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Author Topic: Something positive at IS, royalty rate stays the same next year  (Read 10693 times)

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« Reply #50 on: January 02, 2013, 04:24 »
+6
It's obvious what they've done. They don't want to retrospectively shift the RC level downwards to keep people in their old band because that would result in some people moving up a level, so what they've done is thrown a pile of fake credits at everyone who was dropping a level to bring them above the "target".

Of course, this is grossly unfair to those who sold exactly the same number of files as, for example, jsnover but are now trapped a level below her because their sales have not fallen the way hers have. (Nothing personal intended - but I'm sure an extra 8,000 credits could have shifted a lot of people)

In effect it is an admission of the complete failure of the RC system because it says that if you sold more images in the past than some newbie you get a higher payment rate - even though the newbie may be outselling you today. Which is exactly the "unfairness" the RCs was meant to overcome.

Only this time it is doubly unfair, because the newbie will never be allowed to rise up the levels despite outselling the oldie and the oldie will never be allowed to drop levels despite falling sales. Except, of course, it is telegraphing the fact that the system is on the verge of being abandoned.

My guess is that their main aim is to stem a tide of defections by exclusives and at the same time to try to avoid further bad publicity which the new management seems to understand is damaging the brand.

It is a tacit admission that sales are crumbling and of a problem with RCs that  Gostwyck pointed out well over a year ago: that it would look very bad for iStock if it kept having to cut and cut the RC targets to keep the desired proportion of members in the various different bands.

I presume that they realise that they can't have a supposedly performance=based reward system that disregards performance in order to keep people who are "under-performing" happy. IF they haven't worked that out yet, they soon will.

The challenge now facing them is how to scrap the disfunctional RC system without creating a new wave of outrage from people who find their pay is getting cut. Even going back to the old system would enrage newbie exclusives who are high-performers and find their historic sales do not yet tally enough to put them into the RC band they have achieved. I suppose they could grandfather those, but it would be an expensive move and they wouldn't like that.

« Last Edit: January 02, 2013, 04:43 by BaldricksTrousers »


« Reply #51 on: January 02, 2013, 04:53 »
0
^^^I didn't get any fake credits, I'm still below the 17% level but they've kept my 17%.  So I don't think that explains it.

« Reply #52 on: January 02, 2013, 05:27 »
0
^^^I didn't get any fake credits, I'm still below the 17% level but they've kept my 17%.  So I don't think that explains it.

Well, that's odd, but there doesn't seem to be any other reason that grandfathered people - and only them, apparently - are getting piles of credits. Maybe they haven't updated your stats yet.

Of course, the more interesting bit is why they might be doing it and what the implications are. One of the implications is that the RC levels can be left unrealistically high because people aren't screaming about losing their ranking.

« Reply #53 on: January 02, 2013, 06:42 »
0
^^^I didn't get any fake credits, I'm still below the 17% level but they've kept my 17%.  So I don't think that explains it.

Well, that's odd, but there doesn't seem to be any other reason that grandfathered people - and only them, apparently - are getting piles of credits. Maybe they haven't updated your stats yet.

Of course, the more interesting bit is why they might be doing it and what the implications are. One of the implications is that the RC levels can be left unrealistically high because people aren't screaming about losing their ranking.
Mine have gone up to 18% after going down to 17% last year.

lisafx

« Reply #54 on: January 02, 2013, 10:25 »
0
Very thoughtful and insightful analysis above Baldrick.  I suspect you are absolutely right. 

I agree this move is a tacit acknowledgement by the new management that the RC system is fundamentally flawed. They appear to be a bit more far-thinking than the prior group.  Maybe there will be some incremental improvements in things at Istock this year. 

« Reply #55 on: January 02, 2013, 11:04 »
-1
Its a long time since I have heard anything worse.

so amateur like.
like a nigerian scam

They should be closed down.

« Reply #56 on: January 02, 2013, 11:22 »
+2

...Of course, this is grossly unfair to those who sold exactly the same number of files as, for example, jsnover but are now trapped a level below her because their sales have not fallen the way hers have. (Nothing personal intended - but I'm sure an extra 8,000 credits could have shifted a lot of people)

It may have been 6K not 8K but it was definitely over 5K as I am 99% certain that the last time I looked at that number some time in December it was not over 30K.

I agree that it's unfair, even within a totally misbegotten system, to "help" some people and not others. From what others have said, Getty was aware when they started it that the key was to keep the top contributors happy, regardless of how they scr3wed everyone else.

My only puzzle is why I would have been included in the people to help - they never included me in the inner circle or gave me any sort of indication I mattered to anyone while I was exclusive. Largely the opposite.

First, they said they were going to roll over current rates and mine has gone up one point from what it was in 2012. Second, I'm an independent, and as such am part of the lower than dirt group that supports the higher payments to iStock exclusives by getting less than the Getty target of 20%. Why help me? My work is already everywhere else.

Given how they've mangled the site this past year, it doesn't surprise me that they've effed up implementing this new policy - layering incompetence on an unfair fix to a greedy and miserable RC system (in particular splitting credits by medium, having different levels for different media types).

Just when you think Getty can't get any worse...

« Reply #57 on: January 02, 2013, 11:30 »
0
Isn't this most likely just an IT screw up over the new year holiday that someone will fix when they get back to work?  It wouldn't be a shock for them to mess this up, would it?

ShadySue

« Reply #58 on: January 02, 2013, 11:37 »
0
From MichaelJay:
"Here is my guess based on others reporting similar boosts on Facebook: It probably would have been too complicated/risky to re-program the whole RC system for the royalty rate rollover, so someone came up with a pragmatic solution: Add a bunch of RCs to the table manually, so those people affected are reaching their RC targets."
http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=350199&page=1

« Reply #59 on: January 02, 2013, 11:37 »
+2
The house of cards has become precariously fragile. When the players involved stop caring or even worse, start kicking at the base, then it's only a matter of time until the inevitable happens. Starting phony dialogues about what can be done to improve the situation shows a complete disrespect for the players. Telling everyone everything is good because it's not worse, is just as disrespectful. And that's what it all comes down to. Respect. Not giving a simple * about the very people making you insanely rich. It is how revolutions get started, governments topple and greedy companies die.

« Reply #60 on: January 02, 2013, 11:42 »
0
Isn't this most likely just an IT screw up over the new year holiday that someone will fix when they get back to work?  It wouldn't be a shock for them to mess this up, would it?
I would be extremely suprised if I get to keep 18%

« Reply #61 on: January 02, 2013, 12:00 »
0
Im with Zeus.
Its all about respect.

« Reply #62 on: January 02, 2013, 12:22 »
0
From MichaelJay:
"Here is my guess based on others reporting similar boosts on Facebook: It probably would have been too complicated/risky to re-program the whole RC system for the royalty rate rollover, so someone came up with a pragmatic solution: Add a bunch of RCs to the table manually, so those people affected are reaching their RC targets."
http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=350199&page=1


he have left iStock exclusivity (for the ones that don't know)

« Reply #63 on: January 02, 2013, 12:37 »
0
Looks like I have had fake credits added now, to get me just over the 17% that I used to make easily.

« Reply #64 on: January 02, 2013, 12:45 »
+1
Isn't this most likely just an IT screw up over the new year holiday that someone will fix when they get back to work?  It wouldn't be a shock for them to mess this up, would it?

It would not be a shock for them to mess this up. And it would not be a shock for them to have not looked forward far enough to see the implications of another screw-up.  But when the screw-up comes, and they have to remove some RC's from accounts, then complaints will come and they will have to 'fess-up to all of the RC shenanigans behind the scenes to squelch the uprising.  It will all come out in the end as to what is going on - especially if they screw-up the first script.

« Reply #65 on: January 02, 2013, 12:46 »
0
From MichaelJay:
"Here is my guess based on others reporting similar boosts on Facebook: It probably would have been too complicated/risky to re-program the whole RC system for the royalty rate rollover, so someone came up with a pragmatic solution: Add a bunch of RCs to the table manually, so those people affected are reaching their RC targets."
http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=350199&page=1


Yes, this looks to be right to me.

ShadySue

« Reply #66 on: January 02, 2013, 12:48 »
0
From MichaelJay:
"Here is my guess based on others reporting similar boosts on Facebook: It probably would have been too complicated/risky to re-program the whole RC system for the royalty rate rollover, so someone came up with a pragmatic solution: Add a bunch of RCs to the table manually, so those people affected are reaching their RC targets."
http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=350199&page=1


he have left iStock exclusivity (for the ones that don't know)

That's irrelevant to this discussion.

« Reply #67 on: January 02, 2013, 12:51 »
0
From MichaelJay:
"Here is my guess based on others reporting similar boosts on Facebook: It probably would have been too complicated/risky to re-program the whole RC system for the royalty rate rollover, so someone came up with a pragmatic solution: Add a bunch of RCs to the table manually, so those people affected are reaching their RC targets."
http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=350199&page=1


he have left iStock exclusivity (for the ones that don't know)

That's irrelevant to this discussion.


sorry, you are right

dbvirago

« Reply #68 on: January 02, 2013, 13:33 »
0
For me, the percentage is irrelevant at the current volume. While all other agencies rebounded in 2012, iStock continues to plummet. A few percentage points one way or another won't make any difference unless the sales increase.

« Reply #69 on: January 02, 2013, 13:58 »
+2
....
In effect it is an admission of the complete failure of the RC system because it says that if you sold more images in the past than some newbie you get a higher payment rate - even though the newbie may be outselling you today. Which is exactly the "unfairness" the RCs was meant to overcome.
....

The RC system was never meant to rectify any unfairness other than the fact that over time IS would have to pay exclusives that sold a lot up to 40%. They might have tried to sell it as being more fair, but really it was just a way to control and limit the % they had to pay to the artists.

The fact that total number of sales at IS has fallen drastically (compared to $ amounts) would have somewhat lowered the rate people climbed up the levels anyway and hurt newbies a lot. Gradually moving sales away from IS to PP and GI also lowers canister growth and RC totals (as well as the %age they have to pay).

Their biggest problem is they either have to hurt their loyal big contributors or they have to admit sales are falling or they have to do weird gyrations and shenanigans like this to keep the levels where they want them. With the RC system someone is going to get hurt. As usual at IS it will be independents as well as with this particular move, newbies.

ShadySue

« Reply #70 on: January 02, 2013, 15:04 »
+1
Don't imagine for a moment that only independents are suffering at iStock. A read across the board shows that many exclusives are suffering, and considering handing in the crown, which insanely is probably what they want, to get that percentage they hand out as low as possible, ignoring the probably-still-quite-valuable USP of exclusive images.

Poncke

« Reply #71 on: January 02, 2013, 16:19 »
0
Don't imagine for a moment that only independents are suffering at iStock. A read across the board shows that many exclusives are suffering, and considering handing in the crown, which insanely is probably what they want, to get that percentage they hand out as low as possible, ignoring the probably-still-quite-valuable USP of exclusive images.
Could an agency be that evil?

ShadySue

« Reply #72 on: January 02, 2013, 17:05 »
0
Don't imagine for a moment that only independents are suffering at iStock. A read across the board shows that many exclusives are suffering, and considering handing in the crown, which insanely is probably what they want, to get that percentage they hand out as low as possible, ignoring the probably-still-quite-valuable USP of exclusive images.
Could an agency be that evil?

It's the old 'evil vs stupid' conundrum.

Someone over on the iS forum questioned whether the iS management is effective.
I wondered if their policies are even sustainable. Doesn't look like it.  >:( :'(

PaulieWalnuts

  • On the Wrong Side of the Business
« Reply #73 on: January 02, 2013, 20:35 »
+1
Don't imagine for a moment that only independents are suffering at iStock. A read across the board shows that many exclusives are suffering, and considering handing in the crown, which insanely is probably what they want, to get that percentage they hand out as low as possible, ignoring the probably-still-quite-valuable USP of exclusive images.

I can't see this being their goal unless exclusive content no longer means anything to buyers.

Without exclusive content what's their competitive advantage? Do they have better service than other sites? More files? Better prices? Better search? Probably not.

So without exclusive content they would have most of the same content as other sites with higher prices, a buggy website, and poor customer service. I can't see that working out too well.

ShadySue

« Reply #74 on: January 02, 2013, 20:50 »
0
Don't imagine for a moment that only independents are suffering at iStock. A read across the board shows that many exclusives are suffering, and considering handing in the crown, which insanely is probably what they want, to get that percentage they hand out as low as possible, ignoring the probably-still-quite-valuable USP of exclusive images.

I can't see this being their goal unless exclusive content no longer means anything to buyers.

Without exclusive content what's their competitive advantage? Do they have better service than other sites? More files? Better prices? Better search? Probably not.

So without exclusive content they would have most of the same content as other sites with higher prices, a buggy website, and poor customer service. I can't see that working out too well.

It's not working out too well for anyone most people there at present.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2013, 20:55 by ShadySue »


 

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