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Author Topic: DT in trouble?  (Read 24832 times)

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RacePhoto

« Reply #25 on: January 04, 2010, 02:42 »
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What happens at DT (even Stockxpert seems do better)? Third (consequential) month Dreamstime has \\\"red arrow\\\" in poll results.
My numbers are bad, RPI dropped below 1$ for last 3 months (never happend before), 50% dls less.
How about your results?

It's a poll and it measures opinion, instead of impartial sales data.


lagereek

« Reply #26 on: January 04, 2010, 07:29 »
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As it happens I think they are in trouble, images I have with them are selling close to 100 times per day at other places but at DT, nothing.
Im also considering to start removing files.

best.  Christian

« Reply #27 on: January 04, 2010, 07:57 »
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The people that made StockXpert are currently working on a new site.

I'm surprised at this, I would have thought that after selling the company, they would have had to sign a no-compete clause for a period of time. If it's true, I will be happy though. StockXpert always did ok for me.

As far as DT goes, they also have been an ok site for me. Steady sales growth, nice site, now that they've added ftp uploads it's much easier to upload, etc.

For people who have stopped uploading to DT because they are exploring exclusivity, it makes sense that your sales would drop. We should all know by now that you must keep uploading new material to keep your name out there and to keep generating new sales. It's just how microstock works.

The only beef I have with DT is the 6 month commitment period. I was willing to do it 4 years ago, but since that time I now see how volatile these companies are. Change is a constant and I don't think making that kind of commitment for commissions that keep getting lower and lower is a good idea for us contributors.


« Reply #28 on: January 04, 2010, 08:09 »
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The only beef I have with DT is the 6 month commitment period. I was willing to do it 4 years ago, but since that time I now see how volatile these companies are. Change is a constant and I don't think making that kind of commitment for commissions that keep getting lower and lower is a good idea for us contributors.

Six months isn't much of a commitment in the greater scheme of things. After all the agency does have to invest significant sums in the review process, etc and it is only natural for them to insist on a few months to recover those costs. As Jonathan has pointed out tie-ins of 5 years or more are common within the macro agencies.

The onerous bit is actually IS's insistence on artist exclusivity rather than just the images themselves. If it weren't for that then DT's commitment would have very little effect.

« Reply #29 on: January 04, 2010, 08:31 »
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As Jonathan has pointed out tie-ins of 5 years or more are common within the macro agencies.

These aren't macro photos that we are getting macro commissions for. I am in total agreement with a commitment for 5 years on an image that you make $100 or more a pop on. I would be in total agreement if our commissions were steadily rising, but they are not.

For images that we get paid pennies for, I think it a little much. Especially when some micros don't have any time commitment. The micro companies are all over the board on this.

« Reply #30 on: January 04, 2010, 10:20 »
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The people that made StockXpert are currently working on a new site.
I'm surprised at this, I would have thought that after selling the company, they would have had to sign a no-compete clause for a period of time. If it's true, I will be happy though. StockXpert always did ok for me.
(Off-topic)
As far as I understood, it's the developers and perhaps some reviewers. They were just employees near the end (as I suspect) and Getty fired them. A non-compete clause can't be forced when you are fired. That's why in some corporations, part of the staff (e.g. sales) is obsolete but kept anyways to keep them from competing, or more clearly said, to keep their mouth shut. Probably Getty has a clause like that when they hire, but the old StockXpert techies weren't hired by Getty.

This is all speculation. Wait and see.

« Reply #31 on: January 04, 2010, 10:24 »
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Good explanation. Fingers crossed that they get something going.

lagereek

« Reply #32 on: January 04, 2010, 10:34 »
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StockXpert,  sad story actually, used to be brillant and now?  a gonner.
Future scenario is as follows:  Getty/IS,  will either buy-out or force-out any competition. Others dont stand a chance.
Now is the time to really consider IS exclusivity, including myself.
After 25 years in this stock business and a member of the Getty-RM, I can easily see where all this is going and believe me, its not going in favour of anybody, except the Getty umbrella.
Good rythms! I will say. Theyve worked hard for it, clever marketing and its paying off.

« Reply #33 on: January 04, 2010, 10:40 »
0

Six months isn't much of a commitment in the greater scheme of things. After all the agency does have to invest significant sums in the review process, etc and it is only natural for them to insist on a few months to recover those costs. As Jonathan has pointed out tie-ins of 5 years or more are common within the macro agencies.

But the lock in doesn't actually address the issue of costs - for a hypothetical portfolio that just doesn't sell, they might never get their costs covered. It's about leverage and when a contributor can't walk whenever they want to, it gives the agency a bit more power and the contributor a bit less. Even if IS weren't part of the picture, when DT can change any and all of its terms with no notice, but you can't pull your portfolio for 6 months even if you don't like the new terms, that seems highly unbalanced.

With all the agencies except DT and BigStock, if you don't like their new commission structure or license terms or whatever, you can pull your portfolio and be on your way (in general we don't, but we could). If DT or BigStock had some sort of reciprocity in delays before new terms went into effect so contributors who didn't like them wouldn't have to be bound by them, then it would seem more equitable.

When you consider how little work the agencies actually do in microstock - compared to traditional agencies which did all the keywording and other preparations for sale - I think comparing micro and macro isn't apples to apples in terms of who does what upfront anyway. The sites do have huge up front costs to get the site up and running and market themselves, but not getting the content ready for sale.

« Reply #34 on: January 04, 2010, 10:46 »
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It would be a shame if DT were in fact in trouble but let's not forget their sub program which played a big role in my decision to back to being Exclusive with IS.

« Reply #35 on: January 04, 2010, 10:47 »
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StockXpert,  sad story actually, used to be brillant and now?  a gonner.
Future scenario is as follows:  Getty/IS,  will either buy-out or force-out any competition. Others dont stand a chance.
Now is the time to really consider IS exclusivity, including myself. >...

Off-Topic, but I would say now is the time to value your assets more and consider which images you put with which agencies, go IS exclusive if it floats your boat, exclusive does not mean that everything goes to IS, be selective if you have images that are not really suited to generic microstock then don't put these with IS or other micro's to get your image count up, but put these as RM with a Macrostock site.

David  ;)

« Reply #36 on: January 04, 2010, 10:55 »
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JoAnne - It's a fair point about the reciprocity but then again we have all either accepted those conditions when we joined DT or have had ample time to leave since the 6-month lock-in was imposed. Don't forget the lock-in was only brought in as a counter measure to Istock's exclusivity deal.

The 'getting the content ready for sale' costs are indeed significant. Take SS for example who we know have peaked at accepting over 100K images per week. To do so they might have inspected 140K images or about 20K per day. Even if the inspection/bandwidth/storage of each image was just 10c then it still works out at $60K per month. I'd imagine that DT has to cope with a fairly similar number of images.

« Reply #37 on: January 04, 2010, 11:00 »
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JoAnne - It's a fair point about the reciprocity but then again we have all either accepted those conditions when we joined DT or have had ample time to leave since the 6-month lock-in was imposed. Don't forget the lock-in was only brought in as a counter measure to Istock's exclusivity deal.

The 'getting the content ready for sale' costs are indeed significant. Take SS for example who we know have peaked at accepting over 100K images per week. To do so they might have inspected 140K images or about 20K per day. Even if the inspection/bandwidth/storage of each image was just 10c then it still works out at $60K per month. I'd imagine that DT has to cope with a fairly similar number of images.

True, some countries have walls to keep people in while others have walls to keep people out.  Where do you want to live?  Metaphorically speaking of course.

« Reply #38 on: January 04, 2010, 11:36 »
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My decision about exclusivity was made a while ago now, but in addition to all the positives in IS\\\'s column while weighing pros and cons, there was a pile of negatives from truly awful and and contributor-hostile behavior at various sites. FT\\\'s behavior since that time hasn\\\'t gotten any better :). As soon as one agency\\\'s antics were addressed, another turned around followed suit. Certainly FT\\\'s success combined with ongoing pullback of contributor royalties and benefits sets an environment that gives shelter to other agencies to follow along.

I don\\\'t see iStock contributors as serfs, and if you wanted some evidence for that I\\\'d suggest the fact that we got some changes in the proposed royalty shifts (cannister changes) by voicing our views loudly. If we were serfs they\\\'d just have thrown more slop buckets on us and let us be unhappy :)

I realize that many folks just won\\\'t work with only one agency on principle, which I understand, but contiuing to support an agency that doesn\\\'t treat you right only encourages the agency to treat you badly yet again.
Jsnover, you are my hero. Like always I agree with everything you say.

lagereek

« Reply #39 on: January 04, 2010, 12:39 »
0
StockXpert,  sad story actually, used to be brillant and now?  a gonner.
Future scenario is as follows:  Getty/IS,  will either buy-out or force-out any competition. Others dont stand a chance.
Now is the time to really consider IS exclusivity, including myself. >...

Off-Topic, but I would say now is the time to value your assets more and consider which images you put with which agencies, go IS exclusive if it floats your boat, exclusive does not mean that everything goes to IS, be selective if you have images that are not really suited to generic microstock then don't put these with IS or other micro's to get your image count up, but put these as RM with a Macrostock site.

David  ;)


Well at IS,  Ive managed to become a Diamond member, non-exclusive and I would say 99% of all my stuff with them is non-generic. Generic stuff will tend to just disappear.
To put images up for RM, is today a hell of a gamble, Gettys RM is not at all what it used to be and Alamys is a joke.
The entire RM business is very, very unstable.
Ive been with the Getty-RM since 93 and boy! have I seen it plunge down or what.

best.

« Reply #40 on: January 04, 2010, 13:24 »
0
Well at IS,  Ive managed to become a Diamond member, non-exclusive and I would say 99% of all my stuff with them is non-generic. Generic stuff will tend to just disappear.
To put images up for RM, is today a hell of a gamble, Gettys RM is not at all what it used to be and Alamys is a joke.
The entire RM business is very, very unstable.
Ive been with the Getty-RM since 93 and boy! have I seen it plunge down or what.

best.
Hi lagereek,
I was coming more from an exclusive point, if a contributor goes IS exclusive then they are limited to RF at IS, if I am right they cannot put images as RF anywhere else, if you have any image that might not suit microstock or you think they may only get an odd download then taking a chance with RM might be better for them images, by being selective in where you place your images instead of uploading them to IS just to make up the numbers for the next canister.

When I say generic I was not thinking just about handshakes more on suitable microstock content, my thinking had come from a post I read yesterday where a photographer had seen one of thier images in a travel mag which was downloaded at $0.30, as it is a niche image it may only get a couple of downloads, where had they thought about the potential and limited market it may have been better uploading it as RM, at least if they had a sale it may be worth it.

David   ;) (Off-Topic Sorry)

« Reply #41 on: January 04, 2010, 13:45 »
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Six months isn't much of a commitment in the greater scheme of things. After all the agency does have to invest significant sums in the review process, etc and it is only natural for them to insist on a few months to recover those costs. As Jonathan has pointed out tie-ins of 5 years or more are common within the macro agencies.

But the lock in doesn't actually address the issue of costs - for a hypothetical portfolio that just doesn't sell, they might never get their costs covered. It's about leverage and when a contributor can't walk whenever they want to, it gives the agency a bit more power and the contributor a bit less. Even if IS weren't part of the picture, when DT can change any and all of its terms with no notice, but you can't pull your portfolio for 6 months even if you don't like the new terms, that seems highly unbalanced.

With all the agencies except DT and BigStock, if you don't like their new commission structure or license terms or whatever, you can pull your portfolio and be on your way (in general we don't, but we could). If DT or BigStock had some sort of reciprocity in delays before new terms went into effect so contributors who didn't like them wouldn't have to be bound by them, then it would seem more equitable.

When you consider how little work the agencies actually do in microstock - compared to traditional agencies which did all the keywording and other preparations for sale - I think comparing micro and macro isn't apples to apples in terms of who does what upfront anyway. The sites do have huge up front costs to get the site up and running and market themselves, but not getting the content ready for sale.

another interesting insight. as always jsnover , you open your mouth and pearls fall out  8)
i always pay full attention to what you write.

i think it should be that we, the copyright holder of our work, should have full say as what we want to do with our chattel, when we want to do. failing this, it smells of ransom or a bad case of divorce due to irreconciliable differences  ;D

prior to all these most recent upheaval and recurring curveballs by the Big 6, i never thought the 90 days of BigStock nor the 6 months of DT to be anything but.
But now, it seems to be the proverbial last straw.

at volatile times like these, one would think the agencies would try their best to work with the people who actually keep them afloat. no, not the buyers as we all seem to be brainwashed to think.
.. but the dudes who supply the crop.
you can have a frigging marketplace without farmers? ya!!!!
can anyone tell me if this is true?
the marketplace thrives, only because farmers are too afraid to lose their place in the marketplace.

same thing is happening in the real world with fishery industry, and agriculture.
we are hopeless because we let the blokes who when we were little elephant tied us up with a chain (metaphor derived from S.E. Asian fable).
now that we are a gigantic elephant, the same blokes tie us up with a rope, and we still think we are helpless to break this bound, even though it is now a frigging rope.




nruboc

« Reply #42 on: January 04, 2010, 13:55 »
0
The people that made StockXpert are currently working on a new site.
I'm surprised at this, I would have thought that after selling the company, they would have had to sign a no-compete clause for a period of time. If it's true, I will be happy though. StockXpert always did ok for me.
(Off-topic)
As far as I understood, it's the developers and perhaps some reviewers. They were just employees near the end (as I suspect) and Getty fired them. A non-compete clause can't be forced when you are fired. That's why in some corporations, part of the staff (e.g. sales) is obsolete but kept anyways to keep them from competing, or more clearly said, to keep their mouth shut. Probably Getty has a clause like that when they hire, but the old StockXpert techies weren't hired by Getty.

This is all speculation. Wait and see.



Hopefully they downloaded the customer email list. Oh never mind, I'm SURE they did :)

lagereek

« Reply #43 on: January 04, 2010, 14:13 »
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David!  hi!

yes in one sense youre right ofcourse. It would be great if one could think in the terms of supplying good saleable shots as RM. Trouble is once they are in RM files, well, thats that, the file is pretty much "locked" for a number of years.
Today, I can only see a very specific client type going to RM and prepared to pay the money, the typical AD-agency AD, the corporate Designer and perhaps a company that actually needs exclusivity. Not enough by a long shot!
We might as well face facts, the Traditional Stock-agency is on its way out, for better or worse, personally, although I myself am an RM member, I would say its for the better. Im fed up with the RM policies of world-rights and all, charging more for that then the actual picture, etc, etc.

best. Christian

« Reply #44 on: January 04, 2010, 14:19 »
0
Six months isn't much of a commitment in the greater scheme of things. After all the agency does have to invest significant sums in the review process, etc and it is only natural for them to insist on a few months to recover those costs.

No comments!  :-\




Xalanx

« Reply #45 on: January 04, 2010, 14:59 »
0
Six months isn't much of a commitment in the greater scheme of things. After all the agency does have to invest significant sums in the review process, etc and it is only natural for them to insist on a few months to recover those costs.

No comments!  :-\





I think they recover pretty much the costs by getting a huge comission from our sales (and of course by cutting down OUR comission). Sounds like a plan - "let's not forget to recover the reviewers' salaries from the sales of the arrested files of contributors who want to leave!"

« Reply #46 on: January 04, 2010, 15:22 »
0
The people that made StockXpert are currently working on a new site.
I'm surprised at this, I would have thought that after selling the company, they would have had to sign a no-compete clause for a period of time. If it's true, I will be happy though. StockXpert always did ok for me.
(Off-topic)
As far as I understood, it's the developers and perhaps some reviewers. They were just employees near the end (as I suspect) and Getty fired them. A non-compete clause can't be forced when you are fired. That's why in some corporations, part of the staff (e.g. sales) is obsolete but kept anyways to keep them from competing, or more clearly said, to keep their mouth shut. Probably Getty has a clause like that when they hire, but the old StockXpert techies weren't hired by Getty.

This is all speculation. Wait and see.



Hopefully they downloaded the customer email list. Oh never mind, I'm SURE they did :)

regardless of the semantics, what cannot be denied is the StockXpert was one heck of a performer before they were hijacked.
for that , and that alone, i for one look for a new StockXpert ... and hopefully with all the brains that made StockXpert the great site to belong to.

traveler1116

« Reply #47 on: January 05, 2010, 05:56 »
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Hi Rene,
I seem to remember reading many of your posts regarding DT before. You didn't really like them.
What's the sudden change? Are you worried about them now?
DT is the only one agency that increased prices this year and didn't lower our commissions at the same time.
That's something to keep in mind.
I like them.
And by my standards, they're doing just fine.
Didn't lower commissions?  They lowered our percentage from 50 to 30% for level one sales didn't they?

« Reply #48 on: January 05, 2010, 06:47 »
0
DT is slowing down a little for me too. Not too much though. But the downwards trend for the past three months is worrying, especially considering that it was during autumn.

Yuri_Arcurs

  • One Crazy PhotoManic MadPerson
« Reply #49 on: January 05, 2010, 07:46 »
0
I have had some bad experiences with DT lately. Beside being the only agency in the world that does not allow you to submit images on the Getty generic release, which results in massive extra paperwork, they also seem to be rejecting images based on similarity so much these days that it is almost not worth uploading to them. Having uploaded more than 6000 images over the last 6 months, my income is slightly dropping with them which is not a good sign either.
I addressed these issues with DT SEO and actually got a slightly unpleasant email back. I was very surprised by this.
We must remember that DT has an otherwise generous photographer commission and should be respected for that. Some tolerance seems in place because of this.


 

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