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Author Topic: Picfair Raises $520K To Take On Getty  (Read 12400 times)

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« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2014, 06:29 »
-1
Well, there's $520k down the drain....

« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2014, 06:41 »
+1
That's like giving a new kid on the block a penny to fight the neighborhood bully.

Ron

« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2014, 07:31 »
+1
The article made it up that the 520$K is to take on Getty. Its a juicy header to gain readers. They just raised the money to improve some features, not to take on Getty.

« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2014, 07:38 »
0
The article made it up that the 520$K is to take on Getty. Its a juicy header to gain readers. They just raised the money to improve some features, not to take on Getty.

That and the whopping addition of 40,000 images in the last year.  That's dew on the side of a bucket compared to Getty.

stockphotoeurope

« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2014, 07:45 »
+3
I kindly suggest that they spend a few dollars from that budget to set up FTP if they want our pictures.

Making upload as simple as possible is paramount for a new site with unproven sales.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2014, 07:50 by stockphotoeurope »

« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2014, 07:50 »
0
I sold images there twice. Takes too much time to upload. They're integrating IPTC I think.

Ron

« Reply #7 on: June 09, 2014, 08:01 »
-1
The OP has left the building already

« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2014, 08:55 »
+11
The cynicism on this forum can be really off putting! Why slam something that could be a much better deal for you as a contributor before it even has a chance to get going? Don't you want a better choice than the current robber barons have to offer?

Ron

« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2014, 08:59 »
-1
Nobody slammed anything

« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2014, 09:09 »
0
The cynicism on this forum can be really off putting! Why slam something that could be a much better deal for you as a contributor before it even has a chance to get going? Don't you want a better choice than the current robber barons have to offer?

That's how it is when you put many people who do the same thing together.

« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2014, 09:16 »
0
The cynicism on this forum can be really off putting...

It's beyond off-putting lately. Honestly I think it's bordering on being damaging to the business at this point. We'll never see anything change for the better in this business if we approach everything with pessimism.

It seems that many folks here are content to just complain about the companies doing bad things and mock the companies trying to make their way up the ladder. Heck, even good companies get mocked around here.

What's the old saying? Something about a nose and spite... 


« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2014, 10:18 »
+6
I think it's because we can see nothing's going to play out differently than any others who have tried to start the exact same thing in the past.  It's a site that accepts any image that comes in and wants to payout %80 of the sales which means no money for marketing or improvements.  It's just nothing new, so we can see the end of the story.

PaulieWalnuts

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« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2014, 10:18 »
+7
It's nice to see a newer site get some funding and get serious about competing.

I think a lot of the pessimism comes from past results. Photoshelter spent $1M to grow their stock business and threw in the towel. Shutterstock I believe spends around $15M (?) annually in sales and marketing just to grow a microstock agency.

So $520K seems a bit light. Maybe they'll get more funding. Or if growth takes off organically like Instragram than $520K may be plenty.

It'll be interesting to see where this goes.






Shelma1

« Reply #14 on: June 09, 2014, 11:11 »
+2
The cynicism on this forum can be really off putting...

It's beyond off-putting lately. Honestly I think it's bordering on being damaging to the business at this point. We'll never see anything change for the better in this business if we approach everything with pessimism.

It seems that many folks here are content to just complain about the companies doing bad things and mock the companies trying to make their way up the ladder. Heck, even good companies get mocked around here.

What's the old saying? Something about a nose and spite...

Other than suggesting people upload 7 million images to a stock site that spends nothing on marketing and generates few sales, what would you like to see happen?

I think people are being realistic. It's great to see a site that lets you set your own prices and adds 20% to the topwhich is how it works in the real world, at least in NYbut they've got 40,000 images. Even Symbiostock has almost 300,000 now.

The sites that are successful put a lot of effort into marketing. Shutterstock is successful because they market the heck out of their site and keep reaching out to tap new markets.

Nobody will buy your product if they don't know it exists.

« Reply #15 on: June 09, 2014, 11:52 »
+2
Other than suggesting people upload 7 million images to a stock site that spends nothing on marketing and generates few sales, what would you like to see happen?

I think people are being realistic. It's great to see a site that lets you set your own prices and adds 20% to the topwhich is how it works in the real world, at least in NYbut they've got 40,000 images. Even Symbiostock has almost 300,000 now.

The sites that are successful put a lot of effort into marketing. Shutterstock is successful because they market the heck out of their site and keep reaching out to tap new markets.

Nobody will buy your product if they don't know it exists.

I think I agree and disagree with this at the same time.  ;D

Despite all the money spent, I don't feel particularly marketed or represented. I'm just along for the ride trying to pick up any scraps. On the flip side, some of those places that don't have the huge budgets seem to do a better job marketing my business just by existing.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2014, 12:13 by cthoman »

« Reply #16 on: June 09, 2014, 14:21 »
0
I think it's because we can see nothing's going to play out differently than any others who have tried to start the exact same thing in the past.  It's a site that accepts any image that comes in and wants to payout %80 of the sales which means no money for marketing or improvements.  It's just nothing new, so we can see the end of the story.

actually its 100% for the photographer

« Reply #17 on: June 09, 2014, 15:45 »
0
Shutterstock is successful because they market the heck out of their site and keep reaching out to tap new markets.

Sooner or later they are going to have to split their collection into basic and premium (i.e. expensive to produce and / or niche) IMO. Otherwise how will they be able to reduce the entry price of subscriptions as the cost of basic content continues to fall ?

Basic content, what used to be called microstock, is going towards being free or offered as a service. You only have to look at what has happened to music to see where things are going. Spotify is now $10 per month or free if you can cope with adverts. That's $10 per month for instant access to more content than any record store ever stocked.

« Reply #18 on: June 09, 2014, 16:07 »
0
Other than suggesting people upload 7 million images to a stock site that spends nothing on marketing and generates few sales, what would you like to see happen?...

Well that would be a start. At least it's a different strategy than the current popular one of simply complaining about things in an Internet forum and hoping for something to change.

How do you expect a company to generate sales when they don't have a quantity of images that can adequately compete with any of the top companies? Sales don't magically appear. Marketing certainly is a part of it, but you need something to market, also.

All I've been saying is that we need to be more open to trying something different. We've done this pointless song and dance of deleting images, threatening to delete images, boycotting uploads, opting out images, etc., and it goes nowhere. Has any company ever had to radically change direction based on a boycott?

I think we can do things a little differently, take a different approach. Unfortunately I'm mostly alone in that belief so I'm sort of wasting my breath/keystrokes. But I still hold out hope that a greater number of people will warm up to the idea of trying something that is historically (in microstock) unconventional.

« Reply #19 on: June 09, 2014, 16:32 »
+4
I think everybody is looking at it from the wrong side. A business doesn't have to be big to succeed.  After all, many microstockers with a few thousand images would consider that they are a business success even though they have a turnover of less than $100,000 a year.
If this company spends its money wisely it may well become a success within the terms it judges itself by. That might not mean it becoming a top-four microstock company. And it might not mean that it becomes a lucrative market for us.
Sites like Scanstock invest little and sell little, but they seem able to soldier on, presumably making a modest living for their owners.

« Reply #20 on: June 09, 2014, 16:47 »
+3
I think everybody is looking at it from the wrong side. A business doesn't have to be big to succeed.  After all, many microstockers with a few thousand images would consider that they are a business success even though they have a turnover of less than $100,000 a year.
If this company spends its money wisely it may well become a success within the terms it judges itself by. That might not mean it becoming a top-four microstock company. And it might not mean that it becomes a lucrative market for us.
Sites like Scanstock invest little and sell little, but they seem able to soldier on, presumably making a modest living for their owners.

This seems to be lost on a lot of people. I was hoping at one time that contributors would start to throttle back on the giant micro sites as they started having success on smaller boutique sites. A sort of voluntary exclusivity would start to emerge as more profitable markets were discovered. Unfortunately, those sites haven't really appeared in large numbers, so I'm not sure it is going to happen. It still seems like it would be the best outcome for the industry, but you can't make people submit to places that don't exist.

Shelma1

« Reply #21 on: June 09, 2014, 17:08 »
+3
Other than suggesting people upload 7 million images to a stock site that spends nothing on marketing and generates few sales, what would you like to see happen?...

Well that would be a start. At least it's a different strategy than the current popular one of simply complaining about things in an Internet forum and hoping for something to change.

How do you expect a company to generate sales when they don't have a quantity of images that can adequately compete with any of the top companies? Sales don't magically appear. Marketing certainly is a part of it, but you need something to market, also.

All I've been saying is that we need to be more open to trying something different. We've done this pointless song and dance of deleting images, threatening to delete images, boycotting uploads, opting out images, etc., and it goes nowhere. Has any company ever had to radically change direction based on a boycott?

I think we can do things a little differently, take a different approach. Unfortunately I'm mostly alone in that belief so I'm sort of wasting my breath/keystrokes. But I still hold out hope that a greater number of people will warm up to the idea of trying something that is historically (in microstock) unconventional.

Well yes, of course companies have changed direction, changed ingredients, pulled products, gone out of business, etc. etc. because of boycotts.

Here's an oldie but goodie:

"A tired African-American woman by the name of Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat near the front of the bus to a white man. This sparked the Montgomery Bus Boycott, which deprived the bus company of 65% of its income and led to the landmark decision by the Supreme Court that bus segregation is unconstitutional."

As I said before, it's not either/or. You can opt out AND do something else. But why post in a thread about a positive group effort and repeatedly tell everyone their efforts are going nowhere (despite evidence to the contrary)?

And BTW, what's with the double standard? You're convinced DPC can do just great even if we opt out half their images, but StockFresh can't possibly compete unless they have another 7 million.

« Reply #22 on: June 09, 2014, 18:14 »
0
I like their business concept, I hope they take off.
I'll give them a try soon instead of uploading to Envato, Pond5, Veer and the same low earners.
Just hope their upload isn't too Istocksy.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2014, 18:20 by Nikovsk »

« Reply #23 on: June 09, 2014, 18:38 »
+1
Well yes, of course companies have changed direction, changed ingredients, pulled products, gone out of business, etc. etc. because of boycotts...

Stock companies? Microstock?

...As I said before, it's not either/or. You can opt out AND do something else. But why post in a thread about a positive group effort and repeatedly tell everyone their efforts are going nowhere (despite evidence to the contrary)?...

What evidence? Has Fotolia announced something I haven't heard about recently?

...And BTW, what's with the double standard? You're convinced DPC can do just great even if we opt out half their images, but StockFresh can't possibly compete unless they have another 7 million.

What double standard? I've said that I think DPC wouldn't change anything if we opted out half of their images (14 million). I've also suggested they could get by with 10 million, meaning that I think a company has a comfortably large enough collection at the 10 million mark. I think Stockfresh is under-supported with around 3 million images.

Not sure where you're getting the idea that I have any sort of double standard with regard to these companies.

And I'm not commenting on the Rosa Parks comparison. It's ridiculous to even mention in the context of a stock image boycott.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2014, 18:40 by EmberMike »

Shelma1

« Reply #24 on: June 09, 2014, 19:48 »
+6
Well yes, of course companies have changed direction, changed ingredients, pulled products, gone out of business, etc. etc. because of boycotts...

Stock companies? Microstock?

...As I said before, it's not either/or. You can opt out AND do something else. But why post in a thread about a positive group effort and repeatedly tell everyone their efforts are going nowhere (despite evidence to the contrary)?...

What evidence? Has Fotolia announced something I haven't heard about recently?

...And BTW, what's with the double standard? You're convinced DPC can do just great even if we opt out half their images, but StockFresh can't possibly compete unless they have another 7 million.

What double standard? I've said that I think DPC wouldn't change anything if we opted out half of their images (14 million). I've also suggested they could get by with 10 million, meaning that I think a company has a comfortably large enough collection at the 10 million mark. I think Stockfresh is under-supported with around 3 million images.

Not sure where you're getting the idea that I have any sort of double standard with regard to these companies.

And I'm not commenting on the Rosa Parks comparison. It's ridiculous to even mention in the context of a stock image boycott.

You're simply dead set on believing microstock cannot be affected by a boycott, though boycotts have been effective against all sorts of businesses, governments, prejudice, you name it.

You're also dead set on believing that if we can't shut a site down within five minutes any effort we make is completely useless.

I'm just very glad so many others here don't share your defeatist attitude.

« Reply #25 on: June 09, 2014, 22:19 »
-5
You're simply dead set on believing microstock cannot be affected by a boycott, though boycotts have been effective against all sorts of businesses, governments, prejudice, you name it...

Of course boycotts work in other industries. They just don't seem to work in microstock. We can't organize and rally around a boycott with much more than a quarter of the contributor base, and we're in an industry where these companies could lose half of their contributors tomorrow and still stay in business. A successful boycott in microstock would require a lot more than 50% of us to take part, which will never happen.

...You're also dead set on believing that if we can't shut a site down within five minutes any effort we make is completely useless...

You're right there. Any effort to shut down a site is useless. Shutting down a site is impossible. No way could we ever organize a boycott or protest big enough to do that.

...I'm just very glad so many others here don't share your defeatist attitude.

If "defeatist" means that I've given up on the idea of shutting down DPC through image opt-outs, a strategy that has already failed as the image count is rising at DPC, then sure, I'll wear that badge proudly.

Ron

« Reply #26 on: June 10, 2014, 02:35 »
+5
DPC boycot hasnt failed at all

« Reply #27 on: June 10, 2014, 05:15 »
+1

...You're also dead set on believing that if we can't shut a site down within five minutes any effort we make is completely useless...

You're right there. Any effort to shut down a site is useless. Shutting down a site is impossible. No way could we ever organize a boycott or protest big enough to do that.
Many companies find themselves tottering on the edge of extinction for all sorts of reasons. It sometimes only takes a tiny push to send them over the edge. In those circumstances, a boycott that could be laughed off by a solid, healthy company could prove fatal for one that is struggling.

So you simply don't know whether or not it would be possible to shut down any given site.

Look at the section here on sites that have died. Obviously, they were all on the edge for a while before they gave up and a sharp push in the last few months of their existence would probably have finished them off early. So in theory it IS possible for external action to shut down a site. Look at the debt burden on Getty Images and the rating agency's reaction to Getty's failure to meet its projections for earnings growth - just being big doesn't mean there aren't financial storm clouds on the horizon.

I'm not advocating trying to close sites, just saying that in some instances action could lead to closure.


Shelma1

« Reply #28 on: June 10, 2014, 06:10 »
+4
You're simply dead set on believing microstock cannot be affected by a boycott, though boycotts have been effective against all sorts of businesses, governments, prejudice, you name it...

Of course boycotts work in other industries. They just don't seem to work in microstock. We can't organize and rally around a boycott with much more than a quarter of the contributor base, and we're in an industry where these companies could lose half of their contributors tomorrow and still stay in business. A successful boycott in microstock would require a lot more than 50% of us to take part, which will never happen.

...You're also dead set on believing that if we can't shut a site down within five minutes any effort we make is completely useless...

You're right there. Any effort to shut down a site is useless. Shutting down a site is impossible. No way could we ever organize a boycott or protest big enough to do that.

...I'm just very glad so many others here don't share your defeatist attitude.

If "defeatist" means that I've given up on the idea of shutting down DPC through image opt-outs, a strategy that has already failed as the image count is rising at DPC, then sure, I'll wear that badge proudly.

Well, be proud wearing that badge of "only the most extreme outcome counts as success." To me, just the fact that Fotolia was pressured into an opt out is success. That means people who rely on their Fotolia earnings haven't been forced to decide between either allowing their images to sell for a dollar or closing their FT account completely and forfeiting that income.

How you don't see that as a win is beyond me.

Tror

« Reply #29 on: June 10, 2014, 06:28 »
+3
Great news! Benji is a great guy and if he makes it there will be a very friendly agency option for us contributors. I wish him all the best - and a efficient FTP/IPTC processor :D

« Reply #30 on: June 10, 2014, 08:36 »
-1
Well, be proud wearing that badge of "only the most extreme outcome counts as success." To me, just the fact that Fotolia was pressured into an opt out is success. That means people who rely on their Fotolia earnings haven't been forced to decide between either allowing their images to sell for a dollar or closing their FT account completely and forfeiting that income.

How you don't see that as a win is beyond me.

You and Paul have something in common. You both seem to enjoy suggesting that I've said things I've never actually said.

To reiterate (yet again), I've always supported other efforts to push back DPC. I've used that exact phrase, "push back". Not "shut down", which I think is impossible anyway.

I never said that the opt-out wasn't a good thing. Feel free to quote me if you think that I did.

« Reply #31 on: June 10, 2014, 09:36 »
+1
Of course boycotts work in other industries. They just don't seem to work in microstock. We can't organize and rally around a boycott with much more than a quarter of the contributor base, and we're in an industry where these companies could lose half of their contributors tomorrow and still stay in business. A successful boycott in microstock would require a lot more than 50% of us to take part, which will never happen.

I would say the most successful boycott would probably involve both contributors and buyers.

« Reply #32 on: June 10, 2014, 09:37 »
+1
I think it's because we can see nothing's going to play out differently than any others who have tried to start the exact same thing in the past.  It's a site that accepts any image that comes in and wants to payout %80 of the sales which means no money for marketing or improvements.  It's just nothing new, so we can see the end of the story.

actually its 100% for the photographer

Yes, the 20% is added on top. So, if you price an image at 5, the buyer will pay roughly 6.40. 5 to you, 1 (the 20%) to Picfair, and 0.40 to Stripe, who process our payments.

(Benji reply)

« Reply #33 on: June 11, 2014, 11:05 »
0
Do they still have that upload limit of 210 images / account?

Started uploading, not bad but they need to allow more images than that.

Also the license they offer is kinda like an extended lease, so I didn't put anything below 10.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2014, 11:08 by Nikovsk »

« Reply #34 on: June 11, 2014, 11:21 »
0
It would be really nice to have IPTC read...

« Reply #35 on: June 11, 2014, 12:58 »
+1
I think it's because we can see nothing's going to play out differently than any others who have tried to start the exact same thing in the past.  It's a site that accepts any image that comes in and wants to payout %80 of the sales which means no money for marketing or improvements.  It's just nothing new, so we can see the end of the story.

actually its 100% for the photographer

Semantics.  Of the price a buyer pays, the contributor gets 80% and the agency gets %20.  Well 83 and 17 but same idea.

« Reply #36 on: June 11, 2014, 13:32 »
+1
I think it's because we can see nothing's going to play out differently than any others who have tried to start the exact same thing in the past.  It's a site that accepts any image that comes in and wants to payout %80 of the sales which means no money for marketing or improvements.  It's just nothing new, so we can see the end of the story.

actually its 100% for the photographer

Yes, the 20% is added on top. So, if you price an image at 5, the buyer will pay roughly 6.40. 5 to you, 1 (the 20%) to Picfair, and 0.40 to Stripe, who process our payments.

(Benji reply)

That's one way to look at it - 20% added on top.

As a buyer, I'd prefer to just see the price I pay not some price and a bunch of fees to be added (which is more like renting a car from the airport - $100 for the car and $70 in taxes/recovery charges/etc).

If the buyer's price is 6.40, taken as a percentage of the total paid, the photographer gets 78.1% the agency 15.6% and the payment processor 6.3%

It's a bit worse for a 3.00 image (76.9, 15.4, 7.7) and a bit better for a 50 image (80.7, 16.15, 3.15) because the Stripe fee isn't linear (0.30 and 1.94 respectively).

But if that 50 surfing image were ever to find a buyer, seeing 50 on the search page and then discovering it's really 61.94 would be off-putting, IMO - it's a lot more money

« Reply #37 on: June 11, 2014, 15:04 »
0
Jo Ann, I would guess that the buyer sees the total price, not the photographer's share. But it's only a guess.

« Reply #38 on: June 11, 2014, 15:14 »
0
They say that promotional use is okay - and yet promotional use of many of these images would be problematic. That makes no sense. And they say that they are hoping to revisit the licensing later.

It's not serious. It's bizarre that anyone has given them money. Bubble economy still.

« Reply #39 on: June 11, 2014, 18:41 »
+1
Jo Ann, I would guess that the buyer sees the total price, not the photographer's share. But it's only a guess.

I used the site to check those things I posted. I don't have an account there (and don't plan to either buy or contribute). As far as they knew, I was a buyer.

I acted as I think a buyer would and clicked buy but then cancelled the purchase before paying. You see three items on the page where the price is totaled - the teaser you saw in the search, the PicFair fee and the payment fee.


 

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