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Demotix- Good or Bad.

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Just starting out and looking for a good site to upload news type images to,is Demotix worth trying or are there better sites to upload to?

I ask as having checked out a few forums it seems the jury is still out on Demotix.

I do not have a lot of uploads (I rarely shoot news events) but I do have a few sales. All of the sales are through their Corbis arrangement, so not really news but stock sales. The RPD isn't great but it is better than in microstock.

I have 60 published stories at Demotix with 722 images.  I uploaded my first story with them in September 2011.

The good...if you put the effort into it and you shoot stories of national/international interest, you will do well.  Check out Steve Rhodes portfolio (he's based in San Francisco).  He uploads at least one story per day....twitter handle is @tigerbeat.  He does well.  When you upload to Demotix your images are also reviewed by Corbis Editors and your images are placed into the Corbis collection.  Unlike Corbis, you earn 50% of the royalty that Corbis gets (I've verified this with a Corbis editor).  My images have been used in very respectable publications via Demotix - everywhere from The Huffington Post, The Guardian, and Time.  The staff is terrific but there seems to be a lot of turnover.  Ossie is the main editor and he's awesome to work with.  Jeff is an editor at Corbis and he's great to work with as well.  They have assisted me in getting accreditation a few times (I believe you need 25 published stories before you can apply for accreditation to events).  Fees earned are on par with any other RM news agency - anywhere from a few Euro (Daily Mail) to what you would expect to get from a newspaper fee.  Images are licensed on a rights managed basis.

The bad...it takes a while to get paid.  I have images that have been used some time ago for which I am still waiting payment - I can think of one in particular that was used in DNA India last summer that I haven't been paid for (yet).  Most folks upload 5 stories and leave...they don't have the patience to stick with it.  The forums are riddled with people looking to make a quick buck and that's not what the site is for.  You also have to understand that if you are uploading news images, you stand a chance of your images getting stolen....you need to learn to live with that reality.  Demotix/Corbis will chase down whats worth chasing down in my experience.  They are run with a very small staff so emails going to them don't get answered very often (another point of frustration with contributors who are new).

I am not sure but there seems to be a transition of some sort going on.  Stephen Sidlo was the main editor and he has left.  Rachael was an editor and she has left.  It appears Corbis is running quite a bit of the show there and I'm not sure what's going on behind the scenes at the moment but I'm sure it will work out.

I would recommend them.  You will do well if you do your part.  Again - stories must be of NATIONAL or INTERNATIONAL interest - something you would likely see on the evening news that isn't just pertinent to your community.  Don't just upload snapshots of people....Corbis is more likely to pick up your work if you can actually provide names of people in the scenes you are shooting (as a photojournalist would).  There are many tutorials and resources on their website on how to be successful.  Use them.

I have received royalties from them every month this year so far from stories I've uploaded.

very interesting, thanks for sharing this! :)

Thanks Ed, great information. I have seen a few forum posts elsewhere talking about Demotix and it gets mixed reviews with lots of complaints about low fees etc but that could just be from people who don't fully understand how the news market works in regards to payments etc. There were a few photographers in my city who were selling through Demotix but i did get mixed reviews from them when i talked to them,one was selling through some sort of Demotix subscription deal but he was not allowed to say anything about it and the other left after a year so anything he said may have been slightly clouded by his negative experience. Will have to sign up and see if i can find out some more info from their forums.


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