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Topics - BaldricksTrousers

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123RF / Negative earnings
« on: January 16, 2020, 07:29 »
In a new phenomenon, it seems that the more images get sold via 123 the more money i owe them. With 5 sales this month (paltry, I know) I now owe them 36c for the month. Yesterday I had no sales and owed them either the same or slightly less.
However, according to the daily downloads tab I have only 1 sale this month and I actually made 45c.
What a way to run a site.
Should I close the account now, while I still have some earnings (though not enough to cash out) or should I leave it for a year or two until I've enough sales for them to think I owe them a reasonable amount and then close it and refuse to pay them what they will say i owe?
Oh, hang on, there's a credit of -1.55 for Jan 6 (for no given reason) . So debit 1.65 vs earnings of 45 = -36c according to their maths.
It's all fun, isn't it?

iStockPhoto.com / I QUIT iSTOCK
« on: September 20, 2019, 03:42 »
I've done it. After 15 years and six months I finally gave them the boot.

 I hung in there so long because they were my first agency and taught me a lot, so I didn't like to part from them. Also, I felt that having put the effort into uploading the files, I might as well let them earn as much as possible. However, all the bizarre deals they have that seem to let my files go for fractions of a cent etc etc, and now the backdated refunds, leave me wondering whether I'm not giving away some stuff that people would pay for at other sites. Some of my work is sufficiently different for it not to be easily substituted by somebody else's - not a lot of it, maybe, but some.

With the latest earnings down to less than $30 this month (for about 6,000 files, I made more than $10 in my first month with just a few dozen shots) it's not a major loss. Maybe it will lead to an uptick in sales as Shutterstock to compensate.

For those wondering what happens to the balance of earnings that iStock holds, it seems they will be paid eventually. The form for terminating the agreement states:
I confirm that I want to have any outstanding royalties issued on the time specified by my Agreement (most standard agreements specify any outstanding balance is to be issued within 90 days of your request to close your account)

iStockPhoto.com / Get into jail free
« on: September 16, 2019, 12:23 »
"Getty Images and iStock would like to see you in Sharjah" says the blurb they sent me. So, I'm sure,  would the Emirates internal security force, with the handcuffs and rubber truncheons all ready for me.  I am not joking, if you have ever expressed any criticism of the ruling regime in the UAE or (even worse) suggested that Qatar is not a terrorist hell-hole, then you are officially a terrorist under UAE law and liable for a $15,000 fine and imprisonment of unspecified duration.
UAE prisons are reputed to be extremely nasty places, so that's a "no" from me, istock/getty, and from anyone else with any sort of belief in free speech.

Dreamstime.com / Colour problem
« on: April 30, 2019, 01:09 »
I uploaded some files to DT for the first time in a while yesterday and they appear in revolting dull flat colours - most unappetising for food. Is there an issue with the colour space on DT, it reminds me of the complaints when Alamy were using Adobe RGB as the space, which doesn't look good on screens with a limited gamut.  Here's one of the files on DT https://www.dreamstime.com/earning_det.php?imageid=146243515
The original looks fine on my screen and on Shutterstock (unfortunately, its not gone live there yet so I can't show that) but it looks bad on DT and, I now notice, on Deposit Photos as well.
Can anybody tell me what's happening and what I can do to solve the problem?

Dreamstime.com / Dreamstime vanished?
« on: January 06, 2019, 02:26 »
I'm getting a completely blank page when I try to connect to DT.

Adobe Stock / Acceptable acceptance level
« on: December 18, 2018, 01:56 »
I'm wondering what sort of percentage of acceptances is needed before a portfolio starts getting punished. I've had a few for reasons that I understand but with older files needing uploading I'm wondering how close to the borderline I should stray. What to do with film files, for example, some of which get accepted while others get grain rejections.

Adobe Stock / Two word keywords - are they allowed?
« on: December 13, 2018, 15:06 »
Take a Red admiral butterfly. Should it be keyworded as "Red, admiral, butterfly, Vanessa, atalanta" or "Red admiral, butterfly, Vanessa atalanta"?  Obviously, someone searching for an admiral (or a Vanessa) doesn't want an insect, but all the keyword examples I see are for stand-alone words.

Alamy.com / Data glitch
« on: November 12, 2018, 01:28 »
All my data have vanished from the "account balance" and "sales history" pages. The landing page still shows sales and earnings. I assume others are seeing the same and they will fix it soon.

iStockPhoto.com / New conspiracy theory! Hooray!
« on: October 01, 2018, 03:21 »
It's nice to be author of a conspiracy theory, so I thought I would share this with you: 
I've noticed for some time that the iStock exclusive tally in the Microstock Poll Results bar is almost always approximately equal to the sum of the top four independent sites. Perhaps iStock caps its exclusives at (= Top 4).
I guess it would be possible to tweak the earnings average to keep it at a desired level, and presumably the people submitting to the poll are generally the same bunch each month so their decline (or rise??) in earnings will be pretty consistent.

General Stock Discussion / Best request yet
« on: September 22, 2018, 14:28 »
How's this for a request? - (from the latest Alamy requests blog):

Porridge preferably in earthenware or stoneware shot from a front-on or horizontal perspective like below.


If the link doesn't work or you can't be bothered to open it, it shows a  tall bowl shot at precisely eye-level with a bunch of flowers sticking up above the edge. Now, I've made some lumpy porridge in my time, but porridge that rises to twice the height of the bowl containing it would be a heroic failure even by my standards.

Shutterstock.com / Are sales reporting today?
« on: April 08, 2018, 15:23 »
I got one early on and then it died. It's odd and I'm wondering if it is another day when the sales reporting has gone wrong.

Shutterstock.com / Wrong file in my uploads
« on: April 06, 2018, 02:36 »
Someone else's file has appeared in  my pending uploads. This is not good.

Shutterstock.com / Large amounts of non-English text rejection
« on: January 29, 2018, 07:43 »
I don't know what Shutterstock are playing at with their "files with large amounts of non-English text are not accepable" rejection.

Here's the text:

Sacks of dried herbs on sale in Souq Waqif, Qatar, Arabia. The leaves are used in traditional infusions and cookery.

Here are the keywords:

souq, Doha, Qatar, Arabia, herbs, dried, dried herbs, chamomile, sage, parsley, thyme, green, traditional, shop, herb, erb, ingrediend, food, cookery, tea, herbal tea, market, zattar, middle east, plant, nature, natural, qatar, cuisine, cooking, asian, arabia, leaves, ingredients,leaf,rose

It's irritating. The only non-English word I see there is souq, where souk might be more common. Souq Waqif is a place name .... l

General Stock Discussion / Copyright complaint - logo removed
« on: January 28, 2018, 01:17 »
A major company seems to have complained about a photo of the Doha skyline which shows their tower. It happened 5 years ago but I just stumbled over "photo deleted because of copyright complaint" by company XYZ in my list of rejected files on canstock.

Unfortunately, I didn't receive any notification besides the cryptic message in the "rejected" folder that I never bother to look at.

As far as I can make out, the complaint is that in the picture their prominent logo has been deleted from the top of their tower, depriving them of the advertising impact of putting it there in the first place.

I've wondered for a long time about the legalities of altering bits of commercial architecture like that and had, in fact, held back that photo for a long time because the logo seemed to me to be an integral part of the skyline - but someone else then posted an edited picture of the same thing and was getting sales I could have had so I decided to upload after all.

Anyway, it seems you can run into problems from deleting logos, as well as from not deleting them, which may be of some interest. Perhaps the best solution is to submit such material as "editorial" and let the end users decide whether their use is likely to offend.

123RF / 123 Contributer stats board closed for maintenance
« on: January 26, 2018, 08:09 »
It says it's a temporary outage for system maintenance but gives no idea of when it will be restored (if it is .... one gets rather cynical about these companies).
Does anybody know anything more?

Software - General / Odd metadata in Darktable
« on: November 23, 2017, 05:55 »
I've switched from Windows to Ubuntu (Linux) and I'm having strange metadata problems with the Darktable program.  The metadata I enter in Darktable doesn't upload to Shutterstock and seems hit and miss with Dreamstime. However, if I put in the data, save the file then upload to Photoshelter the data is there; and if I then save the Photoshelter file back to my computer and re-upload to SS then all the data appears.
Does anybody else have this problem? The Photoshelter work-around is a bit clumsy and I don't understand why this should happen. If there's a simple way of getting the data read without going through Photoshelter it would be better.

General - Stock Video / What does timelapse do to shutters
« on: September 08, 2017, 11:39 »
Just wondering if timelapse photographers have wrecked their shutters with so many exposures. And how many exposures before the shutter dies on various cameras - or are they far more resilient than expected?

Shutterstock.com / Captcha not working
« on: August 23, 2017, 07:29 »
Captcha is telling me to use a supported browser (I'm on firefox/linux) to log in. I've never encountered that before and I'm not keen on being told what to do by an anti-robot app.

123RF / Time-wasting clicks
« on: August 03, 2017, 00:58 »
It annoys me that I have to click at least two or three times to see my balance or what has sold on 123. I assume that this is to boost site-traffic figures, either that or its incompetent programming, but it's just wasting time whatever it is.#

Photoshop Discussion / Soaring cost
« on: July 15, 2017, 23:27 »
Creative cloud cost up 250% in Oz in four years.

I need a new computer. I guess I'll be using Gimp and Darktable from now on, though switching to Linux involves a nasty learning curve.

I didn't mind the one-off cost for CS4 but I'm out of licenses for new machines with that (and who knows how long it will continue to work with Windows?). I've been using Gimp and Darkroom my son installed on a notebook and they're as good for what I want as PS, but the notebook is dying.

The way microstock is going, it makes no sense to spend $600 a year on PS/CC.

Alamy.com / Live news - i don't get it
« on: July 07, 2017, 05:45 »
So a macro picture of a bee on a flower or a distant swimmer in an anonymous sea is an Alamy "Live News" British weather image, but a picture of streets festooned with recently placed pictures in support of the Emir of Qatar during the on-going Gulf crisis doesn't qualify as "news".  It's a bit galling.
Oh, well...

General Stock Discussion / Fotoarabia not paying up
« on: May 13, 2017, 07:24 »
The relatively new Qatari agency, Fotoarabia, has still not processed my latest payout four months after I requested it. This is a violation of their own terms, which guarantee quick payment (within four weeks IIRC).  They aren't responding to e-mails about it, either.
I had hoped they would be OK as they are part of a bigger organisation, but apparently not.
Anyway, that's a heads-up for the few who may have some files invested there.

Alamy.com / New uploader stinks
« on: April 07, 2017, 01:37 »
I thought it would be impossible to make the uploading process to Alamy worse than it was, but they seem to have managed it. I suppose it's great if A) you don't want to bother doing anything more after you've uploaded, regardless of how much visibility your work loses; or, B) you upload hundreds of similar images all at once and can bulk process them all at once. However, if you do small batches of different subjects, keeping track of what has or has not been fine-tuned after upload is a nightmare, and trying to fine-tune it batch-by-batch is clumsy and awkward. Everything is going on sale RM which usually needs to be changed, a less-used pseudonym is inappropriately stuck on everything and I have to go through a great pile of batches to try to find anything and work out if it has been updated post-uploading or not.
If you don't keep a note of all the batches and whether or not you have dealt with them, you end up with files on sale with no "super" keywords, which presumable means they have no chance of getting a good search position, ever.
At least the old system kept files off-sale until you knew you had dealt with necessary adjustments.

Shutterstock.com / Is SS reporting sales normally today?
« on: March 29, 2017, 06:02 »
My sales stopped dead about 12 hours ago, which is very odd. Is there some delay in reporting or have I just hit a bad patch?

Alamy.com / Have Alamy gone bonkers?
« on: April 29, 2016, 01:33 »
They keep posting simultaneous sale/sale refunded notifications, I've had  three in the last 24 hours,

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