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Messages - Gizeh

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StockXpert.com / Re: Bad things about to happen ...
« on: November 05, 2009, 13:40 »
If you have followed the threads on istock about this, you will know that this is ground that has already been well covered.  

So what is your interpretation of the Klein quote? Just one more executive with his head in the clouds?

Don't forget: Subscriptions are much more profitable for agencies than single sales. Getty will try every dirty trick to bring as much contributors as possible into this model.

StockXpert.com / Re: Bad things about to happen ...
« on: November 05, 2009, 12:37 »
A link to the leaked internal memo from Jonathan Klein has been posted earlier in this thread. I find the following part especially interesting:

"Jupiterimages Unlimited brings a very good base from which to start, but we will create an entirely new subscription business that builds upon it. This new subscription product will be a major initiative, with significant marketing support. It also represents a major collaboration between Getty Images and iStockphoto. "

Looks like we don't need to puzzle anymore about how Getty will feed the subscription beast. The only remaining question is: Will Getty come up with a fair deal or at least keep the opt-out option for contributors? Or will all contributors be forced into a rip-off deal?

Veer / Re: Veery Quiet
« on: September 30, 2009, 14:57 »
Had 2 ELs last week so the revenues seem to catch up.

What concerns me more is the number of views. Views go up immediately after uploading new images and shortly later they are down to almost zero. Wonder whether Veer gave me a very low ranking or if this is the same for all contributors?

General Photography Discussion / Re: Breaking Even
« on: September 23, 2009, 03:05 »
So, what my hourly rate should be when working on microstock? Any ideas or suggestions? Let's assume that things like medical insurance are covered by my other job.

There is no such thing as a correct hourly rate. Someone like Yuri Arcurs might feel that 1,000$ is appropriate while a 16year old living in Romania might feel that 2.50$ is great. Simply choose a rate that you are comfortable with and that reflects your background and your costs of living.

What really counts is not to overlook your invested labour for getting an educated opinion about when your work starts to become profitable.

General Photography Discussion / Re: Breaking Even
« on: September 22, 2009, 17:14 »
I guess I haven't been paying close enough attention to this forum as I've never seen this Dingo guy around before.  What a brilliant analysis

Agreed, Mr. Wilddingo is not only a voice of reason but an immensely talented writer in itself. Reading his enlightening comments is always a pleasure.

Most businesses spend a few years not breaking even while they establish themselves.

Yes, but regular businesses start with honest business planning and a clear picture of their real costs. Talking about break-even and looking only at the price for a handful of lenses and books is not exactly what I would call a professional approach. I don't get it why so much aspiring semipro microstockers are not willing to learn the basics of business. All serious contributors would win if colleagues learn to understand the differences between making a profit and taking part in postmodern slavery. This is no macro vs. micro or old fart vs. youngster thing but plain common sense.

General Stock Discussion / Re: SS didnt wanted it - Flame at Istock
« on: September 17, 2009, 02:59 »
Do you have a property release for that shot? To me it looks like the Hotel could be easily identified by those who know it.

Don't find it surprising that SS has rejected it. t seems much more puzzling that IS is accepting this kind of imagery.

Would look for a good liability insurance if there is more stuff like that in your micro portfolio.

Veer / Re: Veer - How are you doing so far?
« on: August 25, 2009, 13:23 »
Has anyone sold newly submitted images or only stuff transferred from Snapvillage?

I have 198 (newly submitted) pics online, no sales and the number of views looks quite poor, too. This is of course a very small sample but to me it looks like Veer marketplace is far away from flying.

Will postpone further uploading until I see more traffic.

One wonders if this is the first time that SS closed such a fishy deal.

It could easily be that this is a common practice that only comes to the surface because this time it is above 800x600px.

I dint realise when i open de thread, but now i see the mail is send by Shutterstock,  ???

Wow, SS will have something to explain if that is true.

What a great marketing idea to give away 1600x1200px images in exchange for an HTML link that can (and will be) be removed within seconds.

Could someone please clarify who the sender of this begging letter is?

Is it Google/blogger.com itself? Or an agency trying to make a buck at our expense?

Anyway, this stinks and it might be a good idea to contact Google directly and ask for an explanation.

StockXpert.com / 9 months since Getty bought StockXpert...
« on: August 21, 2009, 09:21 »
... and still the future seems to be quite nebulous. What are your guesses for the future?

Will StockXpert be closed after the JIU/Photos.com deal moves to iStock in 1-2 months?

Or is there a chance of Getty reactivating StockXpert after finding out that iStock cannot deliver enough volume to JIU/Photos.com because more contributors than expected have opted out of the el cheapo distribution scheme?

Veer / Re: Losing my enthusiasm for Veer
« on: August 20, 2009, 03:31 »
Other concerns. Snowmobile brand needs to be removed and based on the remote location and situation, a model release may be necessary

Would be glad to receive detailed comments like that.

With my last submissions I only got 'other concerns' without further comment or 'underexposure'/'overexposure' for pictures with histograms that looked perfectly ok to me.

Not really helpful for understanding what Veer wants.

Veer / Re: Veer - a big waste of time
« on: July 27, 2009, 16:23 »
My current rejection rate is about 25 percent which is not great but ok. What I don't like is the pattern I see. It seems like Veer employs two reviewers with distinctly different tastes. One of them loves my work and the other rejects almost everything.

A little more predictability would be great.

Veer / Re: Setting up Veer
« on: July 27, 2009, 13:57 »
You now have more ways to control how your name/company/brand are displayed: 

 *** there is a new "alias" field on your Member page under Contact Information.

Thanks a lot! A 19 minute delay between posting a problem and getting the solution is not that bad. Hope you will keep that pace ;)

Veer / Re: Setting up Veer
« on: July 27, 2009, 11:06 »
Just realized that everyone clicking on a Veer marketplace pic gets to see the photographers real name. Is there a way to stop this?

For me it would be a show stopper if it is not possible to hide my microstock endeavours from current or potential direct clients.

Are you with Bigstockphoto as well? I believe anyone can see your real name also when you click on the photographer Bio!

That is exactly the reason why I don't sell via BigStock.

Veer / Re: Setting up Veer
« on: July 27, 2009, 10:58 »
Just realized that everyone clicking on a Veer marketplace pic gets to see the photographers real name. Is there a way to stop this?

For me it would be a show stopper if it is not possible to hide my microstock endeavours from current or potential direct clients.

I am afraid the role of the current recession is not as important as we hope. I am with Steve Ballmer http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2009/jun/24/microsoft-steve-ballmer-cannes and other experts who think that we will not see a bounce back after the recession ends.

Buyers move online at a rapid pace but most micro and macro agencies still haven't found a solution for charging healthy prices for it. Isn't it absurd that a company like Microsoft would need to pay only 1$ for a low-res pic that gets billions of pageviews while a small shop pays 20$ for a high-res pic that gets used for a single poster or a handful of brochures?

Yes you are right. They are undercutting all other agencies' prices.

As some members of this forum agree, Revostock will attract all stock footage buyers from Shutterstock, Istock, Pond5 and all other footage agencies on this planet and take their competition out of business.

I planned ahead and uploaded my videos to them, because what are you  going to do once SS and IS is shutting down because all their buyers ran away...???


HaHaHa. Do you have a floor limit for your cool strategy? Or would you even sell your HD clips for 1$ if some new agency come up with that smart idea?

Just checked out Revostock. They seem to have a well made website, the commissions look quite fair and also sales seem to be there albeit not on a level with the major players.

However I have a serious problem with their pricing. 35$/credits per HD1080 download is an incredible low price. IS gets undercut by 2/3 and even cheapo prices from SS gets undercut by 30 percent.

It would be interesting to hear how you think about this dilemma.

Is Revostock cannibalizing other sites?

Or is the overall market that large and intransparent that nobody cares when the same clip could be bought for 35$/50$ and 90$?

BTW for myself I have decided not to work with Revostock until they have at least raised their prices to the level of SS.


Let's be absolutely clear about the facts. Switzerland is not a tax haven.

That is debatable. But you should be aware that in Switzerland you have to pay withholding taxes just like in the US. Every foreigner owning some swiss stocks knows this. And compared to the US it is much more difficult and bureaucratic to get this money back.

I have no connection at all with the USA.

Who if not you took the decision to sell your images in the US and sign a contract with a US company called Shutterstock?

If microstock only works with financial headquarters in shady offshore locations then I would question if it is a healthy business model at all.

Could it be that most critics of the US withholding tax have never before declared their income to their local fiscal authorities and for the first time realize that microstock is a business and that tax fraud is a crime?

Withholding taxes do exist in a lot of countries and you get back overpaid amounts when filling out your yearly tax declaration.  Why should a honest taxpayer have a problem with that?

Adobe Stock / Re: Fotolia Funded? Sold?
« on: May 26, 2009, 02:25 »
In my experience a venture capital firm like TA would be far too smart for paying $50m to $100m for a company like Fotolia. Even for a full buy-out this is massively overpriced in todays economy.

My guess is that the Fotolia owners try hard to sell their company and simply spread some rumours for impressing uninformed investors.

Imho Getty's/iStock's move is based on two wrong assumptions and will therefore fail:

1. Micro contributors are too dumb for understanding that subscriptions are a lousy deal

Wrong. Serious contributors know their numbers very well and are perfectly aware that subscriptions are rip off schemes for filling the agency's pockets at the supplier's expense.

2. There will always be enough supply from micro contributors independent from commission rates and how fair contracts are

Wrong. Fact is that the group of contributors accounting for most sales is not that large. Maybe 500 to 1,000 contributors worldwide. No micro agency could survive without the cooperation of this relatively small group. Getty will have a serious problem if these people decide that istock/jupiter/photos.com is not a profitable channel for them.

General Stock Discussion / Re: Using a NAS for FTP uploads?
« on: March 20, 2009, 12:17 »
I don't know how you can run ftp software without a computer?

The NAS devices I have in mind are actually little computers. They all have embedded LINUX versions on board and can act independently.

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