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Author Topic: Uber drivers are workers, will this affect the Stock industry?  (Read 1526 times)

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H2O

« on: February 19, 2021, 10:11 »
+1
Uber drivers are workers, UK supreme court rules

Will this affect the Stock industry?

Part of the ruling was drivers were considered to be employees because they didn't set the fairs.

This is exactly the same as in Microstock, except for a few I can think of, Pond 5, Envato and Creative Markets.

Maybe this ruling will have a impact on Shutterstock.

 


« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2021, 10:13 »
+9
"Will this affect the Stock industry?"

No.

H2O

« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2021, 10:21 »
+1
"Will this affect the Stock industry?"

No.

That's what Uber said.

Here is more of the ruling coving contracts which may also have implications:-

The supreme court said any attempt by organisations to draft artificial contracts intended to side-step basic protections were void and unenforceable.

Judges criticised the controversial contracts Uber asked their drivers to sign, saying they can be seen to have as their object precluding a driver from claiming rights conferred on workers by the applicable legislation.

« Reply #3 on: February 19, 2021, 10:47 »
+5
That's what Uber said.

$5 says it'll have no effect on anything related to stock photography sales.

« Reply #4 on: February 19, 2021, 10:58 »
+1
Interesting. Let me start off by saying no, it wont affect us.

Academically though apparently the court mainly considered these elements in its judgement:

1. Uber set the fare which meant that they dictated how much drivers could earn. True for us with all the main agencies. They also control who sees our work and can bury or promote anyone they like in the searches. They can also send our work to partners without even consulting us as to where it is going

2. Uber set the contract terms and drivers had no say in them. Very true for us

3.  Request for rides is constrained by Uber who can penalise drivers if they reject too many rides. See 1, there are similar parallels for us too. Also agencies suspending uploads if you have too many similars etc.

4. Uber monitors a driver's service through the star rating and has the capacity to terminate the relationship if after repeated warnings this does not improve Again a very parallel relationship to the one we have with the agencies with regards to similars, noise etc.

Looking at these and other factors, the court determined that drivers were in a position of subordination to Uber where the only way they could increase their earnings would be to work longer hours.

So all in all we are in a very similar situation as Uber drivers, but so are lots of people in lots of industries. I have seen the term "Uberisation" used to describe lots of things and it's all true, but we are way down the list in terms of exploitation. Plus they can just ditch any one of us that are in a country that cares about our rights if there is a similar ruling. Uber drivers have to be where the market is.

« Reply #5 on: February 19, 2021, 11:07 »
+4
"Looking at these and other factors, the court determined that drivers were in a position of subordination to Uber where the only way they could increase their earnings would be to work longer hours."

Except that licensing intellectual property, and not actually requiring your physical presence, this isn't true.  You could increase earnings by having more content, for example and that doesn't necessarily equate to working longer hours.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2021, 11:09 »
+2
That's what Uber said.

$5 says it'll have no effect on anything related to stock photography sales.

We are self employed, commission workers, not even close to employee. Consider all the other businesses that work straight commission, will they be flipped as well.

"This verdict will undoubtedly have far and wide-reaching implications for all gig economy operators and will make it harder for companies engaging people via digital platforms to assert that they are self-employed, despite contractual documentation which may state otherwise,

Yes, in effect if this gets applied in the UK, the decision will put every individual artist using the internet as a means to make money - Out Of Business. But since sanity actually prevailed in California, the same claims were rejected, or in other words, the workers are not employees.

California voters supported Proposition 22, which lets Uber and Lyft continue to treat their drivers in the state as independent contractors rather than employees entitled to benefits. Of course that could still change. But parts of the issue were, the company told workers how much they should work, hours and other things. In our case, no one says, upload ## images a week or you won't work for us.

Not going to happen to Microstock and if it does, you can mark your account dead, except for the big volume contributors.

"Uberism" I learned a new word today.  :)

I'll make the same offer, $5.00 as a donation to the charity of your choice H2O, if this changes Micostock as a whole.

I'm not going to say that this won't hurt some agency (and there is at least one now) that says, if you don't make sale or you don't upload enough, you'll have to pay a fee to have your images hosted. That's going to put them into the employer category. Fun to watch.

FAA, Zazzle, Redbubble, Etsy and the rest, we set prices, we work when we want, no effect on those.

« Reply #7 on: February 19, 2021, 11:09 »
+3
Stock contributors are not compensated by the task (or hours worked). The level of control by agencies over the content contributors upload is minimal and over the quantity virtually non-existent.

Adhesion contracts ( take it or leave it where there's no real "meeting of the minds") are used in dry cleaning; that doesn't make dry cleaning like stock agency supply agreements. In other words, not every unreasonable or unfair contract is similar.

An Uber driver can't be driving on multiple journeys simultaneously for multiple ride hailing companies, but stock contributors can license content multiple times via multiple agencies at the same time. Driving a car to ferry passengers is inherently a different type of activity from receiving royalties for music, stock licenses, book sales or any other activity related to intellectual property. Ours isn't an "hours worked" type of business.

No comparison, and unfortunately no sign of legal relief from the outrageous contracts stock agencies use.

« Reply #8 on: February 19, 2021, 11:33 »
+2
I hired Shutterstock and Adobe to sell my content and I give them a percentage of every sale. So they work for me.

« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2021, 11:56 »
+1
Uber drivers are workers, UK supreme court rules

Will this affect the Stock industry?

Part of the ruling was drivers were considered to be employees because they didn't set the fairs.

This is exactly the same as in Microstock, except for a few I can think of, Pond 5, Envato and Creative Markets.

Maybe this ruling will have a impact on Shutterstock.

Seeing as most stock agencies are not based in the United Kingdom how on earth do you even begin to think that this ruling would in any way shape or form have an effect on the the stock industry?  :o

Plus what Jo Ann said above which I agree with.

« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2021, 11:56 »
+3
I hired Shutterstock and Adobe to sell my content and I give them a percentage of every sale. So they work for me.

Oh I hope that was a tongue in cheek statement  ::)

H2O

« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2021, 13:14 »
0

No comparison, and unfortunately no sign of legal relief from the outrageous contracts stock agencies use.

Thanks for all the replies I generally agree with all of them, in that I can't see Microstock agencies taking any notice, especially as most of them are based in America.

But I do think there is a pointer in this to how the market will play out in the future, the 'outrageous contracts' are really the crux of the matter for all Contributors, it was only a couple of years ago that Envato changed there Site so that you can set the price.

It would only take Adobe to make this move to flatten Shutterstock.

« Reply #12 on: February 19, 2021, 20:10 »
+1
It could effect stock industry if we go to court like those 25 Uber drivers decided to go, but not for employees benefits but to put some regulations so it's not possible to change terms of use retroactively. Things will change on Internet also in next few years. This will be tough fight but we unfortunately must fight for our rights.

It doesn't matter where company is based if EU decide not to allow those shady deals with changing terms we never agreed upon then agency can loose whole EU market.

Also in Germany is already against the law not to report where your image is used or in EU to prohibit rights to protect my rights on court in case of image usage violation. Agency have to provide you all buyer contact details and they do if you know how to ask even it's not in their terms of use.

Uber driver can also leave like we can, so it doesn't matter.

We need patience.

« Reply #13 on: February 19, 2021, 20:57 »
+2
a better comparison is with writers who work with publishers & receive royalties

« Reply #14 on: February 19, 2021, 23:41 »
+1
It is not the first country in Europe to sentence this and other companies.

On our topic. In theory they do not tell us what we have to do, nor schedules, nor exclusivity.

Another thing is, perhaps and supposedly, those collaborators who guide them what jobs they should do, some agency. There is the possibility of being similar to salaried workers that group of special collaborators. Of course, I do not know their contracts and I do not know everything.

Another problem in this concept is, if the company provides you with the work material.

Clients from the European Union will have access, free files, the deadline is running out and I do not believe that the agencies have taken steps to ensure that the files they have in their possession have the correct and adequate copyright. Therefore, the fines can be outrageous if there are stolen files for sale.

The famous article 13, which has been given a period of two years to adapt the companies to fight against this issue. It is no longer useful to delete a stolen file in a short period of time, nor to rely on the good faith of the collaborators. Those responsible are the companies.

There are other problems in the world now, but at any moment the dance will begin.

YouTube has been trying for a long time to avoid this problem in its videos. I suppose that the agencies have also invested time, infrastructure and money in this matter.

« Reply #15 on: February 20, 2021, 05:47 »
0
I hired Shutterstock and Adobe to sell my content and I give them a percentage of every sale. So they work for me.

Oh I hope that was a tongue in cheek statement  ::)
Kind of :) Sometimes I feel better looking at things from a different perspective. Otherwise I get depressed.

« Reply #16 on: February 20, 2021, 06:34 »
+1
I hired Shutterstock and Adobe to sell my content and I give them a percentage of every sale. So they work for me.

I know you were joking but to reply for others who maybe think different:

agencies choose price
agencies choose commission
agencies choose discounts
agencies choose even free promotions
agencies choose partners (and their commission)
agencies choose content (rejecting or accepting)

we can only choose to be with them or not (as all others, Uber drivers, workers etc.)

all of this was "under the radar" and will not go for a long time, that's why agency opening their own studios to do their own content because they know it can't continue to go like. Or they will go full AI generated content. (EU directive will soon became law)

as I said, times are changing as we all can see, and I expect in some future there will be no more single image on internet without copyright name, as well as not knowing where your image is bought and in what contest used will be past.

will this all go for better or worst to us, I don't know.


H2O

« Reply #17 on: February 20, 2021, 08:28 »
0
I hired Shutterstock and Adobe to sell my content and I give them a percentage of every sale. So they work for me.

I know you were joking but to reply for others who maybe think different:

agencies choose price
agencies choose commission
agencies choose discounts
agencies choose even free promotions
agencies choose partners (and their commission)
agencies choose content (rejecting or accepting)

we can only choose to be with them or not (as all others, Uber drivers, workers etc.)

all of this was "under the radar" and will not go for a long time, that's why agency opening their own studios to do their own content because they know it can't continue to go like. Or they will go full AI generated content. (EU directive will soon became law)

as I said, times are changing as we all can see, and I expect in some future there will be no more single image on internet without copyright name, as well as not knowing where your image is bought and in what contest used will be past.

will this all go for better or worst to us, I don't know.

I think you are absolutely right, America where most of the agencies are based are behind the curve on legislation; copyright and usage control are coming, this will be by mutually agreed contracts, some may laugh at this, in reality the UK Uber ruling was about 'artificial contracts'.

The ruling made it quite clear these are unenforceable.

The EU are already looking at this across loads of internet companies, when it comes down to exploitation, which again is basically what these contracts are, they will legislate to change this.

Shutterstocks business model has at the maximum ten years, maybe less, they may even end up being fined.

As for 'better or worst to us', it can only be better.


« Reply #18 on: February 20, 2021, 11:31 »
+5
If you think a contract is outragous don't sign it. No one is compelled to sign up to an agency no agency requires you to submit a minimum number of pictures or direct you on what to produce and mostly they don't restrict your ability to sell elsewhere.

H2O

« Reply #19 on: February 20, 2021, 11:46 »
0
If you think a contract is outragous don't sign it. No one is compelled to sign up to an agency no agency requires you to submit a minimum number of pictures or direct you on what to produce and mostly they don't restrict your ability to sell elsewhere.

It's all very well saying this, in reality the Agencies are always changing the Contracts, so you start off with a reasonable contract and then over the years after you have put a great deal of time and effort into the portfolios they change the terms you originally signed up for.

This is not being compelled to sign, this is being forced to sign.

« Reply #20 on: February 20, 2021, 12:04 »
+2
If you think a contract is outragous don't sign it. No one is compelled to sign up to an agency no agency requires you to submit a minimum number of pictures or direct you on what to produce and mostly they don't restrict your ability to sell elsewhere.

It's all very well saying this, in reality the Agencies are always changing the Contracts, so you start off with a reasonable contract and then over the years after you have put a great deal of time and effort into the portfolios they change the terms you originally signed up for.

This is not being compelled to sign, this is being forced to sign.
and you can leave. I'm not saying I like it but to put up any kind of case is next to impossible. If they required exclusivity or had any requirements to produce material possibly. The Uber drivers are considered employees for the time they are logged into the app how would that work?

« Reply #21 on: February 20, 2021, 12:34 »
+2
I hired Shutterstock and Adobe to sell my content and I give them a percentage of every sale. So they work for me.

I know you were joking but to reply for others who maybe think different:

agencies choose price
agencies choose commission
agencies choose discounts
agencies choose even free promotions
agencies choose partners (and their commission)
agencies choose content (rejecting or accepting)

we can only choose to be with them or not (as all others, Uber drivers, workers etc.)

all of this was "under the radar" and will not go for a long time, that's why agency opening their own studios to do their own content because they know it can't continue to go like. Or they will go full AI generated content. (EU directive will soon became law)

as I said, times are changing as we all can see, and I expect in some future there will be no more single image on internet without copyright name, as well as not knowing where your image is bought and in what contest used will be past.

will this all go for better or worst to us, I don't know.
I agree with you, but I was half joking half not. Agencies are choosing commissions, discounts, promotions, partners, yes, because it is their job to do. I don't know to do that and I don't want to do that. I hired them to do that :)
But, joke aside, this idea came up on my mind looking at artist gallery relation. And what law applies here. At least, in my country, law recognizes artist as special entity - they are not employees, they are not workers. They sell their copyrighted work through gallery. If law recognizes this specific situation, then there is something about it.

« Reply #22 on: February 20, 2021, 12:37 »
+2
There may be some mileage in looking at the iStock Royalty Free Exclusive agreement, since that effectively says you can't sell ANY of your work anywhere else except through them using the most ubiquitous, widely understood method of distribution. It's quite different to all other exclusive deals which are image exclusive.

« Reply #23 on: February 20, 2021, 14:33 »
+1
If you think a contract is outragous don't sign it. No one is compelled to sign up to an agency no agency requires you to submit a minimum number of pictures or direct you on what to produce and mostly they don't restrict your ability to sell elsewhere.

did you sign anything when contract terms were changed? nobody did

contract can be changed only if both sides agrees, at least in EU, anything other than that is illegal.

retroactively changing terms of use is and will always be illegal if both parties dont agree, and option that we can remove all of our images and leave is not real options because in that way everyone can leave, uber drivers, workers, employees. (yes, we dont have same rights and employees, but uber drivers didn't have few days ago either).

In soon regulated internet market we will have options to agree to new terms or choose not to, where our already approved content stay in same conditions as we agreed and we just don't upload any new content for conditions that we didn't agree upon.

If agencies don't want to work under EU law they can leave 450 millions EU market. But they will not do that, count on that.

« Reply #24 on: February 20, 2021, 15:10 »
+1
If you think a contract is outragous don't sign it. No one is compelled to sign up to an agency no agency requires you to submit a minimum number of pictures or direct you on what to produce and mostly they don't restrict your ability to sell elsewhere.

It's all very well saying this, in reality the Agencies are always changing the Contracts, so you start off with a reasonable contract and then over the years after you have put a great deal of time and effort into the portfolios they change the terms you originally signed up for.

This is not being compelled to sign, this is being forced to sign.

You are not compelled to do anything.

Even Jon Oringer was quite blunt about the latest royalty reductions when he stated publicly that anyone who didn't like should just go and take their portfolios with them.


 

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