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Author Topic: Increase in Credit Value at Fotolia?  (Read 57368 times)

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« Reply #150 on: February 06, 2010, 16:22 »
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It seems like they're determined to break, once and for all, any direct link between what a buyer pays for an image, and what the photographer gets. They want to run all sorts of pricing and subscription games with buyers,  while payments to contributors stay the same.  

You get what you get, and don't bother trying to figure out whether it's correct, because they're won't be any "correct".  

So why don't they just make it explicit, and say - here is what we pay for a photo when it sells, you don't know what we got from the buyer, and you don't need to know.  It's not a "commission" system any more, you're just a supplier producing a product, and here's what we'll pay for it, per unit sold.



« Last Edit: February 06, 2010, 19:48 by stockastic »


« Reply #151 on: February 06, 2010, 16:54 »
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I'm sorry you find red annoying, I won't do it again. Can you tell me what the permissible degree of stirring up discussions is for a newbie? Or should I just not say anything because you might not like it?

No need to be sarcastic, I'm sure you know exactly what I mean.  I don't mind the anonymity much, but I surely don't like it either.  It's the attitude however that matters, and I do expect that a person that is new to a group has a more low-profile attitude.

« Reply #152 on: February 06, 2010, 16:57 »
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I wrote to FT on Feb 3rd, and got a very standard reply back:

Quote
Thank you for your recent inquiry regarding Fotolia's introduction to credit bundle purchases. As we move forward with our 2010 marketing plans, we continue to implement strategies to benefit the entire community. Providing consumer incentives for larger, bulk purchases directly benefits Fotolia contributors.

Commissions are earned on every $1 of image sales. With strong incentives for buyers to purchase large quantities of credits, revenues are anticipated to remain above industry average. For example, contributors still earn 1 credit to the dollar for bulk consumer purchases that put credits at $0.75.

Please take the opportunity to share your experiences over the next few months with us. Should you need anything further, please feel free to contact us directly.

« Reply #153 on: February 06, 2010, 19:30 »
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I don't mind the anonymity much, but I surely don't like it either.  It's the attitude however that matters, and I do expect that a person that is new to a group has a more low-profile attitude.

BT is well known to many of us here and certainly has both the time within the industry and the sales record to qualify any opinion he might have. He's perfectly entitled to consider himself in the company of friends here even if you do not personally know him.

I think that 'the attitude' you seem so concerned with is not directed at you or this group but is actually a natural and indignant reaction to Fotolia's actions of increasing prices to customers without passing on a proportionate amount to the contributors.

Surely every worthwhile and long-standing business relationship is ultimately based on trust. If Fotolia won't tell us how much our images sell for how can we believe them when they claim to be paying us a certain percentage? Especially when we can see for ourselves that the % in some cases, if not most, is evidently much less.

« Reply #154 on: February 07, 2010, 06:44 »
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I wrote to FT on Feb 3rd, and got a very standard reply back:

Quote
...

Commissions are earned on every $1 of image sales. ...

In other words, Fotolia no longer has any interest in percentages ... we will just get some sort of random commission that they decide.


contributors still earn 1 credit to the dollar for bulk consumer purchases that put credits at $0.75
Quote
...

this is either worded extremely incompetently or extremely cleverly. It either means that we will get 0.75 credits per credit on bulk sales at 75c, in which case it is an additional cut in our commissions, or it means that credits that cost 0.75 will still be listed as worth one credit to us.

For the moment I will assume that the wording is incompetent and they don't plan to charge us for discounts that reduce the price below $1....in which case this is just another example of how Fotolia are unable to communicate in plain English even when they are trying to.

If they are saying that we still get from 25c to 46c per credit depending on our colour level even if they are getting only 75c, which I assume is what they are trying to say, then it is just the usual corporate double-speak. If they are trying to make out that we are the winners out of all this, why won't they pay us the real percentage of the sale price?

It's perfectly obvious that they will pocket a higher percentage of the money our images earn than before and that this special case of the 75c discounted sale is just window-dressing designed to conceal the truth.

****

Concerning your remark to me -  this is a forum for discussing issues, not a primary school where we have to settle in and get peer approval before we should dare to put our hand up in class. The fact you had been posting here endlessly before I signed up doesn't give you the right to any special privileges m and it doesn't automatically make your statements more valid than mine or mean you know more about this business than I do, whatever you may think.

If you find me presumptuous for daring to arrive and speak plainly, I find it arrogant that you "do expect" that people new to the group adopt "a low profile attitude". In other words, you object to anybody expressing a strong opinion until you feel they have been posting long enough to qualify for membership of your clique. Who appointed you to impose your expectations on anybody else?











« Reply #155 on: February 07, 2010, 08:10 »
0
It seems like they're determined to break, once and for all, any direct link between what a buyer pays for an image, and what the photographer gets. They want to run all sorts of pricing and subscription games with buyers,  while payments to contributors stay the same.  

You get what you get, and don't bother trying to figure out whether it's correct, because they're won't be any "correct".  

So why don't they just make it explicit, and say - here is what we pay for a photo when it sells, you don't know what we got from the buyer, and you don't need to know.  It's not a "commission" system any more, you're just a supplier producing a product, and here's what we'll pay for it, per unit sold.

That's a scary thought.

donding

  • Think before you speak
« Reply #156 on: February 07, 2010, 08:24 »
0
It seems like they're determined to break, once and for all, any direct link between what a buyer pays for an image, and what the photographer gets. They want to run all sorts of pricing and subscription games with buyers,  while payments to contributors stay the same.  

You get what you get, and don't bother trying to figure out whether it's correct, because they're won't be any "correct".  

So why don't they just make it explicit, and say - here is what we pay for a photo when it sells, you don't know what we got from the buyer, and you don't need to know.  It's not a "commission" system any more, you're just a supplier producing a product, and here's what we'll pay for it, per unit sold.

That's a scary thought.
I agree..that reponse to madelaide from them was double talk, I read that over and over.

"For example, contributors still earn 1 credit to the dollar for bulk consumer purchases that put credits at $0.75."

How can $1.00 equal  1 credit which puts that credit at .75 cents. That doesn't even make sense.

« Reply #157 on: February 07, 2010, 08:37 »
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I agree..that reponse to madelaide from them was double talk, I read that over and over.

"For example, contributors still earn 1 credit to the dollar for bulk consumer purchases that put credits at $0.75."

How can $1.00 equal  1 credit which puts that credit at .75 cents. That doesn't even make sense.

With that quote I believe they were saying how generous they are.  When they sell credits for $0.75/credit, they still give us commissions as though the credits were sold at $1.00 - so we get our % of $1.00, not $0.75 - if that makes any more sense.  The same sort of difference as when they sell credits for $1.20 and we only get commissions on $1.00, except the other way around.

donding

  • Think before you speak
« Reply #158 on: February 07, 2010, 08:51 »
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I agree..that reponse to madelaide from them was double talk, I read that over and over.

"For example, contributors still earn 1 credit to the dollar for bulk consumer purchases that put credits at $0.75."

How can $1.00 equal  1 credit which puts that credit at .75 cents. That doesn't even make sense.

With that quote I believe they were saying how generous they are.  When they sell credits for $0.75/credit, they still give us commissions as though the credits were sold at $1.00 - so we get our % of $1.00, not $0.75 - if that makes any more sense.  The same sort of difference as when they sell credits for $1.20 and we only get commissions on $1.00, except the other way around.
Thanks for explaining that. So they are still going to pay a percentage of $1.00 rather they sell it for .75 cents or 1.20, except they won't be sellin the .75 cent one anymore and only the 1.20 ones. Am I understanding that right?

« Reply #159 on: February 07, 2010, 09:34 »
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I agree..that reponse to madelaide from them was double talk, I read that over and over.

"For example, contributors still earn 1 credit to the dollar for bulk consumer purchases that put credits at $0.75."

How can $1.00 equal  1 credit which puts that credit at .75 cents. That doesn't even make sense.

With that quote I believe they were saying how generous they are.  When they sell credits for $0.75/credit, they still give us commissions as though the credits were sold at $1.00 - so we get our % of $1.00, not $0.75 - if that makes any more sense.  The same sort of difference as when they sell credits for $1.20 and we only get commissions on $1.00, except the other way around.
Thanks for explaining that. So they are still going to pay a percentage of $1.00 rather they sell it for .75 cents or 1.20, except they won't be sellin the .75 cent one anymore and only the 1.20 ones. Am I understanding that right?

No. As far as I know up to now the diff in the 'real credit price' and 'credit price for photographers' was dependent only on one thing - the 'platform' (EU vs. UK vs. US) where you happened to register yourself. As a result customer might purchase 1 credit for 1 Euro and your commission could be computed as % from $1 per 1 Credit.

Now, on top of that long existing boobery, they introduced floating credit price. So on top of that currency uncertainty that remains the same, there is also floating prices of credits (based on how much of them you purchase).

The worst case is, I believe, 16% commission (white user, being on the US platform (in $), customer pays with credits from smallest package bought in Euro) as Gostwyck computed in another thread.

They will buy credit at Euro 1.143 which is approx. $1.6 and you will get your % as if the credit cost $1.

There are obviously cases when you actually get more than the % you are supposed to get based on the official commission structure.

However, and that's very important, essentially all the credit packages for which you would get more % and not less % than what your commission should be are packages that do not make any sense when compared to subscription packages FT offers. They are much more expensive and as far as I know do not offer any pros when compared to them. No one in their right mind would buy them.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2010, 09:36 by Danicek »

« Reply #160 on: February 07, 2010, 10:09 »
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You get what you get, and don't bother trying to figure out whether it's correct, because they're won't be any "correct".  

So why don't they just make it explicit, and say - here is what we pay for a photo when it sells, you don't know what we got from the buyer, and you don't need to know.  It's not a "commission" system any more,  ...

That's a scary thought.

It's not especially scary. Shutterstock has always paid a flat rate per download. The difference is that Shutterstock's doesn't have a deal with us to pay a certain percentage, it has a deal to pay a fixed lump.

Look at what Fotolia is doing by comparison. One photographer credit equals one dollar, absolutely fixed (unless you are on their Europe or UK site, when it is fixed at a different rate). One buyer credit now equals $1.20 (except UK and Europe, of course), this is also absolutely fixed but there are "free" bonus credits for big packages. But they now quote the fixed US buyer price recalculated to include the largest free bonus credit package when they talk about what we will get, so the buyer credit is revalued at 75c in this new calculation. But none of this fits in with the concept of a percentage commission in line with the contract.

In the end, the whole thing is about trustworthiness and transparency. We need our agencies to show that they believe in fair dealing.

« Reply #161 on: February 07, 2010, 12:16 »
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Ok now explain the Fotolia "partner sites" to me.  I saw one recently - Chinese, so I couldn't read a word on it.   But they have my images.  So are they using the same 'credit' system?  Is there any way I can find out how many of my Fotolia sales came through that site, or what was paid for them?  Were they sold on the basis with regard to publication rights and restrictions?   If someone bought my full size images through the Chinese partner, and began reselling them as his own, what recourse would I have, legally?  What if the Chinese 'partner' himself was corrupt? Would Fototlia have any responsibility?

RT


« Reply #162 on: February 07, 2010, 13:07 »
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If someone bought my full size images through the Chinese partner, and began reselling them as his own, what recourse would I have, legally?  What if the Chinese 'partner' himself was corrupt? Would Fototlia have any responsibility?

You'd have the same recourse as you would have if somebody bought your images from any site no matter where they were based, it's where the person that resold your images as they're own that is the part to worry about, and if that person is based in China, Russia or any other country that might have a bad reputation of abiding or enforcing international law the probability of successful recourse is pretty low I'd imagine.

I wish all microstock sites would follow Alamy's example and give you the opportunity to opt out of having your images distributed in countries that you choose, but what is becoming clearer and clearer each day is that microstock is slowly dissolving into an industry of 'make as much money as we can without a care for the contributors welfare'
« Last Edit: February 07, 2010, 13:14 by RT »

« Reply #163 on: February 07, 2010, 17:24 »
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That's a scary thought.
I agree..that reponse to madelaide from them was double talk, I read that over and over.

"For example, contributors still earn 1 credit to the dollar for bulk consumer purchases that put credits at $0.75."

How can $1.00 equal  1 credit which puts that credit at .75 cents. That doesn't even make sense.
[/quote]
 seems clear enough -- FT sells images at a price in credits, and pays royalties based on 1 credit = $1

it says that FT is doing the OPPOSITE of what the conspiracy thoerists here are claiming -- they sell credits at a discount to buyers, but contributors still get paid AS IF the buyer paid full price -- FT is absorbing the difference

steve

« Reply #164 on: February 07, 2010, 17:55 »
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Steve, that does appear to be what they are trying to say.

However, it is just like the lottery advertising that tries to persuade you to hand over your cash because "it could be you" who wins.

Have you seen Gostwyck's poll of which currencies people are registered under for payouts?

« Reply #165 on: February 07, 2010, 18:02 »
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Thanks for explaining that. So they are still going to pay a percentage of $1.00 rather they sell it for .75 cents or 1.20, except they won't be sellin the .75 cent one anymore and only the 1.20 ones. Am I understanding that right?

The problem is that they can say credits will be sold on an average below the current US$1.00 (in the USA site), and in fact we can only speculate this isn't true.

It's like when DT reduced commissions, saying the money invested in advertisement would mean more sales.  It didn't work for me.  My RPD and my monthly earnings are smaller. Ok, I am a very small fish and I haven't been uploading for over a year (in any micro), but my result was negative in DT changes.

« Reply #166 on: February 07, 2010, 18:03 »
0


That's a scary thought.
I agree..that reponse to madelaide from them was double talk, I read that over and over.

"For example, contributors still earn 1 credit to the dollar for bulk consumer purchases that put credits at $0.75."

How can $1.00 equal  1 credit which puts that credit at .75 cents. That doesn't even make sense.


Quote

 seems clear enough -- FT sells images at a price in credits, and pays royalties based on 1 credit = $1

it says that FT is doing the OPPOSITE of what the conspiracy thoerists here are claiming -- they sell credits at a discount to buyers, but contributors still get paid AS IF the buyer paid full price -- FT is absorbing the difference

steve


This is not based on a theory, this is based on fact. Simply go to  a FT France site and look at the 20 credit package bottom right of the screen. You will see that each credit averaged 1.14 euro each. However, in this particular case  I am paid 31% of $1.00 per credit and not 31% of 1.14 euro per credit if that buyer happens to buy my images. That is a big difference as 1.14 euro is equal to $1.61 and not a $1.00

http://fr.fotolia.com/Member/BuyCreditsChooseAmount

Denis
« Last Edit: February 07, 2010, 18:09 by cybernesco »

« Reply #167 on: February 07, 2010, 18:17 »
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No doubt some credits will be sold for less than a dollar. But that isn't our problem, is it? I am quite willing to take 31% of 75c if that is what the credit is sold for. But I also want the 31% of the $1.61 that other credits are being sold for.

When Fotolia says it is paying above the odds on 75c sales, it is trying to pretend that it is a virtue that it is hiding the true price that it is selling our images for.

There are something like 15 or 20 different price points ranging from 75c to $1.61, and the average sale price is hidden from us but I'd bet that it is significantly above $1.


« Reply #168 on: February 07, 2010, 18:18 »
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Although I agree the differences in currencies are unfair, it is a totally different problem than the current credit price changes.  To begin with, it's been there for ages.

I would love to see a parity, but on the buyer's side, it wouldn't be pleasant to find price changes every month (if they would adjust prices according to exchange rates monthly).  Then, of course, the right thing to do would be paying us according to the currency of the purchase.  

I'm curious, how other agencies with international sites work, such as IS and DT and even StockXpert before it's demise?

« Reply #169 on: February 07, 2010, 18:50 »
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Its this simple,

The value of one credit for a buyer is 1 ($1.20)

The value of one credit for a contributor is 0.75  ($1.00)

the fact that fotolia decide to give bonus credits to buyers who buy in bulk has sod all to do with what we should get They give them the bouns credits that bring the value of a buyers credit down !!!!

« Reply #170 on: February 07, 2010, 18:52 »
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Although I agree the differences in currencies are unfair, it is a totally different problem than the current credit price changes.  To begin with, it's been there for ages.


I don't think the problems are that different, it just that we recently took notice because of the price change. Even if the differences in currencies have been there for ages, it is still part of the problem as a whole. It is not just the differences in currencies, it is a fact that the buyer's credit has been on its own from the contributor's credit at first because of the differences in currencies and thereafter when FT took a step further by increasing the buyer's credit without increasing the contributor's one regardless of currencies. We should all share the same piece of pie regardless of currencies.  Exchange rates are there to facilitate our own currency if need be. Denis

« Last Edit: February 07, 2010, 19:34 by cybernesco »

donding

  • Think before you speak
« Reply #171 on: February 07, 2010, 22:56 »
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All I know is they have created a huge mess with their "mistake" by posting those credits on the contributors accounts and they are going to have a very hard time cleaning it up and they better get started before the garbage starts to rot and stink!!

« Reply #172 on: February 08, 2010, 02:55 »
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Although I agree the differences in currencies are unfair, it is a totally different problem than the current credit price changes.  To begin with, it's been there for ages.

I would love to see a parity, but on the buyer's side, it wouldn't be pleasant to find price changes every month (if they would adjust prices according to exchange rates monthly).  Then, of course, the right thing to do would be paying us according to the currency of the purchase.  

I'm curious, how other agencies with international sites work, such as IS and DT and even StockXpert before it's demise?

They don't need to change the buyer's side because of exchange rate fluctuations. What they do (and are already doing ) is charge more for non-native (in this case non-US) credits as a protection for themselves against exchage rate fluctuations. The base price/lowest price on which everything is calculated is in the currency the company itself uses. As long as the other prices exchange at a rate above that, then there is not a problem.

That doesn't stop them paying us a percentage of what the credit actually cost.

I'm pretty sure Istock pays the true percentage cost of the credit, there was a discussion about it when they wanted to charge much higher non-dollar prices for non-North American users two years back. It meant higher commissions for artists. I don't know how DT works it.

« Reply #173 on: February 08, 2010, 07:08 »
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did fotolia just change the credit prices again?  when I look at buying credits - the most expensive ones are now $1.09 instead of $1.20

« Reply #174 on: February 08, 2010, 07:13 »
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did fotolia just change the credit prices again?  when I look at buying credits - the most expensive ones are now $1.09 instead of $1.20

oh, sorry no - i figured it out.  I was looking at the credit packages.  if you buy 55 credits they are $1.09/credit but if you click on custom package of 10 credits it is $1.20/credit


 

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