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Author Topic: One Of The Ongoing Ways Getty Is Exploiting Photographers  (Read 6470 times)

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« on: April 06, 2018, 04:25 »
+25
Getty's Custom Content Briefs that they put out to their contributors is one of the ways Getty Images is exploiting the high quality work of photographers around the world.

Using this method they are trying to lure in photographers to shoot traditional commercial assignment work on spec while hoping there are photographers out there that are either really bad at math or generally naive.

Their Custom Content Brief in each case first provides the photographer details about the exact kind of imagery they want one to create for their client. They say in all cases they want candid and authentic content (images or video). Specific to a client's need, shot in set locations, and with a distinct theme or subject matter. The content needs to also be cleared for commercial use (so model and property released). And the photographer must license the imagery/content to the client exclusively and in perpetuity if selected and purchased by the client.

This is what is traditionally known as a paid commercial assignment. The aim though is to get any or all of their contributors to shoot stuff for clients as if it is a commissioned assignment, but without any guarantee of any payment in return whatsoever.

The photographer must also use models (in most or all cases) to create the imagery they are wanting, thus incur out of pocket expenses by hiring models who are willing to sign model releases for commercial usage of the imagery, but again, with no guarantee of any payment for the work of any sort to the photographer.

Then, if Getty does choose an image that was shot specifically for their brief, the pay for the image to the photographer from Getty could be less than US$100 per image. Not only that, the photographer will automatically surrender full copyrights to that image for eternity if the client chooses to license it.

Traditionally, assignment photographers have been hired and guaranteed a specified amount upfront to be paid when shooting a commercial assignment for a client. And when there is a transfer of full copyrights involved like this (known as All Rights), then the fee paid to the photographer may often be a lot higher, perhaps even double the original assignment fee in some cases.

But Getty is trying to change the game by getting thousands of photographers to all shoot the very same assignment at the same time, with no guarantee of anything, and by only offering the photographer hopes of selling an image or two from all the cost and work invested into the shoot for the client.

There are perhaps photographers out there either unknowing or desperate enough to fall for Getty's scheme, but, if a photographer does agree to shoot one of their assignments for free, the photographer is still unlikely to recoup merely the cost paid out to models, even when Getty does license an image or two to a client from the shoot.

Using this method, the client gets the benefit of being able to, in essence, hire an unlimited amount of photographers for an assignment, and for free, and then choose from a large selection of fresh and exclusive purpose-shot imagery from photographers all over the world who are all shooting the same unpaid assignment for the client and at the same time. Unheard of anywhere else on this planet.

Where else would a client ever have the opportunity to get a large group of experienced photographers to invest and shoot an assignment for them without any promise of anything upfront or in return to the photographer for their work? It doesn't exist.

In the first sentence of the article introducing Custom Content Briefs on the Getty site they say "but which is very different from a traditional commissioned shoot." Yes, this concept is "very different" in the sense that this is just like a commissioned shoot, except that photographers potentially don't get paid anything for their work and, if they do, it is at a much much lower rate than it should be.

Basically, this is a completely insane offer for any self respecting photographer to accept. In the process, Getty is further devaluing the overall work of commercial assignment photographers throughout the industry, and the world, to an unethical extreme and they should be shamed for this.
« Last Edit: April 06, 2018, 05:55 by OptOut »


ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2018, 06:30 »
+6
Is this news?
About a year ago, in reponse to an admin's constant sniping to various people, "You'd get more sales if you'd follow our Briefs". I said more or less, "You could outlay hundreds of dollars and get cents in Premium Access" and this wasn't denied.
Some big-budget contributors have said they are getting more, and bigger, sales by participating, but it's taking them much longer to recoup their outlay (with no proof that they actually will recoup).
Just stick to the mantra: "Turnover is vanity; profit is sanity".
« Last Edit: April 06, 2018, 07:26 by ShadySue »

Noedelhap

  • www.colincramm.com

« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2018, 06:44 »
+7
Although I agree with you, there is one part I'd like to address:

Quote
Unheard of anywhere else on this planet.
Where else would a client ever have the opportunity to get a large group of experienced photographers to invest and shoot an assignment for them without any promise of anything upfront in return to the photographer? It doesn't exist.

Actually, it already exists elsewhere. Spec work is not invented by Getty. There are already lots of websites out there who do the exact same thing, often disguised as a 'contest'.

Spec work is probably the dumbest thing ever in our industry (whether it's photography, logo or graphic design) and any participant entering one of these contests shouldn't consider himself to be a professional photographer or graphic designer.

« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2018, 07:24 »
+2
It basically sounds like a new version of crowdsourcing, which for some stuff, I don't particularly care for. (I.e., 99 designs does the same thing, except for graphic design). As a contributor, you spend a lot of your time/money, etc with no guarantee, competing with literally 100's, sometimes 1000's doing the exact same thing. And then if the client indicates he/she likes a particular job - you'll see all 100 people "copy" that initial item with a slight variation. I tried that - I was curious to see what it was like - and yeah, essentially you end up working for peanuts, 'if' you get paid, because you have to work for free for a number of projects just to have a chance to win one.

(The "prize" seems great, until you realize essentially it is unlimited revisions until the client is 'satisfied', AND - if the client indicates they want a revision - you'll get 100's of copycats - one of which whom the client might end up ultimately choosing instead of yours). Just a huge time suck, and the hourly rate tends to work out to about $1-$2/hour with all the time invested, that is - if you are lucky enough to be chosen to be the prize winner (otherwise it is $0).

Unfortunately, I don't think there is really anything you can do about it, other than choosing not to participate and find other incoming generating avenues. OR - raise awareness (like you are doing with this article) - telling people to value their work more instead of giving it away for free, so there are less people participating in this type of thing.

Because of the nature of it... and the fact it is such a time suck, etc... I think you'll get this happen...

a) The smart people/professionals won't participate, because they understand the time/work/cost involved.
b) You will still get a lot of submissions, but the majority will be semi-amateurish where they can either get free model releases (i.e., friends doing it), or people brand new/excited that they can make a couple dollars from photography. Periodically, a super professional shot will come out (simply because of the sheer number of submissions).
c) Initially, the client will think this is fantastic, because it is super cheap work for professional grade stuff. But after doing 2-3 of these, and 'slogging' through the 100's of amateur stuff, then realizing all the shots look the same (simply because amateurs don't know how to adjust shutter speed, aperature, ISO, etc - and just use 'auto' shots) - they'll start to get a little annoyed.
d) The clients may or may not realize you actually do get what you pay for. And then they'll move on, and actually hire professionals.
e) The people shooting the photos realize what a complete waste of time/money/energy it is, and move onto something else.
f) Getty takes a cut/%.
g) You get a fresh new batch of amateur photographers doing submissions, and a fresh new batch of clients wanting ultra-cheap work.
h) Cycle repeats itself.

Very smart move for getty. They'll get rich/another income stream from it. Not so smart for the photographers/clients - but since the photographers/clients won't complain/etc (rather, just move on) - it will just be a cycle that repeats itself over and over and over...

Oh - and while this will be true - you'll will start reading periodic "blog" posts about how an "unknown" person made $10k doing submissions like this. It just won't say it was luck of the draw and he was 1 out of 100,000 people (in order to excite and get the next batch of ultra-cheap free submissions, etc).
« Last Edit: April 06, 2018, 07:34 by SuperPhoto »

« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2018, 08:01 »
0
I don't like Getty at all, but I can't blame for trying.

This is exactly what is to be expected form companies facing though competition.
There is saying about fools being those who are giving (i.e. contributors), not those who are asking.
Besides, I am certain that all scenarios enumarated above have also been considered by Getty's strategists. Most likely, they concluded it is worth a try, since market forces are on their side. Everybody has a camera these days, and among thousands of cheap crappy shots, might lie hidden a few cheap gems.

Another important point you made is that competition is not only between agencies, but also between contributors.
I often fail to understand why many contributors, mostly on SS forum, but also here, are going out of their way to advise others on how to become better competitors.
Many have no problem exposing themselves to copycats by bragging about their successful creations, deluding themselves that, somehow, their skills are unique and not reproducible, while naively asserting that the market is big enough for all of us to thrive!

It doesn't take much time before the very same who bragged about their successful photos, offering free "expert advise" from the heights of their "extensive experience", will come back bitching about sales errosion.
What a surprise!
« Last Edit: April 06, 2018, 08:41 by Zero Talent »

« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2018, 08:26 »
+3
Shutterstock sent out one of their custom shoots.  $200 for five very specific recipes for Nestle.  Each with 4-5 very specific shots.  For $200.

« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2018, 08:30 »
+1
Shutterstock sent out one of their custom shoots.  $200 for five very specific recipes for Nestle.  Each with 4-5 very specific shots.  For $200.

Putting that in perspective (because I am not quite familiar with that) - how much would that go for if it was custom/fixed price work to hire a professional photographer to do that?

Shelma1

« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2018, 08:51 »
+3
For a company the size of Nestle? Tens of thousands of dollars. But they want you guys to do it for 200 bucks.

« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2018, 08:59 »
+6
Maybe we'll see Getty's Custom Content Briefs eventually go the same way as ImageBrief. How long will it take?
http://www.microstockgroup.com/general-stock-discussion/imagebrief-throws-in-the-towel-and-is-closing-down/msg507993/#msg507993

« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2018, 09:23 »
+2
Shutterstock sent out one of their custom shoots.  $200 for five very specific recipes for Nestle.  Each with 4-5 very specific shots.  For $200.

Putting that in perspective (because I am not quite familiar with that) - how much would that go for if it was custom/fixed price work to hire a professional photographer to do that?

No idea, but I'm certainly not inspired to take that much time for $200.  Maybe $4-5000 for a professional food photographer?

Clair Voyant

« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2018, 09:56 »
0
Shutterstock sent out one of their custom shoots.  $200 for five very specific recipes for Nestle.  Each with 4-5 very specific shots.  For $200.

Putting that in perspective (because I am not quite familiar with that) - how much would that go for if it was custom/fixed price work to hire a professional photographer to do that?

No idea, but I'm certainly not inspired to take that much time for $200.  Maybe $4-5000 for a professional food photographer?

It depends on usage and territory. $4-5000 per shot seems about right as a starting point.

« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2018, 10:41 »
0
lol, huh. wow. I'd like to be in that position where you get paid $4-$5k per *image*... :P

« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2018, 10:45 »
0
lol, huh. wow. I'd like to be in that position where you get paid $4-$5k per *image*... :P

Me too.  I meant for the project.

jonbull

    This user is banned.
« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2018, 10:47 »
0
nestle can easily send some free product to emerging blogger and not even pay and having the photofor official campaign they spend a lot.

anyway last day i read a food blogger and husband are doing 100000 months...and have campaign for 5000 post in instagram....i will be a food blogger in next life

jonbull

    This user is banned.
« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2018, 10:50 »
0
Shutterstock sent out one of their custom shoots.  $200 for five very specific recipes for Nestle.  Each with 4-5 very specific shots.  For $200.

can you tell what recipe?
i do food photo and cook and styes by myself...if it's t too time involving and you can use the image for stock is not that bad.4000 dollar we are talking about official campaign, these are probably images used for some marketing brochure or press content.

« Reply #15 on: April 06, 2018, 13:45 »
+5
The problem, in my opinion, is not with the agencies. They will do whatever they can to line their pockets with cash. There is no "moral" guidelines in the stock business. Most agencies will, if their contributors allow them, to take as much as they can. Period.

The problem, in my opinion, is with the contributors who - for whatever reasons - allow immoral, self-serving, unscrupulous, deceitful behavior by providing and supporting these agencies with material.

The key, if you want to change this kind of behavior, is simply not to contribute material to these agencies. Whether or not you're making some coin - if you don't like the way an agency is treating you, don't supply them with material.


« Reply #16 on: April 06, 2018, 13:51 »
0
The problem, in my opinion, is not with the agencies. They will do whatever they can to line their pockets with cash. There is no "moral" guidelines in the stock business. Most agencies will, if their contributors allow them, to take as much as they can. Period.

The problem, in my opinion, is with the contributors who - for whatever reasons - allow immoral, self-serving, unscrupulous, deceitful behavior by providing and supporting these agencies with material.

The key, if you want to change this kind of behavior, is simply not to contribute material to these agencies. Whether or not you're making some coin - if you don't like the way an agency is treating you, don't supply them with material.

The problem is that we are facing a typical "Prisoner's Dilemma".

In other words:
The prisoner's dilemma is a standard example of a game analyzed in game theory that shows why two completely rational individuals might not cooperate, even if it appears that it is in their best interests to do so.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prisoner%27s_dilemma

The agencies know it and are not ashamed to play this "game" to take full advantage of it.
I can't really blame them for doing what they are expected to do.
« Last Edit: April 06, 2018, 14:27 by Zero Talent »

U11


« Reply #17 on: April 06, 2018, 14:10 »
+1
The problem, in my opinion, is with the contributors who ...
you forgetting the fact that we are leaving in a global world.
There is nothing "immoral, self-serving, unscrupulous, deceitful" from stand point of people who is residing in a 3rd world country.

« Reply #18 on: April 06, 2018, 15:44 »
+3
The problem, in my opinion, is with the contributors who ...
you forgetting the fact that we are leaving in a global world.
There is nothing "immoral, self-serving, unscrupulous, deceitful" from stand point of people who is residing in a 3rd world country.
It doesn't matter where you live. Contribute to agencies who treat you immorally, deceitfully, unscrupulously or are agencies that are simply self-serving and contributors who are subjected to "3rd world marginalization" will suffer just as much as we who live in other parts of the world. Period.

« Reply #19 on: April 06, 2018, 18:44 »
0
Getty's Custom Content Briefs that they put out to their contributors is one of the ways Getty Images is exploiting the high quality work of photographers around the world.

Using this method they are trying to lure in photographers to shoot traditional commercial assignment work on spec while hoping there are photographers out there that are either really bad at math or generally naive.

Their Custom Content Brief in each case first provides the photographer details about the exact kind of imagery they want one to create for their client. They say in all cases they want candid and authentic content (images or video). Specific to a client's need, shot in set locations, and with a distinct theme or subject matter. The content needs to also be cleared for commercial use (so model and property released). And the photographer must license the imagery/content to the client exclusively and in perpetuity if selected and purchased by the client.

This is what is traditionally known as a paid commercial assignment. The aim though is to get any or all of their contributors to shoot stuff for clients as if it is a commissioned assignment, but without any guarantee of any payment in return whatsoever.

The photographer must also use models (in most or all cases) to create the imagery they are wanting, thus incur out of pocket expenses by hiring models who are willing to sign model releases for commercial usage of the imagery, but again, with no guarantee of any payment for the work of any sort to the photographer.

Then, if Getty does choose an image that was shot specifically for their brief, the pay for the image to the photographer from Getty could be less than US$100 per image. Not only that, the photographer will automatically surrender full copyrights to that image for eternity if the client chooses to license it.

Traditionally, assignment photographers have been hired and guaranteed a specified amount upfront to be paid when shooting a commercial assignment for a client. And when there is a transfer of full copyrights involved like this (known as All Rights), then the fee paid to the photographer may often be a lot higher, perhaps even double the original assignment fee in some cases.

But Getty is trying to change the game by getting thousands of photographers to all shoot the very same assignment at the same time, with no guarantee of anything, and by only offering the photographer hopes of selling an image or two from all the cost and work invested into the shoot for the client.

There are perhaps photographers out there either unknowing or desperate enough to fall for Getty's scheme, but, if a photographer does agree to shoot one of their assignments for free, the photographer is still unlikely to recoup merely the cost paid out to models, even when Getty does license an image or two to a client from the shoot.

Using this method, the client gets the benefit of being able to, in essence, hire an unlimited amount of photographers for an assignment, and for free, and then choose from a large selection of fresh and exclusive purpose-shot imagery from photographers all over the world who are all shooting the same unpaid assignment for the client and at the same time. Unheard of anywhere else on this planet.

Where else would a client ever have the opportunity to get a large group of experienced photographers to invest and shoot an assignment for them without any promise of anything upfront or in return to the photographer for their work? It doesn't exist.

In the first sentence of the article introducing Custom Content Briefs on the Getty site they say "but which is very different from a traditional commissioned shoot." Yes, this concept is "very different" in the sense that this is just like a commissioned shoot, except that photographers potentially don't get paid anything for their work and, if they do, it is at a much much lower rate than it should be.

Basically, this is a completely insane offer for any self respecting photographer to accept. In the process, Getty is further devaluing the overall work of commercial assignment photographers throughout the industry, and the world, to an unethical extreme and they should be shamed for this.

Yeah, thats like those Eyem or whatever photo challenges. I put a few photos on that app, and was told they made it into Gettys select or whatever.

On that app a company will present some kind of challenge ( say creating photos to advertise a particular brand) and youre supposed to bust your butt on spec.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

« Reply #20 on: April 06, 2018, 20:39 »
0
I would accept $200 per chocolate chip

namussi

« Reply #21 on: April 06, 2018, 21:30 »
0
Getty is further devaluing the overall work of commercial assignment photographers throughout the industry, and the world, to an unethical extreme and they should be shamed for this.

Let's hope that Getty goes back to devaluing that work to an ethical extreme, and everything will be alright then.

JaenStock

  • Bad images can sell.
« Reply #22 on: April 06, 2018, 22:43 »
0
In my mail getty briefs go to spam

« Reply #23 on: April 06, 2018, 22:46 »
0
I think it has to do with desperation. Being desparate for a sale, recognition, etc. Established photographers probably would not be in this boat. But up and coming - to break into the field - probably would.

Plus, it's now a global market place, so $2 is considered "good money". And, you also have people that don't share the same western values in terms of honesty/etc, so if they can steal something, they will. (That isn't to say there aren't western people that would do that, but - it tends to be more prominent in certain other cultures/countries).


The problem, in my opinion, is not with the agencies. They will do whatever they can to line their pockets with cash. There is no "moral" guidelines in the stock business. Most agencies will, if their contributors allow them, to take as much as they can. Period.

The problem, in my opinion, is with the contributors who - for whatever reasons - allow immoral, self-serving, unscrupulous, deceitful behavior by providing and supporting these agencies with material.

The key, if you want to change this kind of behavior, is simply not to contribute material to these agencies. Whether or not you're making some coin - if you don't like the way an agency is treating you, don't supply them with material.


 

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