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Author Topic: FOTOLIA - NOW PAYING LESS THAN 16% !!!!!!  (Read 36748 times)

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« on: February 03, 2010, 07:43 »
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It would appear that the most expensive currency in which to buy images from Fotolia is in Euros. The smallest credit package there is for 21 credits at 24 which works out at 1.143 per credit. Converted into $US each credit costs about $1.60 at today's exchange rate.

If a European customer, using the above package, downloads an image from a base level (White) contributor who is paid in $US then that contributor will earn just 25c per credit expended. Instead of earning 25% of the sale that contributor will actually receive just 15.7% of the sale price. Shocking.

It doesn't get much better as you go up the rankings either. If you aspire to get to Yuri's level of Rubis you'll be expecting to earn 43% commission __ wrong. If you are paid in $US then, under the circumstances above, you'll be earning less than 27%.


« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2010, 08:22 »
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It does look bad, particularity as they claim to pay "among the highest commissions offered in the industry".  Perhaps they need to replace "highest" with "lowest".  I hope they make some changes quickly to get out of this mess.

« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2010, 08:37 »
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It would appear that the most expensive currency in which to buy images from Fotolia is in Euros. The smallest credit package there is for 21 credits at 24 which works out at 1.143 per credit. Converted into $US each credit costs about $1.60 at today's exchange rate.

If a European customer, using the above package, downloads an image from a base level (White) contributor who is paid in $US then that contributor will earn just 25c per credit expended. Instead of earning 25% of the sale that contributor will actually receive just 15.7% of the sale price. Shocking.

It doesn't get much better as you go up the rankings either. If you aspire to get to Yuri's level of Rubis you'll be expecting to earn 43% commission __ wrong. If you are paid in $US then, under the circumstances above, you'll be earning less than 27%.

You really need to get this translated into German - that's the market with most of FT's buyers and a fair chunk of sellers.

« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2010, 08:53 »
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How much you get paid at Fotolia depends enormously on where you live too.

At the risk of raising the blood pressure of our US friends yet further let's look at what a Fotolia 'credit' is worth in the currency that you earn it at today's exchange rate;

US Contributor:     1 credit = 1 $US = $1.00

UK Contributor:     1 credit = 0.75 = $1.20

Euro Contributor:  1 credit = 1.00 = $1.39

If the info from our Euro colleagues is accurate, that a credit earned is indeed worth 1 Euro, then they are being paid 39% more for their sales than their US counterparts and 16% more than those from the UK.

Why is this? I can understand that there are often good business reasons to price goods or services differently in different countries (the costs of doing business, what the market can bear, etc) however that shouldn't extend to where the supplier lives. The contributor should also benefit from higher prices surely?

We're not talking amount marginal differences here either __ the differential between US and Euro contributors is HUGE.

« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2010, 09:18 »
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Now they are trying to cover this up by changing the text in the credits/policy section from "1 Credit = $1.20" to "credits from 0.75c".

Do they think we're stupid?

« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2010, 09:21 »
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gostwyck,

It is unfair, butthat's how they have been working for years.  On FT's side, you can also imagine that they less money when an image from a EUR contributor is purchased by an USA buyer.  For them, in the total balance, it is probably the same as if earnings were paid according to the buyer's country.  Maybe a bit better because, we suppose they sell more in Europe than in the USA, so in this case thier "effective" cut would be more than we calculate (100 % minus our share).

Anyway, the difference is in fact on the contributor's side, with European-site-member ones getting effectively more than USA-site-members.

This has been discussed before (the currency equivalence was the issue then) and I remember someone even suggesting that UK members should receive more because life costs are higher there - what is obsviously a ridiculous argument.

I agree that the fair thing would be our % being paid according to the buyer's cost, but this is not how FT designed their international sites and it is not what we signed up for.  Unfortunately, we agreed to receive a % of credits, not $.

« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2010, 09:36 »
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How much you get paid at Fotolia depends enormously on where you live too.

At the risk of raising the blood pressure of our US friends yet further let's look at what a Fotolia 'credit' is worth in the currency that you earn it at today's exchange rate;

US Contributor:     1 credit = 1 $US = $1.00

UK Contributor:     1 credit = 0.75 = $1.20

Euro Contributor:  1 credit = 1.00 = $1.39

If the info from our Euro colleagues is accurate, that a credit earned is indeed worth 1 Euro, then they are being paid 39% more for their sales than their US counterparts and 16% more than those from the UK.

Why is this? I can understand that there are often good business reasons to price goods or services differently in different countries (the costs of doing business, what the market can bear, etc) however that shouldn't extend to where the supplier lives. The contributor should also benefit from higher prices surely?

We're not talking amount marginal differences here either __ the differential between US and Euro contributors is HUGE.
I don't mind that so much because it is down to the fluctuations in the currencies.  They change the rates every now and then, it would be better if they did it every month but that is up to them.

« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2010, 09:43 »
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Unfortunately, we agreed to receive a % of credits, not $.

No we didn't. Did you understand that they could raise prices to customers by 33% and you wouldn't benefit at all? It has never explicitly stated that the % commission was based only on credits and it doesn't say that now. I very much doubt that any court would accept such an interpretation of it and I really don't understand why you are so keen to do so against your own interests.

Anyway, if this is how they want to play it then I will be 'unsigning' myself from their agreement very shortly. I'm just hoping that common sense and justice will eventually prevail and that Fotolia will be honest and fair to their contributors, wherever they live and in whatever currency they are paid.

Don't underestimate your own worth as a contributor to them. At very best they help themselves to 2/3 of the sale price of most of our images, probably significantly more. In my case, as with many others that have spoken out on this issue, that tots up to tens of thousands of $'s per year. Fotolia are on the verge of losing a staggering amount of money if several of us choose exclusivity with Istock in preference to being d*cked around by them.

« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2010, 10:05 »
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Unfortunately, we agreed to receive a % of credits, not $.

No we didn't. Did you understand that they could raise prices to customers by 33% and you wouldn't benefit at all? It has never explicitly stated that the % commission was based only on credits and it doesn't say that now. I very much doubt that any court would accept such an interpretation of it and I really don't understand why you are so keen to do so against your own interests.

I agree. In civilized country no court would agree to interpreting their terms in a way that would allow them to say 'hey we will pay you 30% of the purchase in credits and this credit will be worth X to you and Y to buyers'.

And yes, they were doing this in a way for years through their currency policy. I'm not sure but I guess they always had different prices for their credit packages. Anyway, the thing they did recently just clearly shows that they have decided they can abuse us through this practice as they wish. They cannot.

If they were doing this in some way for years and we were accepting it and they are just making it more blatant now, does not mean we should continue to accept it.

« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2010, 10:10 »
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Unfortunately, we agreed to receive a % of credits, not $.

Fotolia are on the verge of losing a staggering amount of money if several of us choose exclusivity with Istock in preference to being d*cked around by them.

Unfortunately, that depends on their customers following you to iStock to buy your goods, rather than just buying something similar from someone else at Fotolia.

Fotolia is relying on the customers' inertia.

donding

  • Think before you speak
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2010, 10:13 »
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Them posting the rates on the contributors home page really set this off...do you think any of us would have been aware of this if they hadn't screwed up? The person that made the mistake and posted that credit amount was proubably fired the same day!!

I'm sure all the stock sites are watching this very closely because if alot of their contributors pull to go exclusive with iStock...that means they will also lose those portfolos. If they were smart they would be offering some sort of incentive package for those contributors to stay or move to their sites pretty quick.

« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2010, 10:26 »
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I'm sure all the stock sites are watching this very closely ....

At Istock HQ they must be wiping tears of mirth from their eyes, running around giving each other high-fives and ordering the bubbly.

If your ambition is too build the biggest microstock agency, as surely Foltolia's is, then gifting lots of your best-selling contributors to your much bigger and richer competitor ... is probably not the best plan.

« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2010, 10:31 »
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I am wondering, how much did Getty pay FT for this and previous moves :) ?

« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2010, 10:32 »
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I'm sure all the stock sites are watching this very closely ....

At Istock HQ they must be wiping tears of mirth from their eyes, running around giving each other high-fives and ordering the bubbly.

If your ambition is too build the biggest microstock agency, as surely Foltolia's is, then gifting lots of your best-selling contributors to your much bigger and richer competitor ... is probably not the best plan.


Yes, I was still strongly sceptical about iS exclusivity until yesterday. But if I dump Fotolia then I really have to wave a regretful goodbye to DT and SS too, and I have nothing against either of them.

donding

  • Think before you speak
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2010, 10:52 »
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personally I'm not going to go exclusive with iStock because, like someone said before in this forum, I don't want all my eggs in one basket. I am going to pull my port out of Fotolia though....they are my lowest earner, so they proubably wouldn't even notice...but if there are enough of contributors rather big or small that do this, it would have a impact. There is proubably many of their contributors that aren't even aware of what is going on because they don't read the forums or pay attention to what their credits are worth.

« Reply #15 on: February 03, 2010, 11:00 »
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personally I'm not going to go exclusive with iStock because, like someone said before in this forum, I don't want all my eggs in one basket. I am going to pull my port out of Fotolia though....they are my lowest earner, so they proubably wouldn't even notice...but if there are enough of contributors rather big or small that do this, it would have a impact. There is proubably many of their contributors that aren't even aware of what is going on because they don't read the forums or pay attention to what their credits are worth.

I hope you will tell them why you are withdrawing. It is probably the only message they will understand.

lisafx

« Reply #16 on: February 03, 2010, 11:01 »
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Yes, I was still strongly sceptical about iS exclusivity until yesterday. But if I dump Fotolia then I really have to wave a regretful goodbye to DT and SS too, and I have nothing against either of them.


Yes, this sums up the dilemma.  I need all the major sites in order to financially justify staying independent.

To be honest, I am surprised that SS hasn't come up with some incentive for contributors.  Dreamstime did.  

Maybe SS is just being hit hard from all sides with everyone and their brother starting subscription sites.  Probably they aren't in a position to offer anything.  Although another top tier would probably be enough to keep some of their best sellers happy.  

Oh well, decisions have to be made with the information in hand, not with wishful thinking...

« Reply #17 on: February 03, 2010, 11:42 »
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If we all left FT, the buyers would probably spread out around the other sites and our earnings would go up.  I don't see it as a reason to have to go exclusive with istock.  Getty have annoyed me more than FT, closing StockXpert and lowering subs to the insulting $0.25 doesn't make me feel like they are interested in us.  Why leave FT to go to there?

« Reply #18 on: February 03, 2010, 12:09 »
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If more people are with me here,
I'm actually ready to pull my portfolio from that horrible site. I've had enough.

They would lose approx. 400-500 EUR a month. Not much, but in case enough of us leave, surely it will make an impact.

I'm posting anonymously right now because I can't speak my mind when it comes to Fotolia and their fascist policies.
If I'm going to close my account, it's gotta be my decision, not theirs.

« Reply #19 on: February 03, 2010, 12:25 »
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Has anyone noticed what has been missing from this thread (and the others) being highly critical of Fotolia?

Matt Hayward. Normally comes here attempting to do the management's job for them. Maybe he can't bring himself to do it this time.

« Reply #20 on: February 03, 2010, 12:47 »
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Yes, actually I did notice. But to be fair, he does come here often to face the music, and you never know, he might not be able to be here for some reason or other.

WarrenPrice

« Reply #21 on: February 03, 2010, 12:51 »
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Has anyone noticed what has been missing from this thread (and the others) being highly critical of Fotolia?

Matt Hayward. Normally comes here attempting to do the management's job for them. Maybe he can't bring himself to do it this time.

Matt also has been among the missing on the Fotolia threads? ???


« Reply #22 on: February 03, 2010, 12:53 »
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I'm posting anonymously right now because I can't speak my mind when it comes to Fotolia and their fascist policies.
If I'm going to close my account, it's gotta be my decision, not theirs.

That is the only reason I have always been anonymous here which I actually would rather not be.

donding

  • Think before you speak
« Reply #23 on: February 03, 2010, 12:59 »
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Has anyone checked the other site forums to see if there is any chatter about all this there to???

« Reply #24 on: February 03, 2010, 13:03 »
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Anyone expecting fair and honest business practices in thier dealings with Fotolia has not been paying attention the past four years. They have a long history of self serving business practices that have shown little to no regard to the wlefare of their greatest asset (the contributor) and have always paid full service to their greatest concern (their greed)

Fotolia has always been known to bait and switch at the contributors expense.


 

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