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Topics - Sunnygirl

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How all of you istock quitters are doing, after a year or so?

I'm asking because I have been hating them for years... but still, getting files to upload only to one agency that still pays something every month (used to be four digits, now it's just to pay the bills) is kind of viable. It doesn't hurt at least.

I understand they are shady, greedy, no live stats, nothing to boost your desire to work.

BUT, seeing the poll results on this site kind of explains why many big players and lots of people still remain with them - exclusives reported 108.8 points in earnings. If you combine almost all other agencies, you will get to the same number, slightly higher. Meaning, you'll have to work hard to just catch up with what istock excl. alone made for you.

So I'm heavily reluctant at what to do. Seeing what SS and Alamy have been doing lately (changing models, owners etc.), I'm not at all sure if the grass is greener at the other side anymore. Except for maybe not holding all eggs in the one basket and having a live stat?

What did you do with all those MReleases? There's a ton of mind-killing bureaucracy work if they don't accept EasyReleases or past istock ones. What to do with old releases when trying to upload those files to new agencies? Some models aren't even available anymore to sign anything new.

This issue has been bothering me for quite some time. The truth is, I always had the best time doing iStock. Because images used to sell for the longest period and quality mattered more than quantity. Then Getty came and I was cautious but optimistic. Hey it's Getty! Sure it's not RM but RF, but still they were one of my inspirational agencies! I was doing quite well for several years. Then new "improvements" started to go live, one by one, from no-counter to ESP platform and new "exciting" pricing models. It all went downhill for me.

Since Getty is getting microstock sales, cheaper and cheaper as the days go by, I'm wondering if the time has finally come to wave GI/IS exclusivity g'bye?

I used to earn solid four digit numbers every month at is/getty doing lifestyle portraiture. I'm now struggling to reach 1k let alone return to my previous levels.

Buuuuut. There are several caveats:

1. If Getty is doing bad or worse than before, it can also be a sign that other agencies are struggling too.
2. Nobody can firmly say that doing 3-4 agencies will make more money than being exclusive at IS/GI.
3. Most big stock players are still being exclusive to iS/Getty. I know, they are a minority, but still means that exclusivity offer them more than doing other top tier agencies. Some also regretted and eventually came back. Grass do looks greener on the other side, you know.

On the other hand:

1. Working for Getty/IS is getting frustrating and tiresome month after month.
2. Doing briefs, getting S+ nominations doesn't mean much. Is it good? Of course. But ultimately does not guarantee any boost in sales, adding more to the overall frustration level mentioned above.
3. Terrible subscription and "premium" prices, going from few cents to a few dollars and almost NO mid-stock priced sales at GI. The only thing still doing well are the credit sales at iS that are still good but are diminishing in numbers and take like 30% of total sales.

Don't know if Microstock poll results are legit in any way, but I do remember seeing iStock exclusive ratings to be much higher than now.

Anyhow, I'm on the cross-road, trying to see whether to keep going the exclusive path or turn left and go in all sorts of directions... Being exclusive, having editors and briefs by my side do seem more professional and more promising, but those prices... ouch.

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