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Author Topic: Changes to the Referral program  (Read 13020 times)

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EmberMike

« on: February 05, 2013, 10:20 »
+1
Just got this email:

Quote
To start, we're going to raise payouts from $0.03 to $0.04 cents per referred download. Were also going to update the term so that payouts will be earned for the first two years that a referred contributor is active on our site. These changes will become effective as of February 28, 2013 and will affect contributors you have referred in the past, as well as those you refer in the future. There will be no changes to the footage referral program at this time.

Sounds like a downgrade rather than an upgrade. It's more money in the short term, but our referral earnings get cut off after 2 years.

Not cool, SS. This is a pay cut for those who have produced lots of referrals or have referred high-value artists who produce lots of sales volume.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2013, 10:32 by EmberMike »


« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2013, 10:26 »
0
Interesting. It's hard to tell when someone was referred, so I don't know how this will affect me right away. I figured this would eventually happen though.

« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2013, 10:29 »
+1
I agree with Ember Mike, not nice from SS. I would have prefered the old version of referral program.

EmberMike

« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2013, 10:31 »
0

I get $10-$12 per day in referral earnings. I suspect there will be no grace period for the 2/28 date this change becomes effective, so as of that day I'm down $10-$12 per day. Thanks, SS.

Really curious about how the big-time referrers feel about this, guys like Lee.

« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2013, 10:35 »
+13
not good, a gentle reminder for you not to trust any agency too much.

« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2013, 10:37 »
+3
I guess this will be a big blow to a small number of people. It doesn't make much difference to me but I won't bother with referral links any more.

« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2013, 10:47 »
0
With 200,000 downloads/day ( http://submit.shutterstock.com/forum/post-2423551.html ), this will bring SS some nice money,... which will be lost for plenty of people. I don't think this will be only a few isolated cases. I too will miss the old referral program and I just recommended a few people (but one of them is a really good one).

The problem is when people start with microstock, they do not have big portfolio, and after the time they will reach good sales - cut! No more referred downloads. So you won't get the share at times when it matters most.

« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2013, 10:51 »
0
Really curious about how the big-time referrers feel about this,
How I feel about this? Just imagine that your referrals generated 6,2% of all Shutterstock sales from the beginning of its history. Of course I'm happy!
Can anybody lend me a bottle of poison? ;D
« Last Edit: February 05, 2013, 10:53 by zastavkin »

« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2013, 10:53 »
+3
Quote
The goal of these changes is to bring a wider variety of new contributors and content to our site.

Can they just say it is about money?

EmberMike

« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2013, 10:54 »
+3
Quote
The goal of these changes is to bring a wider variety of new contributors and content to our site.

Can they just say it is about money?

Seriously. Is not about bringing in new contributors and content, it's about killing the referral program. Nothing else.

« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2013, 10:58 »
+7
OOooh, everyones fav microstock co. finaly took the first step showing what they too are about.

« Reply #11 on: February 05, 2013, 11:03 »
+3
To be honest, I'm surprised they didn't cut it a long time ago. The need to pay for luring new contributors in vanished long ago and with it the benefit to SS of such a programme.

« Reply #12 on: February 05, 2013, 11:05 »
+2
Considering it takes at least 2 years for anybody to build a reasonable portfolio to bring in income, no surprise that some money hungry CEO would take advantage of this. I CANNOT BELIEVE they are suddenly adding a time limit cap, what a huge stab in the back.


Referring contributers literally helped SS build their entire image collection. What a * huge backstabbing.

Microbius

« Reply #13 on: February 05, 2013, 11:16 »
+1
It also doesn't really effect me, but I too am disappointed to see the weasel words in the announcement.  "The goal of these changes is to bring a wider variety of new contributors and content to our site."

That's the kind of wording I'd expect from IStock

How about using a bit of that extra cash to give us a pay rise? there is such a thing as inflation!

EmberMike

« Reply #14 on: February 05, 2013, 11:25 »
+3
It also doesn't really effect me, but I too am disappointed to see the weasel words in the announcement.  "The goal of these changes is to bring a wider variety of new contributors and content to our site."

That's the kind of wording I'd expect from IStock...

Bingo.

I can take the financial hit. It stings, but I'll figure out how to make it up somehow. What is really disappointing is the way in which this is being communicated to us, with barely 3 weeks notice and using some very istock-like weasel wording.

RacePhoto

« Reply #15 on: February 05, 2013, 11:31 »
0
Interesting. It's hard to tell when someone was referred, so I don't know how this will affect me right away. I figured this would eventually happen though.

Earnings > Referred Contributors > it shows the year. Not the month. I'd agree that we only get a general view of when they went active.

Pretty soon it won't matter one bit to me. If the terms are, since they first went active, my only accepted referral will go dark next month. If it's from the date of the contract change, I might have another $4 in my future.

I feel bad for the people who worked hard for years to build a good referral list. Especially the person who referred me, because she was trying all over on many forums and encouraging people to join SS.

I guess this will be a big blow to a small number of people. It doesn't make much difference to me but I won't bother with referral links any more.

Removing mine right now.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2013, 11:34 by RacePhoto »

« Reply #16 on: February 05, 2013, 11:35 »
0
I have 47 referred photographers. All of them joined 2010 and earlier.


« Reply #17 on: February 05, 2013, 11:37 »
0
Earnings > Referred Contributors > it shows the year. Not the month. I'd agree that we only get a general view of when they went active.

Ah, I see. It's on their profile. Thanks.

lisafx

« Reply #18 on: February 05, 2013, 11:45 »
+13
I get under $1 a day in referral earnings, so this won't really affect my income.  But it does give me a slightly uneasy feeling about what's coming next...

« Reply #19 on: February 05, 2013, 11:50 »
0
for what its worth-- I posted this on the iStock / Getty / Google D-Day (Deactivation Day) page

http://www.facebook.com/events/157094501107518/permalink/160265830790385/?notif_t=like

BUT my opinions here seam to fall on def ears, for some reason?

Just delet yout istock/getty/google acct. Put them down as a loss and move on. untill the next co. tries something similar. then we do the same to them.
 Thats the only way you can protect your IP and send a strong message, this diactivating crap is doing nothing. eventually, they all want to take our work and give it away for free. its obvious with the constant diminishing % we are given. and dont praise any microstock co. as being good and fair. shutterstock just changed the way we make $$ from refferals. in a bad way for us. i have been waiting for them to show there true colors. what do yo think they are going to do when say istock gos away. i will tell you they will be worse then istock. they are worse selling our stuff for a quarter--wake up ppl!!! we need to use these co. for ourselves. NOT them to use us for themselves! when a co. starts pushing us we move on. One thing you do not understand is that WE hold the power over them. WE are stronger and can push them around. but it has to be "WE" together that make the move/change.

RacePhoto

« Reply #20 on: February 05, 2013, 11:56 »
+4
I get under $1 a day in referral earnings, so this won't really affect my income.  But it does give me a slightly uneasy feeling about what's coming next...

EXACTLY! +1 and a ♥



« Reply #21 on: February 05, 2013, 11:58 »
+4
I get under $1 a day in referral earnings, so this won't really affect my income.  But it does give me a slightly uneasy feeling about what's coming next...

As others have said the need for the referral system probably disappeared long ago. The person that got my referral, from a cheeky post on the Fred Miranda forum, is still 'earning' about $100 per month from my sales __ over 8 years later.

I'm hoping that by reducing the referral system they can pay more out to contributors instead because they're the people that are actually doing the work and generating the content.

I wouldn't be surprised is this has something to do with a sudden rush of ex-exclusives from Istock uploading large portfolios and all attached to a 'referral'. There's no value in that to SS.

« Reply #22 on: February 05, 2013, 12:05 »
+1
I get under $1 a day in referral earnings, so this won't really affect my income.  But it does give me a slightly uneasy feeling about what's coming next...

As others have said the need for the referral system probably disappeared long ago. The person that got my referral, from a cheeky post on the Fred Miranda forum, is still 'earning' about $100 per month from my sales __ over 8 years later.

I'm hoping that by reducing the referral system they can pay more out to contributors instead because they're the people that are actually doing the work and generating the content.

I wouldn't be surprised is this has something to do with a sudden rush of ex-exclusives from Istock uploading large portfolios and all attached to a 'referral'. There's no value in that to SS.

If they wanted to end the referral system then they would stop all future referrals, not suddenly gouge us on our referral earnings. It's all about the profit, and if you think doing this will result in pay increases for contributors, then LOL.

« Reply #23 on: February 05, 2013, 12:08 »
+1

I'm hoping that by reducing the referral system they can pay more out to contributors instead because they're the people that are actually doing the work and generating the content.


i wish of that but ironically, that isn't where the trend of microstock is going. we have 1 or 2 agencies having almost 85% of the market and making all the decisions for us. less profit for happy contributors ? no such things.

Microbius

« Reply #24 on: February 05, 2013, 12:14 »
+3
Actually they probably had no choice but to change the referral structure, because of the large numbers of exclusives being referred to the site outstripping the growth in new buyers.

I would have preferred if they didn't bother with the 3-4c raise, put in the two year limit and raised contributor's rates instead.

It is crazy that referers have been earning in perpetuity from people they refered 5+ years ago.


 

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