LR4 = Data Loss from Global Status Flags ==> Bug (not feature)

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  • Updated 7 years ago

This conversation has been merged. Please reference the main conversation: Lightroom: LR4 "TIP" - avoiding data loss converting LR1/LR2/LR3 Local flags... (and a BUG report)

(heads up that there are multiple threads about aspects of this issue that should probably be consolidated into a single thread.)

Apologies for adding another topic on this issue, but the previous threads seem old, and possibly overlooked; one was even marked as "Implemented" which is counter to noting the resultant data losses created by LR4's mandated global status flags.

The new, all or nothing, global flag behavior is a major step backwards (for those who understand the old, much more powerful local behavior).

Sorry to be late to the party, BUT, this "new" global flag behavior is REALLY damaging to our information (and to our other colleagues and our workshop students).

All the (considerable) collection-based selection criteria we have in LR3 is wiped out when "upgrading" to LR4. Simply put, this is a DATA LOSS, which we'd consider to be a bug.

For instance, we have many individual collections that contain particular Client Proofing selections via the Picked/Rejected flags. Such collections often contain overlapping images. One client might want to order Image123 (so click "Select") in their collection, but the next client may not (so click "Reject") in their own collection. Similarly, their particular "maybe's" are left unflagged. With the new global behavior, the last one to change a status wipes out all other's preferences.

With LR4 we can no longer allow recording this proofing (without a huge hassle of maintaining separate, little catalogs for each client/job/interaction/output type - and then the little catalogs become outdated/out of synch with master changes, etc.). It seems like a big step backwards.

Similarly, we have various collections containing output jobs that use Local status selections (and ordering) for what was/wasn't included in a given job. Examples include various Calendars, Books, and even Gallery Shows. All this information is destroyed by LR4.

Pretty, pretty please can you revert the local vs global flag behavior to a simple Preference? (since it sounds like "local" was confusing too many folks, then "global" could be the default pref).

Please don't go the way Apple seems to be heading, in "dumbing down" your products, and create a Lowest Common Denominator situation.

Either way, the level of manual/power user/pro control seems to be inconsistent. How many folks who can't figure out the difference between local and global selections are going to be able to figure out separate RGB curves?

Lightroom/Photoshop are amazing, crucial tools for any serious photographer. Please consider not crippling parts of the incredible product as you advance others!
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Chris Ogden

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Posted 7 years ago

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Chris Ogden

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re: Victoria Brampton's helpful reply at

Victoria Bampton 2 hours ago
>Chris, I'm sorry to disappoint you, but they're not likely to come back.

Well, at the risk of futility, I'd like to reply that the lack of choice is very disappointing.

Contextual status flags are conceptually no different than contextual filters (although they have lost a great deal of their power/applicability now that flags are global).

There is precedent for actually giving users the choice to set Lightroom's behavior to meet their needs/workflow: the ability to "Remember each source's filters separately" is a perfect example. Or is that going to be yanked out of LR 4.x too?

>It wasn't just an issue of dumbing down, although it's had a minimal impact because very few people understood it.
> During the whole of the beta period, I only remember one thread on the subject, and it wasn't that long.

Hmmm. There are plenty of hardcore Lightroom users who did not or could not participate in the LR4 public beta, let alone the private ones. I know of many people who understood a pretty simple concept: flag status relates to collections. Use collections (and subsequent picks) to store choices of photos for particular uses.

>Picks/Rejects have become a primary method of refining image sets since it was originally implemented

EXACTLY! Your use of the plural "sets" is my point. How many avid/full time professionals only have 1 set of criteria/uses for their photos?

The context of a given photo's usage is most easily managed via collections. Yes, there are stars and colors, but they're global as well. There are keywords + filters, but they're global as well - why pollute the global keywords with local picks? The local flags are the one contextual method we have (had) (other than kludgy naming of separate collections/sets - which are hard to see since LR has an small, artificial limit on how far one may drag out to expand the left panel).

The sets which may be per client, per publication, per print type, per gallery/museum show, per slideshow, per iPad/iPhone gallery, per Wedding album vs DVD, etc.

Now we have to create 3 essentially duplicate catalog sets for each instance, and then somehow drag/drop and go back and delete (!?!) between collections? Incredibly manual and thus error prone.

>and LR's local flags ruled out any possibility of cross-program compatibility. With them now globalized
>, future compatibility with other software such as Bridge, Photo Mechanic, Photosmith, etc., becomes a possibility.

As far as I can tell, Flags still aren't saved to XMP data, so I'm a bit skeptical about the interoperability claims.

Regardless, what about user choice? Wouldn't that be a perfect place to provide the user a choice (ie, local or global)?

>The good news is it's not a data loss situation. If you right-click on any collection
> that previously had local flags, you'll be able to select them again, and use
> another rating system.

••••Please see separate post "LR4 "TIP" - avoiding data loss converting LR1/LR2/LR3 Local flags... (and a BUG report)"

for the bug/missing functionality associated with this approach, and also the kludgy, error prone reality of 36 steps required to split the 1 LR3 collection into the now required 3 LR4 collections.

> I know it's tough to have to change your workflow. Rather than adding to the collection
> and then flagging, you could flag in the folder, and then save their picks and their maybes
> as collections, before resetting the folder flags ready for the next person. No need to go into separate catalogs.

Yes, even so, this work around only applies for linear processes (ie, one set of picks/maybes/rejects are completely finished before another set is started). However, many of us work on more than project, with more than one client, at a time.

It's a shame that we have to resort to kludges when the flexibility and functionality existed since Lightroom's inception.