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Topics - dragonblade

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Adobe Stock / Payout query
« on: November 15, 2021, 20:16 »
With Adode Stock, I'm assuming that the minimum payout amount is $100 like some other stock agencies? If that's the case, I'm above the minimum but I haven't received any notifications about payout. I guess it's not automated so do I have to manually request a payout? I went into my account on the AS site but couldn't find anything related to payouts. How exactly do I go about this?

Off Topic / The Hummer Thread
« on: September 30, 2021, 23:08 »
Continuing the 'Hummer' thread from the SS forum which will soon expire in late October. Hopefully, there will be some wildlife discussion here and all manner of other topics too. And also a place for people from the old SS forum to hang out.

Alamy.com / Surprised to find my videos on Alamy
« on: September 27, 2021, 22:15 »
I did some random video searches on Alamy today and I was surprised to find some of my videos on there. By the way, I was not contributing to Alamy in the days when they accepted video.

I clicked on a few videos of mine and under 'contributor', it says: "Pond 5 / Alamy Stock Video." And yes, I also have these same videos on Pond 5.

Actually, I vaguely recall some deal between Pond 5 and Adobe Stock where your editorial videos on Pond 5 could be sold through AS. But I wasn't aware of any deal between Pond 5 and Alamy.

Interestingly, only some of my Pond 5 videos are available on Alamy - not all of them. I wonder if there's some kind of selection process or I guess it could be random.

Though it does seem odd that some of my videos on Alamy are also on my Pond 5 exclusive account. Since they're exclusive, I would have assumed they could only be sold through P5. And there are also non exclusive P5 videos of mine on Alamy.

I did check the details of a few of my videos and I notice my Pond 5 account name on them (on the Alamy website.)

Pond5 / Unusual rejection reason
« on: February 06, 2021, 02:57 »
Recently, I submitted some super 8 footage to Pond 5 and got a rather surprising rejection reason. They claim that they cannot accept this clip because of the visible black bars on the sides and that I should resubmit it with it's native dimensions. Well of course it has black bars on the sides - it's super 8 film footage. As most people know, super 8 has a 4:3 aspect ratio and so there will be black bars on the left and right when the footage is displayed on a 16:9 screen. That can't be helped.

And yes, obviously it has the native dimensions - super 8 cameras expose a 4:3 frame (unless the gate has been modified.)

I have also submitted another super 8 clip in the past and there were no issues accepting that one despite the 4:3 aspect ratio. And a search on P5 will reveal many 4:3 clips.

I wonder if they're developing a bias against 4:3 clips.

Alamy.com / Anyone still getting big sales on Alamy?
« on: November 21, 2020, 20:57 »
With peoples latest reports on sales on Alamy, all I'm hearing about is very low prices these days. And I had two sales there recently myself. Both of them were fairly low. Are the big sales becoming an extremely rare occurrence? I admit I'm reluctant to put the work in and submit on a regular basis because sales in general are very rare. And it seems that these days, if you are lucky enough to have a sale, it's likely that it's just going to a few dollars.

iStockPhoto.com / So where's my money?
« on: September 02, 2020, 10:43 »
I don't take a regular look at the ESP site because I find it awkward and tricky to navigate at times. However, I noticed that late last year, my earnings were just over $70 and then the following month, the amount was slightly over $2. So my question is - where did the rest of that money go? I didn't receive a payout. I checked PayPal and there is certainly no payment from iStock / Getty for that time period. I did get a payout from them once before.

Another thing I should add is that I actually earned just over $100 in that period but due me foolishly not updating the tax form, they took out a huge chunk of tax which left me with a little over $70. Though regardless, I don't know how it dropped from over $70 to just over $2 with no payout.

General - Stock Video / Possible green screen dilemma
« on: August 29, 2020, 04:02 »
So I shot some green screen footage recently, as I have in the past as well. During the shoot, I checked the corners of the viewfinder carefully and the light on the green screen looked fairly even and uniform. However, when I viewed the footage on a computer afterwards, I was surprised to see a shadow on the top left hand corner of the frame.

Just now, I imported the clip into Sony Movie Studio along with another clip and did a chroma key test. The shadow on the upper left corner does not appear to be an issue. When I keyed the green out, I could see no shadow at all. It looks seamless to me.

However, if I leave the shadow in the footage, would this potentially be off putting to buyers? Could it discourage them?

The thing is a lot of my stock footage is edited with Shotcut and I have my doubts that that software would have the means of removing the shadow. If I wanted that shadow gone, I would have to go the hassle and invest time in learning how to use new software. Although I would have to that eventually for certain future projects, it just seems overkill in order to hide a shadow that is not really a problem anyway (except in some buyers eyes perhaps.)

It seems that I can't reply to existing threads or start new ones on the forums at SS. Can't send private messages either. Hopefully, the ban is temporary. I didn't receive any notification about it or anything like that. No e-mail.

Ive hardly said anything negative on the forums. I did share my outrage of the new massive payment cut but so have most other contributors. And I expressed my thoughts about that ages ago - not recently. And some contributors have been a lot more vocal and aggressive about that topic than I have.

Oh well. I guess I'll just have to wait it out.

Just wondering if it's possible to use Stocksubmitter with two different Pond 5 accounts? I currently have an exclusive P5 account and a non exclusive P5 account. And Stocksubmitter submits to the non exclusive P5 account at the moment as well as a few other agencies.

Alternatively, I guess I could open up a second Stocksubmitter account and use that one just for the exclusive P5 account?

This query relates to buyers who purchase a license to use model released stock images from a stock agency. Obviously, the buyer is informed by the agency that the photo or clip featuring a person has a valid model release form. Though does the buyer ever see the model release? Is the buyer given a copy of the release? Or is it a case that they have no access to the release and rely on the trust of the agency that there is a release that was provided by the photographer?

The reason why I'm curious is I am considering trying to sell some stock directly with no agency involved. And I may have some images featuring myself and possibly other people (who I would normally need model release forms for.) I would inform any interested buyers that I have releases for the models. Though is it likely that they would demand to see the releases or download them? And if they go ahead with that, I'm wondering if there would be any disadvantages like the risk of identity theft etc.

Pond5 / Video subscriptions?
« on: June 10, 2020, 10:05 »
I just came across this page with P5 advertising subscriptions to buyers.


I thought Hyperstock was the only avenue for video subscriptions offered by P5 (non existant for now.)

Pond5 / Trying to sign up for exclusivity
« on: May 29, 2020, 23:57 »
At the moment, I'm trying to sign up for an exclusive account at Pond 5. Just to clarify, I don't want to make all my clips exclusive. I just want to make certain clips exclusive and make the rest available on more than one agency. Of course during this turbulent time period, there's so few agencies that pay respectable commissions for videos. SS has just thrown it's contributors under a bus (unless you can make massive amounts of sales over there to get to their top paying levels.) So as far as I know, that leaves just P5 and Adobe Stock as the only two viable options.

However, I'm curious about this second account that I have to set up. According to the instructions, I have to click on a button that says "Sign Up Now" on the Sell Your Media page. I can't see that option so I guess I'll just click on the "Sign Up" option. I'm asked to create a new user name which I'm finding a little unusual. I think I would prefer to have a single user name when I'm selling both exclusive clips and non exclusive clips. That way, I have a common identity and buyers would realise that all my videos were produced by the same person. If they like one of my clips and are considering purchasing it, chances are that they may like another one of my clips on my second account that has a different user name. I'm not even sure if P5 lets buyers know that two accounts with potentially usable videos may belong to the same person.

Pond5 / Can only view first page of search results
« on: February 10, 2020, 02:40 »
Something strange has happened to the design interface on P5 from the buyer's side. Say for example, I get over 1000 results for a search term, only the first page of results will be displayed. There is no option to advance to the next page like there used to be. Is this the same for everybody else?

MicrostockSubmitter / Shutterstock sign in issues
« on: February 09, 2020, 09:31 »
Tonight, I was having a problem with the pop up Shutterstock sign in page that appears when I'm using Stocksubmitter. Specifically, it's to do with the 'I am not a robot' option. When I click that option, no tick appears. Instead, the photo test appears where I have to select which images feature cars, motorbikes or traffic lights etc. And no matter how many times I click on the 'I am not a robot' option, it always remains blank. I cannot get the tick to appear.

Ive closed this pop up screen a few times and each time it reappears, I have the same problem.

Dreamstime.com / I got a rejection at Dreamstime??
« on: February 04, 2020, 00:23 »
Something has just happened to me that has me extremely puzzled. And it's something that's very rare too. I actually got a rejection at Dreamstime. As you know, DT accepts just about anything. I honestly can't remember the last time I got a rejection there but it was probably over two years ago. And I could probably count my total number of rejections at DT with just one hand.

And the reasons for the rejection are bizarre. "The image is overexposed." I disagree. The subject (an insect) is correctly exposed. I bracketed different power settings on my speedlight and selected the most pleasing exposure for submission. The background may look very light in appearance but that's because it's white. Pure white. And there's certainly nothing wrong with a white background as you'll find many of those in microstock images.

The other rejection reason is: "Poor lighting." I say nonsense. I used off-camera flash positioned at roughly 45 degrees from the subject and I also had a diffuser to soften the light. Additionally, I also used a reflector to bounce light back into the shadow areas. As a result, my invertebrate subject was evenly illuminated by soft lighting. I have no idea why DT regards this as poor lighting.

My gosh, is this a sign that DT is becoming more like SS? I haven't had any photo rejections from SS for a little while but Ive heard of many other contributers over there complaining about ridiculous rejection reasons. Actually, by the way, this very same image was accepted by SS. Ive also submitted it to Adobe Stock but haven't heard back from their review team yet.

Regardless, I'll resubmit it to DT and see what happens.

General - Stock Video / Should I submit or not?
« on: January 19, 2020, 22:42 »
I currently have a dilemma concerning stock footage. Not too long ago, I recorded some 4k footage of some news worthy content (I guess I should say potentially newsworthy.) However, the laptop that I usually use to edit 4k video is being repaired and so I don't have access to it. So I'm forced to use my 9 year old pc with only 4GB of RAM and old processor. I seriously doubt it could handle rendering 4k video files so the best I could do is render HD files from 4k footage. But a weird thing happens when I do that. I currently use Shotcut for editing stock footage and I always use a two pass render for optimum quality results. Though at least one of those passes will fail (and I get a big red X to indicate that.) Ive attempted to export this particular video so many times and what happens is that either the first render pass will fail or the second one will. Or sometimes both passes will fail.

Though surprisingly, when I play back the exported file, the video looks completely normal. I don't see any issues. Though logically, there must be something not quite right since I repeatedly got failed render passes. So the question is - should I submit or not? Just wondering if there might be some kind of issue that's invisible to me but might be apparent to an editor working with the clip on a timeline.

I also took some photographs of the very same subject that I recorded footage of. And one of those photos sold through SS over week ago. I couldn't find whereabouts the image was used though I'm assuming it may have been featured in a news article. I'm probably thinking now that this is old news and so I'm likely too late in trying to submit the footage of the same newsworthy subject. However, this morning, another one of my photos of the same subject sold through SS. So there could be hope yet.

Though like I mentioned before, there could be some technical issue with my edited footage that I'm not aware of. Cos according to Shotcut, what I have is a failed video export. And no matter how many times I render, I get those red Xs and the fail messages.

Shutterstock.com / Cannot log into SS forum
« on: November 19, 2019, 21:41 »
This morning, I was able to log into the SS main website as usual no problem. Though I can only log into the forum temporarily to view the list of sub forums. As soon as I click on a particular sub forum like Contributor Experience, I'm logged out again. Don't know if it's a technical issue or if I'm being punished by SS for some reason. As far as I know, I haven't been suspended. And I notice that contributors who have accumulated a significant number of red arrows are no longer posting on the forum. Coincidence? Maybe they get an automation suspension when their popularity ranking gets too low. I haven't had any red arrows for a while (I'm still in the green as far as I know.)

Pond5 / Netflix Premium License upgrade
« on: November 08, 2019, 10:24 »
Just curious if anyone else has gotten this or something similar? I just got a sale notification from Pond 5 via e-mail though as it turned out, it wasn't really a new sale after all. Apparently, it relates to one of my videos that previously sold before. This one has sold three times in the past. Someone paid extra money to upgrade to another kind of license for it's usage. This particular license is called a 'Netflix Premium License.' I got $15.84 for it. Judging by the name, I assume the clip's going to be used on Netflix.

General Stock Discussion / TV news and editorial footage
« on: October 10, 2019, 21:21 »
There's something Ive been curious about for a while with regards to the TV news. I do get the impression that the vast majority of the time, if a TV news station is covering a certain story, they will go out and shoot the material themselves and / or retrieve existing footage from their own archives. Though are there occasions when they purchase editorial footage from stock agencies like SS, P5 etc? I'm guessing such instances are pretty rare and they'd only do so as a last resort? Obviously, this wouldn't be suitable for breaking news. I guess the ironic thing is although a number of contributors would likely shoot editorial footage with a TV news audience in mind, the reality is that it's unlikely to end up on the TV news. Though the clip may be featured in a documentary instead, depending on the content and the quality of the footage. 

Pond5 / Payout query
« on: October 05, 2019, 22:33 »
With my first four sales on P5, I'm well above the minimum payout level. Though what happens now? I guess the payment is not automatic like on SS. Do I have to notify P5 that I want my payment?

MicrostockSubmitter / Description field not copied over
« on: October 05, 2019, 02:40 »
I haven't used Stocksubmitter in a while and used it again just recently to submit some editorial content. And I just noticed that I got a rejection on Shutterstock for a video I sent through Stocksubmitter. This particular rejection was for the editorial caption. I checked the metadata of the file within SS and noted that the editorial caption which I had typed into the description field on Stocksubmitter was not copied over into the description area on SS. What happened instead was the title was copied over on to the description area - hence the rejection. This is quite surprising. Since SS uses descriptions rather than titles, I thought the description field from Stocksubmitter would be copied over. It's annoying too because Ive since submitted some other editorial videos and I guess they'll be rejected for the same reason. I guess the only thing I can do is copy and paste the description / editorial caption into both the title and description fields on Stocksubmitter.

Dreamstime.com / Dreamstime moderators out of control
« on: October 02, 2019, 05:50 »
To my complete surprise, one of my posts was recently deleted on the forum over at the Dreamstime site. I was replying to a poster who had just recently joined DT and was asking how to get some sales and views. For the last few days, this person has had a total of one photo in their portfolio. And it's still currently one photo. My reply was as follows: "Adding more photos to your portfolio would be a good start."

Not long after that, I received an e-mail notification informing me that my post had been deleted. And possible reasons for deletion can be any of these things - "We delete duplicate posts, posts in other languages than English, spams or any post that may be considered as violation of the message board rules."

Obviously, my post was written in English, it was not a duplicate post or spam and did not break the rules which are outlined below:


All I was doing was offering helpful advice in that thread started by the newcomer. Logically, the only way to get sales is to have a decent sized portfolio containing quality images that are useful to clients. Having more than one photo in your port is certainly a step in the right direction if you do want sales.

These DT mods are really out of control. Some of them, especially the female mods, seem to be on a power trip.

By the way, I have had other posts of mine disappear from the DT forum in the past but I did not receive e-mail notifications about them.

Shutterstock.com / SS contributor being sued
« on: July 26, 2019, 04:50 »
Just wondering if anyone managed to read that post on the SS forum by a contributor who was supposedly being sued? The post was only viewable for a very short period of time and then it looked like it was removed. Apparently, according to the poster, it was an editorial photo he / she took that landed him in hot water. He / she mentioned he / she took a photo of a company's logo and submitted it which was the cause of the issue. He / she didn't say which company it was. Though it wasn't really clear from the post whether he / she was actually being sued or if the company was threatening to sue. The image was taken down regardless.

Alamy.com / Cannot log into Alamy
« on: July 06, 2019, 00:23 »
As of today, I cannot log into Alamy. I have tried multiple times with no success. Is anyone else having this issue?

Looks like we'll no longer be able to see the number of views on our images. This feature has been disabled - supposedly for good. Of course more views doesn't necessarily translate to sales but it was always nice seeing views go up and seeing how certain images seemed to be much more popular than others. Oddly, DT never made an announcement about this. Someone posted on the forum about some issue they were noticing with views and one of the mods responded in the same thread, explaining why.

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