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Poll

Do you believe in sharing your knowledge or keeping it secret?

Share everything
17 (19.8%)
Share some stuff
50 (58.1%)
Don't share
19 (22.1%)

Total Members Voted: 74

Author Topic: Share your knowledge or keep it secret?  (Read 15785 times)

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lthn

    This user is banned.
« Reply #25 on: June 26, 2011, 07:55 »
0
It's stuff like this that keeps pushing me closer to just not bothering to help or share knowledge anymore.


It always makes me giggle a bit when some of the basically noname amateur photographers in microstock expect the red carpet to roll out for them, because they sold many pictures somewhere : )) Face it dudes and dudettes, teen starcraft shoutcasters are known by 'bout 10000 times more ppl then these guys who started with reading their forst DLSR's manual something like 6 years ago.


PaulieWalnuts

  • On the Wrong Side of the Business
« Reply #26 on: June 26, 2011, 08:49 »
0
It's stuff like this that keeps pushing me closer to just not bothering to help or share knowledge anymore.


It always makes me giggle a bit when some of the basically noname amateur photographers in microstock expect the red carpet to roll out for them, because they sold many pictures somewhere : )) Face it dudes and dudettes, teen starcraft shoutcasters are known by 'bout 10000 times more ppl then these guys who started with reading their forst DLSR's manual something like 6 years ago.


Sean actually made a good point. From now on if some newbie wants my knowledge they can pay for it. Or give me something in exchange. I may not have a huge portfolio but my sales performance is probably in the top 5% tier or better.

I love teaching and helping but the latest newbie brought me back to reality that this is still a business. And in business if someone wants advice they hire a professional services person/company. A consultant, lawyer, whatever. In business do you ever see a bunch of people sitting around waiting to help another business for free? And especially help competitors? 

I'll continue helping people here that I like but this is first and foremost, a business.

« Reply #27 on: June 26, 2011, 08:54 »
0
It's stuff like this that keeps pushing me closer to just not bothering to help or share knowledge anymore.


It always makes me giggle a bit when some of the basically noname amateur photographers in microstock expect the red carpet to roll out for them, because they sold many pictures somewhere : )) Face it dudes and dudettes, teen starcraft shoutcasters are known by 'bout 10000 times more ppl then these guys who started with reading their forst DLSR's manual something like 6 years ago.


I don't recall any regular here calling for the 'red carpet'.  Besides this game is all about selling 'many pictures somewhere'.  Otherwise, why are you here?

All things in moderation.  'Help' and other stuff.
« Last Edit: June 26, 2011, 08:56 by sjlocke »

« Reply #28 on: June 26, 2011, 09:29 »
0
Share everything and anything. Unless the person is acting like a total *, then just clam up and grin at them for as long as is reasonably polite Then cave and share everything. Unless of course they persist in being a *, then tell them that sorry your camera's got twigs in it and photoshop flooded.

« Reply #29 on: June 26, 2011, 09:48 »
0
I don't mind sharing knowledge. Is there something that is really a secret? What make some more succesful than others is experience, hard work and talent.

I agree with that. Except of course.. Edit: On second thoughts, I'd better just keep stum.  ;)
« Last Edit: June 26, 2011, 22:44 by Microstock Posts »

lisafx

« Reply #30 on: June 26, 2011, 17:58 »
0
I like learning, and I like teaching.  In another life I might well have been a teacher, and I might even have been good at it.  I also refuse to see photography as some kind of zero sum game, even this little microcosm of microstock.  Helping others to get better won't hurt my own skills and isn't likely to have much of an effect on my revenue. 

That's part of what I hate about iStock's tier scheme; they've turned us into competitors who only win when someone else loses.  I'd rather enjoy my work, and learning and experimenting and teaching others is a very real part of that enjoyment.  And if others do better with what I teach them than I do, well, I'm sure lots of teachers have had that experience too.

^^ Excellent post.

+2.  You captured my feelings on the subject perfectly Disorderly. 

I enjoy sharing photography tips, and also information about how to upload to the sites.  That sharing, learning, and teaching aspect was a big part of what drew me to photography in the first place.  Not to mention when I started photography seriously I got tons of help from the good people on the Sony, and then Canon forums at dpreview.com.  I guess I am just paying it forward. 

It's been a long time since I discovered and under-covered or not-covered hole in the stock libraries.  I seriously doubt there are any anymore.  But if I were to think of one, that is information I would NOT be sharing.

lisafx

« Reply #31 on: June 26, 2011, 18:13 »
0
It's stuff like this that keeps pushing me closer to just not bothering to help or share knowledge anymore.


Oh gee, I managed to overlook that one.  I tend to skip those "Hey, I just got my first camera and I want you to teach me how to use it and make millions in my spare time" threads. 

It's not that I don't want to help to a sincere microstock newbie, but it has always irked me no end that some people expect others to do all the legwork for them and hand them a career on a platter.  What makes anyone who doesn't even know how to take a properly exposed picture or use a basic lighting setup think they should be offering their images of their cats, or their garden, or last night's dinner, for sale commercially?   Cart before horse, people.   ::)

ShadySue

« Reply #32 on: June 26, 2011, 18:44 »
0
It's stuff like this that keeps pushing me closer to just not bothering to help or share knowledge anymore.

I'm pretty sure that guy is a troll. I don't really think he's an 'innocent newbie'. Admittedly, I was 'defensive' as first; nd still have to check that tendency. Nevertheless, even if Sean's 'tough love' was hard to take at first, it was pretty obvious that someone with his track record for sales gives some advice, or prompts you to think deeper, you need to pay at least some attention.  ;)

« Reply #33 on: June 26, 2011, 19:32 »
0
It's stuff like this that keeps pushing me closer to just not bothering to help or share knowledge anymore.

I'm pretty sure that guy is a troll. I don't really think he's an 'innocent newbie'. Admittedly, I was 'defensive' as first; nd still have to check that tendency. Nevertheless, even if Sean's 'tough love' was hard to take at first, it was pretty obvious that someone with his track record for sales gives some advice, or prompts you to think deeper, you need to pay at least some attention.  ;)


If he isn't he certainly needs a class on emotional intelligence.

« Reply #34 on: June 26, 2011, 21:27 »
0
I guess I am just paying it forward. 
Exactly. At some point, some people helped us, and now we can help others.

The amount of time you put on it may vary, and it depends on the attitude of the person who is receiving the information as well. When I feel genuine interest, it is more gratifying to help.

nruboc

« Reply #35 on: June 26, 2011, 22:19 »
0
"Share your knowledge or keep it secret?"

Really it doesn't matter one way or the other. Just don't be a douche and bait newbies on the forum, some actually seem to take pleasure in doing so...sigh
« Last Edit: June 26, 2011, 22:29 by nruboc »

« Reply #36 on: June 27, 2011, 17:14 »
0
I give classes to art school photo classes on how to keyword and how to get started in stock.  Most of the students find that the workflow, keywording, and systems I recommend for shooting and submitting too time consuming.  In my humble opinion, if you are wanting a real income from stock, you have to look at it as a real job. 

One of these days I will write a book on keywording and stock photography from an editor's perspective.  Until then, I am always happy to help where I can. 

« Reply #37 on: June 27, 2011, 19:40 »
0
I didn't see the answer I would want to give - I used to help, but I've stopped. It was largely via the iStock critique forum and I truly enjoyed the process of working with people there. I think I learned something through the process as well.

I'm not a big enough person to see past iStock's September 7th changes which destroyed, for me, the notion that we could build the business long term not only by what we sold but by having support for people starting out or anyone not sure of what to do with an image. Their changes said, to me, that there is no long term and there is no partnership between contributor and agency. In the climate of a grabby free-for-all, I'll spend my time on my own work and trying to boost my own share.

I hope at some point another opportunity like that might surface

steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« Reply #38 on: June 27, 2011, 20:16 »
0
I've always taken the view that the techniques of stock may be relatively simple, but the effort and dedication required to actually make something from the images makes the difference between someone playing at it and someone who is going to be successful. I've always been pretty open on my blog about what I do and why I do it, and part of that is because I like writing and hopefully passing on my enthusiasm to others (even though they may theoretically take some sale from me in the future.)

I finally decided to try to monetize that advice a little through writing a "how to get started in Stock" eBook and so far 14 happy people have been tempted to part with their cash!! ;D

At this rate, the book will become my third best selling site behind Shutterstock and iStock!

Steve

jbarber873

« Reply #39 on: June 27, 2011, 20:29 »
0
   When I was an assistant ( a long time ago in a land far far away), there were 2 photographers in NY who were the top shooters. I worked for one and my best friend worked for the other guy. There was a group of maybe 10 of us who all worked for the heavy hitters, and after work, we would all sit around and compare notes about what we were working on, and how the photographer accomplished something. The amazing thing was how many different ways there were to get to an end result. When the guy I was working for found out I knew the assistant for his top competitor, he made me swear that I would never talk about how something was done at his studio. Of course I swore up and down that we never talked shop. Meanwhile we would grab outakes ( film) and trade techniques back and forth. We all benefited from this. The reason it worked was that we shared- that is everyone gave and everyone took. It wasn't just a one way street- you had to earn your way in by where you worked. And I've never stopped learning, It just becomes a way of life. But it should be a fair trade, not just you help me and I'll see ya later.

« Reply #40 on: June 27, 2011, 20:32 »
0
At this rate, the book will become my third best selling site behind Shutterstock and iStock!

eheh are you kidding no? you sold 14 books for 5$ each? not saying it bad or good but they arent like pictures, I dont believe you will sell 14 every month  ;D

« Reply #41 on: June 27, 2011, 22:50 »
0
I won't share specifics about what works for me, such as the subject matter and styles that sell well.  There's simply too much to risk for me in creating copycats.  Not that the regular posters here would ever do that... but I'm sure there are lurkers and people curious about microstock who would do so if they knew my images and my numbers.

But I try to share general advice for two reasons: 1. To steer people down the right path and improve their own numbers, and 2. To improve microstock as an industry.  That benefits me.  I think there's a danger that if microstock continues to be flooded with the same old images that buyers don't really want, they'll get frustrated and stop buying.  That's not good for any of us.

And speaking of that advice, I'll share it again here:  try to find subject matter that isn't well-covered already, and create a style that is your own.  Approach subjects in a manner that no one else is doing / can do.  If you do this, you don't have to worry so much about "feeding the beast" and showing up at the top of the "most recent" search results.  That's the strategy of people who have nothing unique to offer.  If you're truly doing something unique, you'll sell well because your competition will be minimal.  I expect several people will say I am crazy, that there are no subjects that aren't already overcovered, but they are wrong.  I wish I could show you my port and my sales to prove it, but... well, see my first few sentences.  So get out there and do something NEW and UNIQUE.  You help yourself, you help the industry, and in doing so, you help me.


RacePhoto

« Reply #42 on: June 28, 2011, 01:40 »
0
It's stuff like this that keeps pushing me closer to just not bothering to help or share knowledge anymore.


Nothing but a one day wonder. He came, registered, did a self destruction thread and blew away in the wind.  :o

Most people are willing to listen and get advise in drops, not expecting a whole perfect bucket of gold when they ask some vague and obviously uninformed questions, and somehow manage to disagree or insult the people who answer. The person doesn't have a camera, software or a clue and then says, no one here answered with anything helpful? LOL

Last time someone asked for advise and then started in disagreeing with me, (operating some specialized equipment and proprietary software) I said, why did you ask if you already knew all the answers and all about how to do it, better than I do?  ;D

As for the OP question: What Knowledge? I know nothing.  :D
« Last Edit: June 28, 2011, 11:05 by RacePhoto »

steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« Reply #43 on: June 28, 2011, 08:38 »
0
Quote
Quote from: steheap on Yesterday at 20:16
At this rate, the book will become my third best selling site behind Shutterstock and iStock!

eheh are you kidding no? you sold 14 books for 5$ each? not saying it bad or good but they arent like pictures, I dont believe you will sell 14 every month  Grin

About one copy a day so far, and I have just managed to get it on Amazon as a Kindle book. I get a reasonable number of hits to the site from Google searches (rather than the restricted set of folks on a forum) and so it may continue - who knows! At least I have paid for the shopping cart functionality that I added to my Wordpress site and could start selling other things now for no incremental cost. Anyone want a Canon AE1 camera?

Steve

WarrenPrice

« Reply #44 on: June 28, 2011, 09:10 »
0
Quote
Quote from: steheap on Yesterday at 20:16
At this rate, the book will become my third best selling site behind Shutterstock and iStock!

eheh are you kidding no? you sold 14 books for 5$ each? not saying it bad or good but they arent like pictures, I dont believe you will sell 14 every month  Grin

About one copy a day so far, and I have just managed to get it on Amazon as a Kindle book. I get a reasonable number of hits to the site from Google searches (rather than the restricted set of folks on a forum) and so it may continue - who knows! At least I have paid for the shopping cart functionality that I added to my Wordpress site and could start selling other things now for no incremental cost. Anyone want a Canon AE1 camera?

Steve

Congrats on getting the book on Amazon.  About that Wordpress shopping cart.  Are you doing your own site development/programming or having it done?

« Reply #45 on: June 28, 2011, 09:35 »
0
I won't share specifics about what works for me, such as the subject matter and styles that sell well.  There's simply too much to risk for me in creating copycats.  Not that the regular posters here would ever do that... but I'm sure there are lurkers and people curious about microstock who would do so if they knew my images and my numbers.

But I try to share general advice for two reasons: 1. To steer people down the right path and improve their own numbers, and 2. To improve microstock as an industry.  That benefits me.  I think there's a danger that if microstock continues to be flooded with the same old images that buyers don't really want, they'll get frustrated and stop buying.  That's not good for any of us.

And speaking of that advice, I'll share it again here:  try to find subject matter that isn't well-covered already, and create a style that is your own.  Approach subjects in a manner that no one else is doing / can do.  If you do this, you don't have to worry so much about "feeding the beast" and showing up at the top of the "most recent" search results.  That's the strategy of people who have nothing unique to offer.  If you're truly doing something unique, you'll sell well because your competition will be minimal.  I expect several people will say I am crazy, that there are no subjects that aren't already overcovered, but they are wrong.  I wish I could show you my port and my sales to prove it, but... well, see my first few sentences.  So get out there and do something NEW and UNIQUE.  You help yourself, you help the industry, and in doing so, you help me.

Exactly.  I have nothing against sharing general advice.  Or stuff about equipment.

steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« Reply #46 on: June 28, 2011, 10:07 »
0
Quote
Congrats on getting the book on Amazon.  About that Wordpress shopping cart.  Are you doing your own site development/programming or having it done?

Thanks for the kind comments on the Amazon bit - a "published" author at last!! I tried to post the link here but the forum software is changing the link before it inserts it. I'll write to Leaf about that.

I have done all the wordpress stuff myself. Wordpress is a great system that has worked flawlessly for me. To add the shopping cart, I looked at the available plugins (some free, some paid) and was impressed by the WP eStore plugin ($49) as it seems to have a combination of very easy installation coupled with a lot of flexibility to sell physical as well as digital products, have discount coupons, sales etc. I'm only scratching the surface with my installation. Installing was a breeze - you just click "install" and it all works automatically. The integration will Paypal was already configured, although I had to create a new account with Paypal. I tested it by creating my book as a product sold at $0.05 (I know, that is what it is worth ;D), and bought a copy myself from my old Paypal account. It provides you with an automated email that includes a unique and time limited download link for the actual book. All in all, a very easy process.

I have only had one problem - someone in China couldn't download the book, but he emailed me and I sent one successfully as an attachment via email. I suspect it was a problem in China rather than a flaw with the process.

Steve
« Last Edit: June 28, 2011, 10:11 by steheap »

WarrenPrice

« Reply #47 on: June 28, 2011, 10:46 »
0
My WP site is hosted at GoDaddy.  I have no idea how to make any other than very simple changes.  A friend did all the work while he was unemployed.  He found a jog.... dang it.   :P

Shank_ali

    This user is banned.
« Reply #48 on: June 28, 2011, 16:40 »
0
" Can you please take a look at my portfolio and tell me why i am not selling many of my photographs." How many times do we need to read that on the forums.
No-one needs to share there knowledge.The good selling files are pretty much staring contributors in the face.Go do the same....
The good critique i once recieved was about basic photography but i never  needed to enquire about what sells.I have tryed to return that helpful advice in the last few years but realised not many people are prepared to work hard if the sales are not guaranteed and they certaintly aint !
Do  Pro's still enjoy photography even though it's a job?

« Reply #49 on: June 28, 2011, 21:56 »
0
Hi All,

 I want to take a minute out to share a section of a blog from a very good friend of mine. He has been making cutting edge stock photos for 25 years and this is part of his take on sharing. Thank you John Lund for all you have shared with me over the years, you are a true professional.


Staying Under The Radar Isnt The Answer
One thing I have learned over the last twenty years is that staying under the radar isnt the answer. The courage to share your process (within reason), to get your work out in front of everyone, and to rise above those very reasonable fears of seeing your work, ideas and techniques stolen in so many ways, brings with it rewards that cannot be denied. Do you think the benefits Chase Jarvis gains from sharing his world online out-weighs the risks of being copied and the threat from competition that is enhanced by the information he doles out?

The Benefits of Sharing
In my own experience the benefits of sharing have been enormous. The rewards have ranged from free gear (I was once given a $45,000.00 Leaf Digital Back on the condition that I share my results with the camera at trade showsduh!), to important contacts (in the long run more important than gear), free film, and all manner of opportunities. If I hadnt been open to sharing I would never have been invited to join Blend Images as a founding partnerprobably the biggest opportunity in my career. The latest reward for putting my work and ideas out there is in the form of traffic to my website that continues to increase weekly. Yes, I get ripped off all the time, but my rewards are definitely greater than my losses.

best,
Jonathan


 

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