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Author Topic: iPhone/iPad app with images prohibitted by iStock  (Read 7804 times)

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« on: October 31, 2011, 05:19 »
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Hello,
I'm currently looking into developing an iPad/iPhone-app (App store) where the user can see rendered 3D-images made by me. These images are not for sale on iStock, nor can the user of the App buy them through my app, it's purely for the informative aspect that the viewer can consult these images. I'm still condiering if it is a free app with ads, or a buying app without ads.

I've asked Istockphoto's Artist relations and they told me my exclusivity agreement prohibits me from offering this app on the App Store (would be a breach of the Exclusivity agreement). I was astonished to hear this!
Has anybody experienced this before or does anybody have a similar app (in production). I don't know if it matters if the app is free or not.

Some of my arguments:
-I'm not selling RF images through this app.
-It is an app that I'm selling not an image(s) (you can NOT buy the images in any way in the app).
-The images are purely informative/educational.
-The app has a one time fixed price or is free (with ads). There is no kind of licensing involved.
-The disclaimer of the app states that it is prohibited to use any content for commercial purposes.

If I terminate my exclusivity, is the use of the images in my app allowed?

All feedback is greatly appreciated!
David


« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2011, 05:29 »
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I'm surprised that iStock said it was against their terms if buyers cannot download the photos from the app.

I could go to your port, purchase your photos and create the app you are talking about and it shouldn't be against any of the terms, so you should certainly be able to do so... or am I missing something.

« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2011, 06:01 »
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I've asked Istockphoto's Artist relations and they told me my exclusivity agreement prohibits me from offering this app on the App Store (would be a breach of the Exclusivity agreement). I was astonished to hear this!
You can expect anything from iSuck. Why are you staying there anyways? That site is doomed. As to Apple apps, that's indeed a promising source for great revenue, if your apps are good. I'm actually moving into apps (and software) again after all those years since images microstock is dead. Apple has the right business model for contributors. They make it worthwhile.

As Leaf said, there are numerous ways around this ridiculous requirement.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2011, 06:04 by AttilaTheNun »

« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2011, 06:56 »
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If I understand situation correctly - this is the most indefensible ruling I've ever heard of related to stock photography.

The dangerously inept company representative must think s/he's dealing with an idiot.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2011, 11:45 by ann »

« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2011, 14:54 »
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Thank you all for the replies. I've just contacted Contributor relations with additional clarifications and questions. Hopefully this was a misunderstanding. I'll keep you posted.

« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2011, 06:38 »
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Still in contact with iStock over this, but it seems I'll be cancelling my exclusivity due to iStock's stand on this. I'll keep you posted.

« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2011, 07:01 »
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I think you'll find quite often Contributor Relations are woefully ill informed.
Many a time I have heard of them giving out contradictory information.

You're allowed to sell prints if you're exclusive, you're allowed to sell Rights Managed if you're exclusive.
What your considering sounds like a multiseat extended license for software, which if someone bought your images they could do, there should be no reason you couldn't...

Microbius

« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2011, 07:09 »
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This must be a misunderstanding, the last reply is almost exactly what I as going to say.
You could transfer the rights to someone to do just what you are suggesting with a license through I Stock, the idea that you as the rights holder are prohibited from doing the same thing is ludicrous.

« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2011, 14:48 »
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After a lot of mailing with istock support and a lot of answers which can be read in numerous ways. I decided to drop my exclusivity. Basically they tell me that I should license my own files (extended licenses). And for images that are not available on istock, I should upload them, if they're not approved I can ask CE to grant me a license anyway (this would be free,-not clear to me). Support also sent me a part of the exclusivity-ASA which describes that istock reserves itself the rights to sell not-approved images through other channels, something I wasn't aware of. The difference between apps that include images which can not be downloaded through the app and apps in which the images can be downloaded, is a big difference but reading the answers from support don't indicate clearly they see it that way.

Well, to make a long story short: I'm sick and tired of vague responses to detailed questions + answers that also indicate a bad knowledge of people at istock-support. Furthermore istock is really going down the drain with the many screw-ups of the last year(s), that I decided to cancel my exclusivity. So I can upload my files on other sites. And most important I'm free to do with my images as I see fit and not be hampered by misleading/bad- support and a company that's really NOT taking its contributors seriously anymore.
« Last Edit: November 18, 2011, 14:51 by Raycat »

« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2011, 14:52 »
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... I decided to drop my exclusivity...
Let me be the first to welcome you to the wild, wonderful world of image independents! I think you will enjoy it.

« Reply #10 on: November 18, 2011, 14:54 »
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That is ludicrous. They have no control over your images - they are yours.

Good move I say, of course now they're getting a bigger slice of your royalties, which makes them more profitable - but I guess that's the catch 22...

« Reply #11 on: November 18, 2011, 14:55 »
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Let me be the first to welcome you to the wild, wonderful world of image independents! I think you will enjoy it.
Thanks  ;)
Before I went exclusive with istock I was an independent, at that time Istock was a company that I was proud of to be affiliated with. Now? not anymore...

« Reply #12 on: November 18, 2011, 14:58 »
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That is ludicrous. They have no control over your images - they are yours.

Good move I say, of course now they're getting a bigger slice of your royalties, which makes them more profitable - but I guess that's the catch 22...


The problem is they are not reasonable anymore. Misplaced greed is the keyword at istock. They don't encourage exclusives anymore because they only want to pay the standard percentage (of not-exclusives) so they can have more money of our backs. Well let them have a bigger slice of my files. I think they'll need it if you look at this
http://siteanalytics.compete.com/istockphoto.com/ [nofollow]

« Reply #13 on: November 18, 2011, 15:13 »
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... of course now they're getting a bigger slice of your royalties, which makes them more profitable - but I guess that's the catch 22...

There's a cloud to every silver lining :)

We all have to make the best of the situation in which we find ourselves. Any answer which says you should license your own images (something that I think in other circumstances they prohibit) has a padded-cell quality to it. And the inability to provide a straightforward answer to a straightforward question in one or two exchanges is just embarrassing.

« Reply #14 on: November 18, 2011, 15:21 »
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They seriously suggested you license your own files with an extended license?

I never knew the ASA had a passage like that.

You have a killer portfolio with 596 files and 84 000 Downloads. What a loss for istock! This is not funny.
« Last Edit: November 18, 2011, 15:24 by cobalt »

« Reply #15 on: November 18, 2011, 15:25 »
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Sorry you decided to drop.  They are %100 incorrect.  I think there must be some misunderstanding.

ShadySue

« Reply #16 on: November 18, 2011, 19:46 »
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Did they move or remove your thread on iStock? I can't seem to find it, maybe I'm looking in the wrong place.
They really need to get away from the skim reading thing with support, also if they would compose their communications in Plain English, support wouldn't have to try to fathom how to interpret it.
They're clearly wrong about expecting you to buy ELs for your own files.

« Reply #17 on: November 18, 2011, 19:53 »
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The thread is in the exclusive forum.

ShadySue

« Reply #18 on: November 18, 2011, 20:03 »
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The thread is in the exclusive forum.

Thanks, I was looking in Help.


 

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