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Messages - marquixHD

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General Stock Discussion / Re: Best reverse image search?
« on: January 19, 2019, 14:25 »
although I kind of hate to admit it, I find that Google works best so far...



This article drives home the fact that blockchain is still new and it might not be ready for prime time use by businesses yet


ongoing incidents of theft of video and photos from these big agencies with their "IT teams", same with how many other big firms? Equifax anyone?, the average artist would probably have better security on their laptops than these companies and they are smaller harder to find targets for the bad guys. 

Very good points you're making here, this pretty much nails it when it comes to those agencies (as well as all the other 'experts' out there)! Love it.

I haven't been hacked yet or gotten one virus/malware (...)

never fell victim to any successful attack on any of my personal boxes either -- it usually just hits the very dumb ones out there who came to the internet AOL-1992 style... :)

I think a feasibility study is in order.

This post was the only well-written one so far, also apparently by the only one on here actually knowing a bit about blockchain, decentralization, and 'more simple' peer-to-peer specifics.

You're also the only one addressing the real questions and issues, skipping the useless polemics so common here on MSF with all those nay-sayers with their history of hardship and alienation by a cut-throat market and price dumping between conventional stock image agencies (who are not a photographer's friend, indeed)...

Be that as it may, the common hesitation on here against anything smelling of another 'New-Symbiostock' thing may be understandable -- but it's also a mindset that makes it easy for Shutterstock and look-alikes to further corner the market (to the disadvantage of image artists, the main casualties here).

Essentially on the same page as you here, completing the questionnaire and interested to see if it leads to a feasability study. Hopeing for an OpenBazaar-style market for stock photo and video myself. Maybe this will be it???

@cascoly what is your opinion of the inter-site search network that we all had? Hindsite is 20/20, I'm curious what you think.

I didn't intend to carry on anything like that in this endeavor, but still I'm curious. You had contributed very well to it.

as I wrote earlier, I think the biggest problem is google image search where my images from 123,ss et al get higher rankings than my sym images

the latter is, IMHO, mainly due to Google's insufficient overall image "search" approach which rather randomizes that entire process and yields (random) rankings like the one you mentioned above (these are not even real "search results" notwithstanding the fact that it is labeled "Google"...). Looking for better ways of searching for images for some time now, have been working on some ideas with a guy from Denmark for some time, nothing useful we could release so far in order to cure Google's shortcomings though :(

Much depends on whether or not there is demand (here, maybe?) for a better and wholly different approach to photo and video*) search over the conventional "solutions" out there at Google & similar. Would be lovely to hear whether or not anyone here would be interested in using an improved solution to this problem?


*) and graphics, of course ;)

General - Stock Video / Re: Video editing software
« on: August 25, 2016, 12:22 »
Please advise. I'm looking for video editing software for basic editing like exposure correction, length adjustment etc. Like Lightroom for photo editing, what will be for video?

if you'd like to not throw your hard-earned money after Adobe and if you care or know anything about software licensing problems or the infamous .H264 patent issue etc, you might also want to check out Open Source alternatives, such as:

 - OpenShot (http://www.openshot.org)
 - Avidemux (http://avidemux.org)
 - WinFF / ffMpeg
 - Llightworks (http://www.lwks.com/)

Many of them are avalaible across all platforms, (i e at least MacOS, Linux, or Windows) without vendor lock-in or similar issues.

I am using OpenShot which is straightforward to use, but still has lots of FinalCut-style pro-features. Do note, that "Free" also means free as in "free beer", so you just download and install it without a price tag instead of worrying about licensing and similar garbage all the time... Anyway, I am used to it and am quite happy with it. Have uploaded tons of clips to agencies using OpenShot and also sold nicely (much easier to break even in today's microstock world that when you also have to recover $$$ for just buying a software package). Much better cost-to-reward ratio. So on top of technical, it also makes economic sense for me.

Shutterstock.com / Re: SSTK stock hits new high
« on: August 18, 2016, 12:11 »

Shutterstock.com / Re: Most popular/most recent screwup
« on: August 18, 2016, 11:39 »
Suddenly my most popular and most recent images on page 1 in my port have disappeared. Anyone else?

which agency are you guys talking about, at all...?

Shutterstock.com / Re: SSTK stock hits new high
« on: August 18, 2016, 11:36 »
When the boneheads are buyinG stocks, the shrewd are selling

exactly --- that's the way it is.

There's one thing it means for traders though, and that would be going short on the stuff. (Even if, indeed, it isn't an all-time high, a 52-wk high is usually "good enough" as well -- particularly in the overall market situation :) and the fundamental situation of a microstock agency like SSTK in particular...)

Will look into this further -- nice to find trading info even here on MSG ;)


EDIT: Having looked at it a bit more closely, a P/E of 108 is really outlandish -- reminds me of 2001 when every would-be Yuppie and their grandmom were running worthless stock companies. (The rest is history...) So, indeed, SSTK appears to be a great candidate to go short on :)

Off Topic / Re: OMG America!!!
« on: March 18, 2016, 16:25 »
to me, a non="american" (ie mexico, usa, cda)...
bill gates is the best person to be president.
he knows what it's like to be a person who works to be great at what he does.
he has track record of philantropy
he can reduce cost by firing all the corrupted politicians
he can run USA with robots

he is already ruling the world with his compute;
why not his own country???

this must be a joke, right?

- so you think Windows is great? Then why do advanced users -- most notably photographers -- use MacOS (not to mention Linux)?
- his "track record" is bullying an industry with a little help from his father shelling out some dubious license depriving a poor little programmer guy of his (not Gates'!) invention
- his "track record" of "philanthropy" is contaminating the world with Zica (his mosquito experiment in Panama went sour), abusing little girls in India as guinea pigs for his questionable HPV vaccines, and dodging U. S. taxes by way of thinking up some "foundation" that really is nothing more than a tax shelter for his billions not to go to Uncle Sam (the latter part I don't mind, but it's not "for others" either)
- reducing cost by firing people is usually not the way to improve the outcome (surprised that "firing" all of a sudden should be an acceptable thing to do in this union-friendly underdog forum her -- what a laugh),
- do you want to live in a world "rulded" or rather controlled by robots?! I am an IT systems developer but have quite enough of this pseudo-technophile attitude...
- that "rule of his computers" is, thank God, diminishing for the benefit of better solutions than an insecure monolithic OS like Windoze
- and finally (and for your information), the U. S. is not "his" country, nor anyone else's. Where I come from, countries are not owned but civil servants and politicians are supposed to serve the electorate in a political system

As for the bullying part and for (ab)using mechanisms in order to see his stuff through Gates would be "qualified" though for fighting a few more wars, occupy countries "for democracy" and unilaterally "change regimes" at will, I grant you that much, @etudiante_trop_lentement

VB has finally come alive for me this month with about 8 sales so far.

curiously, similar here. They're apparently here again. Very nice I'd say ;)

I am not sure what's going on as I had three months of zero sales and all of a sudden I am seeing a mix of sales (different subjects).

me neither, but I'll keep watching. In the past, my sales were equally sporadic there with kinds of clusters followed by lliterally months of total silence. This is so much better now, and it's good to see that "it's not just me"...

Thanks for sharing.

Shutterstock.com / Re: Shutterstock payment mail?
« on: January 06, 2016, 15:57 »
Just received the e-mail (minutes ago)

me too, received it this morning.

I am exclusive and I have been with Getty Images for years. This is not a SEO problem, rather it is a CEO problem. You can't keep sh!tt!ng on the talent and expect positive long term results. Without a doubt the competition has brought the industry to new lows, but you combine this with reckless abandon and total disrespect to your contributors and buyers, people will leave you either as a contributor or a buyer. Mr. CEO you and your arrogant ego blew Getty Images, not the competition or Google search. You needed us more than you thought.

whether or not this is a CEO problem, it also is true that Google and their arbitrary "algo updates" are designed with Google's bottom line in mind -- not yours, not Getty's, not mine nor anyone else's.

At the same time, Google delivers very mediocre "image search", if you can call it that at all. Actually, it seems the entire internet does not havy any "image search" worth its salt yet. This is ridiculous, and it seems they at Google, of all places, did not know the first thing about parsing certain pieces of data.

So, as much as I dislike Getty (or Rockefeller or any other corporation belonging to that cartel discovered by the ETH Zurich a few years back) as well as being aware of the fact that Getty seem to try and argue against any deep linking on the net in some way here and certainly still don't get how the internet works, they still have a point. At least sort of. (Also the "proof" offered by thesempost is incredibly lame and beside the point. That is where the real "ouch" lies: seriously, who in this world would only be searching for ridiculous terms like "stock photo of xyz"...?

No one should ignore the fact that Google pose a far greater threat to all internet users and their interests than an on-the-way-out joint like Getty.

General Stock Discussion / Re: Shopify?
« on: December 06, 2015, 11:36 »
I had a look at Shopify.

I like the site, but I am afraid it has the same problems of Symbiostock, Ktools, etc...
i.e. the lack of a centralised search AND/OR store

Buyers don't have the time/will/trust to sign up to many different shops

this is exactly why we should have better image search over the Net. Perhaps something will *finally* come up -- I mean, how ridiculous is it that image buyers have to sift through millions of largely irrelevant "hits" all the time?!

Has anyone tried shopify?
FB is such a huge platform I wonder if it works.

I'm guessing it would work about as good as any direct sales platform you set up ... which is not that good unless you put a lot of work into it.  WooCommerce also has a plug-in to sell stuff on Facebook.  I'm guessing most people would simply prefer to purchase their 'stuff'on the website itself.

correct, @Leaf -- one really doesn't need Shopify for it (nor pay a monthly Shopify subscription fee) if one goes for the Plugin with WP.

Symbiostock - General / Re: Woohoo... first real SymbioStock sale.
« on: December 06, 2015, 10:10 »
My first sale on my new Symbiostock plugin based personal agency. Well, just $2.00, but everyone has to start somewhere...



I even had two sales for Bitcoin (Alt coins) by now! I use a WordPress plugin alongside grfx & wooCommerce adding payment functionality for ALL Crypto coins -- such as Litecoin, Dogecoin, Earthcoin, Mintcoin, Mazacoin, etc -- on top of Biticoin itself...

In fact, this makes a lot of sense because most microstock sales involve micro payments -- and remember, Bitcoin and most Alt coins having zero transaction fees and essentially being instalnt and free payments are perfect for that scenario!

15 years ago, I sold cds and dvd on ebay that way, but it was never very profitable, even with 100+ images on the disc; competition kept the price below $10 for the most part. 

early on, when ebay allowed digital downloads it was reasonable to sell that way, but they disallowed that many years ago

yes, they disallowed it -- just like that. Had my own share of bad experiences with it back in the day -- and certainly haven't forgotten that eBay sucks ever since! Reason enough to look for another selling platform (not only indie images, but as in REPLACING eBay altogether with item search and peer-to-peer auction link sharing. It can be done if enough of us get in on it!

Hi all,

 I don't want to spoil the party at all but before you drop 8K on this new DJI product I would be absolutely sure that not one rotor will go out on you. At 3K the first model was okay, losing 3K is a lot different than 8K. Many countries do not allow the use of 4 rotor systems as they can be dangerous. DJI horror stories are all over the place if you do a bit of google search. This industry is moving so fast unless you are ready to start making money tomorrow with your new flying camera I would wait it out. No rush for now they are all just getting things figured out and the changes are happening at light speed. Please read reviews at B and H, and everywhere for that matter, about the Inspire 1 and all DJI products. This new unit is the same Inspire with new optics but the guts of the bird appear to be the same as the 1. There are lots of good ones but there are plenty of bad ones and DJI is the worst for repair if you recover your crashed bird. You could easily be down for 2 months waiting on parts and for professional that makes business difficult. Best of luck :)


fully have to agree. The kind of "service" from DJI is appalling in light of the fact that we are talking K$ products and multi-K$ products here (and with their inefficient way of handling requests and collecting fault data, they show how unnecessarily long these actual repair times are going to be right from the start).

As for the fast-moving part of that segment, again it's DJI who are the ones having demonstrated very bad product development policy -- this time with their larger copters and the infamous "flip of death" problem. Apparently they did not even care to test their expensive airships but (ab)used multi-K paying customers as "beta testers" who then had to foot the bill for crashed ones out of their own pockets, thank-you-very-much.

Indeed, I would not go for anything but small (and somewhat affordable) quadcopters from DJI in light of that. These haven't been overly changed and messed-with for a number of model generations and seem to be sufficiently "stable" as a product now. Phantom-2 to "vision" to Phantom-3 and all its variants (sold in large numbers) may be "reliable enough" to go for.

And yes, very pleased elsewhere with the overall experience and results from Phantom 3s (when you succeed getting a fault-free copy with working FPV and image data feed so you can actually shoot images with it, that is).

... As stated the sponsored or premium SS images give a refer kickback so the sites aren't affiliated to SS or anything

I think that's exactly what they are:

quite likely, indeed.

Strange though that, according to Whois information (in some cases imprint where a proper one exists on-site), all of them are based in or connected to or registered/held by someone or rather a group of what appears to be Germany-based college friends. Makes you think...

tahanks jjneff, I was considering getting Phantom2 with GoPro4 but my research shows that Phantom's3 camera gives better quality still photo. on the other hand having a copter without built in camera gives you possibility to change optics when there is something new/better on the market without changing a drone. Sending a dslr into the sky is very expensive, i was thinking about compact camera, but gimbals are also expensive toys. There are some rc tech guys willing to assemble the system for compact, but I don't want to carry a soldering gun in my bag and all those sticking out wires looks user unfriendly.

Have you been exercising on smaller copters before flying P3?

totally with you when it comes to user-unfriendliness of the "big rigs", @spamowanka. Things have become better lately though with, for example, the Tarot hexacopter series, see http://steadiflite.com/advanced-apv-tool-the-tarot-t960-hexacopter/ for details: these can carry a full DSLR (or a good MFT offering a better choice of lenses than, say, this badly-fisheyed Gopro thing along with its totally unacceptable shutter-roll etc most seem to use these days)... While definitely not as sleek as these prosumer Phantoms (with their own severe limitations and also cost draw-downs), that Tarot set-of-flying-tubes is definitely manageable for non-RC-techies. Not worse than a decent video rig set-up on a tripod, frame, and external screen. (Ask someone to help with configuration, or you may even "buy" that as an add-on service for a ready-to-fly result.)

Me, I definitely used a small copter as a "training wheels" solution; and it's not even mainly the flying part but the aerial filming and overall composition portion that needs LOTS OF practice here -- used to "get my feet wet" flying a Blade 350 QX3 which is the cheapest platform for any meaningful AP/V use and image quality (and does not have that overly expens-ified Gopro garbage hanging underneath), can be had pre-owned from eBay for 300 bucks or new for a tat higher.

Interesting. Guess it all has to be done with a gopro which I dont have. (yet)

then don't bother getting one. If you do it for the camera in an attempt to get another "interesting tool" or addition to your kit, you are flat out gonna be disappointed. (It may be a different story for people who cannot sit still and plan on jumping around and need a small camera to go with them while breaking their necks, plus want all those Twitter-generation sharing functions and toys on top   -- but if that's not you, then this specialised thing is not for you.) I bought and tested one but sent it back for its appauling image quality:

 - the GoPro fisheye effect really sucks,
 - even at 1080p60, you cannot even slowly pan without having a severe strobing effect (and I don't believe anyone would want a GoPro for recording panoramic views or sunsets); this is apparently caused by some sub-micro sized tiny little sensor that blows the high-data-volume 60p thing as well as the acceptable Mpx amount and really doesn't make much sense,
 - the mike is (understandably) heavily wind-filtered and, therefore, produces overly weak, far-away sounding audio (there is an external mike input though which might (?? fixed mike level presets allowing for this at all??) improve the camera's poor audio), albeit this requires a micro-USB-to-3.5mm adapter first :( , adding to handling issues and fall-offs etc,
 - micro SD cards are way too small (physically to handle) and hence impractical for real-life situation on the job; haven't got the time to go searching for 20 minutes if I drop them...

I am aware of **some** of the issues being remediable (correcting fisheye in software) but most are not. And why would I when there are better cameras out there that cost less than a GoPro! Also, people may have got better things to do than adding an, otherwise unnecessary, extra step in post-production. Even DJI who initially recommended using GoPros in their older Phantom and Phantom 2 quadcopters have now come up with a better camera and lens and are expressly boasting the fact that their own new Phantom-3-and-beyond camera has a 94 FOV and no fishy stuff anymore. While not touting DJI consumer and prosumer drones here (as I prefer more versatile, less-closed-down solutions), there must be a reason DJI now avoid fisheyed cameras.

For starters, if you only try finding actionable information on lens correction data, the only thing coming up is the usual garbage about using "that great preset in Adobe AfterEffects" but nothing in the way of actual **values** that can be used in non-proprietary software like openShot or shotCut etc. I knew how to click some drop-down entry in AfterEffects before. I also can see why Adobe would want to push only THIS "solution" -- thank you very much.

** EDIT **: after trying for some time now to fix the issue using what little actionable information is out there for non-Adobe users, I found out that even thoroughly lens-correcting that distorted pile of GoPro output does not really help too much: instead of that pathetic fisheye, you now get skewed horizons all over your image except for the very center. Not surprising it didn't work so good for me: others seem to have the very same problem, as seen in this YouTube example RAW original footage and lens-corrected version. To make a long story short, this is hardly the result one would want after losing significant amounts of additional time on that just-not-good-enough GoPro stuff.

Also, the obscene amount of packaging going into presenting these GoPro thingies in a way they "shine as great toys for boys" is not good at all! (While the extra one-way "mount" may come in handy for makeshift solutions, fixes, or DIY holders, the useless throw-away "showcase"  and transparent dome you're also buying with it is flat-out wasteful.) Welcome to the Brave New World of Apple- and Chinese-led "Environmental Awareness"...

GoPros compare favorably only when the "competition" is a cheap toy camera or maybe a Yuneec CGo-1 and similar. In these instances, the GoPro has more of a quality-feel to it and also produces better results than these "garbage cams" (that only cost a fraction though). Compared against any MFT or DSLR, it hasn't.

So, at the end of the day, a decent mirrorless system camera is clearly the better choice. This even goes for Aerial or Multicopter applications (as a Nikon 1 J1 costs a lot less, shoots way better images -- both photos and HD footage which includes slow motion, albeit limited to 720p and lower resolutions  --  and has a body weight of just 192 grams to fit many copters, even smaller quads).

"Being a Hero" doesn't mean we need to also be braindead from now on out.

Selling Stock Direct / Re: grfx Main Site Rebuild. Updates.
« on: July 25, 2015, 06:17 »
looking forward to it -- as usual ;)

Why don't you submit a few batches without the EXIF data and see what happens, then your assumed "software" won't see exposure time, ISO, aperture, etc.

Great idea. I wouldn't be surprised if they reject images lacking EXIF data though, certainly for editorial stuff. Whenever I've got the date wrong in an editorial caption, they're on it like a hawk.

that's exactly what will happen -- anyone ever tried logging into Facebook or Google after erasing cookies?! Just have a look at what they're displaying when someone dares using their right to "Privacy" or what's left of it. SS will do the same when EXIF data is missing, as will most-any of those presumably "new economy" outfits out there. You could fake the EXIF entires though (if you haven't got better things to do and from now on out also want to lose time having to "edit" EXIF info too)...

My point was that they are using software to review images, nothing more, nothing less.

Take it however you like, but from what I can tell most people just think it is all done by a bunch of reviewers with "issues" or humans who are just very bad at their jobs.

My point is that in many cases there are no humans involved and the artistic "value" of our images, that we work so hard to create unique pieces of art are reviewed by a software algorithm rather than an actual human.

The fact that a software algorithm is making the determination between "acceptable" stock and "unacceptable" images fits with what everybody is complaining about. I believe it explains why stuff we would consider "poor" quality stock images are accepted and our unique and creative images are rejected.

It's a numbers game, if the "values" contained in the meta-data of the image are in the good range, the image is accepted, if however the numbers contained in the meta-data of the image are out of the "acceptable" range then the images is rejected.

All this happens without an actual human looking at the images we spend so much time and energy to create.

That is my point.

Yes, I know they don't care, I agree that they don't care, but that isn't the point I was trying to make.

your point is a very good one (and bringing this up is too), because apparently no one has thought about it that way yet -- and them using software makes total sense (and matches their overall behavior as well)!

On top, how "smart" or "appropriate for the job" that is is highlighted by the fact that computer vision is a hairy problem to this day, and we (and SS) need to accept that fact. SS' nice little "workaround" is outright inadequate and nothing but backfires.

Yeah, and it's right that they don't care anyway...

Beware of VideoBlocks. Did any of you receive payments from them?

 I am from South Africa with a 0% tax treaty with the USA. I am familiar with the tax requirements and have completed numerous W-8BEN forms for all the US agencies that require them (doing this since 2006). In all cases it was a straightforward process and all accepted my details with no problems. However, on VideoBlocks I have now completed the W-8BEN form several times and after weeks of pending they notify me that there is a problem with only a very vague indication of what exactly is the problem. My monthly payments are now delayed for several months.

I am not going to attempt this obscure process again, just to wait weeks before I will know if I will ever receive payment. I cannot continue to sell my videos on an agency where I dont know if I will ever receive payment. I just today requested them to delete my videos and close my account.

there definitely seems to be a technical problem with their tax forms processing. Had the same issue, over and over again, even after manually correcting it! VB definitely need to (1) solve this and (2) be honest and TELL US that this is the case, instead of regurgitating the same "explainer modules" in e-mail "responses" over and over again.

Elsewhere, VB seems like a great agency and has a nice and friendly approach. Will not waste my time again until the above is solved though...

Super Image Market / Re: Upload photos and get PAYMENT
« on: July 24, 2015, 13:16 »
hello Mr. Lee,  how are you???
the first thing that caught my eye on your home page was
the line that said pay nothing for storage.
first time i hear a stock agency charging for storage of your images.

please explain

We hope contributors upload their best work to superimagemarket.com. And we do not want contributors upload lots of similar photos. So we charge storage fee. And  We provide 10 GB for contributor in Level 1 ( account with 1 flag ) for free, and 100 Gb for contributor in level 2 ( account with 2 flag ) for free. If a contributor make its account into level 3, this contributor will get unlimited free space to storage images.

That whole SIM "business plan" is "too smart" for a simple mind like myself...:

(1) on one hand, stringent selection is wanted -- but on the other, 10,000+ images are "more wanted", hence rewarded with an advance of a grand (or, rather, 10 per piece); how likely is it that 10,000+ pictures only represent one's "best work" (or is it just me shooting crap and only having just below 9999 award-winning photographs here)?

(2) SIM is an agency (taking 20% in commissions" proves this fact) and, at the same time, is "providing storage space" (how utterly kind)... No, it is in SIM's best interest to "provide space" and store images in order to increase the chances of applying a better multiplier to those 20% and increase their own automatic stream of income running from a system-built-once and providing perpetual cashflow that way. Nothing wrong with that, but pretending to "provide something" when it is primarily for one's own benefit is a big no-no.

(3) Level-3-contributors being "awarded even more" kind of only confirms points (1) and (2) raised above.

(4) Expecting people here to *not read* the T&C and lock away our creative work somewhere in the Chinese back alleys does not inspire much confidence either.

Also, the guy in that cover image is grinning on at least $2,500 -- I guess, this is for 25,000+ images of his "best work"?!

As I said, all a bit too "intelligent" for most people on this forum, I'm afraid. As for me, it's Thank you but no-thank-you...

General Stock Discussion / Re: DJI Phantom 3 Over Niagara
« on: July 19, 2015, 12:39 »
You can spank me for the shameless pimping but if you have never seen the falls from this angle it is fun. Hope you enjoy. PS. No purchase necessary!

very nice, and good flying!

I can see that you mainly stayed upstream and apparently tried to dodge the notorious cloud of the falls -- but did you have any concerns with damp and moisture out there (as these are known hurdles except for some 3DR or other weatherproofed ones)...?

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