A Kodak moment will now cost you at least $4.99

I have a friend who takes a prolific amount of digital photos on every vacation, then sends her friends a link to KodakGallery.com, where her photo album is stored. She just got back from Australia and kindly sent me a link to her latest album -- a total of 382 photos, totally uncategorized. Gee thanks, but do I really need to scroll through the slideshow of 10 photos of Sydney's train station alone and 20 photos of her and her boyfriend snuggling on the snorkeling boat? (I never even made it to the second half of her trip).

However, after I clicked off her album, Kodak Gallery sent me an e-mail titled 'Our storage policy has changed.' Now, members with photo storage of up to 2 gigabytes or more must make annual purchases of at least $5, and those with photos totaling more than 2 GB worth must buy at least $20 of annual minimum purchases. Kodak told me I was 'currently compliant with our new policy,' (because I don't have any photos there) but customers who signed up before the crackdown don't get a free pass. I hope my friend has backed up her photos because, according to the Associated Press, Kodak will delete freeloaders' photo albums on May 16 if they don't pay up.