uploaded to Facebook all that information goes away.  That’s why the next section discussing copyright usage is so important.  And frequently discussed among photographers, photo organizers and social media groups.


In a nutshell, if you didn’t create the photo you don’t own the rights to save or print that photo.  If you see a photo a friend or family member posts on Facebook, ask to share their post.  If it’s business page, feel free to share…they want you to.  Not all friends and family members may want their photos shared, or reposted as your own.

And for goodness sake, give credit where credit is due!  Don’t save and repost someone else’s photo as your own.  It’s impolite and infringes on copyright work.    You think it’s perfectly innocent, but this is really a big deal and you could be breaking the law. Using the “Share” function is the fair AND legal way to post others’ images on Facebook.

Want to learn more about Copyright?  Here’s some great articles.


In summary, just don’t save or print photos from Facebook.   It’s certainly fun to share photo and look back on memories, but it’s not meant to be a repository or backup method for photos.  If you are looking for photo storage tool, feel free to contact me.