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How to allow my client to give shared photos star ratings and view versions I create for them?

Participant ,
Feb 25, 2021 Feb 25, 2021

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The reason why I tried Lightroom CC (and mobile) for the first time this week is because I thought that it allowed me and my client(s) to collaborate on working on the photos of a photoshoot I made of her.

The simple goal was that I shoot the photos, synch them up to an album I created in my CC cloud, give her access to the album, and let her give the photos star-ratings to isolate the ones we'll be working on, together. I thought this was the purpose of Lightroom CC and mobile, and that even the free version of Lightroom should be able to handle this basic task.

But now that everything is synched and I have given her access to the album as a contributor, she cannot give any photo a star-rating as this option is grayed-out in the menu.
I also wanted her to be able to see the versions of photos I started to process and grade, but that function was also missing in her Lightroom mobile app.

She has since gone ahead and subscribed to the full Lightroom/Photoshop package, but everything is just as it was before...no star ratings, no versions.

What's going on here, and how do we accomplish this seemingly simple and basic task?
Is a "Contributor" not permitted to do either, and if so, is there a way to make a client a "Co-Owner" or something like that? If not, then I don't see the purpose of this software.

I have subscribed to the Creative Suite for many many years, and use Lightroom Classic routinely, so I was kind of excited at the prospect of using the "new" Lightroom to collaborate on photoshoots with my clients, even if it is still short of the power that Lightroom Classic offers.

Can someone instruct me on how I can accomplish true online collaboration with my clients via Lightroom CC (mobile or desktop)?

(Please see the attached screenshots of what she sees on her end)

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 25, 2021 Feb 25, 2021

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Can someone instruct me on how I can accomplish true online collaboration with my clients via Lightroom CC (mobile or desktop)?

 

No, it's not yet possible to have "true online collaboration" using Lightroom. Some small steps have been taken, but there's still long way to go before that might be fully implemented (if indeed it ever is). 

 

For now, you could look at the Collaborative Proofing tool, which is available as a Technology Preview in the LrWeb interface. That basically allows you to share an album with a client (that client does not need an Adobe subscription, just an Adobe ID), and to set a selection limit (if a limit is needed). The client can then select the images, up to the number set, that they want you to work on, and that information flows back to your LrWeb app. Multiple clients can be involved, and I believe the feature allows you to filter by client. But it's still pretty basic.

 

If you need your client to be able to EDIT the images (and the client would, I believe, need a subscription for this to happen) the only way this could be currently achieved is to have the client create an empty album which is then shared with you, and gives you the ability to contribute to that album. So you copy your images into that album as the contributor (note, these are copies - separate from your originals - and you would have no edit control of them, you can only view what happens to them), and the client then has full edit control over them. I'm not sure that's what you actually want, however.

 

I can't think of anything else currently available to allow you to do what I think you want, though I have hope that this is on Adobe's radar.

 

 

 

 

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Participant ,
Feb 25, 2021 Feb 25, 2021

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Thanks so much for your detailed response, Jim!

Wow. It boggles my mind how something so basic can still not be working. I had a hunch that the "new" Lightroom was a bit of a toy, but to hear from you that its most basic potential, to allow photographers and clients to define the photos to process, and for clients to view and rate the versions that a photographer processed/graded, is not possible makes this a ludicrous proposition, in my mind. What a joke of software!

I have developed my own online collaboration tools and know a lot about what's necessary and possible when dealing with permissions in a shared collaborative environment of assets. It's 99% there, this new Lightroom, but somebody at Adobe has to make the decision to take that one extra step to allow a Contributor to use the stars and versions tools. It's little more than to flip the switch on what's already there, and I am not talking out of my butt here. I *know* what is involved, from a development standpoint. Sure, at that scale it's not trivial to enable new features, so put it up on your beta channel, Adobe, and let Owners decide (enable/disable) the abilities of Contributors to touch the star rating and versions (although viewing versions is non-destructive in the first place, so should be a no-brainer to enable).

I don't get Adobe, sometimes...this whole proposition of the "Creative Cloud", and using it to collaborate, is moving at such snail's pace and with so little vision that I wonder what they do there all day. Their software tools show great vision, in places, and I have zero complaints about the value proposition of the suite and some of the new features that get added every month/year can be revelatory at times, but this whole collaboration topic, which is *essential* to digital nomads like me, who hires talent world-wide, is all but a lame afterthought, so far.

Get your heads together, Adobe, and get with the times! You've had a monopoly for way too many years, and companies such as Serif Labs show that you don't hold a patent on innovation and need to do better. I, for one, am deeply disappointed in this half-a** attempt at collaboration called Lightroom CC.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 26, 2021 Feb 26, 2021

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You could have stopped your response after the first line. Venting at Adobe here is a waste of your time (and mine, having to wade through it to see if there was a question there that I could have helped with), as this is a User-to-User forum. So if you want to get your message to Adobe, I suggest you post at the official Adobe feedback site: https://feedback.photoshop.com/topics/lightroom-desktop-cloudbased/5f5f2093785c1f1e6cc40874

 

You'll almost certainly find an existing feature request regarding client collaboration, so you could add your vote and voice to that.

 

 

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Participant ,
Feb 26, 2021 Feb 26, 2021

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I apologize for wasting your time, Jim. I wasn't aware that this forum isn't frequented by Adobe staff, and even then, you'd be right that this isn't the place for venting my frustration.

Thanks for the link, and again, for suggesting an alternative in your original post. Just doing some digging into what you suggested, and trying to come up with a work-around, like giving my client access to another MBP of mine via desktop sharing, so she can do the ratings on it.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 27, 2021 Feb 27, 2021

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Thanks for the link, and again, for suggesting an alternative in your original post. Just doing some digging into what you suggested, and trying to come up with a work-around, like giving my client access to another MBP of mine via desktop sharing, so she can do the ratings on it.


No worries. I understand the frustration, but do understand that client collaboration to the degree that you require was likely not a priority in the initial development of the newer Lightroom desktop app. Mainly the app is targetted (at least initially) at a different audience, most of whom are likely not professional photographers with the same client-facing needs as you. Having said that, of course, some work has clearly been started in that area, so let's hope that further development will continue.

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Participant ,
Feb 26, 2021 Feb 26, 2021

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And yes, there was one post there already, requesting almost exactly the same things, so I upvoted it and added a comment with additional suggestions.

Thanks for that link and the wise words, Jim.

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