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Poll

Istock independents, assuming no changes are made to the latest announcement, what are your plans at IStock?

No change, keep submitting as normal
21 (19.4%)
No new uploads, leave existing content there
41 (38%)
No new uploads, and remove all existing content
13 (12%)
Have not decided yet
31 (28.7%)
Other
2 (1.9%)

Total Members Voted: 98

Author Topic: Istock Independents Only Poll  (Read 8430 times)

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nruboc

« on: September 11, 2010, 11:18 »
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Just curious to get a feeling where other independents stand. I don't have much content there, never did like the 20% commission and the archaic uploading process, so for me it is easy, won't submit again and will remove my content
« Last Edit: September 11, 2010, 11:19 by nruboc »


« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2010, 11:23 »
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I need another option.  I've started removing my content, but slowly, and starting with Dollar Bin and other nonperformers.  At the rate I'm going, it'll be two years before I'm completely gone, and who knows what the situation will be by then?

nruboc

« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2010, 12:00 »
0
I need another option.  I've started removing my content, but slowly, and starting with Dollar Bin and other nonperformers.  At the rate I'm going, it'll be two years before I'm completely gone, and who knows what the situation will be by then?

I added an 'Other' option. Hopefully people will explain what they are doing as you did, if they select this. Thanks

« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2010, 12:14 »
0
I need another option.  I've started removing my content, but slowly, and starting with Dollar Bin and other nonperformers.  At the rate I'm going, it'll be two years before I'm completely gone, and who knows what the situation will be by then?

+1, except less images there.

« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2010, 13:11 »
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I voted for the no upload more option, but also could vote for the not decided yet, as i pretend to wait and see what happens the next months.
I have calculated a loss of about 15% of my income with the new sytem, it sucks, but in the other hand i cant renounce to the other 85%, Istock is between 1/3 to 1/4 of my total income in micro.

« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2010, 13:13 »
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I voted for the no upload more option, but also could vote for the not decided yet, as i pretend to wait and see what happens the next months.
I have calculated a loss of about 15% of my income with the new sytem, it sucks, but in the other hand i cant renounce to the other 85%, Istock is between 1/3 to 1/4 of my total income in micro.

+1 (voted "no change" for these reasons, but really - sitting, waiting, thinking)
« Last Edit: September 11, 2010, 13:14 by UncleGene »

« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2010, 13:18 »
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Other (Radical) option: Decide to remove complete portfolio, BUT just ignore exclusivity restriction - in my book IS broke the contract first - and start uploading at other sites. Redeem money the moment you reach 100. When they find out they will oblige and remove your portfolio.

« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2010, 13:33 »
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Over time I will likely reduce the size of my portfolio. As I was planning before this fiasco.

« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2010, 13:39 »
0
Stopped uploading for now, but will keep the port at least until I reach payout.

« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2010, 13:55 »
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I was going to stop uploading as well. Growth has been kind of garbage everywhere this year, so I need to retool or refocus my operation anyway. Long term, I'm not sure though. I guess I'll wait and see. People seem to be madder at this than any other change, so I'm not sure what the backlash will be yet.

ap

« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2010, 14:38 »
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my port is too small and new to make a difference to anyone, including myself, since is accounts for only 20% of sales, at best. however, is performance keeps getting better, with 35% growth each month. so, i'll just maintain whatever i'm doing since it's really the more established players who'll change the status quo at is.

« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2010, 16:21 »
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stop uploading, I simply can't afford to drop my port entirely but I expect to half it.
I drop to 17% and basically I have to draw a line somewhere, and that is a very begrudging 20% (much like I wont take below $0.30 subs) (I still believe agencies should offer a minimum 40%) I think it is insulting to offer so little.

« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2010, 16:25 »
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I have a tiny low performing port but am not going to upload more images under the current conditions. I'll leave my files online for the time being...would really like to get a payout first.

« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2010, 16:28 »
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Regarding 2 FACTS:

1. With leaving content there you are giving signal to other agencies that they CAN reduce your royalties for 1/4 (25%) too as iStock did.

2. With leaving your content there you are giving 85% of money to iStock and Getty on any sale your images make.

Have you come up to those two FACTS?

Why would you leave your content on iStock after changes take effect?

« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2010, 16:42 »
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Regarding 2 FACTS:

1. With leaving content there you are giving signal to other agencies that they CAN reduce your royalties for 1/4 (25%) too as iStock did.

In a word, crap.

Quote
2. With leaving your content there you are giving 85% of money to iStock and Getty on any sale your images make.

And I say again: crap.

Quote
Have you come up to those two FACTS?

Why would you leave your content on iStock after changes take effect?

Both of your "facts" are plans for 2011 and beyond; they are not true today, tomorrow or for the next three months.  Things may change before then, although I don't hold out much hope.  But I would hope that any agency planning such action would see the hostility it engendered and tread very softly.

« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2010, 16:54 »
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What is crap? Facts you are facing soon?

Why would you leave your content on iStock after changes take effect?

« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2010, 16:54 »
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Regarding 2 FACTS:

1. With leaving content there you are giving signal to other agencies that they CAN reduce your royalties for 1/4 (25%) too as iStock did.

2. With leaving your content there you are giving 85% of money to iStock and Getty on any sale your images make.

Have you come up to those two FACTS?

Why would you leave your content on iStock after changes take effect?

In fact all agencies can do whatever they want, and no action taken by a single contributor will do anything at all. Then only way taking out your port could be something meaningfully would be if there was some kind of UNION in our band, and we made this as a collective group. If you and a bunch more of people take your port out they wouldn't even notice it, and the only loosing money will be you. Sad but true, we should have an UNION if we want to threaten them with our actions, and negotiate better conditions.

« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2010, 17:13 »
0
Regarding 2 FACTS:

1. With leaving content there you are giving signal to other agencies that they CAN reduce your royalties for 1/4 (25%) too as iStock did.

2. With leaving your content there you are giving 85% of money to iStock and Getty on any sale your images make.

Have you come up to those two FACTS?

Why would you leave your content on iStock after changes take effect?

In fact all agencies can do whatever they want, and no action taken by a single contributor will do anything at all. Then only way taking out your port could be something meaningfully would be if there was some kind of UNION in our band, and we made this as a collective group. If you and a bunch more of people take your port out they wouldn't even notice it, and the only loosing money will be you. Sad but true, we should have an UNION if we want to threaten them with our actions, and negotiate better conditions.

Exactly that your point of view will reduce royalties to that kind of "money" that you will not have enough to continue doing what you do now.
In any business there is some bare minimum of income which must be accomplished to stay in the game. While you are whining that you can't do anything and that you will loosing "money". What any independent must be educated about is what represents difference about "money" and money.
While you are calculating that 15% represents money I will be free to tell you that is much less than 85% of MONEY which they will took for what? For selling your works to buyers which they have attracted with highest prices and advertising using YOUR money.

You people seems that your logic is wrong as well that "unsustainable" 80% for iStock will make you sustainable 15% royaties. Someone has crippled mind and that for sure is not iStock management!

If you again think a bit more about this matter where is logic that you as content producer get 15% and those who only sell your work are taking 85% of sales price?
If you say that you are afraid of competition, then find other job. If you think that competition won't rise in the future then you are still sleeping. But, aside with competition when your seller is reducing your space to be creative with 25% cut in your royalties.
So, take your "money" while you can and enjoy while it lasts because this will not be sustainable for you or any other contributor in long term!

« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2010, 17:29 »
0
What is crap? Facts you are facing soon?

Why would you leave your content on iStock after changes take effect?

very simply I cant afford to drop them. The best I can do is keep deleting images as my income at other sites increases, thereby balancing the loss.

« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2010, 17:38 »
0
What is crap? Facts you are facing soon?

Why would you leave your content on iStock after changes take effect?

very simply I cant afford to drop them. The best I can do is keep deleting images as my income at other sites increases, thereby balancing the loss.

You can't balance the loss... You are at loss big deal! There are diminishing earnings and they will grow in that direction due to rising number of competing agencies as well contributors... The only way you can help yourself is to bail-out ASAP new royalty structure becomes active. At least no one will blame you for giving signal other agencies to follow istock in reducing royalties.
It IS POLITICS and we all now must be smarter than big-ass managers who messed this up! The most dangerous is to bend over and get it from behind (this time it will be more than once) which you will do if you stay there after changes become active.
Don't forget that Getty pays 20% - that will be MAX earnings on any Getty owned place and you as non-exclusive will have much less that 20%.
So, bail - out when time comes and don't look back!

« Reply #20 on: September 11, 2010, 17:52 »
0
Will be working as hard as I can to support their competitors

« Reply #21 on: September 11, 2010, 18:00 »
0
What is crap? Facts you are facing soon?

Why would you leave your content on iStock after changes take effect?

very simply I cant afford to drop them. The best I can do is keep deleting images as my income at other sites increases, thereby balancing the loss.

You can't balance the loss... You are at loss big deal! There are diminishing earnings and they will grow in that direction due to rising number of competing agencies as well contributors... The only way you can help yourself is to bail-out ASAP new royalty structure becomes active. At least no one will blame you for giving signal other agencies to follow istock in reducing royalties.
It IS POLITICS and we all now must be smarter than big-ass managers who messed this up! The most dangerous is to bend over and get it from behind (this time it will be more than once) which you will do if you stay there after changes become active.
Don't forget that Getty pays 20% - that will be MAX earnings on any Getty owned place and you as non-exclusive will have much less that 20%.
So, bail - out when time comes and don't look back!

yes I agree I am extremely offended by both the new rates and the arrogant patronising way it has been done. But I have bills to pay based on my stock earnings and I cant tell the electricity company that sorry I have taken a moral stand and cut my earnings by 30%.

« Reply #22 on: September 11, 2010, 18:17 »
0
What's the expression? Cutting off your nose to spite your face? I think many of us have to take a more cautious approach because for better or worse, stock has become an integral part of our income. I'd love to dump all these sites that have done me wrong. Then, I could sell it all myself for 100% of the royalties and make even more, but that isn't realistic either.

« Reply #23 on: September 11, 2010, 18:18 »
0
Those 30% will be 1/4 less of it soon or 22.5% if all traffic stays as it is. So, you are loosing 7.5% of your total as soon as changes take effect.

But, you can adapt to new situation with spreading your port all over the places starting right now. Plus, you can afford yourself a bit (just a bit) lower quality work in this period regarding boosting your quantity in portfolio.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2010, 18:22 by Albert Martin »

traveler1116

« Reply #24 on: September 11, 2010, 18:30 »
0
the poll makes it look like IS wins this round.  how can you leave you content on there with less than 20% commission it's wrong.  I feel like a macrosaur or maybe now it's a microsaur, you can't devalue yourselves this much.

« Reply #25 on: September 11, 2010, 18:36 »
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I'm another tiny fish with about 150 images and I'm done with IStock.   Obviously they no longer have any interest in small producers of oddball images, they just want a steady flow of new factory shots.   They never paid enough to make it worthwhile fighting through their approval process and only a few  images actually sold and made anything - unlike other sites, where most of my images continue to sell over time.  In addition to the other hoops, IS always seemed to be a skewed system where an image had to 'get lucky' early on, or it sank and was lost.

If I do more stock in the future it will be for agencies like graphicleftovers, that pay a reasonable commission so that at least you feel like a hobbyist and not just a fool.   I will probably get around to deleting my images from IS to give places like GL a better chance.

lisafx

« Reply #26 on: September 11, 2010, 18:49 »
0
the poll makes it look like IS wins this round.  how can you leave you content on there with less than 20% commission it's wrong.  I feel like a macrosaur or maybe now it's a microsaur, you can't devalue yourselves this much.

Graham, from what I can see your images are all still on istock.  Am I missing something? 

Great saying somewhere (yeah, I know where!) along the lines of "first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye"

traveler1116

« Reply #27 on: September 11, 2010, 18:55 »
0
the poll makes it look like IS wins this round.  how can you leave you content on there with less than 20% commission it's wrong.  I feel like a macrosaur or maybe now it's a microsaur, you can't devalue yourselves this much.

Graham, from what I can see your images are all still on istock.  Am I missing something? 

Great saying somewhere (yeah, I know where!) along the lines of "first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye"
My images are there now, and they will be till the day I lose money from this change.  I quit DT and FT because of the crap they did and I expected IS to be better.  I was wrong.  When I hit gold in the beginning of next year and I don't get the 14% or so raise that I expected, all of my images are coming off IS.  I hope they change but I have already begun preparing, all my future travel images will be RM and since the announcement I have gone from 70 images on alamy to over 120 with much more waiting.  I think hurting nonexclusives is going to hurt me too, this isn't about hoping that you guys leave so I'll get something. 

« Reply #28 on: September 11, 2010, 19:34 »
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I don't know about cutting my nose ...
One thing for sure - accepting ANY offer, no matter how low, how insulting, it's not doing any good to my nose, and, most importantly, my future.
I have a hard time believing that IStock can't survive unless they cut my commission to 15%.
The same holds true for microstock contributors.
I have a hard time believing some microstock contributors really can't afford to withdraw ports at IS. They can. In most cases there's no real danger. Some can.
It's not so much about bills, food on the table and growing families.
It's about personality, nose if you will, and more, but I'll leave it at that.
To each its own.

In my case, I'm still in shock and I need a few more days to think this over.
I'm faced with a task that right now seems impossible to me. I can't bring myself to upload to a site that offers 15% commission. It's so low, it's unreal. IStock of all places!

Have a look at those targets. They're funny. Contributors who diversified by producing more than one media type - in my case vectors and photos - are being hit twice as hard.
To diversify your port is not a good thing anymore. At least at IStock it isn't.

Well, by myself I don't matter.
Unfortuntately we seem to be incapable of organizing ourselves  - there's no group or union that I can join or try to help.
IStock will go ahead, targets will be yearly adjusted and no independent contributor will ever make it to 20%. That's for sure.

« Reply #29 on: September 11, 2010, 19:42 »
0
I don't know about cutting my nose ...
One thing for sure - accepting ANY offer, no matter how low, how insulting, it's not doing any good to my nose, and, most importantly, my future.
I have a hard time believing that IStock can't survive unless they cut my commission to 15%.
The same holds true for microstock contributors.
I have a hard time believing some microstock contributors really can't afford to withdraw ports at IS. They can. In most cases there's no real danger. Some can.
It's not so much about bills, food on the table and growing families.
It's about personality, nose if you will, and more, but I'll leave it at that.
To each its own.

In my case, I'm still in shock and I need a few more days to think this over.
I'm faced with a task that right now seems impossible to me. I can't bring myself to upload to a site that offers 15% commission. It's so low, it's unreal. IStock of all places!

Have a look at those targets. They're funny. Contributors who diversified by producing more than one media type - in my case vectors and photos - are being hit twice as hard.
To diversify your port is not a good thing anymore. At least at IStock it isn't.

Well, by myself I don't matter.
Unfortuntately we seem to be incapable of organizing ourselves  - there's no group or union that I can join or try to help.
IStock will go ahead, targets will be yearly adjusted and no independent contributor will ever make it to 20%. That's for sure.

I am just wondering where they are going to spend the new 5% cut :P

jbarber873

« Reply #30 on: September 11, 2010, 19:56 »
0
     I guess i feel less of a shock that this whole thing has happened this week, because I have always hated istock. As I say to my kids, hate is a pretty strong word, and you should use it carefully, but in istocks case it fits. The thing that always rubbed me the wrong way there was how whenever they made any announcement, you would have to wade through 500 emails saying " great , i love you, give them a muffin, etc", and i just found that creepy. the one or two contacts I've had with the suits from getty reinforced my utter dislike for everything about the entire organization. The approval process is arbitrary, the website is byzantine ,and the admins are self important blowhards. (IMHO). I guess I don't do well with "community".
  But, I'll leave what i have there and submit some more and take whatever comes in, because, to me, microstock is just a machine that generates cash. I've never been exclusive because it didn't make economic sense, and I can make a lot more money by being all over the place. If things get as grim as, say , Crestock, well then I'll bail. But until then, money is money.
But i can at least say i never drank the kool aid!

« Reply #31 on: September 11, 2010, 20:27 »
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It's sad, but I give it a month or two.  Let's see what everyone says in a few months.

I predict many will be saying, "Well, I will only be dropping to 17% from 20%; that's not so bad.  At least sales are better than site NNNNN."  We may even hear, "Yeah iStock; you increased sales (and profit) so much I am now at 18% instead of 17 (which means iStock only gets 82% instead of 83)!  Here is your muffin sir."

Maybe everyone should start kissing a** now so you get bumped up to page 12 in the best match instead of page 50 behind all the new "midstock" coming in.  The 1st one to start the "Yeah iStock" thread gets half the muffin.

Or better yet, we can go join Matt and the others, ... or ... well ... Matt at the Fotolia Exclusive's table.  I bet he would like a muffin.

« Reply #32 on: September 11, 2010, 20:52 »
0
Note to add to my previous post :

I will make sure that no file of mine ever sells for anything less than 20%.
Especially at IStock.
That's where I draw the line. 20%.

« Reply #33 on: September 12, 2010, 01:18 »
0
Note to add to my previous post :

I will make sure that no file of mine ever sells for anything less than 20%.
Especially at IStock.
That's where I draw the line. 20%.

Nice.... Your work is undervalued that way and again you're giving signal to other agencies that they can cut your royalties to 20%.

This all with most of logic and sense for money earning in most cases comes up to total beggars stance from most of resulting statements I saw here.
I urge to all of you who would bend and "take it from behind" to educate yourself into basics of running the business so you know what is sustainable minimum for doing stock.
There are your expenses needed to cover so you can produce stock images (no matter if you have free models or free makeup) but economical logic say that you have 2 bottom lines which are very dependent in term that you must subtract first bottom line (your expenses) from second bottom line (your income).  Then, regarding to that what stays in your pocket you must plan to sustain your production and that will make you more expenses in the future which again lead to two bottom lines and circle closed with starting again to subtract bottom lines and so on. Dont forget to add to first bottom line your new lense or camera or so which you need to stay competitive.
If that two bottom lines are giving result which is unsustainable then you should first drop all agencies which sell your work undervalued. I doubt that even 20% sale is enough to be sustainable except you sell your work like hot cookies.

« Reply #34 on: September 12, 2010, 01:28 »
0
Just forgot one important detail:

Please calculate what you will earn in the future projection of 20% of all agencies royalties and ask your self is it sustainable!

rubyroo

« Reply #35 on: September 12, 2010, 04:12 »
0
   I guess I don't do well with "community".
  

I guess you don't!  :D

But yes... I agree... it is a bit creepy.  It always felt a bit cult-like to me.

Microbius

« Reply #36 on: September 12, 2010, 04:19 »
0
I've got to say that if you do this for living you can't afford to take down your images from IStock.
They account for too big a percentage of any microstock income.
The way to go is to make sure every buyer knows how IStock/ Getty treats its contributors and encourage them to use other cheaper alternatives that pay us more.
Then hopefully, in a year or two, we can walk away from IStock when it's a corpse.

« Reply #37 on: September 12, 2010, 04:48 »
0
I will leave my content there until I can replace my istock income with the other sites.  Unfortunately I just can't afford to dump them today but I wont be there long with less than 20% commission.

« Reply #38 on: September 12, 2010, 05:23 »
0
I've got to say that if you do this for living you can't afford to take down your images from IStock.
They account for too big a percentage of any microstock income.
The way to go is to make sure every buyer knows how IStock/ Getty treats its contributors and encourage them to use other cheaper alternatives that pay us more.
Then hopefully, in a year or two, we can walk away from IStock when it's a corpse.

Yes Microbius! I think it's the correct solution too! Communication is the right way, but how to spread these news to buyers?

« Reply #39 on: September 12, 2010, 06:21 »
0
At the moment my sales are growing faster than they are dropping the commision. No other sites with higher commision can match that.  And who knows what happens in a short future.

Its plain stupidity to leave them right now.    I can be mad but thats about it...


 

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