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Author Topic: Microstock Collective Site Launched  (Read 4630 times)

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« on: June 18, 2014, 20:55 »
+19
Hi all, due to all of the recent upheaval and changes in the market and the amount of negativity in the forums Leo (with a bit of help from me) has created a new alternative to the way contributors can choose to voice their opinions. The "Microstock Collective" which can be found here:
www.symbiostock.org/collective

What it is-
A way for contributors to come together to help create a consensus about what is currently happening in the industry.
A way for contributors to share their opinions in a completely anonymous manner.
A way to rate the agencies based on a much larger number of criteria than just sales.
A way to vote on current issues without having to actually make a post.

What it is not-
A Forum- discussions need to be kept on the current forums because there is not actually any place for comments on the collective.
A Soapbox- just like above, personal opinions are not really given a platform here.
A place with an agenda - Voting is the only way to show your support or displeasure for an agency or an idea.
Perfect- We know this has a long way to go but it is a step in the right direction. Additional functionality and polishing will happen on a regular basis. Also the ranking system while pretty good will probably undergo some tweaking. So be nice- its not done but it is started.

What the Collective currently offers-
A way to rate agencies on a much larger number of categories important to contributors
A way to vote on current hot topics
A way to see how many images are associated with the voting results.

What the Collective will offer in the future-
A way to break down the information into many different sorting categories.
A way for contributors to create their own voting initiatives and news items.
A way to view agency reviews by portfolio type and other cool breakdowns.

Important things you need to know about the "Microstock Collective"
1) You must be logged in as a user to vote and rate agencies- this is free and easy to do and your information will not show to anyone but yourself.
2) You do not need to offer your image library size but if you do it will help add to the credibility of the voting and overall power of the Collective
3) Portfolio Size is "Total # of images you have for sale on at least one agency" In other words how many images do you have that are represented by at least one agency - this includes self hosted. If you have 2000 images in your portfolio that is the size of your portfolio even if you only have 1000 uploaded to Shutterstock, 500 to Istock etc. It is not total images uploaded, it is individual images uploaded and accepted at least once.
4) The collective is open to anyone who is a micro stock contributor.Even though it is hosted on the Symbiostock server it is for everyone and you do not need to have anything to do with Symbiostock (other than registering as a user) to use the Collective.

I am happy to answer any questions you might have- we realize this is nowhere near perfect so please be constructive and professional in your criticism and we will do our best to fix/solve/adjust any issues that you might have. In the meantime please- check it out, vote, add your image count and just participate.

Thanks
Dennis



« Last Edit: June 18, 2014, 20:58 by chromaco »


« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2014, 22:24 »
+1
Great idea!  Good to see some positive actions.  Nice job! 

« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2014, 22:35 »
0
Thanks, so far we are fairly pleased with the initial launch. Still a few bugs, but for the most part it is working the way we hoped it would. Also some fairly interesting results are starting to form. Some of it matches the sentiments here at the forum but some of it doesn't. I always wondered if the conventional wisdom portrayed in the commentary was really what the majority was thinking, or if it was just the people willing to speak up that were driving the opinions. Hopefully this will serve as a way for the silent majority to make their opinions heard.

« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2014, 02:35 »
0
I tried to sign up but it says my ip is blacklisted. I am at a hotel in Miami, could that be the issue? I ain't no spammer :D

« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2014, 04:02 »
0
Hi Chromaco,

in Microstock Agency Ratings Stocksy, iStock (Exclusive) and iStock (non Exclusive) are messed with each other.

BR,

Kalevi

« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2014, 06:08 »
0
I was thinking this was a new agency that for the 1st time would be controlled by contributors, anyway great work!

« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2014, 06:18 »
0
Yes - I click on Stocksy and get Istock.

« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2014, 06:26 »
0
I click on Stocksy and get Istock.

parapraxis

« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2014, 07:09 »
0
For something that prides itself on anonymity, you may not wanna pull Gravatar profile pics without so much as asking for permission...

« Reply #9 on: June 19, 2014, 09:21 »
+1
Thanks all. I will look into these issues and do what I can to resolve them. About the avatar pics I'll see what i can do. I'm not sure this feature is even necessary. The only person that can see them is yourself. You do need to register so complete anonymity is impossible but as far a how you voted or your agency ratings none of that is publicly viewable (only privately by yourself).

« Reply #10 on: June 19, 2014, 10:30 »
0
About the Istock-Stocksy page mixup. Although ironic it certainly wasn't intentional. This was a glitch we discovered last week and thought we had fixed. Apparently not. Hopefully this will be cleared up in the next couple of hours. The Istock-Non exclusive page was just a typo- thank you for helping me find that one.

There are a number of agencies we are not personally involved with so creating descriptions is proving to be somewhat difficult. If anyone would like to contribute some content descriptions that would be very helpful. Vote integrity should be maintained even though the content of the pages will be edited. Also, just FYI, you can change your votes at any time. So if your opinion changes or the agencies do something you like/dislike you are able to express your opinion about the changes. Finally, I am working on getting Leo to add a "no vote" button so you can just click this button for agencies you don't personally contribute to and they will no longer show up in your dashboard.

Thank you for the feedback

« Reply #11 on: June 19, 2014, 15:27 »
0
On the scores you need to put the scale min and max so viewers know where that score falls in terms of positive or negative.  For example, a score of 3.7 don't mean much to a buyer checking out this site unless it says [POOR] 0   3.7        10 [POSITIVE} or something along those lines. I know it shows you that during voting but the summary doesn't.

« Reply #12 on: June 19, 2014, 16:05 »
0
@ Mantis, That is a great idea. We will try to adjust the phrasing so it is clearer what is good and bad.

Also, the Stocksy, Istock problem is now resolved so you can vote with confidence that you are indeed rating the correct agency.

Two new voting initiatives for you to chime in on:
One regarding "image exclusivity" and the other about "whether agencies should delete old unsold images"
You can find them here: www.symbiostock.org/collective/microstock_init/

« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2014, 19:06 »
+1
The Microstock Collective is a very constructive idea and should prove to be most valuable to the contributor side of the industry going forward. Thanks guys!

Shelma1

« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2014, 20:03 »
0
Nice idea.

Couple of things: The text is so tiny I cannot read it, and no matter how many times I try to get in to vote I don't get anywhere. I'm just taken back to the same page over and over.

« Reply #15 on: June 19, 2014, 20:33 »
0
Strange. Which browser are you using? I've been looking at the site for almost 4 weeks straight and haven't experienced what you are describing. Anyone else having these issues? If so please let me know and we will try to diagnose the cause. Shelma if you could add a bit of detail. The text at the top is small but the rest should be quite large.

« Reply #16 on: June 19, 2014, 21:03 »
+2
WTG Guys.  Great effort.


Shelma1

« Reply #17 on: June 19, 2014, 21:21 »
0
Strange. Which browser are you using? I've been looking at the site for almost 4 weeks straight and haven't experienced what you are describing. Anyone else having these issues? If so please let me know and we will try to diagnose the cause. Shelma if you could add a bit of detail. The text at the top is small but the rest should be quite large.

I've looked at it both on my MacBook Air and my iPad. Safari.

« Reply #18 on: June 19, 2014, 21:29 »
0
Strange. Which browser are you using? I've been looking at the site for almost 4 weeks straight and haven't experienced what you are describing. Anyone else having these issues? If so please let me know and we will try to diagnose the cause. Shelma if you could add a bit of detail. The text at the top is small but the rest should be quite large.

I've looked at it both on my MacBook Air and my iPad. Safari.

I use the same platforms. Leo was doing some upgrades about the time you posted. Have you visited the site multiple times with the same results? Maybe you can PM me so we can figure this out without sidetracking the thread. Thanks

« Reply #19 on: June 20, 2014, 05:45 »
+2
thank you for this!  :-*

Again and Again togehter we are strong and powerful than any agency!

People join in!

« Reply #20 on: June 20, 2014, 06:32 »
+1
...no matter how many times I try to get in to vote I don't get anywhere. I'm just taken back to the same page over and over.

I found it a bit confusing the first time I tried to vote because it didn't say my vote had been registered and because we can vote over again the sliders were still there. I only realized it was working by seeing the number of votes increase for the sites I was rating.

Maybe have something to show what sites we have already rated and when ("you last rated this site on 06/20/2014" with the list of sites or something?)

« Reply #21 on: June 20, 2014, 09:32 »
+1
That's a good suggestion. It's hard to take the perspective of a new visitor when you know how it is supposed to work. Simple details like this one tend to get overlooked. I'll try to get that added. Thanks

« Reply #22 on: June 20, 2014, 09:36 »
0
@shelma
I think this may be happening to you. It is actually registering your vote but because it isn't telling you it appears to keep redirecting to the same page. I can see how confusing this might be. Hopefully we can come up with a clearer way to communicate on this.

Shelma1

« Reply #23 on: June 20, 2014, 10:13 »
0
I've never gotten as far as voting...can't even get to any poll to vote on it.

Anyhoo, best of luck. Great initiative.

« Reply #24 on: June 20, 2014, 11:17 »
0
Update
The collective had its soft launch about one week ago. 6/12/14
Since then there are:
74 participants representing 62861 images

Average Port size is around 850 images, this number has been pretty steady as membership grows. This number feels small to me but I would be interested to hear others thoughts on this. Obviously not everyone has included their port size but I still find this average port size fairly interesting.

A number of agencies now have enough votes to make the results somewhat trustworthy. A couple of interesting things I have noticed.

1) Even when earnings are only a fraction of the rating criteria certain agencies are still showing very high results which to me indicates those agencies are doing much more than just delivering good sales.
2) The agencies who only deliver good sales are not fairing so well in the results which also shows that contributors do care about more than just sales.
3) A few of the agencies with only a few votes are either severely disliked or are getting skewed by a couple of disgruntled voters. The more participation we can get, the more we can trust the results.
4) Some of the results from the "voting initiatives" disagree with the conventional wisdom presented here on the forum- in particular the one about how people feel about the future- there is less doom and gloom than is currently evident in the forum here.

Interested to hear your thoughts about the information we have so far.

@Shelma- sent you a PM to try and help


 

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