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Author Topic: Microstock tug o' war  (Read 30152 times)

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« Reply #125 on: September 09, 2009, 13:50 »
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The goofy upsizing requirements gave me an image of Alamy as being seriously  out-of-date and not going anywhere.  Maybe I'm wrong.

No... It has been the digital cameras that haven't been up to the task to provide images that are large enough for a magazine spread. Luckily some prosumer (for example Canon 5DmkII and 7D) cameras have large enough images so no upsizing is required. I definitely have shot more for Alamy after I got my 5DmkII.

If your images are of good quality, it's easy to make an action with image size -> bicubic smoother -> save as.


« Reply #126 on: September 09, 2009, 14:10 »
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If your images are of good quality, it's easy to make an action with image size -> bicubic smoother -> save as.
Sure, I get that.

It's still pointless, because Alamy's system could do it automatically, on demand, and only when needed. Why have every photographer do all this, for every image, and then devote time and bandwidth and storage space to upsized images that will never be bought - and why should Alamy pay for all that disc space instead of using the server CPU to upsize only when a customer makes a purchase - ok I give up, I've had the "Alamy argument" before and it goes nowhere.

And Alamy's prices are crumbling too, aren't they?

« Reply #127 on: September 09, 2009, 14:29 »
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Average sale price at Alamy has come down to 87 dollars (I dont remember where did i read this, but 3 yrs ago was about 120 dollars, I think it was a survey on some forum)  Sales are about the same since i joined about 3 yrs ago, so returns have come somewhat down.

The resizing is no problem, even from a G7... I have resized with CS3 and Genuine Fractals, the former is quicker and haven't had a rejection since 18 months ago.  It shouldn't be a problem if you know your thing.  Even "noisy" pics get in and sell (of course, noise is expected under some situations).

wilddingo

    This user is banned.
« Reply #128 on: September 09, 2009, 14:31 »
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You humble me yet again, Mr. Dingo.  But I assure you that your wisdom has convinced me of the folly of my actions and I will give up.  But it's a shame.  I just checked today's figures and it will be a best sales day ever for me. 

Dude, this is your best sales day ever and you're still earning less than $14/hour, closer to $10/hr after expenses.

The pimple-faced kid STARTING at a McDonald's gets paid around $8/hour.

Yep, it is a shame.

« Reply #129 on: September 09, 2009, 14:48 »
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You humble me yet again, Mr. Dingo.  But I assure you that your wisdom has convinced me of the folly of my actions and I will give up.  But it's a shame.  I just checked today's figures and it will be a best sales day ever for me.

Dude, this is your best sales day ever and you're still earning less than $14/hour, closer to $10/hr after expenses.

The pimple-faced kid STARTING at a McDonald's gets paid around $8/hour.

Yep, it is a shame.

How much value would you put into someone's advice that will refuse talking about his own experiences? Are you such a failure and ashamed of yourself?

« Reply #130 on: September 09, 2009, 15:16 »
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Dude, this is your best sales day ever and you're still earning less than $14/hour, closer to $10/hr after expenses.


Yes, yes, yes, dear dingo, you've convinced me again!  I'd like to now become your humble troll-in-training and we can go tell others the foolishness of their endeavors.  Master, let us now go talk to the idiot hamsters at Pixar.  The morons spent several years toiling away on the movie Up, spending $175 million.  Imagine!  For years, they made NOTHING!  In fact, even when it was released it made only $20 million on its first day!  FAILURE!  In fact it took several months for them to make that $175 million back just to get to ground zero.  (Let us forget the $125 million it has made in the days since, for it is irrelevant!)  Let us go preach to those hamsters and convince them of their folly!

« Reply #131 on: September 09, 2009, 16:12 »
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plus what started out as the big six, will slowly become the big seven, the big eight, the big nine.. we can't ALL make money with market saturation at these levels!

No they won't.  The "big" whatever, is about who brings in the most revenue, not who has X images.  Besides, independents could just spread their work at any additional agencies to get whatever buying royalties are cannibalized from other sites.

« Reply #132 on: September 09, 2009, 16:15 »
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if the pro's can't sustain the work it currently takes to make it full-time, it will implode.

No it won't.  Micros are supplied in large by crowd sourcing.  They existed before any "pros" came to the game.

« Reply #133 on: September 09, 2009, 20:23 »
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if the pro's can't sustain the work it currently takes to make it full-time, it will implode.

No it won't.  Micros are supplied in large by crowd sourcing.  They existed before any "pros" came to the game.


True, that is how it began & most professionals shunned the micros.
The game has changed though. The buyers expect profesional quality now.
Who knows what will happen in the future?
My crystal ball broke ages ago.

« Reply #134 on: September 09, 2009, 20:44 »
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Who knows what will happen in the future?
My crystal ball broke ages ago.
Mine too.

wilddingo

    This user is banned.
« Reply #135 on: September 09, 2009, 21:39 »
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Yes, yes, yes, dear dingo, you've convinced me again!  I'd like to now become your humble troll-in-training and we can go tell others the foolishness of their endeavors.  Master, let us now go talk to the idiot hamsters at Pixar.  The morons spent several years toiling away on the movie Up, spending $175 million.  Imagine!  For years, they made NOTHING! 

Ahh, Grasshopper, you have seen the light and you too seek the wisdom.

Come child and you too shall see truth.  For there is no truth that shines brighter than the truth spoken by Dingo.

Close your eyes and listen.

First, Grasshopper, you shall learn to break from the urge to look upon the problems of other morons and to focus on your own.  For each moron was not created equal and you can never know what motivates morons other than yourself.

Second, Grasshopper, you shall not dwell on the accomplishments of the artist, but seek the education of a businessman.  You shall learn how to correctly calculate your costs, your revenue and your profit and learn the laws of accounting and finance.  And you shall employ your knowledge to be truthful with yourself and make realistic projections.

Third, Grasshopper, you shall learn to be passionate with your art and rational with your business.  You must know your costs at all times and seek to keep them low.  You must be aware of the value of your art at all times and seek to keep it high. 
 
Fourth, Grasshopper, you shall learn that you will only earn the respect of others after you endeavour to respect yourself.  At no time, Grasshopper, must the value you attribute to your art ever be lower to your costs. 

And fifth, Grasshopper, you shall learn to shun the crowd and think independently.  For crowds act emotionally, and you have risen from the ashes of doom and now think rationally.  And at no time, must you accept to embark upon a journey proposed by an agent or partner simply because others are willing to do so.  For just as you would not accept used toilet paper, you should not accept contracts that stink.

Grasshopper, here concludes our first lesson.  Go now child and ponder your new future with eyes wide open.  Your future shines brighter by the clarity of your wisdom.

For you now know the truth.

« Reply #136 on: September 09, 2009, 21:52 »
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True, that is how it began & most professionals shunned the micros.
The game has changed though. The buyers expect profesional quality now.
Who knows what will happen in the future?
My crystal ball broke ages ago.

The buyers will buy what they can at the price they can afford.  If "pro" quality is not available at lower prices, they will need to pony up or lower standards.

hqimages

  • www.draiochtwebdesign.com
« Reply #137 on: September 10, 2009, 04:42 »
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Case in point, Clusterstock, which I really like actually..

"We are about to hit 280,000 images. Since we hit 275,000 last night it seems we're growing by about 5,000 per day."

5000 a day, 35000 a week, 150000 a month.. how is someone even adding 100 a month meant to get found, at this point even the pro adding 1000 a month will suffer, but definitely has a better chance, but they will have to go from adding 1000 a month, to 2000 a month if these kinds of numbers keep going through the roof!

Now Clusterstock is kind of different in that, you have your own page, and it's essentially your own shop, so perhaps you can market locally to some success.. but this kind of growth in microstock sites that depend on search results to get downloads for people.. well.. the small contributor is screwed really!!! And by small I mean dedicated part-time with good equipment.

hqimages

  • www.draiochtwebdesign.com
« Reply #138 on: September 10, 2009, 04:53 »
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Here's an interesting article for anyone interested in this topic! http://www.pdnonline.com/pdn/content_display/photo-source/stock-guide/e3i149b78bd472801659bdb98218cf7fcf4  :)

Wow, it's like they read my mind, it's all exactly what I was thinking.. this quote from Dreamstime CEO:

We have to bring in enough revenue to support the production of high-volume producers, but we also have to motivate the hobbyists and amateurs who helped us build the community as it is now, Enache says.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2009, 04:58 by hqimages »

« Reply #139 on: September 10, 2009, 05:22 »
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5000 a day, 35000 a week, 150000 a month.. how is someone even adding 100 a month meant to get found, at this point even the pro adding 1000 a month will suffer, but definitely has a better chance, but they will have to go from adding 1000 a month, to 2000 a month if these kinds of numbers keep going through the roof!

You seem to be laboring under the assumption that everyone is uploading "apples on white" or essentially the exact same subject matter.  One would assume that good images on varying subject matter that can be found using specific keywords will be found.

« Reply #140 on: September 10, 2009, 05:55 »
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5000 a day, 35000 a week, 150000 a month.. how is someone even adding 100 a month meant to get found, at this point even the pro adding 1000 a month will suffer, but definitely has a better chance, but they will have to go from adding 1000 a month, to 2000 a month if these kinds of numbers keep going through the roof!

You seem to be laboring under the assumption that everyone is uploading "apples on white" or essentially the exact same subject matter.  One would assume that good images on varying subject matter that can be found using specific keywords will be found.

I have to agree. I don't think the size of the collection is the problem, I think it's about how good your images are, how effective the search engine is and how the buyer enters their search query. Google being a case in point, I don't have too much trouble finding the info I want from tens of millions of pages, if I enter a logical search query.

hqimages

  • www.draiochtwebdesign.com
« Reply #141 on: September 10, 2009, 06:47 »
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5000 a day, 35000 a week, 150000 a month.. how is someone even adding 100 a month meant to get found, at this point even the pro adding 1000 a month will suffer, but definitely has a better chance, but they will have to go from adding 1000 a month, to 2000 a month if these kinds of numbers keep going through the roof!

You seem to be laboring under the assumption that everyone is uploading "apples on white" or essentially the exact same subject matter.  One would assume that good images on varying subject matter that can be found using specific keywords will be found.

I have to agree. I don't think the size of the collection is the problem, I think it's about how good your images are, how effective the search engine is and how the buyer enters their search query. Google being a case in point, I don't have too much trouble finding the info I want from tens of millions of pages, if I enter a logical search query.

Right, because buyers use unique search phrases such as 'business man on white'  ;) Maybe you have a point though, there must be an obscure search or two that only return a few 100 results regardless of age or downloads..


« Reply #142 on: September 10, 2009, 07:12 »
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Right, because buyers use unique search phrases such as 'business man on white'  ;) Maybe you have a point though, there must be an obscure search or two that only return a few 100 results regardless of age or downloads..


Right.  Because the entire universe revolves around "businessman on white". 

A search doesn't have to be that obscure to return a reasonable subset.

For example, an isolated businessman sitting in a chair.  Now, I know that's crazy obscure and no one would ever use that ;), but it returns less than 200 images:
http://www.istockphoto.com/file_search.php?action=file&text=businessman+isolated+sitting+chair

hqimages

  • www.draiochtwebdesign.com
« Reply #143 on: September 10, 2009, 07:22 »
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Right, because buyers use unique search phrases such as 'business man on white'  ;) Maybe you have a point though, there must be an obscure search or two that only return a few 100 results regardless of age or downloads..


Right.  Because the entire universe revolves around "businessman on white". 

A search doesn't have to be that obscure to return a reasonable subset.

For example, an isolated businessman sitting in a chair.  Now, I know that's crazy obscure and no one would ever use that ;), but it returns less than 200 images:
http://www.istockphoto.com/file_search.php?action=file&text=businessman+isolated+sitting+chair


7 pages of isolated business men sitting on chairs.. lol!!!!! I guess, I mean maybe if you shot an isolated business man sitting on a chair once a week so that you're always on the first page.. but really, 7 pages of just isolated business men sitting on chairs, you really think a person looking for that photo is even going to look at page 2? They just got EXACTLY what they wanted on the first page.. so you gotta keep shooting over and over to serve that fresh image if that's the market you want.

« Reply #144 on: September 10, 2009, 07:31 »
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7 pages of isolated business men sitting on chairs.. lol!!!!! I guess, I mean maybe if you shot an isolated business man sitting on a chair once a week so that you're always on the first page.. but really, 7 pages of just isolated business men sitting on chairs, you really think a person looking for that photo is even going to look at page 2? They just got EXACTLY what they wanted on the first page.. so you gotta keep shooting over and over to serve that fresh image if that's the market you want.

As I said, 200 images.  Actually 160 of just photos.  My pages are set to 100 images a page.  It is not very difficult to scan through two pages  to find exactly what you want.  I would also say that most of them would be useful in different situations - ie. they are not exactly the same.  Different expressions, character types, ethnicities, etc.

The point is that your comment about "obscure" searches being the only thing to return small amounts is incorrect.  I know this may invalidate whatever point you were trying to make, but there you go.

hqimages

  • www.draiochtwebdesign.com
« Reply #145 on: September 10, 2009, 07:44 »
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7 pages of isolated business men sitting on chairs.. lol!!!!! I guess, I mean maybe if you shot an isolated business man sitting on a chair once a week so that you're always on the first page.. but really, 7 pages of just isolated business men sitting on chairs, you really think a person looking for that photo is even going to look at page 2? They just got EXACTLY what they wanted on the first page.. so you gotta keep shooting over and over to serve that fresh image if that's the market you want.

As I said, 200 images.  Actually 160 of just photos.  My pages are set to 100 images a page.  It is not very difficult to scan through two pages  to find exactly what you want.  I would also say that most of them would be useful in different situations - ie. they are not exactly the same.  Different expressions, character types, ethnicities, etc.

The point is that your comment about "obscure" searches being the only thing to return small amounts is incorrect.  I know this may invalidate whatever point you were trying to make, but there you go.

7 pages of results for an incredibly specific search, ie, Must be male, must have a suit on, must be isolated on white, must be sitting on a chair, just proves, even the most specific of searches are over represented.

« Reply #146 on: September 10, 2009, 08:03 »
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7 pages of results for an incredibly specific search, ie, Must be male, must have a suit on, must be isolated on white, must be sitting on a chair, just proves, even the most specific of searches are over represented.


Stop saying "7 pages".  Say "160 images".  It is a clearer representation of what is not a very specific search.  Sorry, you're just wrong.  Stepping to a 4, 3 or even 2 word search in many cases will show a rather small and easily scannable subset.

http://www.istockphoto.com/file_search.php?action=file&text=woman+wheelchair+outside - 300 images
http://www.istockphoto.com/file_search.php?action=file&text=alcohol+beach+"palm+tree" - less than 100
http://www.istockphoto.com/file_search.php?action=file&text=pumpkin+"isolated+on+black" - less than 200

« Reply #147 on: September 10, 2009, 08:47 »
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You can see the way buyers have found your images at DT, it's quite helpfull. When you look at these results you can see that most buyers use a 'string search' to find what they are looking for.

I have used these strings to see the search results, and in most cases the images returned are only in the hundreds. As Sean said, it doesn't take long to skim through to find a suitable image.

« Reply #148 on: September 10, 2009, 09:16 »
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Ok - so the trained, eagle-like eyes of microstock buyers can take in 160 businesmen at a glance, and spot the one that truly conveys their message, and they'll still be able to do that next year when there are 1600.  There are still some crucial limitations to what the search functions on the microstock sites can do.

The microstocks aren't searching images, just a database of keywords, which in many cases are junk. They can't improve that situation without paying reviewers to re-keyword millions of images, which is never going to happen. The search engines can't apply any 'quality' standards to the image because that's all pretty subjective.  They can't even determine what's in the image. 


« Reply #149 on: September 10, 2009, 09:23 »
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deleted
« Last Edit: September 10, 2009, 09:35 by cybernesco »


 

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