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Author Topic: Dreamstime - Is it time to leave  (Read 25056 times)

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« on: March 04, 2009, 07:59 »
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I don't know about anyone else but things happening at Dreamtime lately have seriously made me consider pulling my portfolio from there.

-Their only credible resource has announced she's leaving.

-It's impossible to upload there using any FTP software.

-Yesterday they had a major security breach and are recommending everyone change their password (although they're doing their best to play this down in the forum)

-Sales lately have just plummeted.

-But the final insult for me was reading in the forum about their latest editor, not only has this guy got a mediocre portfolio with low sales, but one of his latest uploads is a photo of a duck, and not just a photo of a duck but one he took standing up and looking down and he even managed to cut the tail out of the frame, I mean for crying out loud this guy is going to be reviewing our work!!!




« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2009, 08:03 »
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Dreamstime didn't have a major security breach.  Istock had a phishing attack on their site and passwords were stolen.  The problem is if people use the same pasword for the different agency then all agency passwords needed changing.  Istock handled it very well but as far as I know the only other agency that took the time to warn their contributors was Dreamstime for which they should be commended.

« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2009, 08:08 »
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I uploaded 15 files using ftp this morning. Everything looks fine. I wonder why you had problems using ftp. Did you use it before? I guess you set parameters correctly..

« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2009, 08:31 »
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I think DT is one of the best microstock players in several areas. The only issue I see with them is that the language of their response is sometimes too strong.

FTP works fine. Sometimes they have delays with transfer of FTP uploads to their site but I only saw in once in the last few months (uploading at least weekly, usually more often).

My sales on DT is comparable with Fotolia. It's behind SS and StockXpert but much better than 123 or BigStock.

BTW inspectors don't have to be be good photographers. Movie critiques aren't good movie makers. Art experts aren't great artists. Many of great sport trainers aren't good sportsmen.

« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2009, 09:19 »
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BME there last month, second overall for me, after SS, prices are increasing with more sales. It's the last agency I would pull out of right now.

« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2009, 09:22 »
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if I was absolutely forced to go exclusive with one agency right now it would be DT so no.

« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2009, 09:59 »
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Elllen has only been with DT for a couple of years.  The site worked perfectly alright before she came and will no doubt work perfectly alright now that she has gone.



-Their only credible resource has announced she's leaving.





« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 10:45 by fotografer »

« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2009, 10:25 »
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if I was absolutely forced to go exclusive with one agency right now it would be DT so no.

Agreed ... in my book DT is the best run site of them all. They are the very last site i would choose to leave.

« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2009, 10:30 »
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If your itching to tell someone off I would think Fotolia would be a good candidate. I have been  thinking of telling them to take the short walk off the long pier. I agree with most everyone here. Dreamstime is very good imho.



« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2009, 10:53 »
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Another vote with the majority.  Dreamstime is well run, produces good results and communicates before making dramatic changes.  Sometimes we don't like their decisions, and sometimes the outcry has caused them to reconsider. 

My only complaint, and it's a minor one, is that I believe their minimum payout is a bit high for the level of sales they deliver.  I'm at the stage where I get a payout every month from the other majors.  Dreamstime is hit or miss for me; sometimes I make it, sometimes I don't.

« Reply #10 on: March 04, 2009, 10:54 »
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I don't know about anyone else but things happening at Dreamtime lately have seriously made me consider pulling my portfolio from there.

-Their only credible resource has announced she's leaving.

-It's impossible to upload there using any FTP software.

-Yesterday they had a major security breach and are recommending everyone change their password (although they're doing their best to play this down in the forum)

-Sales lately have just plummeted.

-But the final insult for me was reading in the forum about their latest editor, not only has this guy got a mediocre portfolio with low sales, but one of his latest uploads is a photo of a duck, and not just a photo of a duck but one he took standing up and looking down and he even managed to cut the tail out of the frame, I mean for crying out loud this guy is going to be reviewing our work!!!


just to chime in here...and to agree with everyone else, what are you talking about??!?  
FTP is working just fine, Sales are looking good, $/download is the highest ever, Ellen got a book contract and wants to focus energy on that as well as work on her own consulting business, and the security breach happened at istock  

CCK

« Reply #11 on: March 04, 2009, 11:11 »
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I certainly don't have any intention of leaving DT.

« Reply #12 on: March 04, 2009, 11:18 »
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Dreamstime is fine with me too.

And, anyway, who cares if someone leaves? That happens all the time in companies.

I suspect someone may have a massive chip on the shoulder. Too many rejections?

gbcimages

« Reply #13 on: March 04, 2009, 11:29 »
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DT is #1 for me at the moment. :)

« Reply #14 on: March 04, 2009, 11:38 »
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I don't know about anyone else but things happening at Dreamtime lately have seriously made me consider pulling my portfolio from there.

-Their only credible resource has announced she's leaving.

-It's impossible to upload there using any FTP software.

-Yesterday they had a major security breach and are recommending everyone change their password (although they're doing their best to play this down in the forum)

-Sales lately have just plummeted.

-But the final insult for me was reading in the forum about their latest editor, not only has this guy got a mediocre portfolio with low sales, but one of his latest uploads is a photo of a duck, and not just a photo of a duck but one he took standing up and looking down and he even managed to cut the tail out of the frame, I mean for crying out loud this guy is going to be reviewing our work!!!


just to chime in here...and to agree with everyone else, what are you talking about??!?  
FTP is working just fine, Sales are looking good, $/download is the highest ever, Ellen got a book contract and wants to focus energy on that as well as work on her own consulting business, and the security breach happened at istock  


Haha.. Nice.. Pretty much what I was thinking..
« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 11:40 by tubed »

« Reply #15 on: March 04, 2009, 11:41 »
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if I was absolutely forced to go exclusive with one agency right now it would be DT so no.

Dito..


« Reply #17 on: March 04, 2009, 11:54 »
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Dreamstime is my favorite agency now, ShutterStock is a close second. Fotolia was first but they moved to last after they recently screwed over their contibutors. All goodwill I had towards Fotolia is totally gone, to the point where I'm hoping they fail and buyers move to Dreamstime.

« Reply #18 on: March 04, 2009, 12:55 »
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Dreamstime is the first site I check, the first I upload to and the first to reach payouts.  I wish they would review additional format files faster but it's such a small complaint in the grand scheme of dreamstime goodness it's almost not worth mentioning.

« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2009, 14:56 »
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Troll Alert!  ;D

Don't feed the trolls:D

Xalanx

« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2009, 15:01 »
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Dreamstime is moving places 2-3 in my top sellers, because SS has a huge advantage over others. It's moving slow, but very forward, for me. It's on a par with StockXpert.
Good agency, overall.

lisafx

« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2009, 15:08 »
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Add me to the majority here.  Dreamstime is the best run agency IMO. 

Of your list of complaints, the only one that is true is that Ellen Boughn is leaving.   And as fotografer points out, she has only been there a couple of years.  It was nice having her there - she was an asset to the company, but it was still a wonderful site before she got there and will be a wonderful site going forward. 

We all get frustrated with this business sometimes, but in this case I think your hostility is misdirected.  Dreamstime is a gem. 

« Reply #22 on: March 04, 2009, 15:26 »
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It's not my highest earner, but DT is my fave agency.  And for what it's worth, I had made more or the same by March 2nd than I had made all of Feb at any of StockXpert, BS or 123. 

« Reply #23 on: March 04, 2009, 15:28 »
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DT is our favorite site, and if we had to go exclusive, this would be the site for us.

Had you said the same about Fotolia, I would have agreed completely with you.

Have you considered you just aren't good enough to be on their site?  Without seeing your port, that's just a guess, but I bet a very good one.  Maybe when you learn how to shoot commercial work, you'll start to see sales there.

Good luck!

Gebbie *who doesn't have a problem signing my name to any post I make*

« Reply #24 on: March 04, 2009, 16:07 »
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Dt is a very good agency.  Now, if I could only opt out from subs, I would love them.

Regards.
Adelaide

« Reply #25 on: March 04, 2009, 16:16 »
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Dt is a very good agency.  Now, if I could only opt out from subs, I would love them.

Regards.
Adelaide

Dito... ;D

Patrick H.

« Reply #26 on: March 04, 2009, 17:52 »
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Always loved DT, never any problems with me.

e-person

« Reply #27 on: March 04, 2009, 18:02 »
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I don't like DT. Never did. If they did not have the six months ransom on your photos before you can delete them, and if they did not lock your editing if you delete one photo, I could even evaluate them as average agency. But, given the previous facts, I can not and will never recommend them to anyone.

That said, in order to use FTP, you have to enable it in your control panel.  :)

« Reply #28 on: March 04, 2009, 18:36 »
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Reading all the replies it's clear what the majority here think :)

I'm in the same boat as everyone else, love DT, their stats, growing sales, site etc... it's my No3 site in terms of income but No1 in terms of use

jim_h

« Reply #29 on: March 04, 2009, 18:56 »
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In the midst of all these paeans to DT I'd like to offer a contrasting opinion.  I started doing microstock a couple months ago and have about 40 photos on several sites.  Disclaimer: I'm never going to be hot, I'm just doing objects, my expectations are low, my conclusions apply only to myself. 

I made a few sales on DT in the first 2 weeks, then nothing. After a month, I rather suddenly stopped getting any more views of either old OR recently submitted photos. This pattern was repeated on a couple of other sites.

SS however was completely different. Same photos, but over 10 times the sales, which are continuing. Of course this is mostly 25 cent subscription sales. But I've stopped submitting to any agency except SS, the others are now "dead" as far as my account is concerned. 

I draw 2 conclusions. The main one is that if you're new and don't start selling right away, you're downgraded at some point and might as well give up because people aren't even seeing your images any more. It's not hard to figure this out.  Reviewing is expensive - maybe the biggest cost of running a microstock business - and if you're not selling, they're losing money by paying people to review your images and would really like you to just go away. 

The other conclusion is that ShutterStock does things differently, or maybe the probation period is just longer - we'll see.



« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 19:05 by jim_h »

« Reply #30 on: March 04, 2009, 19:19 »
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DT has many achievements to be pround of, that is out of question.

Frankly, DT, as well as FT and IS, could have used more diplomacy and courtesy in the contributor relationship department.

When unpleasant situations did not happen to many of the contributors, they did happen to others. Perhaps we could have been more sympathetic to our colleagues.

I think Steve Oh is the most responsive one. That is my personal opinion, others may have issues with StockXpert too.

« Reply #31 on: March 04, 2009, 21:18 »
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In the midst of all these paeans to DT I'd like to offer a contrasting opinion.

Hm, what's your authority on this? In the other rant about iStock you refused to show the photo they rejected, but you kept complaining about it. A complaint now again. Where is your portfolio? If all those sites are so wrong, I would start to think that it's not about the sites, but about me:P

jim_h

« Reply #32 on: March 04, 2009, 21:29 »
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Who said they were wrong?  As I explained, this sort of "profiling", if its happening, makes perfect sense to me. My acceptance rate is very high (except on IS), but the photos just aren't the sort of thing that sells on those sites, so why should they continue paying reviewers to look at them?  Just smart business.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 21:31 by jim_h »

« Reply #33 on: March 04, 2009, 22:03 »
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In the midst of all these paeans to DT I'd like to offer a contrasting opinion.  I started doing microstock a couple months ago and have about 40 photos on several sites.  Disclaimer: I'm never going to be hot, I'm just doing objects, my expectations are low, my conclusions apply only to myself. 

I made a few sales on DT in the first 2 weeks, then nothing. After a month, I rather suddenly stopped getting any more views of either old OR recently submitted photos. This pattern was repeated on a couple of other sites.

SS however was completely different. Same photos, but over 10 times the sales, which are continuing. Of course this is mostly 25 cent subscription sales. But I've stopped submitting to any agency except SS, the others are now "dead" as far as my account is concerned. 

I draw 2 conclusions. The main one is that if you're new and don't start selling right away, you're downgraded at some point and might as well give up because people aren't even seeing your images any more. It's not hard to figure this out.  Reviewing is expensive - maybe the biggest cost of running a microstock business - and if you're not selling, they're losing money by paying people to review your images and would really like you to just go away. 

The other conclusion is that ShutterStock does things differently, or maybe the probation period is just longer - we'll see.


Or maybe 40 files over "a couple of months" just isn't enough to make conclusions like the ones you seem to have already made. There are plenty of contributors here that base their conclusions on portfolios over 100 times the size of yours and over a period of years rather than months.

Personally I agree with the support that DT gets. The bottom line for me is that it makes me money. Regularly. An added bonus is that I like the review processes, the forums, and that support there gets back to me quickly.

« Reply #34 on: March 04, 2009, 22:14 »
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I draw 2 conclusions. The main one is that if you're new and don't start selling right away, you're downgraded at some point and might as well give up because people aren't even seeing your images any more. It's not hard to figure this out.  Reviewing is expensive - maybe the biggest cost of running a microstock business - and if you're not selling, they're losing money by paying people to review your images and would really like you to just go away. 

 Completely incorrect and on par with the rest of your uninformed and negative rants.. It has to do with your approval rate as well as your keywording, descriptions, image titles and obviously quality.. My guess is 2 or more of these for you are not up to par.. SS is easy to get new stuff downloaded, and you will soon see that the new image factor will fall away and the true test of your skills will be tested..

jim_h

« Reply #35 on: March 04, 2009, 22:31 »
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Acceptance on DT is about 70%, better on SS. To recap: on SS I make 10x what I make on DT, and on DT, I made no sales after the first 2 weeks, and after a month I get essentially no views on anything, old or new. How else to explain these numbers, except to conclude that DT is quicker to de-rate a submitter who isn't producing revenue? 

« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 22:38 by jim_h »

« Reply #36 on: March 05, 2009, 00:01 »
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I think you will find the same for most others in here Jim where shutterstock makes between 30% to 60% of their microstock income. This is mainly due their size ,number of customers and low prices as opposed to other places. Still this thread isn't about performance of DT but about the usability factor, by which it seems most of us contributors seem rather pleased with DT.

« Reply #37 on: March 05, 2009, 00:23 »
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-Their only credible resource has announced she's leaving.

-It's impossible to upload there using any FTP software.


#1 I never considered her credible.
#2 I use Filezilla and it works.

My $ per sale has gone up up up in the last 3 months, but the numbers are down. In the end I am about 5% up on sales.

« Reply #38 on: March 05, 2009, 00:34 »
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How come those who complain the most don't have links to their portfolios?

« Reply #39 on: March 05, 2009, 00:44 »
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I have never known anybody to get their editing locked for deleting one photo.  I have often in the past deleted photos with no problem.
and if they did not lock your editing if you delete one photo,

« Reply #40 on: March 05, 2009, 03:52 »
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Acceptance on DT is about 70%, better on SS. To recap: on SS I make 10x what I make on DT, and on DT, I made no sales after the first 2 weeks, and after a month I get essentially no views on anything, old or new. How else to explain these numbers, except to conclude that DT is quicker to de-rate a submitter who isn't producing revenue? 


DT is completely different to SS.  It can take months for new uploads to sell but then sales are steady and don't plummet as much if you stop uploading.  I didn't like DT for my first 6 months there but my sales have grown steadily since then.

« Reply #41 on: March 05, 2009, 03:55 »
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I have been with DT for a number of years. Sales haven't been as good for me as they used to, but it is still worth my time. The site is running well and is well managed. I often read in this forum about people threatening to leave sites. I don't quite understand that. You don't have to like a site or their management in order to stay and make some money. That's just my two cents.

« Reply #42 on: March 05, 2009, 04:50 »
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Wow it looks like I've stirred up a hornets nest here, Dreamstime is a popular site amongst contributors no doubt, however my view on sites are not how nicey touchy they are, I do this for a living and I'm very successful at it, I appreciate that many replies here are from those who are looking to make a few bucks each month and as such the friendly side of a site is important, however in business the base line is the only thing that counts I couldn't care less how friendly the management are it's nett profit that is the only important thing for me.

Re FTP - search their forum, just because something isn't happening to you doesn't mean you should dismiss others opinions, there is a problem with FTP there - for some, unfortunately the management at DT take the same dismissive approach as many here.

Re Ellen - Whatever your opinion of her, the fact remains she was brought in because of her reputation in the industry, Dreamstime are a tiny drop in the stock industry ocean, without a 'name' behind them I'm wondering whether they will suffer.

Re the breach - iStock were the only agency professional enough to admit it happened and publicly announced it, full credit to them it's what sets them apart. They weren't the only agency who were targeted and this has been going on for a couple of weeks.

Re the editor - As a professional I want my work reviewed to a high standard, obviously a site like Dreamstime is going to struggle to get a decent reviewer to work for them, if someone knows what they're doing they'll be out there doing it, so I accept reviewers might not be great photographers but what I don't want to see is lack of knowledge of the industry, Dreamstime have employed this guy and I ask what that says about their standards.

As for sales figures, I'm basing my views on a strong growth margin at nearly every site except Dreamstime, for some of you making 10,20 or 50 dollars a month a low percentage drop is not significant, when it gets into hundreds at a time every other site is steadily growing at a time of worldwide recession you'll understand why I said what I did.

As for being anonymous, if you don't understand why then you need a bit more experience in the industry.

For the record I think the folk at DT are nice too, I think the folk at iS are complete a**holes but they are the market leaders, guess which site I prefer  ;)

 

e-person

« Reply #43 on: March 05, 2009, 05:03 »
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I have never known anybody to get their editing locked for deleting one photo.  I have often in the past deleted photos with no problem.
and if they did not lock your editing if you delete one photo,

They do. Are you willing to believe me, or do you need evidence?
Why don't you start with a search, and you will find it does happen.
If you come to see me, I can always show you from one of my computers, btw.
Not that this is going to last long. By June I will be leaving the site.

« Reply #44 on: March 05, 2009, 05:08 »
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I wasn't disbelieving you just very surprised about it happening for deleting just one image as I have many times in the past deleted images with no problem,  Could it be to do with the reason you put for deleting the image?

I have never known anybody to get their editing locked for deleting one photo.  I have often in the past deleted photos with no problem.
and if they did not lock your editing if you delete one photo,

They do. Are you willing to believe me, or do you need evidence?
Why don't you start with a search, and you will find it does happen.
If you come to see me, I can always show you from one of my computers, btw.
Not that this is going to last long. By June I will be leaving the site.


« Reply #45 on: March 05, 2009, 05:18 »
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Many of us that have commented in this thread are also successful at this and making 100s a month on this site but I still don't agree with most of your points.  Dt doesn't make as much for me as SS, IS and Fot but it comes in as a respectful 4th place. If as you say you are making 100s of $s a month then I don't know why you would be considering leaving.  Downloads are also going down a bit for me at DT but earnings are going up as more and more images reach high level pricing.
And yes I do agree with you about being anonymous ;)

Wow it looks like I've stirred up a hornets nest here, Dreamstime is a popular site amongst contributors no doubt, however my view on sites are not how nicey touchy they are, I do this for a living and I'm very successful at it, I appreciate that many replies here are from those who are looking to make a few bucks each month and as such the friendly side of a site is important, however in business the base line is the only thing that counts I couldn't care less how friendly the management are it's nett profit that is the only important thing for me.

Re FTP - search their forum, just because something isn't happening to you doesn't mean you should dismiss others opinions, there is a problem with FTP there - for some, unfortunately the management at DT take the same dismissive approach as many here.

Re Ellen - Whatever your opinion of her, the fact remains she was brought in because of her reputation in the industry, Dreamstime are a tiny drop in the stock industry ocean, without a 'name' behind them I'm wondering whether they will suffer.

Re the breach - iStock were the only agency professional enough to admit it happened and publicly announced it, full credit to them it's what sets them apart. They weren't the only agency who were targeted and this has been going on for a couple of weeks.

Re the editor - As a professional I want my work reviewed to a high standard, obviously a site like Dreamstime is going to struggle to get a decent reviewer to work for them, if someone knows what they're doing they'll be out there doing it, so I accept reviewers might not be great photographers but what I don't want to see is lack of knowledge of the industry, Dreamstime have employed this guy and I ask what that says about their standards.

As for sales figures, I'm basing my views on a strong growth margin at nearly every site except Dreamstime, for some of you making 10,20 or 50 dollars a month a low percentage drop is not significant, when it gets into hundreds at a time every other site is steadily growing at a time of worldwide recession you'll understand why I said what I did.

As for being anonymous, if you don't understand why then you need a bit more experience in the industry.

For the record I think the folk at DT are nice too, I think the folk at iS are complete a**holes but they are the market leaders, guess which site I prefer  ;)

 

jim_h

« Reply #46 on: March 05, 2009, 11:00 »
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DT is completely different to SS.  It can take months for new uploads to sell but then sales are steady and don't plummet as much if you stop uploading.  I didn't like DT for my first 6 months there but my sales have grown steadily since then.
Interesting and I've been told this before (maybe by you).  It's hard for me to believe this, because I see my 'views' dropping down to nothing, but maybe I'll continue submitting to them and see what happens.

I think your other point - sales collapse if you stop uploading - sort of agrees with my conclusion that your whole account - not just an individual photo - is derated if you're not producing.  And also that the microstock sites' business models are based on subscriptions, which in turn are fed largely by new photos.

What a microstock company wants is the predictable revenue of a subscription base, and my guess is that subscribers download a lot of images they don't actually need, most of which come from the new submissions.  A nice money machine which just about runs itself, driven by photographers madly pumping out images for 25 cents in hopes of bigger sales later...  as you can see I have my doubts. ;)
« Last Edit: March 05, 2009, 11:04 by jim_h »

« Reply #47 on: March 06, 2009, 09:33 »
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I have a lot of problems with DT.  Mostly I am not happy with my sales there.  I could blame my small (142) portfolio but my smaller(121/118)) FT/IS ports have outperformed DT for a long time and other sites (StockXpert, SS) do much better on a per image basis with larger ports. Even 123Rf beat them last month!

I would like to have a larger portfolio but their review system is very slow and I still have not figured out what they want.  It took me awhile to realize that acceptatnce percentage was very important so over the last 8 months or so I have only submitted images that are accepted at multiple other sites.  This has brought me up to 60% but it makes it difficult to build a substantial portfolio - and I guess uploading in dribs and drabs may be holding down my sales.

Others complain about FTs commission drop but I would rather be with them and make some money than with DT and - to date - not make anything.  At FT I not only make more I can take it out at $50 with DT I still have not reached their $100 payout limit.

I hope you all realize that this high payout level is money in DT's pocket.  Many contributors (I seen estimates as high as 80%) never reach payout and others like me have too small a portfolio to reach payout very often so they get free use of the money I make.  FT's commission drops are a much more honest way to make money than DT's high payout limit.  The only site I know of with a $100 limit is IS and they get the traffic to justify it.  DT really doesn't.

fred
« Last Edit: March 06, 2009, 09:37 by Fred »

tan510jomast

« Reply #48 on: March 06, 2009, 10:31 »
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(  edited for brevity)

For the record I think the folk at DT are nice too, I think the folk at iS are complete a**holes but they are the market leaders, guess which site I prefer  ;)

um, let me guess ! IS?  ;D   just kidding ,wake  ;) 

« Reply #49 on: March 06, 2009, 11:24 »
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Wow - how can you even begin to analyze micro stock companies results with a portfolio of on 142 images - and I would guess those 142 images haven't been available online for long either?  Even 3 years ago I was told by very knowledgeable and successful contributors that I couldn't expect much until my portfolio was over 100 images - and now that there are contributors with portfolios over 15,000 images that advice has been revised to a much higher number.  DT has been a bit slow for me lately too but that's beside the point.  DT is not some startup site struggling to get buyers.  So unless you have the most amazing 142 images that are at the top of the heap in appeal and quality, you don't have the return from your portfolio to be too serious about analyzing traffic and portfolio performance.  My portfolio is almost 10 times larger and I know it's still tiny compared to the portfolios that drive these markets.  I go to the contributors that have these large portfolios and ask THEM what the trends are.  Go to Yuri Acurs website (www.arcurs.com) and check out his data and statistics on the various websites - unless he's just making stuff up he has enough (understatement of the year) data to make an informed statement about the trends of the various websites as well as the needs of photo buyers.



I have a lot of problems with DT.  Mostly I am not happy with my sales there.  I could blame my small (142) portfolio but my smaller(121/118)) FT/IS ports have outperformed DT for a long time and other sites (StockXpert, SS) do much better on a per image basis with larger ports. Even 123Rf beat them last month!

I would like to have a larger portfolio but their review system is very slow and I still have not figured out what they want.  It took me awhile to realize that acceptatnce percentage was very important so over the last 8 months or so I have only submitted images that are accepted at multiple other sites.  This has brought me up to 60% but it makes it difficult to build a substantial portfolio - and I guess uploading in dribs and drabs may be holding down my sales.

Others complain about FTs commission drop but I would rather be with them and make some money than with DT and - to date - not make anything.  At FT I not only make more I can take it out at $50 with DT I still have not reached their $100 payout limit.

I hope you all realize that this high payout level is money in DT's pocket.  Many contributors (I seen estimates as high as 80%) never reach payout and others like me have too small a portfolio to reach payout very often so they get free use of the money I make.  FT's commission drops are a much more honest way to make money than DT's high payout limit.  The only site I know of with a $100 limit is IS and they get the traffic to justify it.  DT really doesn't.

fred

« Reply #50 on: March 06, 2009, 11:29 »
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my sales have increased rapidly on there never had any probs I certainly wont consider leaving

« Reply #51 on: March 06, 2009, 13:05 »
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Wow - how can you even begin to analyze micro stock companies results with a portfolio of on 142 images - and I would guess those 142 images haven't been available online for long either...?
I have a lot of problems with DT.  Mostly I am not happy with my sales there.  ...

fred


Hey, I just got fed up with everybody else whining about FT and thought I would whine about DT for a change.  They are NOT god's (or whoever's) gift to MicroStrock you know!

c h e e r s
fred
   
« Last Edit: March 06, 2009, 13:10 by Fred »

lisafx

« Reply #52 on: March 06, 2009, 13:52 »
0
Everyone's experience is different, and people are entitled to their own opinions. It's not a contest - you don't have to like one (DT) and complain about the other (FT) or visa versa. 

Each site has its different issues, strengths and weaknesses. 

Personally Dreamstime is my favorite - not for touchy feely reasons and not because I am just a hobbyist or just have a few images.  I have named my reasons for preferring them in numerous other threads and don't need to reiterate them all here.  My opinion is based on over 4 years of doing this, and having over 4K images on all the major micros.   

This is my full time living and Dreamstime treats its contributors like professionals, not like third world sweatshop workers to be exploited.   

« Reply #53 on: March 06, 2009, 14:41 »
0
Everyone's experience is different, and people are entitled to their own opinions. It's not a contest - you don't have to like one (DT) and complain about the other (FT) or visa versa. 

Each site has its different issues, strengths and weaknesses. 

Personally Dreamstime is my favorite - not for touchy feely reasons and not because I am just a hobbyist or just have a few images.  I have named my reasons for preferring them in numerous other threads and don't need to reiterate them all here.  My opinion is based on over 4 years of doing this, and having over 4K images on all the major micros.   

This is my full time living and Dreamstime treats its contributors like professionals, not like third world sweatshop workers to be exploited.   

My favorite is the site that pays me most for my time.  DreamsTime has failed pretty miserably in that department for me.  I wouldn't want any newbies to think that because they can make a $100 payout at IS or SS in a few months with 100 images that they can do the same at DT.  DT is just not in the same league.  Better to go with FT and other sites with lower payout limits until you build a portfolio of 500 or so unless you like waiting a long time for your money.

 

« Reply #54 on: March 06, 2009, 14:54 »
0
I don't know about anyone else but things happening at Dreamtime lately have seriously made me consider pulling my portfolio from there.

-Their only credible resource has announced she's leaving.

-It's impossible to upload there using any FTP software.

-Yesterday they had a major security breach and are recommending everyone change their password (although they're doing their best to play this down in the forum)

-Sales lately have just plummeted.

-But the final insult for me was reading in the forum about their latest editor, not only has this guy got a mediocre portfolio with low sales, but one of his latest uploads is a photo of a duck, and not just a photo of a duck but one he took standing up and looking down and he even managed to cut the tail out of the frame, I mean for crying out loud this guy is going to be reviewing our work!!!

Yes, given your above statement you should leave now. Do not kick the can down the road. It is nice knowing you! Go Now! Go Quick!

tan510jomast

« Reply #55 on: March 06, 2009, 14:54 »
0
agree with lisafx and download . i have a small port like you too , and just only beginning to understand what DT is about. but i am not even one year old. i think realistically, we have to get a larger portfolio . if even the dabblers have 1000 images like download mentioned. even so, 1000 images in your port is not alot, but it shows you're serious and in micro stock for the long run, or at least, it shows you are trying to  .
and oh, one last thing fred, Fotolia nor DT is NOT god's (or whoever's) gift to MicroStrock, IStock is  ;)
« Last Edit: March 06, 2009, 14:56 by tan510jomast »

lisafx

« Reply #56 on: March 06, 2009, 16:20 »
0
agree with lisafx and download . i have a small port like you too , and just only beginning to understand what DT is about. but i am not even one year old. i think realistically, we have to get a larger portfolio . if even the dabblers have 1000 images like download mentioned. even so, 1000 images in your port is not alot, but it shows you're serious and in micro stock for the long run, or at least, it shows you are trying to  .


This is the right attitude IMO.  The get-rich-quick days when a couple hundred images will yield profitable results are rapidly growing to a close, if they aren't gone already.  Patience in building a large portfolio of high quality images will be rewarded on pretty much any site worth its salt.  :)

« Reply #57 on: March 07, 2009, 02:17 »
0

I agree, if I want to do better anywhere I need to get more images online.     However,  if it takes one site two or three times as long to deliver a payout as several of its competitors on a comparable portfolio, then something is wrong.  I would suggest that DT has simply set their payout level too high. 

After doing this for three years I realize my portfolio is also neither particularly high quality nor particularly well suited to stock - but it works well enough for me elsewhere.  I believe DT has factored the Acceptance Rate into the search algorithm and this could also be part of my problem.  Perhaps other things are factored in that work against me - participation in their forum for example.  I am certainly willing to listen to any explanations of the wide discrepancy on my sales there vice elsewhere.

And my main point is not that DT is so bad or that FT is so good but just that the major sites all tend to be equal, each emphasizing different aspects of the business - i.e. sales, marketing, contributor relations etc.

fred

« Reply #58 on: March 07, 2009, 04:20 »
0
I like the $100 payout level.  It isn't difficult to make that every month with DT.  They payout quickly, unlike some of the sites with lower payout levels that have more to process every month.

« Reply #59 on: March 07, 2009, 04:47 »
0
I like the $100 payout level.  It isn't difficult to make that every month with DT.  They payout quickly, unlike some of the sites with lower payout levels that have more to process every month.

Well, I can't see your portfolio so I really don't know how your getting a monthly payout relates. If you have a small portfolio it would be an interesting fact.  If you like the $100 level that is fine but DT could (like SS) allow contributors to set it lower if they wanted to be fair (and lose some of the income from zombie accounts and small ports).

I have probably not had as many payouts as most here but I have had a few and never had any problem with any site once I reached their limit.  I even managed to get paid from LuckyOliver once they lowered their payout to a reasonable level.  fred

« Reply #60 on: March 07, 2009, 17:49 »
0
I tested the microstock waters last year with a mere 12 photos, I'm currently focusing on improving my camera skill before I dive in properly. Out of all the sites, I've removed my microscopic portfolios from all except BigStock, DT and FT. The rest accepted pictures that I know weren't good enough and never made a hint of a view let alone a sale. Out of them all DT was totally dead until last week when I found sales, the best sales out of all the sites, my pictures are still reasonably close to the first page and I'd say out of all the sites, they've done the best for me. Obviously I'm a mere duckling to it all, but I thought I'd pop my head up.

lisafx

« Reply #61 on: March 07, 2009, 18:56 »
0

... I believe DT has factored the Acceptance Rate into the search algorithm and this could also be part of my problem.  Perhaps other things are factored in that work against me - participation in their forum for example.  I am certainly willing to listen to any explanations of the wide discrepancy on my sales there vice elsewhere.


Yes, they definitely do factor in acceptance ratio in search placement. 

I don't think forum participation is a factor though.  I rarely participate in the site forums anymore.  Especially since discovering this group :)

« Reply #62 on: March 08, 2009, 03:25 »
0
I also don't think that forum participation is factored into it as they would be rewarding people that are constantly in the forums complaining or asking questions.
I think that this confusion came about as positive participation in the forums is one of the factors that Serban said is involved in being chosen as featured photographer.

 


I don't think forum participation is a factor though.  I rarely participate in the site forums anymore.  Especially since discovering this group :)

« Reply #63 on: March 08, 2009, 06:27 »
0
I also don't think that forum participation is factored into it as they would be rewarding people that are constantly in the forums complaining or asking questions.
I think that this confusion came about as positive participation in the forums is one of the factors that Serban said is involved in being chosen as featured photographer.

 


I don't think forum participation is a factor though.  I rarely participate in the site forums anymore.  Especially since discovering this group :)

Appreciate both of your comments.  Can you tell me if appealing reviews is of any use on DT?  I am afraid that my poor acceptance rate in the past may have reviewers giving my stuff greater scrutiny - assume reviewers have this information - I've had some questionable rejections lately but I'm not sure how to appeal or if it is even worth it. 

c h e e r s
fred

« Reply #64 on: March 08, 2009, 08:05 »
0
In the midst of all these paeans to DT I'd like to offer a contrasting opinion.  I started doing microstock a couple months ago and have about 40 photos on several sites.  Disclaimer: I'm never going to be hot, I'm just doing objects, my expectations are low, my conclusions apply only to myself. 

I made a few sales on DT in the first 2 weeks, then nothing. After a month, I rather suddenly stopped getting any more views of either old OR recently submitted photos. This pattern was repeated on a couple of other sites.

SS however was completely different. Same photos, but over 10 times the sales, which are continuing. Of course this is mostly 25 cent subscription sales. But I've stopped submitting to any agency except SS, the others are now "dead" as far as my account is concerned. 

I draw 2 conclusions. The main one is that if you're new and don't start selling right away, you're downgraded at some point and might as well give up because people aren't even seeing your images any more. It's not hard to figure this out.  Reviewing is expensive - maybe the biggest cost of running a microstock business - and if you're not selling, they're losing money by paying people to review your images and would really like you to just go away. 

The other conclusion is that ShutterStock does things differently, or maybe the probation period is just longer - we'll see.





Hi Jim,
Perhaps you make the wrong conclusion of these "facts".

You contribute a few months. I think the patron you describe is  kind of typical for what more are experiencing. At least, it's the same, I saw happening in my first months. By the way: 40 files is too less to have more than incidental sales! It's a very very tiny microstock portfolio!

At SS new contributers have an extra exposure to their files for 4 to 6 weeks from their start! In the first two months you sell a lot. After that it will slow down soon! To reach the same amount of downloads, you have to "feed the beast" on a regular base! Send in files and keep doing that. If you don't, your files will just go under in the millions other "lost in time". Feeding it is not only to sell new stuff, but also necessary to get views and so selling possebilities to the rest of your portfolio.

On other sites like Dreamstime the way people search is different. It takes some months before you have more or less regular sales and before your files will be seen. But they have better change to be seen and found still than on SS, after some years.

In general SS is a good earner in the long time, only if you feed it. You'll sell lots of smalls and earn inbetween 25 to 50 % of all from just SS.
Other sites sell less in general, but the fee is higher. Not selling at first there, doesn't mean it will not sell ever!

Of course a lot depends on what you contribute and all kinds of coincidences, we as contributers can not control. But with not at least several hundreds of files on line, you never can get a sale-stream...


Good luck!
Weknow




« Reply #65 on: March 08, 2009, 08:35 »
0
Can you tell me if appealing reviews is of any use on DT?  I am afraid that my poor acceptance rate in the past may have reviewers giving my stuff greater scrutiny - assume reviewers have this information - I've had some questionable rejections lately but I'm not sure how to appeal or if it is even worth it. 

c h e e r s
fred

I never appealed any rejections, but what works pretty good is trying to correct whatever they found and re-submit. Most of my re-submits were accepted and that helps to keep your acceptance rate up (mine is a bit above 80%).

« Reply #66 on: March 08, 2009, 09:56 »
0
double post
« Last Edit: March 08, 2009, 09:58 by fotografer »

« Reply #67 on: March 08, 2009, 09:57 »
0

If you appeal the review I think that if it is then accepted the original refusal will still count against you  and if you re-submit and it is again refused you will then have another refusal against you.



Appreciate both of your comments.  Can you tell me if appealing reviews is of any use on DT?  I am afraid that my poor acceptance rate in the past may have reviewers giving my stuff greater scrutiny - assume reviewers have this information - I've had some questionable rejections lately but I'm not sure how to appeal or if it is even worth it. 

c h e e r s
fred
« Last Edit: March 08, 2009, 09:59 by fotografer »

jim_h

« Reply #68 on: March 08, 2009, 10:57 »
0
weknow, thanks for the interesting information. I will find out if my experience follows that pattern.   Many posters seem to be saying that at least some microstocks want a constant flow of new images to feed subscription buyers, so they reward regular submissions with higher search rankings. 

« Reply #69 on: March 10, 2009, 06:04 »
0
DT is the best!!!

lisafx

« Reply #70 on: March 10, 2009, 10:29 »
0

Appreciate both of your comments.  Can you tell me if appealing reviews is of any use on DT?  I am afraid that my poor acceptance rate in the past may have reviewers giving my stuff greater scrutiny - assume reviewers have this information - I've had some questionable rejections lately but I'm not sure how to appeal or if it is even worth it. 

c h e e r s
fred

I've never appealed a rejection there.  I second the advice about listening to the reason and making sure your new uploads don't fall into the same category.

DT is very picky but I have always found their rejections to be consistent and logical rather than random and arbitrary like on some others. 

As far as I can tell Attilla doesn't work for DT ;)

vonkara

« Reply #71 on: March 10, 2009, 13:23 »
0
For old timers who look at the Dreamstime statistic page, you can see the number of users online growth. From an average of 1500 on weekdays 1 or 2 years ago, it goes up to 2500 today. The number of guests online came from around 2000 to 5400 today.

KB

« Reply #72 on: March 13, 2009, 09:58 »
0
I'm approaching my 3rd anniversary with Dreamstime, and they'd always been one of my favorite agencies. They continue to perform well for me, a constant #3 in sales behind iStock and Shutterstock.

But I am oh so tired of the "well-covered or too specific" rejections. I had stopped uploading to them for a month, to give them a rest, and see if things change. But they haven't; just got that same rejection this morning on my trial balloon (no, it isn't one that was previously rejected).

As for this thread's title, I'm not about to leave me #3 performer. But I have to decide how to balance my desire to add new images with my fear of harming my acceptance ratio (and thus my search ranking). For now, I guess I'll go back to wait mode, and continue to monitor the situation.

cmcderm1

  • Chad McDermott - Elite Image Photography
« Reply #73 on: March 13, 2009, 23:24 »
0
It's funny.  Having read through some of these posts I have never really realized how good DT actually is.  I mean sales are okay, but the site itself and the whole process and experience is totally first rate.  It's one of those sites that just keeps quiet but does what it's supposed to do, day in and day out.

Funny after reading these posts, but I have come to realize that DT is a really good site.  And I've been there 2 1/2 years.  Thanks DT.

tan510jomast

« Reply #74 on: March 14, 2009, 22:50 »
0
DT is very picky but I have always found their rejections to be consistent and logical rather than random and arbitrary like on some others. 
yes, they are (picky)... but yes again, their rejections are consistent and logical and if you heed the reviewers reason, you will get better results next time.

As far as I can tell Attilla doesn't work for DT ;)

phew ! may the gods  of microstock be praised  ... :P
 (oh and the man Achilles too).. ;D

« Reply #75 on: March 15, 2009, 09:13 »
0
Ok, so I didn't read this entire threads comments...I admit. I got through about 5 pages and heard enough.

I agree - as many others have said - with the majority here. That DT is awesome for many reasons.

The original poster seems to have a strayed view of things. As one poster pointed out, most of what they said in their original post was either incorrect or irrelevant. From my experience with DT over the past few years (I started stock with them and have absolutely no plans on leaving) they have their ups and downs sales and earnings wise. But aren't all sites like that?

I'm not about to leave because they asked me to change my password. And frankly, I can see why they wouldn't want to come out and say they had a major security breach (if they even did) because it would cause an unnecessary widespread panic among the whole community.

Fact of the matter is, FTP is not a problem for the majority of submitters. And as far as I can see in the forums, problems are almost always addressed - if not handled/fixed/put on the list of things to be fixed - by an admin. DT has good sales for most people most of the time. One person does not make or break a huge agency like DT.

There will always be problems and issues with every site. If this original poster decides to leave, its their loss. I think he/she should give it some time. I am willing to bet their mind will change.

« Reply #76 on: March 15, 2009, 22:03 »
0
DT is a good site but there are 4 things I don't like here :
- no information about Aliance Partner Program earnings - this is the reason I've opt out. We get 50% of what?. What percentage partner get?
- sometimes, without any reason, I got very low earnings like $0.24 instead of 0.35 for subscription sale. Never got clear response from DT about it.
- subscription unlimited file size - I hate to see 20mp file sell for 0.35. I have to downsize all my images before uploading to DT.
- useless forum. All interestings questions are deleted or stay without response


« Reply #77 on: March 16, 2009, 16:56 »
0
DT is very picky <...>
No-o-o. Lately they accept almost everything. The only better one is StockXpert. IS, SS, even BigStock reject more than DT!

Indeed I am talking about my personal experience.

RT


« Reply #78 on: March 23, 2009, 19:01 »
0
- no information about Aliance Partner Program earnings - this is the reason I've opt out. We get 50% of what?. What percentage partner get?
- sometimes, without any reason, I got very low earnings like $0.24 instead of 0.35 for subscription sale. Never got clear response from DT about it.
- subscription unlimited file size - I hate to see 20mp file sell for 0.35. I have to downsize all my images before uploading to DT.
- useless forum. All interestings questions are deleted or stay without response

These plus some other things are why I've finally decided to stop uploading and leave Dreamstime as soon as I can. Well maybe  ;)
« Last Edit: May 05, 2009, 03:12 by RT »

vonkara

« Reply #79 on: March 23, 2009, 20:15 »
0
Wow does it was a difficult or an easy decision RT? I agree that seeing those subs is discouraging though

« Reply #80 on: March 24, 2009, 03:11 »
0
- no information about Aliance Partner Program earnings - this is the reason I've opt out. We get 50% of what?. What percentage partner get?
- sometimes, without any reason, I got very low earnings like $0.24 instead of 0.35 for subscription sale. Never got clear response from DT about it.
- subscription unlimited file size - I hate to see 20mp file sell for 0.35. I have to downsize all my images before uploading to DT.
- useless forum. All interestings questions are deleted or stay without response

These plus some other things are why I've finally decided to stop uploading and leave Dreamstime as soon as I can.

I could come up with a much longer list to leave some of the other sites.  I know some people knock DT but is there anything to really be concerned about or is it just unsubstantiated allegations?

« Reply #81 on: March 24, 2009, 03:30 »
0
- no information about Aliance Partner Program earnings - this is the reason I've opt out. We get 50% of what?. What percentage partner get?
- sometimes, without any reason, I got very low earnings like $0.24 instead of 0.35 for subscription sale. Never got clear response from DT about it.
- subscription unlimited file size - I hate to see 20mp file sell for 0.35. I have to downsize all my images before uploading to DT.
- useless forum. All interestings questions are deleted or stay without response

These plus some other things are why I've finally decided to stop uploading and leave Dreamstime as soon as I can.

I could come up with a much longer list to leave some of the other sites.  I know some people knock DT but is there anything to really be concerned about or is it just unsubstantiated allegations?
@ sharpshot
My English is not very good so may be I misunderstood "unsubstantiated allegations". Does it mean untrue? Which point in my post is not true in your opinion?

« Reply #82 on: March 24, 2009, 04:37 »
0
- no information about Aliance Partner Program earnings - this is the reason I've opt out. We get 50% of what?. What percentage partner get?
- sometimes, without any reason, I got very low earnings like $0.24 instead of 0.35 for subscription sale. Never got clear response from DT about it.
- subscription unlimited file size - I hate to see 20mp file sell for 0.35. I have to downsize all my images before uploading to DT.
- useless forum. All interestings questions are deleted or stay without response

These plus some other things are why I've finally decided to stop uploading and leave Dreamstime as soon as I can.

I could come up with a much longer list to leave some of the other sites.  I know some people knock DT but is there anything to really be concerned about or is it just unsubstantiated allegations?
@ sharpshot
My English is not very good so may be I misunderstood "unsubstantiated allegations". Does it mean untrue? Which point in my post is not true in your opinion?
I did not mean your list was untrue.  Some of these problems also happen with other sites and I don't see them as a big enough reason to leave DT.  I was more interested in Richards other reasons for leaving.

« Reply #83 on: March 24, 2009, 04:39 »
0
I know some people knock DT but is there anything to really be concerned about or is it just unsubstantiated allegations?

His observations are not that unsubstantiated. The forum is not interesting any more. At CET night time interesting posts and threads show up, and the moment they start working at DT (10am CET), posts disappear mysteriously and threads get locked. I noticed this several times this month. That's fine with me but from now on I'm just going to treat the DT forum like the IS forum. Discard. No reason to leave of course. DT is very good (but slowly shrinking) business, so why leave?
« Last Edit: March 24, 2009, 04:42 by FlemishDreams »

RT


« Reply #84 on: March 24, 2009, 05:20 »
0


Steve send me a PM if you really want to know more.


« Last Edit: May 05, 2009, 03:13 by RT »

Xalanx

« Reply #85 on: March 24, 2009, 12:38 »
0
DT has fallen for me from number 2 to number 4. And that only because 123RF is number 5 and lately it seems to be catching up.
I don't know what's happening at Dreamstime, but my photos are doing much better at FT and StockXpert for some good time now, not to mention the almighty SS. Yesterday I had 0 (zero!) sales on DT. And today - nothing until this hour. It's really weird. On all sites I have almost the same number of photos (2000+), except FT where I have 1600.

Xalanx

« Reply #86 on: March 24, 2009, 15:43 »
0
And because perhaps there's chaos theory in action, I just sold one U-EL and a maximum resolution photo on DT, to compensate for yesterday :P


 

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