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Author Topic: I don't like iStock but...  (Read 3541 times)

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« on: January 11, 2019, 12:32 »
+5
Like majority of contributors I hate what happened in 2013(?) and what became iStock.
But to be honest there is one think I like , the kind of photos that sell here. IStock/Getty is the only place where photos (my) I like sell all the time. Photos which are ... just photos and not 'digital art'.
SS and AdobeStock selling, from my experience, only heavy altered artificial stuff.


« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2019, 14:04 »
+2
For me them and Dreamstime (though not often) sell the pictures by me I personally like the most. I also seem to sell a more consistent pattern on Istock....Shutterstock seems to vary wildly...lately my best sellers are selling over and over a couple of months back I was selling six year old stuff for the first time!

« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2019, 14:22 »
0
For me them and Dreamstime (though not often) sell the pictures by me I personally like the most. I also seem to sell a more consistent pattern on Istock....Shutterstock seems to vary wildly...lately my best sellers are selling over and over a couple of months back I was selling six year old stuff for the first time!
On the contrary for me DT sells the photos I don't like at all.

« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2019, 12:45 »
+2
Heading should be completed:
I don't like iStock but... I love their money!

 ;D

« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2019, 14:28 »
+1
I don't like iStock, but, for me, it still sells more than Adobe/Fotolia

« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2019, 15:09 »
+1
I get one to three Benjamin's a month from them. That's good walking around money for me.

« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2019, 16:24 »
+9
Actually I would really want TO LIKE iStock. There are lots to like about it, but unfortunately the fundamentals seem shaky.
  • I can only imagine what a total mess must be their IT infrastructure. Not only they can't display sales data on time, there is no guarantee that they are correct. And then there are lots of duplicate rows in downloads list. Not being able to correctly provide such a vital data (for contributors) unfortunately only further confirms statement 1.
  • I personally think that their exclusive vs non-exclusive contributors approach is not sustainable. They have to promote their exclusives, but that inevitably means showing not the best content for their customers. So in the end of the day it hurts everyone.
  • Their keywords logic just doesn't work in real life. Not being able to accurately describe your images means customers will never be able to find them.
So it really is very sad, but I don't see any signs of recovery in foreseeable future. At least not in my port. I wonder if the previous year was down or up for their exclusives?
« Last Edit: January 28, 2019, 04:11 by photok »

« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2019, 20:19 »
+5
After the site changes a while back the images no longer have accessible descriptions. All is sold on the title and the image. It dawns on me they are just trying to make iS more of a "clipart" cheap site. Tomatoes on white. Check. But they don't want images that interfere with other Getty collections.

« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2019, 06:44 »
0
New in this world, but this is what I think:

Royalties in order to 0.05 or 0.02 are a joke. You think "why spend time with this?".
Their system to upload and keywording pictures is a nightmare. You need more time than the other agencies. The review process is a nightmare too and so the user interface. Worst web I've ever seen with 123rf ex aequo.
Their contributor support does not exist.



« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2019, 06:46 »
0
New in this world, but this is what I think:

Royalties in order to 0.05 or 0.02 are a joke. You think "why spend time with this?".
Their system to upload and keywording pictures is a nightmare. You need more time than the other agencies. The review process is a nightmare too and so the user interface. Worst web I've ever seen with 123rf ex aequo.
Their contributor support does not exist.
Also 15% commission but... In the end is one of my top earnings. You can have a nice smooth upload method like in deposit but if it doesn't sell what's the deal then. Istock is horrible but I contribute there because they seem to sell what others agencies don't (in my case)

« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2019, 06:48 »
0
I understand that the view is different if you are in this for years.

I don't have perspective yet.

« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2019, 06:52 »
+1
I understand that the view is different if you are in this for years.

I don't have perspective yet.
I am 8 months old. I have a love-hate relationship with iStock.

« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2019, 07:12 »
0
 ;D

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2019, 09:01 »
0
After the site changes a while back the images no longer have accessible descriptions. All is sold on the title and the image. It dawns on me they are just trying to make iS more of a "clipart" cheap site. Tomatoes on white. Check. But they don't want images that interfere with other Getty collections.

Got it Stan. I don't know about clipart or descriptions? You mean my file descriptions are not used in the search or just invisible for any purpose.

Just like the rest, my view, my main sites, every one has better and worse sales for different kinds of images. Mine runs like this, SS Photos and Editorial; iStock (after they wiped out 3,657 Editorial images) a mix, but mostly old photos: Adobe illustrations are first, photos come in second. Each place is different for what does best for me. For Me   :)

Not only that, my best selling image on AS, and I haven't been there long as a returning artist, has only one download on SS in the same years. I think it has more sales on iStock also. One of my top images on SS has only 3 DLs on AS.

What I'm getting at, is some of the comments about best site are not about the site but about what we personally make and upload. The same images don't bring the same returns at all sites equally.

ps I don't do vectors, my illustrations are rasters, not the "real thing".


IS is a love hate relationship for me too. I'll take the money but they are one of the least friendly sites in the business.

« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2019, 12:52 »
0
After the site changes a while back the images no longer have accessible descriptions. All is sold on the title and the image. It dawns on me they are just trying to make iS more of a "clipart" cheap site. Tomatoes on white. Check. But they don't want images that interfere with other Getty collections.

Got it Stan. I don't know about clipart or descriptions? You mean my file descriptions are not used in the search or just invisible for any purpose.

Just like the rest, my view, my main sites, every one has better and worse sales for different kinds of images. Mine runs like this, SS Photos and Editorial; iStock (after they wiped out 3,657 Editorial images) a mix, but mostly old photos: Adobe illustrations are first, photos come in second. Each place is different for what does best for me. For Me   :)

Not only that, my best selling image on AS, and I haven't been there long as a returning artist, has only one download on SS in the same years. I think it has more sales on iStock also. One of my top images on SS has only 3 DLs on AS.

What I'm getting at, is some of the comments about best site are not about the site but about what we personally make and upload. The same images don't bring the same returns at all sites equally.

ps I don't do vectors, my illustrations are rasters, not the "real thing".


IS is a love hate relationship for me too. I'll take the money but they are one of the least friendly sites in the business.

I don't know if descriptions are used in searches or not. Because of the controlled vocabulary that translates the keyword tags, I suspect the search does not include descriptions. I've not tried to suss this out.

Many of us complained back when iS made the current page layouts that there was no description. I sell some city skylines but a buyer now cannot know the date of the skyline and whether it is no longer current (e.g. with a new building).

I've made a few quick reviews of the data in DeepMeta. I don't have full proof but it certainly appears that editors are adding and removing keywords so they are different than what I submitted. There are now keywords that I know I would have not considered (because I didn't think of them - not because they are necessarily wrong) and there are missing keywords that I'm sure I would have included to describe the image. I used to sell a lot of clipped car images. When iS quit accepting cars they didn't remove those already in the collection. So my good sellers are still there - albeit I'm seeing keywords removed for make and model of the car. So if a buyer is looking for a 1968 Chevrolet 396 Convertible, only keywords 1968 and Convertible appears to exist. Fortunately the search might get them from the title. Unfortunately Convertable is a wrong spelling in the title and I would have to open a ticket to get it fixed. The keywords displayed on site don't even include Red (I will have to go back and see if I included Red when uploaded). So people won't find my image even searching for the generic Red Car.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #15 on: January 29, 2019, 11:29 »
0
After the site changes a while back the images no longer have accessible descriptions. All is sold on the title and the image. It dawns on me they are just trying to make iS more of a "clipart" cheap site. Tomatoes on white. Check. But they don't want images that interfere with other Getty collections.

Got it Stan. I don't know about clipart or descriptions? You mean my file descriptions are not used in the search or just invisible for any purpose.

Just like the rest, my view, my main sites, every one has better and worse sales for different kinds of images. Mine runs like this, SS Photos and Editorial; iStock (after they wiped out 3,657 Editorial images) a mix, but mostly old photos: Adobe illustrations are first, photos come in second. Each place is different for what does best for me. For Me   :)

Not only that, my best selling image on AS, and I haven't been there long as a returning artist, has only one download on SS in the same years. I think it has more sales on iStock also. One of my top images on SS has only 3 DLs on AS.

What I'm getting at, is some of the comments about best site are not about the site but about what we personally make and upload. The same images don't bring the same returns at all sites equally.

ps I don't do vectors, my illustrations are rasters, not the "real thing".


IS is a love hate relationship for me too. I'll take the money but they are one of the least friendly sites in the business.

I don't know if descriptions are used in searches or not. Because of the controlled vocabulary that translates the keyword tags, I suspect the search does not include descriptions. I've not tried to suss this out.

Many of us complained back when iS made the current page layouts that there was no description. I sell some city skylines but a buyer now cannot know the date of the skyline and whether it is no longer current (e.g. with a new building).

I've made a few quick reviews of the data in DeepMeta. I don't have full proof but it certainly appears that editors are adding and removing keywords so they are different than what I submitted. There are now keywords that I know I would have not considered (because I didn't think of them - not because they are necessarily wrong) and there are missing keywords that I'm sure I would have included to describe the image. I used to sell a lot of clipped car images. When iS quit accepting cars they didn't remove those already in the collection. So my good sellers are still there - albeit I'm seeing keywords removed for make and model of the car. So if a buyer is looking for a 1968 Chevrolet 396 Convertible, only keywords 1968 and Convertible appears to exist. Fortunately the search might get them from the title. Unfortunately Convertable is a wrong spelling in the title and I would have to open a ticket to get it fixed. The keywords displayed on site don't even include Red (I will have to go back and see if I included Red when uploaded). So people won't find my image even searching for the generic Red Car.

Yup I've read those problems before and now that I think about it, I made notes when I uploaded there, early on, which sites used which fields for the search and if I remember right, iStock never did, just keywords using the CV.  Just checked, name/title and description, are not searched. I went to add a couple words, edit the keywords, not allowed, file is already in ESP. Tough place, isn't it?

I guess their theory is, once it's there and they have adjusted the keywords, like I added vintage which is a non-word, I can only have Retro or Old Fashion or a third inappropriate choice. I don't know why they would remove Red! Meanwhile making the search worse and more difficult for buyers is their way to improve the system.

They don't care about making images discoverable, which makes me not care about uploading, and I'm sure they don't care a bit about that either.  ;)

ShadySue

« Reply #16 on: January 29, 2019, 12:23 »
0
I don't have full proof but it certainly appears that editors are adding and removing keywords so they are different than what I submitted.
I don't know whether it's being done by editors or by machine, but for sure keywords are appearing and disappearing. I've already had keywords reappended to certain images, but last night I found more which had essential keywords missing, i.e. actually what the subject is, even though other files are searchable on these disappeared-from-my-files keywords. And you  have to jump through hoops with spreadsheets to get them reinstated, sometimes with a nippy note that 'titles and descriptions are not searchable' as if you didn't know that, even when you can prove via DM that the keywords were there when you uploaded them.
Honestly, I must have had, and maybe still have, hundreds of files which are unsearchable on their main keyword. But it's hard to know because you need to search for them to see if they're searchable. And even more bizarrely, just because a keyword isn't visible on the file page on iS doesn't necessarily mean that the file isn't searchable on the keyword, the system does that too, so if you find a missing keyword, you also have to search the site to see if it's really there. Finally, I've had files which I found searching within my portfolio but not via a sitewide search, which isn't much good as I'm pretty sure I don't have a personal fanclub, or else I'd be selling directly.

drd

« Reply #17 on: January 29, 2019, 15:45 »
+1

ShadySue

« Reply #18 on: January 29, 2019, 16:10 »
+2

« Reply #19 on: January 29, 2019, 17:27 »
+6

« Reply #20 on: January 29, 2019, 17:52 »
0
Haven't added up the money for 2018 but it seems to be in top 3.
I am concerned about what a fellow stock photographer said about istock giving us almost nothing in a recent deal in this video,
Holding The Stock Media Sites Accountable,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kb8_NGZ68oo&index=4&list=WL
By Crafted Shutter,
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwoU327B927MD49NNf16gxw
He has posted here before and he seems to be professional
Best

fritz

  • I love Tom and Jerry music

« Reply #21 on: January 29, 2019, 18:59 »
+2

ShadySue

« Reply #22 on: January 29, 2019, 19:08 »
0
Haven't added up the money for 2018 but it seems to be in top 3.
I am concerned about what a fellow stock photographer said about istock giving us almost nothing in a recent deal in this video,
Holding The Stock Media Sites Accountable,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kb8_NGZ68oo&index=4&list=WL
By Crafted Shutter,
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwoU327B927MD49NNf16gxw
He has posted here before and he seems to be professional
Best

Indeed. He posted on here immediately above your post!

« Reply #23 on: January 29, 2019, 19:24 »
+2
I was exclusive with iStock before it was bought by Getty, Now I am showing my age :-)

« Reply #24 on: January 30, 2019, 06:08 »
0
My thoughts on this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kb8_NGZ68oo

Disturbing video... makes me want to remove my videos from istock.  Deserves it's own thread. 

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