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Author Topic: Do you purposly keyword mistakes?  (Read 4751 times)

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« on: December 14, 2012, 06:52 »
+2
What I am thinking about is if you use keywords that you know people will search for but are technically wrong.

A tomato is technically a fruit.. does that mean you should leave out the keyword vegetable?  In reality it seems like spam to use the keyword fruit as buyers will most likely be searching for vegetable and tomato if the image is of a tomato you eat.
How about if you have a shot of a Mule, would you use the keyword Donkey?  They aren't the same animal.
Or if you had a spider, would you keyword it with insect?
How about shooting a heifer, would you keyword with cow? A heifer isn't a cow

My philosophy has been that I need to keyword so the buyers can find what they are looking for.  I would guess that a number of buyers searching for donkeys would be quite happy with an image of a mule, or perhaps they are actually looking for a mule but don't know the difference.  Someone looking for a female bovine species may just do a broad search for cow .. if you left out that word on an image of heifer, you'd loose out on a sale... when really they just want bovine animals, not necessarily cows.

Anyhow, what are your thoughts?


« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2012, 07:07 »
0
Yes, I certainly include mistakes like that, but only if it's about the main subject of the photo  (not if there happens to be a small donkey or mule in the far right corner of the picture).
The only "mistake" I never add is the word "baby" for images with newborn animals.  Technically, these are babies too ...

« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2012, 07:12 »
0
Right, yes.
It is a problem. Would you try to educate your audience or would you try to sell to your audience?
With my nature and biological pictures I often face that scisma.

But then it helps if I picture the customers as nail filing brunettes at typewriters, who know nothing about biology, and certainly do not know which order a shrimp or a spider falls into.
So I give them the keywords I imagine they would search for, and that could be "ugly" considering spiders, and "tastefull" considering shrimps, even beach and summer or cellar, where spiders might occur.
We can not expect customers, especially not in north America, to know about crustaceans and arachnidae.
Its like common lowest denominator. We are being crowdsourced and so are the customers.

« Last Edit: December 14, 2012, 07:15 by JPSDK »

« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2012, 07:45 »
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Good topic and yes, guilty as charged! Sometimes you have to include 'technically incorrect' terms because, as we know from SS and DT, buyers often do use those keywords when they buy them. I do think you have to be extremely careful and selective though. I know that some buyers will actually avoid images if they contain inappropriate spammed keywords because they can't then be sure about the authenticity of the image subject. If the subject is a 'sirloin steak' for example then don't also put fillet, mignon, ribeye, etc.

« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2012, 07:55 »
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I've had quite a few instances where agencies have emailed me asking about the specifics of a photo - often to do with location.  I took some images on the prairies and they were in Saskatchewan, but Montana, parts of Alberta, Manitoba, North Dakota all look exactly the same - especially at a distance.  I have often included other prairie provinces / states in the keywords.  Perhaps that was wrong?? But as I said customers do ask when the need to confirm that the image is indeed from Saskatchewan and I am also careful to keep the title and description as accurate as possible (informing / educating the buyer)

« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2012, 08:07 »
0
The most specific you can get is latin names with species.
And I have sold quite a few pictures from searches for latin names.
I have seen many falsely labelled in other portefolios.
Compares to place the Golden gate bridge in Antarctica.
But then again, microstock is the pop of the pop, and I can see pictures of purple and green monarch butterflies also sell.

I think that if you appear trustworthy in your naming and describing of the pictures, customers will return to you for a second pick, next time they need a specific species or a well described location.
Which is why, I never make purple monarchs, though it would be so easy.

« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2012, 08:07 »
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I'm not a spammer in general but yes in those circumstances I would except maybe the mule. I also sometimes include well used spelling mistakes and at DT have sold images like that.

« Reply #7 on: December 14, 2012, 08:20 »
0
The most specific you can get is latin names with species.
And I have sold quite a few pictures from searches for latin names.
I have seen many falsely labelled in other portefolios.
Compares to place the Golden gate bridge in Antarctica.
But then again, microstock is the pop of the pop, and I can see pictures of purple and green monarch butterflies also sell.

I think that if you appear trustworthy in your naming and describing of the pictures, customers will return to you for a second pick, next time they need a specific species or a well described location.
Which is why, I never make purple monarchs, though it would be so easy.


but first they have to find you to trust you.

I don't think I'd ever mis-label a scientific name.  If they are searching that specific then they know what they are after.  It is the broad (unknowledgeable) searches I'm not wanting to miss.

« Reply #8 on: December 14, 2012, 08:31 »
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I dont say you are mislabelling things.

They find me on their first search for Boloria eufrosyne, and since that species can only be identified by experts, they guess that i am one.
So they check what else I have. And see that I know the trade, and then they bookmark me, hopefully, for the next time, next month.
But with "boloria, eufrosyne" I also add "butterfly, red, spotted, green, macro" so that it is also found in the general searches.
Then the people who want green monarchs, have a choice.

But why should we care about spammed keywords? its the agencys problem, they can reject them or give us tools (underway from shutterstock). My motive is to sell as many pictures as possible, therefore im likely to spam with naked women keywords. Its the agencies problem to keep them out of the searches. They are crowdsourcing us and the keywords, they can invent the tools to sort them out or die in entropy.

« Reply #9 on: December 14, 2012, 08:41 »
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The real danger to the microstock business is entropy.
When there are so many pictures and keywords are so random that a search becomes meaningless.
We are close.
Agencies with large databeses know this, and do something: the power of few from istock is an example.
It didnt work, because its is not few, that is the problem. It is precision, and the more global we get, the more general the vocabulary gets ( pidgin, creole). So basically globalisation and crowdsourcing works against presition searches. Thats an inbuilt problem in the business. He who solves that, has an advantage.
I would suggest, working from native languages to English, not opposite as they do now.
i would also suggest a double inspection. One for image quality, and that coudl be automatic, and then a inspection for keywords, from experts, who knew the language and the topic.
There is no point is producing more pictures of footballs and balloons.

« Last Edit: December 14, 2012, 08:49 by JPSDK »

CD123

« Reply #10 on: December 14, 2012, 10:12 »
0
Guilty, but never in the title or description, so at least you can get the real info at the top of the info pyramid. I am not an educator, but also do not like to willingly mislead, so I will just ad such a word if I know the object is commonly mistaken in calling it the wrong name (have to provide in images for people with the right picture in their mind but wrong keyword as well).

And in declaring that I do, I also cover my own bud for where I actually had the wrong keyword and thought it was right myself ;D

WarrenPrice

« Reply #11 on: December 14, 2012, 10:21 »
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I'm sporadic.  I try to be literal but try to think like a buyer "Is the concept important?"  "Will the buyer be searching Literally or Conceptually?" 
Keywording is not as "cut and dried" as some try to make it.  It is more "artistic" than "scientific."   :P

PS:  I also try to keyword for "common" spelling errors.  If a buyer may misspell a word, I try to offer that misspelling as a keyword.   ???

« Reply #12 on: December 14, 2012, 10:27 »
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PS:  I also try to keyword for "common" spelling errors.  If a buyer may misspell a word, I try to offer that misspelling as a keyword.   ???

santa and satan?

« Reply #13 on: December 14, 2012, 11:01 »
+1
I do think that it's OK to use terms buyers are likely to search for - and when I think of a donkey, mule or burro, to me they're interchangeable (even though I know they aren't). I went around with the keyword folks at iStock over pine and fir for Christmas tree foliage, even though I know that a particular branch can only be one or the other.

The one place I do think it's wrong to do this is with location. If it really matters to someone that they have a shot from a particular place, they need to be able to rely on your keywords. I've seen some images keyworded Bahamas, Jamaica, Cayman Islands etc because it's a tropical beach. That's just wrong. You can put tropical, Caribbean (although not if it was shot in the Maldives), islands and other general keywords to cover those who don't care which island.

In the Getty CV you can walk back up the tree from a city (Seattle) to the state (Washington State), region (Pacific Northwest), country (United States of America). I never put in planet earth :) When I keyword I put in Washington as I don't think buyers would use the phrase "Washington State". For your example, I'm not sure what the generic phrase would be - like prairie, badlands, desert, tundra - but I would go for that not multiple places. Imagine a Canadian company using a US picture and getting caught by a sharp-eyed person. It'd be embarrassing.

« Reply #14 on: December 14, 2012, 11:23 »
0
I am pretty aggressive with keywords. borderline spammer...  8)

« Reply #15 on: December 14, 2012, 11:28 »
0
The one place I do think it's wrong to do this is with location. If it really matters to someone that they have a shot from a particular place, they need to be able to rely on your keywords. I've seen some images keyworded Bahamas, Jamaica, Cayman Islands etc because it's a tropical beach. That's just wrong. You can put tropical, Caribbean (although not if it was shot in the Maldives), islands and other general keywords to cover those who don't care which island.

In the Getty CV you can walk back up the tree from a city (Seattle) to the state (Washington State), region (Pacific Northwest), country (United States of America). I never put in planet earth :) When I keyword I put in Washington as I don't think buyers would use the phrase "Washington State". For your example, I'm not sure what the generic phrase would be - like prairie, badlands, desert, tundra - but I would go for that not multiple places. Imagine a Canadian company using a US picture and getting caught by a sharp-eyed person. It'd be embarrassing.


You mean a bit like this example?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1206391/Dubai-hotel-pinches-bit-Dorset.html

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #16 on: December 14, 2012, 11:37 »
+2
Ha, interesting topic.
I'm almost a keywording fundamentallist, though there is a mad keywording godzilla on the inspection team who is even more so - takes 'Europe' out of photos taken in Europe etc etc etc.
The examples you gave, Leaf, were interesting.
Tomato, I'd put as a vegetable, because that's how they're used. Similarly, I keyword peanuts as nuts, although they're legumes.
Mule: no, I'd just keyword 'mule'. If you keyword 'donkey', you'd have to also keyword 'horse' by the same logic, then what about 'hinny'?
Spider: I guess lots of ignorant buyers might think it was an insect, but I couldn't embarrass myself deliberately (E&OE).
Heifer: definitely cow. A heifer is a young cow which hasn't had a calf. It's not as though I could ask it. Slightly more difficult with 'bull' as the general public don't look at a field of cattle and say, "There's cattle"; round here, they would generally say, "Look at the cows (or coos, or kye, obviously)" without checking.
It's difficult to decide whether to keyword for the ignorant or the intelligent, and I tend to choose the latter.
I've written often of the one and only time I had a conversation with someone who might have become a buyer and showed him how to work the search at iStock, and when he put in keywords of the type he might actually buy, the results were truly awful (natural history), either through ignorance of spamming. He brought his co-workers over for a laugh, they were so bad.
There's one high diamond at iStock who usually shoots models, but occasionally wanders towards wildlife. He often knows what he's shooting and puts the right species in the title, but has five or more totally unrelated species in the keywords. That's deliberate spam. Also he deliberately keywords animals in collections as 'animals in the wild', if they're not in actual cages (that's his stated logic), even though the background is totally wrong for the species concerned. That totally rips my knitting.  >:(
I noticed this week another high diamond, who usually does models, has taken a model out to feed birds out of their hands, but have keyworded the species of bird wrongly. I think that was a genuine mistake, as they don't have the correct species anywhere.
Stick with what you know, should be the motto. And research what you don't know.
Rant over!


« Reply #17 on: December 14, 2012, 11:45 »
0

You mean a bit like this example?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1206391/Dubai-hotel-pinches-bit-Dorset.html


That's a pretty extreme example, but yes! The notion that anyone could confused and think this was in the middle east is a bit of a stretch for all but the most geographically challenged.

It's been a while since I was there, but I don't recall it feeling as if I was in a warm climate :)

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #18 on: December 14, 2012, 11:52 »
0
^^^
I've also posted previously that a safari company which claimed "we know Africa like the back of our hands" lost us as possible clients because their inside cover blurb where they were expanding their claim had a photo of a family of Indian One-horned Rhinos. Not remotely convincing.
We went on seven private safaris with a rival company after that; so even if we were the only ones, that was a lot of money for them to lose.

tab62

« Reply #19 on: December 14, 2012, 12:10 »
0
funny you ask this question on keywords- I am okay for the most part but I remember uploading a pic of a silver dollar and the number one image on ss for silver dollar had gold in the key words and no mention of silver whatsoever! That is wrong in my eyes...

gillian vann

  • *Gillian*
« Reply #20 on: December 14, 2012, 16:12 »
0
Similarly, I keyword peanuts as nuts, although they're legumes.



so if peanuts aren't nuts, and almonds aren't nuts, why does half the planet have a "nut allergy" ?

gillian vann

  • *Gillian*
« Reply #21 on: December 14, 2012, 16:22 »
0
what's interesting are the keywords I don't think about: like prairie, which we don't use in Australia, but could in theory be used. although outback Australia tends to wander more towards 'tundra', which I'd never use cos I think of Mongolia, Russia or Alaska when you use that term.




« Reply #22 on: December 14, 2012, 17:06 »
0
My strategy is similar to what others have said - use related but technically incorrect keywords if it might be how I perceive buyers would search, but keep the title and description accurate.

Ed

« Reply #23 on: December 14, 2012, 18:59 »
0
Yes, I do this and I do it often.  I also intentionally misspell keywords - as an example Blond = Blonde

« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2012, 04:43 »
0
Yes, I do this and I do it often.  I also intentionally misspell keywords - as an example Blond = Blonde
That isn't misspelling.  One is the english spelling and one is the american spelling.


 

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