I'm also migrating from Ning. I paste here info from other post from my experience:
I have tested for days different ways to make the plugin work as a collaborative gallery (sitewide) when every member can upload images to any album and maybe create albums.
For the people that are in my same situation, now I have find two options:
USE THE SHORTCODE
The members can upload from their profile to their own albums. All the media is listed thanks to the shortcode. But no shortcode for albums. there is no way to show organized media.
USE ONE GROUP AS MEDIA GROUP
The users have to upload from the group uploader (the media uploaded from profile is not listed on group!!). they can upload to any album on the group (it depends of the privacy). The media is listed in the group organized by type of media (videos, photos, audio) and there is the option to organize by album. Because in the group you have the tabs “Album”, “photos”, “audio”, “video”, “upload”.
Also you can see the media uploaded to the group via shortcode, but not organized!
buddypress media plugin is updated every one or two weeks adding new features or correcting issues. I think that in the future will be better about collaborative albums like Ning. I Have tested all the photos plugins and this is the best for functions, features, support, updates...