The Google Maps blog announced that users will be able to upload photos taken of their Places listings. While no doubt it will require policing by Google, the move makes the review process a little more social.
"The "Photos" section of the Place page now includes an "Upload a photo" link. This new link enables you to select an original photo on your computer and easily add it to the group of photos in the gallery."
It is a smart loyalty play. People who upload pictures for a business are much more likely to become a regular and a recommender - showing others the pic they upload to a place's site is bound to happen and maybe the angle Google is working.
"The most useful photos are descriptive ones that help others experience or envision a place before they visit it in person. It might be a close-up of a popular dish, a wide shot of a business interior, or a picture of the outside of the building," Google instructed.
There is no mention of the businesses themselves being able to edit and choose - this could become a contention in the future. People taking unflattering pictures or uploading false shots etc.