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Author Topic: Change in Commission Structure for *ALL* 123RF.com Contributors  (Read 78958 times)

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« Reply #250 on: February 15, 2012, 16:01 »
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Yes you missed something.

No we're not (any more).

If you refer back to messages #159 and #160 in this thread, you'll see the grim news.

Ah... I see. Well, that's kind of %#$@! That will teach me not to sleep with one eye open.

I still might not lose anything, but 123RF is kind of too small of a player to be pulling this. I guess I have a while to think about it (unless it changes again). A lot can happen in a year.


helix7

« Reply #251 on: February 15, 2012, 16:11 »
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You have 10.5 months to build up a solid portfolio. Why not look towards getting more than 50%, why set your sights so low?...

I hate to keep harping on this statement, but man I just can't get past it.

It's funny, after thinking about this earlier today, I remembered some trouble I had with 123RF a few years back. I couldn't get vector uploads to work, and Alex told me that there was probably something wrong with my files. At the time I submitted images to around a dozen agencies, and never had any problems with uploads anywhere else. So needless-to-say I was skeptical that the issue was my fault.

Of course eventually things were fixed and without changing anything, my images uploads began to work again. But throughout the ordeal, 123RF was insistent that I was causing the problem, not them.

Fast-forward to today, when it's a similar song they're singing. If I can't hit enough RCs to maintain my percentage, it's my fault. Come 2013, it'll be because I didn't work hard enough that I wasn't able to hit that 50% goal. It's not their fault. Obviously I'm doing something wrong.

::)

Don't go down the same road as istock, Alex. They cut rates while throwing around insulting comments (something about money not being what would make us happy) and it left contributors like me unwilling to continue sending work to them. I already don't make much money with you guys (no fault of mine, I can assure you) and the incentives to keep uploading at 123RF are already minimal. You can easily persuade me cut 123RF out of my workflow with pay cuts and the kind of comments you made above.  

lisafx

« Reply #252 on: February 15, 2012, 16:40 »
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Lisa, I will personally come and tear apart your fence (I hear Florida weather's nice this time of year) if you even give a nanosecond's thought to exclusivity at this point!


Oh God no.  Perish the thought!!  We had a bonfire and used that fence for kindling ;)

No, I was just wondering where Pauly was going with his argument. 

« Reply #253 on: February 15, 2012, 17:09 »
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Shutterstock loves this.

So does IS.

« Reply #254 on: February 15, 2012, 17:29 »
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Okay, just did the math.  Based on 2011 numbers, I am in the 50% category, but the low end.  No chance of getting higher up, but a real chance of slipping down.  Just like Istock, I am hanging on to the rate I have earned, but just barely, and for how long? 

Paulie, I definitely get what you are saying, but do you really think Istock exclusivity offers any better protection? 

Lisa, how did you do the math? I'm having trouble adding up credits and stuff, which one is how much and everything. Also, how do the subs count, 1 credit each?

I just love how 123rf is completely unable to fix their website, but is keen to sack us while feeding us the same istock rubbish "lets work harder". Unbelievable.

« Reply #255 on: February 15, 2012, 17:48 »
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Okay, just did the math.  Based on 2011 numbers, I am in the 50% category, but the low end.  No chance of getting higher up, but a real chance of slipping down.  Just like Istock, I am hanging on to the rate I have earned, but just barely, and for how long? 

Paulie, I definitely get what you are saying, but do you really think Istock exclusivity offers any better protection? 

Lisa, how did you do the math? I'm having trouble adding up credits and stuff, which one is how much and everything. Also, how do the subs count, 1 credit each?

I just love how 123rf is completely unable to fix their website, but is keen to sack us while feeding us the same istock rubbish "lets work harder". Unbelievable.

I agree, especially with Joanne.  I think we all work hard to create sellable content, I know I do.  It sounds like Alex was given a script from the IS brain trust.  Now, to be fair to our communicator, is Alex the mail man or the guy at the top making/dictating these commission cuts? Is this an issue of padding profits (because they can't control their expenses) so they look better for acquisition in three years?  Only 3% of my income comes from 123 and I have never grown with them in 5 years.  Always been $60 a month.  No way that I, as a dedicated contributor of 123, will accomplish anything but a pay decrease after this change takes affect.

They know, like IS, that most won't pull their port, will keep uploading with the blind hopes of "something will change", and attrition will simply be minimal.  They win. 

Microstock Man

  • microstockman.com

« Reply #256 on: February 15, 2012, 18:01 »
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Who looks at a sinking ship and thinks "that looks like a great idea, I'll hit an iceberg too"!? Can't believe 123RF have followed iStock's most hated thing - RC system.

Surely this is no time to be putting yourself into the same territory as iStock. REWARD your contributors please, don't make them turn on you.

This could be the biggest mistake 123rf will ever make.

« Reply #257 on: February 15, 2012, 18:12 »
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Ups... Not big jump. From 50 to 30% :(
Thank you very much.

Pav

« Reply #258 on: February 15, 2012, 18:30 »
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Ok, I got the math. I am barely getting 50% and absolutely no chance of going up. I will be pulling my portfolio if I have the slightest decrease below 50%, I'm dead serious. 123RF are clearly overestimating their importance in our eyes. It won't make a significant dent in my monthly income and I'm sure it's the same situation for most of the contributors.

lisafx

« Reply #259 on: February 15, 2012, 19:09 »
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Lisa, how did you do the math? I'm having trouble adding up credits and stuff, which one is how much and everything. Also, how do the subs count, 1 credit each?

It was rather time consuming.  I took a screen shot of my sales from all the months of 2011.  Then I added up the number of sales of each type (which are shown in columns on the site).  Then I multiplied each column total by the assigned value for that type of sale, using message on the sign-in page.  Then totaled all those.

I am sure that the spreadsheet gurus here have much easier ways to do this.

KB

« Reply #260 on: February 15, 2012, 19:34 »
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Unless I missed a post, I haven't seen one complaint about the fact that your percentage is re-evaluated every month. No one has a problem with that? Seems like those on the border of a commission change could bounce up and down monthly. (Even those who aren't that close could bounce down for a month if they had one poor month 12 months ago.)

« Reply #261 on: February 15, 2012, 19:36 »
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 We all complained when IS and FT screwed us, but never the less that's all we all did, deleting ports and stop uploading after the fact did very little to alter their decision, so why stand for another grease up, now from 123rf...let say, which is most likely the truth, we cant afford to delete our existing port with them because of our financial situations, but we should

"  all stand together and stop all uploading of new material to them ",

 if we all small fish as well as some of the more larger ones grow some B..ls! and do this I'm pretty sure the bird will sing a different tune...if we don't do anything about it, every Dick, John and Harry agencies will be following in their steps. Whatever we need to do, we need to start doing it NOW!, not waiting until January 1 2013 to make our self's be heard.
If we don't, well, then we deserved everything we have gotten and will get in the near future from all stock agencies. >:( >:( >:(

123RF is kind of too small of a player to be pulling this.

I just love how 123rf is completely unable to fix their website, but is keen to sack us while feeding us the same istock rubbish "lets work harder". Unbelievable.

They know, like IS, that most won't pull their port, will keep uploading with the blind hopes of "something will change", and attrition will simply be minimal.  They win. 


123RF are clearly overestimating their importance in our eyes. It won't make a significant dent in my monthly income and I'm sure it's the same situation for most of the contributors.


+1
Actions speak louder than words
United we stand, divided we fall
If We do "NOT" do anything about it, What message are we sending to Shutterstock?
I'm a small fish, but I'll stop uploading of new material to 123rf or pull my port ( 1.5K images )
* I'll get 45%, possibly 50% if I work 2x harder? lol

« Reply #262 on: February 15, 2012, 19:40 »
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Step 1) Promise to grandfather contributors and get their hopes up.

Step 2) Introduce RC Scheme after people complain about the first iteration; maximize profit while revenues for contributors drop as time goes on due to competition, buyer migration and site growth.

At least they decided to copy a model that already existed so they are not in uncharted waters.

Step 3) Fire people that are on the non essential creative and review teams?  Time will tell!

I find it hard to see any positives to contributors on this move.  

I give 123rf props about rolling the news 10 months before the date instead of four, that makes it somewhat original.

« Reply #263 on: February 15, 2012, 19:56 »
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Unless I missed a post, I haven't seen one complaint about the fact that your percentage is re-evaluated every month. No one has a problem with that? Seems like those on the border of a commission change could bounce up and down monthly. (Even those who aren't that close could bounce down for a month if they had one poor month 12 months ago.)

I don't think anyone has commented on that aspect of it, but IMO that is probably a good thing - where "good" is relative in a scheme that is a steaming pile of poop.

It's good in that you don't have those messy margin situations (5 RCs shy of the next level sort of thing) affect your royalty for a whole year - there's at least the potential for it to be resolved sooner.

KB

« Reply #264 on: February 15, 2012, 20:06 »
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Unless I missed a post, I haven't seen one complaint about the fact that your percentage is re-evaluated every month. No one has a problem with that? Seems like those on the border of a commission change could bounce up and down monthly. (Even those who aren't that close could bounce down for a month if they had one poor month 12 months ago.)

I don't think anyone has commented on that aspect of it, but IMO that is probably a good thing - where "good" is relative in a scheme that is a steaming pile of poop.

It's good in that you don't have those messy margin situations (5 RCs shy of the next level sort of thing) affect your royalty for a whole year - there's at least the potential for it to be resolved sooner.

Hmmm. As someone who experienced exactly that with iStock's system (200 RCs rather than 5), I'm surprised that didn't occur to me. Excellent point, Jo Ann.

WarrenPrice

« Reply #265 on: February 15, 2012, 20:24 »
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as always my paranoid post ... is it possible that alex is being paid to take the heat off istock?  is there a deal in the works?

Just because I am paranoid doesn't mean there is no conspiracy.   ;D

m@m

« Reply #266 on: February 15, 2012, 20:42 »
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as always my paranoid post ... is it possible that alex is being paid to take the heat off istock?  is there a deal in the works?

Just because I am paranoid doesn't mean there is no conspiracy.   ;D

Anything is possible in the World Wide Net of Stock Photography Warren...lol ;D

« Reply #267 on: February 15, 2012, 21:46 »
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Hi All,

Thanks for the comments and warnings, we will take everything into advisement. No I wasn't paid (not by the competition) or given a script, everything here reflects what my views are.  Nobody likes change, and although it was truly hard to accept some of the criticism that were offered - Nonetheless, I can't thank you enough for your thoughts, opinions and ideas.

Do allow me to address some of the concerns that were brought up:

1. With regards to sales, we're looking to more than double the figure. 2011 was great for us, we're looking to make 2012 greater. Ultimately your sales as a whole will more than just improve. We are having month after month of improving sales, spurred on by the growth - We are spending more on advertising and promotions than ever before with more campaigns coming up soon, we're allocating a large proportion of sales revenue into various marketing channels and this is bearing fruit - I believe that most have enjoyed the increased sales throughout 2011. We're not slowing down on this.
2. On the operations side, we are hiring - hiring takes time, training takes even more time. We're looking to eliminate long queues and try to accept content in real time as we span the operations to work 24 hours from Monday to Friday.
3. We have plans to improve the contributors site but at the moment, improving features on the customer and sales functions, as well as rolling out new products take higher priority. We're hiring more IT personnel to cope with the expanded scope of responsibilities and hope to achieve a good balanced site.

Rome was not built in a day and I have to ask for your further understanding. We are achieving our milestones month on month, and I believe you too will enjoy higher sales volume in the days to come. I earnestly hope that you'll continue to be a contributor even after the implementation date. Only time will tell what decision you'll eventually make. But do factor in the growth if you're plugging the figures into your spreadsheet while determining your future levels.

Lastly, I do hope that everyone here enjoys the fruits of their labor earning more than 50% commissions from 123RF in 10 months time.

Thank you very much,

Alex.

KB

« Reply #268 on: February 15, 2012, 22:24 »
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Alex,

I asked here, and someone else asked on the video forum: How does this impact video?


« Reply #270 on: February 15, 2012, 23:12 »
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I looked at the numbers a bit more, and unless 123RF can up there game a lot (come on 123RF, I know you can work harder at selling my images. You have 10.5 months to do it, so get working). I will be dropping 2 levels.

As I look at the numbers I think my effort would be better spent creating content for sites like Alamy that aren't trying to foster competition between contributors and dropping percentages.

If you really want me to make more than 50%, then make 0 to 1,000 RC = 50% and bring the levels up from there....

Not going to do that? then I guess you really don't want all your contributors to make a higher %.

Hopefully Pond5 lets us upload our images there directly too, so we can get the full 50%.

KB

« Reply #271 on: February 15, 2012, 23:37 »
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Hi KB,

The prices of the video sales would be as follows:
1080 HD - 65 Credits
720 HD - 55 Credits
480 SD - 40 credits
240 WD - 15 credits

50% of nett credit prices now till Dec 31, 2012.
Thereafter, it'll be counted towards the 12 month rolling credit to determine your contributor level.

Thank you.

Alex

Thanks for the clarification, Alex. Considering I contribute videos only, and by Dec 31 I'll have at best 10 months of sales, you can include me in the list of very disappointed contributors.

lagereek

« Reply #272 on: February 16, 2012, 01:19 »
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I checked my spam folders but don't see any e-mail from 123rf - did they only e-mail contributors who don't meet the criteria? It would seem to me that all contributors should know what's going on, not just those who are directly affected.

This is like those deals airlines did a while back where the pilots at the regional carriers got less than those at the main airline. Then they based the lower pay on which jets you flew and tried to move some of the "cheap pilot" jets into the main airline fleet. In other words I don't see this as good news even for old contributors like me who have large portfolios and enough sales.

Cutting royalties is not a good sign - and it's a shame as 123rf had been doing reasonably well.

Yeah thats why they have been doing well, just the start, you wait and see.

fujiko

« Reply #273 on: February 16, 2012, 02:30 »
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Nobody likes change, and although it was truly hard to accept some of the criticism that were offered - Nonetheless, I can't thank you enough for your thoughts, opinions and ideas.

Alex, everybody loves good changes and hates bad changes.

1. With regards to sales, we're looking to more than double the figure. 2011 was great for us, we're looking to make 2012 greater. Ultimately your sales as a whole will more than just improve. We are having month after month of improving sales, spurred on by the growth - We are spending more on advertising and promotions than ever before with more campaigns coming up soon, we're allocating a large proportion of sales revenue into various marketing channels and this is bearing fruit - I believe that most have enjoyed the increased sales throughout 2011. We're not slowing down on this.

I sincerely hope this to be true, I've seen the improvements last months on 123RF and it really goes up and I'm really glad an agency that paid 50% is going that high. I just can't believe such a forecast. Lots of people will go down and many will just barely remain at 50%, after they helped you get this high. It's not fair. It's disloyal. It breaks all trust we had in you.
If you really believe you can double the sales for all, please prove that before implementing the RC system or lower the RC system if sales don't double.

« Reply #274 on: February 16, 2012, 02:37 »
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I think everyone knows where I stand on this sort of thing ;)

I will give 123RF kudos for keeping the 35% payout level reasonably attainable for many people.  However on everything else, it sounds like they are following a certain someone's playbook to the letter; they will not budge on this issue.

If this plan is still in place at the end of the year I will be removing my portfolio completely.  This one sided behavior from our agents cannot be rewarded.  The fact that the RC concept has spread should be a big warning sign to all those who kept their portfolios with IS after their fiasco.  Due to 123RF's lower contribution to our total incomes, the decision here should be relatively straightforward.


 

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