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Author Topic: Sell the Rights on Dreamstime  (Read 52931 times)

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steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« on: July 06, 2011, 11:29 »
0
When I first started uploading to Dreamstime, I recall that the default setting for "Sell the rights - SR-EL" was set to "yes" and the price was $250. I think it has changed now to "no." However, my early images were offered for sale under this agreement, and today I received an email that one had sold and that I had 72 hours to remove the image from sale on other sites, remove from any personal web site or exhibition. Of course, earlier sales cannot be withdrawn. My payment was $125. This particular image (a similar one is here: http://www.backyardsilver.com/2011/07/sale-of-rights-to-an-image-dreamstime/) was only on 7 sites, and had only earned $27, and so a sale for $125 is OK, but it certainly made me think about going back through the old images on Dreamstime and changing this setting to $1000, say.

What do other contributors do with that SR-EL option?

Along the way, I wrote a "how to guide" to deleting single images from the web sites, as I had to search for instructions on each one. You can find that list here for future reference. I'll keep it updated and add new sites on my blog:

   A key bit of information to search out before you start is when you uploaded the file to the stock sites!
   Shutterstock: Go to Stats: Status of Submitted Photos and click on Approved Photos tab. Find the batch that contains the original uploaded image (it helps if you know the approx. date of upload.) Click on the X at the right hand edge of the image details to delete.
   123RF: In the menus at the foot of the page, choose History. View stats for the month you uploaded the image, and then click on View Images for the range of dates to find the specific upload batch containing your image. Check the box Delete this photo and click Save at the foot of the page to complete the deletion.
   Fotolia: Got to My Files and then the Upload Files tab. Find the image (sort by date to get to the approx. date of upload quickly.) Delete the file using the link at the far right of the row containing your image.
   iStockPhoto: Click My Account: Contributor Tools: My Uploads from the bottom toolbar. Search for the image in the Keywords box. Click on the appropriate image to open up the details page for that photo. Click Administration in bottom right and then enter a reason for deactivation in the Reason box. Finally click Deactivate File.
   Dreamstime: In Management Area, select Online Files and then filter the full list by entering keywords into the search box. On the particular image, click Edit and then Disable on the bottom row of the details page to delete the image.
   CanStockPhoto: Click on My Portfolio to list all the files. Order by Approved to find the date of upload. Click Edit and then Delete followed by Done.
   BigStockPhoto: You cant delete an image on BigStock from their website. Contact support using the Contact form on Contact Us and give them the image ID and reason for deletion.
   DepositPhotos: Click Files: Online Files from the contributors page, and find the image by moving to the appropriate upload date. You can enter a page number in the blank box to get there more quickly. Once the image has been found, click on Deactivate.
   YayMicro: Click on My Portfolio under Photographer in the account Profile. Filter the portfolio by entering keywords in the search box. Click on the image in question, and then click the small X in the bottom left under the image.


« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2011, 14:08 »
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I have them all set to 'no' and if somebody asks me to sell one then I decide the price depending on how well it is selling.  If it is a good selling image then I set the price at 5 or 6 thousand but if it is an image that has hardly ever sold then I set it at 800 or 1000.  So far I have sold a couple at the lower prices but never at 6000.

« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2011, 14:55 »
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What happens if you are on holiday and away from the internet for 72 hours when they sell one?

What happens with Fotolia affiliate sites, where I seem to recall they can take weeks to get round to removing pictures?

I never put anything into the DT SR program because I never felt able to guarantee that I could meet the conditions.

steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2011, 15:34 »
0
The Dreamstime contract says the following:

"Sell the Rights (SR-EL):
This license represents a full ownership of the downloaded image. The buyer can use it exclusively (exclusivity applies from the moment that the file was downloaded using this license), and include it in any type of design with just a few restrictions: sensitive subjects may still apply and the buyer may not claim that the file was created by him nor resell it as a photo.
The agency will disable the image immediately after the buyer acquired this license. The photographer is required to disable the file permanently from all other places where he may sell it, as soon as possible after the sale occured, but no longer than 72 hours. The photographer acknowledge and agrees to provide the buyer with full ownership for the file retrieved using the SR-EL license"

I do agree that it would be impossible to remove from all sites (including all partner sites of the agencies that I am a contributor to) in 72 hours as it states. If you have put the image into the iStock Photo+ plan, you are further restricted in removing it from sale.

It seems almost impossible to fully carry out the terms of this agreement - and yet it is still there for non-exclusive images on Dreamstime, and so they must be selling images with the clear knowledge of the impracticality of the request. In my case, I have removed the image from all the sites that I have a relationship with and have documented when I did that. The image can obviously still be used by people who have already bought it, and so this is probably a case of "make best efforts?"

Steve

« Reply #4 on: July 06, 2011, 15:43 »
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In my view, the onus is on you to comply with the terms you agreed to when you put the image into their "buy the rights" programme. They are not required to tell the buyer that he isn't getting the rights he thinks he is getting because its a bit impractical for you to meet your obligations.

In law, I think it would be perfectly clear-cut.

« Reply #5 on: July 06, 2011, 16:38 »
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... If you have put the image into the iStock Photo+ plan, you are further restricted in removing it from sale.

You can deactivate any image - including Photo+ or Exclusive+ - at any time. What you can't do is return the image to the main collection until the 6 months are up. Anything that's in the iStock partner program is a total crapshoot - they seem to have a hard time adding or deleting content there.

With BigStock you have a 3 month wait. They may waive it if you ask (they did for me once, long ago when Tim & Dawn still owned it) but there's no guarantee.

steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« Reply #6 on: July 06, 2011, 20:51 »
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I have written to Dreamstime to try to get their view (not on this one image, but for future reference). I did ask BigStock to take down the image and they did that immediately. I'll update the post if I get a response from Dreamstime.

Can I assume that the general consensus is that we should not offer our images via the Dreamstime SR-EL option because of these issues with confirming full deletion of images on other sites?

Steve

TheSmilingAssassin

    This user is banned.
« Reply #7 on: July 06, 2011, 22:43 »
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I have a real issue with DT's S-ELs.  For one they annoy the crap out of me every time I get a request to sell the image when I've set it to "no".  What's the point in that?  They should create another option "I will think about it" rather than bug me for something when I've already instructed them not to offer it for sale.  I've set most to $25,000 and "no" just to stop the annoyance.

My second issue is that I don't believe it's ethical to sell the rights to an image to a buyer when that image has been sold many times over.  Say I buy an image outright from a contributor at DT and I want to not only own that image exclusively but to use it exclusively.  I cannot stop anyone else from using it if they've already paid for a licence.  I think the whole thing is VERY dodgy and misleading to buyers and I don't ever want to get caught up in the middle of a legal battle in the future.

It makes no sense to me that S-ELs are offered for images that have been sold before.  It should not be allowed.

rubyroo

« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2011, 02:05 »
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I don't offer the rights for any of my images - but if I did, I'd choose only exclusive images.  Otherwise I'd go loopy worrying that one of the partner sites I don't know about might still be carrying the image somewhere.

TheSmilingAssassin

    This user is banned.
« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2011, 02:32 »
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I don't offer the rights for any of my images - but if I did, I'd choose only exclusive images.  Otherwise I'd go loopy worrying that one of the partner sites I don't know about might still be carrying the image somewhere.

See I don't really understand this.  What is the difference if a partner is still holding onto an image or if a buyer selling your image on a t-shirt after buying an EL licence from you on an exclusive site?

What if see a vector image here and I want to buy the rights so I can use it as a logo?  I know logos aren't allowed but if I owned the rights to the image, I could do whatever I want with it.  What if I then trademark my logo and then later find someone purchased a licence to print that image on a mug and I want them to stop?  Legally, as the copyright owner of a trademarked logo, I can stop them from using the image.  But how fair is it to the poor person who purchased a licence to print the image legally?  Selling S-ELs could cause many problems and I don't think it's right to be able to sell the rights to an image that's already out there being used by many.  It's not fair to those who've already purchased a licence and it's not fair to the person who bought the rights. 

I really don't see how Dreamstime can get away with this.  It's just wrong.

« Reply #10 on: July 07, 2011, 04:59 »
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See I don't really understand this.  What is the difference if a partner is still holding onto an image or if a buyer selling your image on a t-shirt after buying an EL licence from you on an exclusive site?

What if see a vector image here and I want to buy the rights so I can use it as a logo?  I know logos aren't allowed but if I owned the rights to the image, I could do whatever I want with it.  What if I then trademark my logo and then later find someone purchased a licence to print that image on a mug and I want them to stop?  Legally, as the copyright owner of a trademarked logo, I can stop them from using the image.  But how fair is it to the poor person who purchased a licence to print the image legally?  Selling S-ELs could cause many problems and I don't think it's right to be able to sell the rights to an image that's already out there being used by many.  It's not fair to those who've already purchased a licence and it's not fair to the person who bought the rights.

I really don't see how Dreamstime can get away with this.  It's just wrong.

I tend to agree with you on this. And besides, I've had 2 or 3 inquiries about SRs on some images, and any reasonable price I offered to sell them for was too much money for the client.

TheSmilingAssassin

    This user is banned.
« Reply #11 on: July 07, 2011, 05:32 »
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I tend to agree with you on this. And besides, I've had 2 or 3 inquiries about SRs on some images, and any reasonable price I offered to sell them for was too much money for the client.

Can I ask how much you asked for?  I never know what's reasonable.  I just know that $25,000 is very unreasonable... so it works at stopping the requests.

This is what concerns me:

Quote
Sell the Rights (SR-EL):
This license represents a full ownership of the downloaded image. The buyer can use it exclusively (exclusivity applies from the moment that the file was downloaded using this license), and include it in any type of design with just a few restrictions: sensitive subjects may still apply and the buyer may not claim that the file was created by him nor resell it as a photo.
Quote
 

That's a blatant lie.  The buyer of the SR-EL can't use the image exclusively if others have already purchased it and have the right to use it indefinitely according to whatever licence they purchased.  DT could possibly land themselves in trouble over this some day.  A small buyer probably won't do anything about it but say a company buys it and eventually grows as big as Pepsi and sue's DT for misleading them and failing to protect their brand?  No thanks.  I wouldn't want to ever be part of something like that.

« Reply #12 on: July 07, 2011, 06:36 »
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snip
Can I ask how much you asked for?  I never know what's reasonable.  I just know that $25,000 is very unreasonable... so it works at stopping the requests.

It depended on the photo. The range was $100 to $1000. The high end represents a best seller of mine they wanted to purchase. I don't know what's reasonable either, but if I am giving up all rights to something, I'm going to make it worth my while and I'm not just going to give it away for free. Just figuring the time it took me to shoot an image and basing it on my regular asking freelance rate, I don't consider those prices unreasonable. But I guess they did.

Quote
Sell the Rights (SR-EL):
This license represents a full ownership of the downloaded image. The buyer can use it exclusively (exclusivity applies from the moment that the file was downloaded using this license), and include it in any type of design with just a few restrictions: sensitive subjects may still apply and the buyer may not claim that the file was created by him nor resell it as a photo.

That's a blatant lie.  The buyer of the SR-EL can't use the image exclusively if others have already purchased it and have the right to use it indefinitely according to whatever licence they purchased.  DT could possibly land themselves in trouble over this some day.  A small buyer probably won't do anything about it but say a company buys it and eventually grows as big as Pepsi and sue's DT for misleading them and failing to protect their brand?  No thanks.  I wouldn't want to ever be part of something like that.

But the first party that bought it did NOT have exclusive rights at all, so I don't think they would have a leg to stand on. And the second party understands that they are only buying exclusivity from that point on, so I don't see where there is any misleading going on. But I do agree that it could definitely create confusion and hassles.

TheSmilingAssassin

    This user is banned.
« Reply #13 on: July 07, 2011, 07:59 »
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Yeah I see what you're saying Cathy but to me that reads as if I would be granted exlcusive usage of that image from that point on and no one else is allowed to use it.  You have one party (me) with a contract saying they (I) have exclusive usage rights from that point on, but you have a bunch of other parties with a contract saying they have unlimited usage of the same image.  It's all a big mess and if any damages are incurred, the one that is likely to be liable is DT.

If I'm wrong please convince me so that I don't turn down the poor soul that offers me $25,000 for my pitiful wheat eat image :D

« Reply #14 on: July 07, 2011, 08:14 »
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But the first party that bought it did NOT have exclusive rights at all, so I don't think they would have a leg to stand on. And the second party understands that they are only buying exclusivity from that point on, so I don't see where there is any misleading going on. But I do agree that it could definitely create confusion and hassles.

But they aren't buying any sort of exclusivity "from that point on" or anything else, because they cannot cancel the licenses that have already been sold. All they are buying is the right to use it and to benefit from any future sales of it they may choose to make. The main thing they acquire is the right to sub=license it, which you give up.

This is where the big problem about affiliate agency sales comes in. Once you "sell the rights" your right to approve the licensing of the image anywhere else ends. If you get another commission payment from it, that is theft. No doubt, if a rights buyer finds the image on sale at another agency he can sue the agency, which - in turn - can probably sue you (or use the clause in most contracts by which we indemnify our agents against legal problems). The whole thing is a can of worms.

steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« Reply #15 on: July 07, 2011, 09:30 »
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Anyone know if there is a way to make wholesale changes to this setting (sell the rights) on Dreamstime? I do agree that the Dreamstime offer to buyers is misleading, as all previous sales of the image are not time restricted in terms of usage.

Maybe I will set all mine to "No"

Steve

steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« Reply #16 on: July 07, 2011, 09:57 »
0
Sorry - found it. It is under "Manage Licenses"

Steve

steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« Reply #17 on: July 07, 2011, 10:17 »
0
I got a reply from Dreamstime. My original email:

Quote
Thanks for this. I have disabled/deleted the image on all the stock sites that I have a direct relationship with.

I am a little concerned about the legal implications of this though - I have no direct ability to make sure that the image is deleted from agents and partners of the stock sites I contribute to, and also, some of my images are in the iStock Photo+ program which requires a 9 month minimum commitment. As I understand the contract, I should not be selling the rights to those images via the Dreamstime license.

If I recall properly, this option used to be checked by default when uploading images, although it has now changed to being unchecked. I think I therefore have a set of images that are part of this offering, and others, the newer ones, that aren't.

Before I decide what to do about this, could you please confirm my understanding of my responsibility for an image subject to an SR-EL sale (ie, I take all available steps to remove the image even though this may take some time (many months with Photo+) to implement.)


And their reply:

Quote
Thank  you  for  contacting  Dreamstime.

It is imperative that the image is removed from all sale venues in a maximum of 72 hours. From our experience, it helps to upload another file as replacement but you need to ensure it is removed within the period specified.

If you do not wish to make the files available by default but only at request, please access the management area/manage licenses button:
http://www.dreamstime.com/extended_license.php

« Reply #18 on: July 07, 2011, 11:56 »
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But the first party that bought it did NOT have exclusive rights at all, so I don't think they would have a leg to stand on. And the second party understands that they are only buying exclusivity from that point on, so I don't see where there is any misleading going on. But I do agree that it could definitely create confusion and hassles.

But they aren't buying any sort of exclusivity "from that point on" or anything else, because they cannot cancel the licenses that have already been sold. All they are buying is the right to use it and to benefit from any future sales of it they may choose to make. The main thing they acquire is the right to sub=license it, which you give up.

This is where the big problem about affiliate agency sales comes in. Once you "sell the rights" your right to approve the licensing of the image anywhere else ends. If you get another commission payment from it, that is theft. No doubt, if a rights buyer finds the image on sale at another agency he can sue the agency, which - in turn - can probably sue you (or use the clause in most contracts by which we indemnify our agents against legal problems). The whole thing is a can of worms.

I see what you are saying. I agree...can of worms. I just double-checked and I have my SR-EL unchecked, and I think it has been for quite a while. But as mentioned by someone else earlier, I think I still got a request.  ::)


 

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