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Poll

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 41124 times)

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« Reply #150 on: September 03, 2011, 21:21 »
0
'shoot what you like,'

Not necessarily.


« Reply #151 on: September 04, 2011, 02:25 »
0
'shoot what you like,'

Not necessarily.
It works with alamy and they seem to sell photos that are rejected by the big microstock sites.  I love having the freedom to not have to think if a photo will get accepted before taking it.  That was really influencing me.

« Reply #152 on: September 04, 2011, 03:10 »
0
'shoot what you like,'

Not necessarily.
It works with alamy and they seem to sell photos that are rejected by the big microstock sites.  I love having the freedom to not have to think if a photo will get accepted before taking it.  That was really influencing me.

Actually, you're both right.  As long as you're not fulltime stockphotographer, you can really shoot what you like.  If it does not sell, well that's bad luck.  But if stock photography is your only income, I'm sure Sean is right to say that you often have to shoot what sells, even if you don't really like it. 
It's just that even as a fulltime photographer, I prefer to diversify and NOT depend on stock photography only.

grp_photo

« Reply #153 on: September 04, 2011, 04:53 »
0
... There is nothing in this new ASA policy that will boost TS to the point where it is any more of a threat to SS than it is today.

True. SS has more content, better content and the presentation is far superior too with search order choices, etc. Even if TS subscriptions were half the price of SS it wouldn't seem good value. I really can't think of any reason why a buyer would choose TS over SS ... unless of course they want dowdy images of businessmen wearing brown suits using cell phones the size of house-bricks.
LOL :-)
Actually I think TS would have good stuff via the Hemera collection but the majority of these collection are hid behind their dated wholly owned stuff, now wonder sales via the TS/StockXpert - route are so ridiculous specially compared to what one did make at StockXpert. But with the new ASA they have all the good and new stuff from the Independents if they are place it right they can compete with SS and they will do that is their plan obviously!
« Last Edit: September 04, 2011, 04:59 by grp_photo »

grp_photo

« Reply #154 on: September 04, 2011, 04:58 »
0
And to "compete with a photographer who has less talent and who's prepared to do the job for less money" seems to be a description of microstock as well.
;-)

« Reply #155 on: September 04, 2011, 06:58 »
0
'shoot what you like,'

Not necessarily.
It works with alamy and they seem to sell photos that are rejected by the big microstock sites.  I love having the freedom to not have to think if a photo will get accepted before taking it.  That was really influencing me.

Well, you don't have to attempt to sell every image you capture.

helix7

« Reply #156 on: September 04, 2011, 11:25 »
0
Actually I think TS would have good stuff via the Hemera collection but the majority of these collection are hid behind their dated wholly owned stuff, now wonder sales via the TS/StockXpert - route are so ridiculous specially compared to what one did make at StockXpert. But with the new ASA they have all the good and new stuff from the Independents if they are place it right they can compete with SS and they will do that is their plan obviously!

I really don't think they can compete. The independent stuff is a fraction of the content from the same artists that's available at SS. Upload limits prevent all of the same content from making it to TS. On top of that you have the EPS8 restriction at istock, which also prevents that content from getting to TS.

And don't forget that istock is it's own worst enemy. SS has flourished with a simple search engine and a solid site that doesn't get in it's own way. TS will likely suffer the same effects of the istock mentality.

I was concerned that TS might become a threat to SS, but really when I think about it, it's actually hard to imagine TS really ever getting to that level. Throw in all the exclusive content and maybe they've got something there. But right now, without anything in the ASA requiring exclusives to participate, TS doesn't have much of a distinguishing factor in place to ever pull in buyers from other sub sites and seriously compete with SS.

« Reply #157 on: September 04, 2011, 13:13 »
0
Actually I think TS would have good stuff via the Hemera collection but the majority of these collection are hid behind their dated wholly owned stuff, now wonder sales via the TS/StockXpert - route are so ridiculous specially compared to what one did make at StockXpert. But with the new ASA they have all the good and new stuff from the Independents if they are place it right they can compete with SS and they will do that is their plan obviously!

I really don't think they can compete. The independent stuff is a fraction of the content from the same artists that's available at SS. Upload limits prevent all of the same content from making it to TS. On top of that you have the EPS8 restriction at istock, which also prevents that content from getting to TS.

And don't forget that istock is it's own worst enemy. SS has flourished with a simple search engine and a solid site that doesn't get in it's own way. TS will likely suffer the same effects of the istock mentality.

I was concerned that TS might become a threat to SS, but really when I think about it, it's actually hard to imagine TS really ever getting to that level. Throw in all the exclusive content and maybe they've got something there. But right now, without anything in the ASA requiring exclusives to participate, TS doesn't have much of a distinguishing factor in place to ever pull in buyers from other sub sites and seriously compete with SS.

Perhaps they never intended to compete, but just grab a share of the sub market. Better to be in it than out of it completely.  ??? 

« Reply #158 on: September 04, 2011, 21:42 »
0
   Maria, you make a good point. There are many artists here that could easily compete in the general market for assignment work, whether it's in the advertising, business to business, or local markets. (...)

I don't mean that necessarily one needs to works as an assignment photographer or a wedding photographer. For instance, one can think of teaching photography or running workshops (I know one photographer who lives basically out of that).

Those of you with succesful portfolios would still make a considerate income from them, I was only considering that maybe when you balance the work effort required to produce more images versus the low commissions these images will generate, then maybe you could find something more profitable for your time - in or out photography.

helix7

« Reply #159 on: September 05, 2011, 13:21 »
0
Perhaps they never intended to compete, but just grab a share of the sub market. Better to be in it than out of it completely.  ??? 

I'm sure. That's how Getty ended up buying istock, figuring that if another agency was going to take business away from them, it had better be their own agency.

Knowing the istock/getty mentality, though, I have a hard time believing that they only want TS to be in the game. I'm more inclined to believe that they want TS to be a major player, maybe even the major player in the subscription market, and unseat the current microstock leader. istock used to be the top microstock agency. Now that's Shutterstock. I'm sure there has been talk around getty and istock HQs about regaining that top spot and doing something about that thorn in their side (SS). In fact I wouldn't be surprised to hear someday that getty attempted to buy SS. That's the getty way, buy up the competition.

Except in the case of SS, that didn't happen for whatever reason. So the next best thing is to put some energy behind a similar microstock subscription property.

I think they intend to compete and grab a significant share of the subscription market. They didn't kill off the internal istock subscription program just because it wasn't working. They killed it off to pave the way for a more Shutterstock-style subscription agency. Now the next goal in that process has to be to take over the market. And the next step in doing that is to leverage the one distinct thing istock has over SS, that being the exclusive content.

« Reply #160 on: September 05, 2011, 14:32 »
0
I wonder what SS will do to protect themselves?  If it looks inevitable that TS will get all the istock exclusive content, perhaps it will push SS in to offering image exclusivity, giving us a choice to use just them for some of our images?  I think they could build a great exclusive images collection quite quickly if they wanted to.  They could charge a premium to buyers for exclusive images and pay us a bigger commission.

« Reply #161 on: September 05, 2011, 15:25 »
0
"They didn't kill off the internal istock subscription program just because it wasn't working. They killed it off to pave the way for a more Shutterstock-style subscription agency."

The IS subscription plan is working fine.  I get 10-20 sub dls a day.

« Reply #162 on: September 05, 2011, 17:27 »
0
I hate being forced into this position, but I will most likely leave iStock over this. I felt like a sellout when I stayed in spite of the commission cut and now they want to force me into having my work on The Abomination Known as Thinkstock? I have to give up control of my work just to have my images on their site! I will be giving up few hundred a month over this, so it's been a very difficult decision to make. If their intent is to drive Shutterstock out of business, they'll have to do it without my help.

« Reply #163 on: September 06, 2011, 06:22 »
0
I've gone from thinking I will accept this to thinking I will leave istock.  As I don't upload any new images, my earnings are going to dwindle away.  This could be a good time to just dump them.

I think that if I accept this, they will just carry on making things worse for me, more commission cuts and more moving my images to the end of the search.  If I leave after my images are mirrored on the PP sites, how long will it take them to remove them?

I also wonder what will happen if a significant number of us remove our portfolios?  The other sites already seem to be getting some of the old istock buyers, hopefully more would look elsewhere and the loss of earnings wouldn't be too severe.

I detest the 17% commission I'm getting for stills and the 15% I'm getting for footage, it really feels like a good time to get out of there.  Going along with this just makes the other sites think they can do whatever they want.

The loss of earnings would hit me really badly but hopefully it would motivate me to work much harder.  I've lost motivation at the moment and perhaps this is what I need.

lthn

    This user is banned.
« Reply #164 on: September 06, 2011, 06:53 »
0
I'm a few bucks from a payout, if that's done, I'm gone. It's miniscule money they made me, but losing even that to these crooks would be infuriating, and I don't trust a word of imps like Lobo or that JJwhateva' guy about getting the money.

My last word about this is that leaving them and taking some hit is actually an investment in your future.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 06:58 by lthn »

« Reply #165 on: September 06, 2011, 07:50 »
0
I'll be leaving!   I've stopped uploading new images a while back but staying for 15% commissions will only strengthen the case for lower commissions at the other agencies I submit to!  I'm not the best photographer around but

The question I have is where on the site can you pull your portfolio?

« Reply #166 on: September 06, 2011, 07:56 »
0
I'll be leaving!   I've stopped uploading new images a while back but staying for 15% commissions will only strengthen the case for lower commissions at the other agencies I submit to!  I'm not the best photographer around but I know the images that have been accepted have more value elsewhere than keeping them at this agency!

The question I have is where on the site can you pull your portfolio?

« Reply #167 on: September 06, 2011, 08:07 »
0
I'll be leaving!   I've stopped uploading new images a while back but staying for 15% commissions will only strengthen the case for lower commissions at the other agencies I submit to!  I'm not the best photographer around but I know the images that have been accepted have more value elsewhere than keeping them at this agency!

The question I have is where on the site can you pull your portfolio?

You have to go into each image individually and deactivate it. Click on your image in your portfolio, and on the details page, in the right bottom corner, I think it says Administration. Open that section and you will see where you can deactivate (sorry, I don't have any images left there now, so I can't go check for the exact procedure).

Or, you might be able to email support and have them do it, but if you want it done quickly, you should do it yourself. I'm guessing it will take them months to get to it.

edit: Or, maybe not...with them being in such a big hurry to get rid of independents off their site, maybe they will be happy to oblige!
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 08:08 by cclapper »

« Reply #168 on: September 06, 2011, 08:16 »
0
Thanks,

I've actually found the email address to request my account termination!  Should take approx. 30 days to complete!

I'll be leaving!   I've stopped uploading new images a while back but staying for 15% commissions will only strengthen the case for lower commissions at the other agencies I submit to!  I'm not the best photographer around but I know the images that have been accepted have more value elsewhere than keeping them at this agency!

The question I have is where on the site can you pull your portfolio?

You have to go into each image individually and deactivate it. Click on your image in your portfolio, and on the details page, in the right bottom corner, I think it says Administration. Open that section and you will see where you can deactivate (sorry, I don't have any images left there now, so I can't go check for the exact procedure).

Or, you might be able to email support and have them do it, but if you want it done quickly, you should do it yourself. I'm guessing it will take them months to get to it.

edit: Or, maybe not...with them being in such a big hurry to get rid of independents off their site, maybe they will be happy to oblige!

« Reply #169 on: September 06, 2011, 09:15 »
0
Thanks,
I've actually found the email address to request my account termination!  Should take approx. 30 days to complete!

Is that somewhere on the IS site, maybe you could link to...or care to share?

« Reply #170 on: September 06, 2011, 09:53 »
0
^^^ Have a look here

Quote
Q  How do I say no to the new ASA?
A  Contact artists@istockphoto.com to close your account.


http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=333842&page=1

« Reply #171 on: September 06, 2011, 12:52 »
0
^^^ Have a look here

Quote
Q  How do I say no to the new ASA?
A  Contact artists@istockphoto.com to close your account.


http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=333842&page=1

Thanks for the link. I read the rest of the page and I'm still a little confused about the process of closing my account. I had assumed that I could simple give my notice before Sept 28, and continue earning royalties up until that point. Then I read this:
Quote
qIf Im non-exclusive and I deactivate certain files from my portfolio, will that be enough to keep them from being added to the Partner Program?
a Yes. As of September 29th the new ASA takes effect. So you will have 30 days from today to remove whatever content you would like. If you decide to deactivate your content after September 29th, it will take up to 30 days to remove your content from the Partner sites, in accordance with the new ASA.

Now I'm wondering if I have the luxury of waiting until the end of Sept to give notice and still manage to keep my images off of Thinkstock...

« Reply #172 on: September 06, 2011, 12:58 »
0
Now I'm wondering if I have the luxury of waiting until the end of Sept to give notice and still manage to keep my images off of Thinkstock...

In theory, no.  If you wait until the end of September, your images will qualify for PeePeeing for the thirty days it'll take to remove them.

In practice, you probably do have until the end of September.  iStock's migration process is so screwed up, I seriously doubt they'll get everything possible moved over the day the ASA goes into effect.  More likely it'll take them weeks to get it going, so your cancelation will arrive either before or not long after your images enter ThinkStock.

Then again, what are the odds that they'll actually get them removed in the promised 30 days?

« Reply #173 on: September 06, 2011, 13:04 »
0
Now I'm wondering if I have the luxury of waiting until the end of Sept to give notice and still manage to keep my images off of Thinkstock...

In theory, no.  If you wait until the end of September, your images will qualify for PeePeeing for the thirty days it'll take to remove them.

In practice, you probably do have until the end of September.  iStock's migration process is so screwed up, I seriously doubt they'll get everything possible moved over the day the ASA goes into effect.  More likely it'll take them weeks to get it going, so your cancelation will arrive either before or not long after your images enter ThinkStock.

Then again, what are the odds that they'll actually get them removed in the promised 30 days?

Yeah, I wouldn't really trust that 30 day promise. It took me months to get images removed from there, after I had already been opted out of PPs, and after I asked them to be removed (somehow they automatically found their way from StockXpert, even though I opted out, even though I closed my StockXpert account immediately, before the process was even supposed to happen).

Thanks for posting the link.

« Reply #174 on: September 06, 2011, 13:07 »
0
Yeah, I wouldn't really trust that 30 day promise. It took me months to get images removed from there, after I had already been opted out of PPs, and after I asked them to be removed (somehow they automatically found their way from StockXpert, even though I opted out, even though I closed my StockXpert account immediately, before the process was even supposed to happen).

Did you ever actually get paid for the sales whilst your images were being held hostage?


 

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