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For independent contributors - in light of Istock's new policy of mirroring all non-exclusive content in the Partner Program, will you be agreeing to the new ASA or leaving the site?

I will be pulling my portfolio from Istockphoto
52 (21.8%)
I will be staying and allowing my content in the PP
104 (43.7%)
Not sure right now.
47 (19.7%)
Going exclusive.
10 (4.2%)
I left already.
18 (7.6%)
Never joined
7 (2.9%)

Total Members Voted: 214

Author Topic: Independents - do you plan to leave Istock or not?  (Read 40567 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

LSD72

  • My Bologna has a first name...
« Reply #50 on: August 30, 2011, 10:38 »
0
I left a long while back. It did not hurt me then because my pics just did not sell well enough there to justify staying with the early warning signs. DT was a better performer and SS has always been in the money for me. SS is still doing good residuals for me after I stopped shooting RF to work on my RM months ago.


« Reply #51 on: August 30, 2011, 11:13 »
0
I don't see a point in leaving. If they decide at some point they want exclusive content only (and that is probably coming soon enough), I won't be uploading of course, but meanwhile why not make some money. If they remove my entire portfolio from Istock and move it to their subscription sites, and I am not happy with the results I'll leave then. Although I don't see how it would be a good business decision for them - my port alone makes them 20K+ a month, and some top non-exclusives like Yuri earn them way more. Why would they want to lose that profit.
And by the way now it's clear that Photo+ collection was introduced in anticipation of this decision - they wanted us to lock in our files so we won't be able to delete them when they make changes to the agreement. Like I said back then, there is always a "catch", at least with Istock.

lisafx

« Reply #52 on: August 30, 2011, 11:25 »
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And by the way now it's clear that Photo+ collection was introduced in anticipation of this decision - they wanted us to lock in our files so we won't be able to delete them when they make changes to the agreement. Like I said back then, there is always a "catch", at least with Istock.

I completely agree with the first part of your post.  But just FYI, you CAN delete your Photos + images from the site anytime you want.  You just can't delete them from P+ and still keep them on the site (for 6 months). 

« Reply #53 on: August 30, 2011, 11:26 »
0
...And by the way now it's clear that Photo+ collection was introduced in anticipation of this decision - they wanted us to lock in our files so we won't be able to delete them when they make changes to the agreement....

This just isn't the case. You can delete (deactivate) your files at any time with no notice, P+ or not. The only thing you can't do for 6 months is move a P+ file back to the main collection

« Reply #54 on: August 30, 2011, 11:39 »
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Jodi Jacobson is assuming if a sale doesn't happen in 18mo it should go elsewhere and find a a place to sell.

Files older than 18mo are being targeted regardless of sales.   I think there is a lot of contributor confusion there.

As an exclusive "I Agreed" to the terms last night after a full day of reading and thought.  As exclusive it is actually changing very little on my end. I already have most of my footage on Getty, I have most of my non sellers on PP since 4mo ago and some content will migrate to Vetta/Agency and video to other partner sites.

In video we have been asking for lower prices for more mundane and not so spectacular shots and it seems the way they want to go about it is by offering them on other sites without adjusting prices down on iStock.    Ive been doing fairly well with video on Getty and time will tell how much better it gets if at all.    We have to compete with sites like Pond5 which give HD videos almost away at $10 in many instances.   This is a way to do it.

The master grand plan of this whole announcement is for iStock/Getty to flood the market of lower priced sites with the images that are available on Shutterstock, DT, FT, Canstock etc...  That way they will have a chance at diluting the market and maybe even offer lower prices for customers in order to hurt the competition with the same content for cheaper.  Non exclusives IMO are the main target of this and they know they can do it because most non exclusives have most of their images on so many sites that iStock calculates that one more site or multitude of sites wont be a burden since it will be automatically ingested, it will be instant dilution of the market.   Getty will offer competition from the bottom to the top.

Now for Exclusives I see it as a minor adjustment but for Non Exclusives it can be quite a step.  In any case the PP for non exclusives should in some way allow artists to include or exclude files from the offering.  This is probably the main problem with this whole thing.  I know that it is extremely important that as an exclusive PP files can be selected and excluded just like before.   If I didn't have that option I wouldn't have agreed. But since that isn't changing for Exclusives I see no major change in my case.  As a non exclusive it seems you have your work cut out for you.

« Reply #55 on: August 30, 2011, 11:40 »
0
And by the way now it's clear that Photo+ collection was introduced in anticipation of this decision - they wanted us to lock in our files so we won't be able to delete them when they make changes to the agreement. Like I said back then, there is always a "catch", at least with Istock.

I completely agree with the first part of your post.  But just FYI, you CAN delete your Photos + images from the site anytime you want.  You just can't delete them from P+ and still keep them on the site (for 6 months). 
Are you sure? I though "locking in" meant you can't move or delete. Well there must be some other catch then:) Coming soon:)

lisafx

« Reply #56 on: August 30, 2011, 12:02 »
0

Are you sure? I though "locking in" meant you can't move or delete. Well there must be some other catch then:) Coming soon:)

Go to the "administration" area on one of your P+ files.  You still have the option to "change status"/delete it.  At least for now...

But you're right, there is always another catch ;)

« Reply #57 on: August 30, 2011, 12:06 »
0
In this new announcemen they didn't even bother with any hype about how the changes would benefit their contributors. It was just "here's what we're doing to you now, take it or leave it".  No vision for the future, not even a fake one.  If they'd at least pretend, I could too.  It is indeed a loveless marriage.


Yes, there is certainly no pretense anymore that they care about contributors.  Very sad state of affairs, but completely predictable.  

But at least they've managed to keep JodiJacobson happy.  ROFL!  I'll have some of what she's smoking please ;D

http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=333754&messageid=6469394



I love this part:

"I make more than enough money here on IS, . . . . . . . "

Well, that's just dandy  :D

« Reply #58 on: August 30, 2011, 12:13 »
0
In this new announcemen they didn't even bother with any hype about how the changes would benefit their contributors. It was just "here's what we're doing to you now, take it or leave it".  No vision for the future, not even a fake one.  If they'd at least pretend, I could too.  It is indeed a loveless marriage.


Yes, there is certainly no pretense anymore that they care about contributors.  Very sad state of affairs, but completely predictable.  

But at least they've managed to keep JodiJacobson happy.  ROFL!  I'll have some of what she's smoking please ;D

http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=333754&messageid=6469394



I love this part:

"I make more than enough money here on IS, . . . . . . . "

Well, that's just dandy  :D


Yeah that's smart: assure them they're still paying us more than they really need to.

« Reply #59 on: August 30, 2011, 12:19 »
0
...The master grand plan of this whole announcement is for iStock/Getty to flood the market of lower priced sites with the images that are available on Shutterstock, DT, FT, Canstock etc...  That way they will have a chance at diluting the market and maybe even offer lower prices for customers in order to hurt the competition with the same content for cheaper.  Non exclusives IMO are the main target of this and they know they can do it because most non exclusives have most of their images on so many sites that iStock calculates that one more site or multitude of sites wont be a burden since it will be automatically ingested, it will be instant dilution of the market.   Getty will offer competition from the bottom to the top.
...

All this is premised on the assumption that iStock can actually get the partner program transfer working - something that's been broken for a very long time. But for the sake of argument, let's assume that they can, and keep it working to deliver new content from iStock to the PP sites.

For all subscription sites, they need more than a good size, comprehensive library. They need a stream of new content - without that, existing subscribers get restive and at some point don't renew. What independents could choose to do, with some cost to them, but not as much as pulling their portfolios from iStock, is give new content to other sites first - for a few months - and only to iStock later.

When buyers see that so-and-so's great new content is on SS but not on Thinkstock, they may decide that switching isn't a great idea.

And as far as drawing buyers away from SS with cheaper content, there are already other cheaper sites and still SS thrives, so it remains to be seen if Getty can "kill" SS even with the addition of independent iStock content.

And I will get a huge laugh if the exclusive IS supporters of the partner program start wailing loudly when their PP sales drop because of all the new content in the program (which will of course happen). If they then pull out of the PP as the sales aren't as good, Getty will then make PP mandatory for exclusives. It'd be funny if it wasn't our livelihoods those jerks were messing with.

« Reply #60 on: August 30, 2011, 12:41 »
0
But at least they've managed to keep JodiJacobson happy.  ROFL!  I'll have some of what she's smoking please ;D

http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=333754&messageid=6469394


Did anybody else notice the post from imgorthand a few down from Jodi's?  iStock now claims the right to pass private information along to its partners, including models' contact information.  Given how little I trust them, I'm sick at the idea of them entrusting all that personal data to firms as sleazy as they.

« Reply #61 on: August 30, 2011, 13:34 »
0
... As an exclusive "I Agreed" to the terms last night after a full day of reading and thought.  As exclusive it is actually changing very little on my end. ...

... The master grand plan of this whole announcement is for iStock/Getty to flood the market of lower priced sites with the images that are available on Shutterstock, DT, FT, Canstock etc...  That way they will have a chance at diluting the market and maybe even offer lower prices for customers in order to hurt the competition with the same content for cheaper.  Non exclusives IMO are the main target of this and they know they can do it because most non exclusives have most of their images on so many sites that iStock calculates that one more site or multitude of sites wont be a burden since it will be automatically ingested, it will be instant dilution of the market.   Getty will offer competition from the bottom to the top.

Now for Exclusives I see it as a minor adjustment but for Non Exclusives it can be quite a step.  In any case the PP for non exclusives should in some way allow artists to include or exclude files from the offering.  This is probably the main problem with this whole thing.  I know that it is extremely important that as an exclusive PP files can be selected and excluded just like before.   If I didn't have that option I wouldn't have agreed. But since that isn't changing for Exclusives I see no major change in my case.  As a non exclusive it seems you have your work cut out for you.

Sorry but you are quite wrong __ these changes are much more worrying for exclusives. As an exclusive the big change for you was that Istock suddenly became your distributor and not your agent. Legally that lets them off the hook of any duty of care to you and your income in the future. It's the same for independents of course but in our case we do not have all our eggs in one basket. If ever there was a time to reconsider your exclusive status it is now.

lisafx

« Reply #62 on: August 30, 2011, 13:38 »
0

Did anybody else notice the post from imgorthand a few down from Jodi's?  iStock now claims the right to pass private information along to its partners, including models' contact information.  Given how little I trust them, I'm sick at the idea of them entrusting all that personal data to firms as sleazy as they.


I did catch that.  It definitely concerns me. But I will hold off freaking out on that particular issue until I get some idea of the details.  

What I take it to mean is that when our images go on the distributor sites, the releases will be made available to them too.  This is standard at all the micros - you have to have releases there with your images.  What I DON'T take it to mean is that confidential information will be shared publicly, or with people who license the images.  

lagereek

« Reply #63 on: August 30, 2011, 13:42 »
0
... As an exclusive "I Agreed" to the terms last night after a full day of reading and thought.  As exclusive it is actually changing very little on my end. ...

... The master grand plan of this whole announcement is for iStock/Getty to flood the market of lower priced sites with the images that are available on Shutterstock, DT, FT, Canstock etc...  That way they will have a chance at diluting the market and maybe even offer lower prices for customers in order to hurt the competition with the same content for cheaper.  Non exclusives IMO are the main target of this and they know they can do it because most non exclusives have most of their images on so many sites that iStock calculates that one more site or multitude of sites wont be a burden since it will be automatically ingested, it will be instant dilution of the market.   Getty will offer competition from the bottom to the top.

Now for Exclusives I see it as a minor adjustment but for Non Exclusives it can be quite a step.  In any case the PP for non exclusives should in some way allow artists to include or exclude files from the offering.  This is probably the main problem with this whole thing.  I know that it is extremely important that as an exclusive PP files can be selected and excluded just like before.   If I didn't have that option I wouldn't have agreed. But since that isn't changing for Exclusives I see no major change in my case.  As a non exclusive it seems you have your work cut out for you.

Sorry but you are quite wrong __ these changes are much more worrying for exclusives. As an exclusive the big change for you was that Istock suddenly became your distributor and not your agent. Legally that lets them off the hook of any duty of care to you and your income in the future. It's the same for independents of course but in our case we do not have all our eggs in one basket. If ever there was a time to reconsider your exclusive status it is now.

No!  James is right!  and YOU ARE WRONG,  as usual. sigh.

« Reply #64 on: August 30, 2011, 13:48 »
0
And I will get a huge laugh if the exclusive IS supporters of the partner program start wailing loudly when their PP sales drop because of all the new content in the program (which will of course happen). If they then pull out of the PP as the sales aren't as good, Getty will then make PP mandatory for exclusives. It'd be funny if it wasn't our livelihoods those jerks were messing with.

Very insightful and well its probably going to be a reality going forward.    Now the PP is kind of happening because its under-fed and when all of this new content floods it, it will probably tank for current PP supporters, it will be a mess.   

Since I'm focusing on Video since the big black days of last year RC plan, I am affected less and less as time goes by.   

What I see in the not too distant future is more consolidation and less sites out there, some copycat sites will die, others absorbed and in the end it will all stabilize into 2-3 major companies. We know that Getty will remain in a strong form considering the amount of properties it has absorbed. SS seems to be positioned as a strong contender with their possible future ownership of other sites with Corbis being a third. In Video Pond5 seems to be doing good and it may very well survive but couldn't leave out the possibility of it being bought out.

I frankly see no easy way out of the current situation.

rubyroo

« Reply #65 on: August 30, 2011, 13:59 »
0
What independents could choose to do, with some cost to them, but not as much as pulling their portfolios from iStock, is give new content to other sites first - for a few months - and only to iStock later.

I think that's a brilliant suggestion.

I'm thinking that I'll stick with only giving my best work to the other agencies and sending lesser works to iStock, but I'm going to incorporate this idea too.  .
« Last Edit: August 30, 2011, 14:05 by rubyroo »

« Reply #66 on: August 30, 2011, 14:02 »
0
What I see in the not too distant future is more consolidation and less sites out there, some copycat sites will die, others absorbed and in the end it will all stabilize into 2-3 major companies. We know that Getty will remain in a strong form considering the amount of properties it has absorbed. SS seems to be positioned as a strong contender with their possible future ownership of other sites with Corbis being a third. In Video Pond5 seems to be doing good and it may very well survive but couldn't leave out the possibility of it being bought out.

I actually see the exact opposite. My income has been slowly spreading out between multiple agencies over the last two years. Companies like iStock are moving closer and closer to the rest of the pack. New players and older smaller players can easily come into the market and compete. If anything, I think the market is primed for a new big player with a contributor focus or multiple smaller focused niche shops.

RT


« Reply #67 on: August 30, 2011, 14:19 »
0
What independents could choose to do, with some cost to them, but not as much as pulling their portfolios from iStock, is give new content to other sites first - for a few months - and only to iStock later.

That's been happening for years for a lot of independents, especially the large producers - because of the upload limits.

In some ways it only goes to strengthen the iStock "campaign" of having the best quality images, because by the time it comes to being able to upload content you did from a shoot 6,12,18 months ago you already know which are the best sellers so you upload them to iStock.

« Reply #68 on: August 30, 2011, 14:24 »
0
What independents could choose to do, with some cost to them, but not as much as pulling their portfolios from iStock, is give new content to other sites first - for a few months - and only to iStock later.

That's what would make sense - except "later" will probably become "never".   They won't get anything new from me unless I see my earnings there actually going up as a result of these changes - which seems  unlikely.   

xst

« Reply #69 on: August 30, 2011, 19:47 »
0


give new content to other sites first - for a few months - and only to iStock later.

That's exactly my plan, making 3-4 months delay.

Lisa,

would you go with this?

If we can really somehow publicize this idea and let as much contributors on board, as possible - it may make a difference.

« Reply #70 on: August 31, 2011, 02:31 »
0
Many of my older images are already placed on TS via the old StockXpert collection
(they make a pathetic income). Sales and revenue at IS are constantly decreasing since 2-3 years now so I very rarely upload any new images there.
My response is simple: I do not change my policy.
1. I leave my port there,
2. But I do not upload new content.
It means they sell my older images while other agencies are selling the new and fresh content. If this is what IS wants I do not mind.

Wim

« Reply #71 on: August 31, 2011, 03:12 »
0
.
« Last Edit: December 08, 2011, 02:44 by Wim »

rubyroo

« Reply #72 on: August 31, 2011, 03:42 »
0
The thing is that none of us know where . any of this is going.  This is all happening under H&F's authority, but when they sell it off, who will take the helm and what will they do?  We simply have no idea.

For that reason, I'm keeping a toe in the water there.  But my best work will go elsewhere, as I insist on asserting my right to determine what goes in the PP.

« Reply #73 on: August 31, 2011, 05:22 »
0
....

Signed:  sunnymars

You definitely have serious emotional problems . I don't know what exactly brought you to that state but it is obvious - your choice of words , constant overstatement , unfocused anger and unconscious search for something to be mad at . You thrive on situations like this . In reality you don't even have a point .

But sunnymars is not completely wrong. The thread shows how most contributors are so dependent on the sites (they are not independents! :D ) that they don't leave no matter what, and of course the sites count on that. I may leave all microstock sites and that would not make any difference in my life. I'm lucky to have a good full-time job.

What surprises me more is actually people discussing new uploads. What has been uploaded is already there generating income, even if decreasing income. I've been earning money in the past two years without any new upload (andthis is basically the reason I stay). But if it really worth the time remaining in this field? Putting hours and hours of work, investing on equipment, models, props - for what? I wonder if all the knowledge and creativity of people here would not be better used in another activity.

PaulieWalnuts

  • On the Wrong Side of the Business
« Reply #74 on: August 31, 2011, 06:08 »
0
The thing is that none of us know where . any of this is going.  This is all happening under H&F's authority, but when they sell it off, who will take the helm and what will they do?  We simply have no idea.

For that reason, I'm keeping a toe in the water there.  But my best work will go elsewhere, as I insist on asserting my right to determine what goes in the PP.

To get an idea of where this is all going, think like an agency instead of a contributor.

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