Koken is brand new, offering photographers, designers and artists a new kind of publishing platform. Koken focuses primarily on images, can be used on your own web server, and offers publishing tools for web sites. It is interestingly enough completely free. Having experienced the free model myself with TeuxDeux, I can honestly say I have become wary of using services that don’t charge. Yes, I had a complete change of heart. Why? Hosting and upkeep of a web service is expensive. With so many services shutting down or being aquired these days, I am afraid of investing time in a service that might not exist in a year or so.

In this blog post the Koken founders explain why they want to keep it free. I hope they can make it work.

9 Comments leave a comment below

  1. I must say, this looks awesome! But, like you, I’m pretty leery of using free services. I guess as long as there is a way to back up your content in case something happens.

    I wouldn’t want to write Koken off before it gets a good chance though. It looks like a good product with a good goal in mind. Perhaps I’ll download it and check it out.

  2. It’s not really a service if I understand it right. Once you download the software and install it on your server it shouldn’t matter what happens to Koken, right? The nice think seems to be that you install it on your server, that you pay for. This way you should be in full control over your images and content. Right now I am using Behance for hosting my work and they just got bought by Adobe. Not sure if that is good or bad.

    Anyone, please correct me if I got it wrong but Koken seems to provide the tools. Hey I take a free shovel, especially when it is this beautiful.

  3. Thank you for covering our beta launch! Greatly appreciate it.

    Just to clarify the point about services — Koken actually isn’t one. It’s a software application you download and install on your own web server, which means you’re in control of all your uploaded content. One of the reasons why we built Koken for this type of environment was because many photographers/publishers would rather keep their content close-at-hand rather than allowing a third-party service/company to host it all.

  4. This looks great. I’ll definitely have a closer look. Refreshing to see they are sharing their platform with the wider community.

  5. Wait, are you suggesting that Teuxdeux might not exist soon‽


  6. Automattic has done pretty well with WordPress, which is, after all, completely free. If they can get enough people excited about the base product, they should do well selling services and extensions on top of that. I wish them well, it looks like a great product!

  7. My dad is a pro-sumer photographer, and he’s been searching for a simple way to display his portfolio online. We’ve tried other outlets that are complicated and don’t focus as much on design and presentation. I act as the “family CTO”, so I’ll have to set up the server for him, but after that he should be fine to manage his work. We’re really excited to try Koken.

  8. Hello All,

    urgently deploy .htaccess password protection!

    Koken can’t be used on a public server – which kind of counterfeits the point of using it.
    a designer friend told me about it wanted a test installation.
    as i wanted to access the back end i noticed something peculiar.
    sometimes i am prompted for a password sometimes not.

    further investigation turned out that when ever on of us is logged in – all the others don’t need a password.
    Designer in UK and me the geek in Greece and the servers DE.

    so when ever you are logged in your Koken is open to the world!

    Conny Dittmann

    Κοννυ Nτιττμανν
    K.Γράψα 13
    31100 Ελλάδα
    Conny Dittmann
    K.Grapsa 13
    31100 Greece

  9. It’s not a free service. It’s free software. Right? I can’t find any services offered. Just the download link.