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Messages - everest

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I have all my portfolio deactivated at SS but while Adobe is growing, last month not so fast as I would liked, it is P5 that was very good with a new record month both in revenue and sales, specially on my exclusive account. I hope the trend continues......

  ;D You are absolutely right. In any case you would still hear people on this forum and on the official one whining about how they cannot afford to loose the income that 1c images gives them to buy a new camera strap. A few would gladly pay for hosting too.

I wonder If they could pull out paying 5 or even 1 cent per download in the future. Actually I even hope they will try. To charge hosting to contributors is also an idea worth considering. There is space for huge discounts plans for those who sell a lot.

Good luck to you too. I apologize if you have felt disrespected in any ways. Sometimes I can be a little "abrupt" in my arguments. In any case, I wish that we all can make out the most of it while it lasts.

Fair enough and well stated. See how reasonable we all become without the names? Good luck with however it plays out. I have my website to play with, a few accounts still up because some take for ever to disable, and my own ideas about getting the last bit of mileage out of what has been a very good second career for me (even if it was only part-time).

SS commission structure was not bad before the jump, not the best neither. But an average of 25-30% is in line with many other agencies except Istock that I would never supply a single image for 15%. Now Shutter has jumped on the same wagon. We will see how it pans out but I hope that enough people will make them fall off the leadership chart, for the good of all contributors.

Yes I am still there because moving so much content from one site to the other is not that easy. You have to keyword, earn good search placements, climb to the top. The alternative in images are no that many with SS out of the picture. Adobe is not enough, at least not yet. And if I decide to leave Getty/Istock I  will leave them completely because I think 15% is robbery. So sooner or later without SS and Istock you better have your options well covered. When Stocksy appeared I did not go bet for them as at that time I was still earning a massive amount of money from Getty but maybe that was a mistake. I will never know. Options are getting thiner.

And going back to our previous discussion. I have respect of the amateurs that don't care too much and post their vacation and travel photos on all sites from Adobe to Canstockphotos, they are happy if they make a few bugs and don't take this as a business. But the people that make good money should care for the medium long term, a good strategy and it implies intelligence. But those that blame that agencies are paying lower and lower amounts and lower and lower commissions but keep rewarding with their images the ones that quick in this cuts again and again.......well you already know what I think of.

Ahh so its not about what they sell it for, its net average, ok. In that case, SS was still my best seller til I jumped off. And while you don't like the commission structure, you're still there anyway. got it.

Not exalted at all. Maybe yours is even better who knows, who cares. If I am not under my real name here and showing my portfolio it is for a number of reasons the two most important are:

a) Copycats On those days when you had blue or red flames on the successful images I learned quickly how eager are people to copy the bestsellers. Going under the radar with your files is one of the best choices you can make in this business if you are successful. Nowadays there are no longer flames but search position quickly gives away those top sellers.

b) If you want to speak freely without retaliations from the agencies, there are quite a few such examples of people posting in this forum, it is also wise to disguise a little your identity. Usually agencies are not very happy when you say some things that might not fit them.

So I try to preserve my portfolio and identity mainly because of these reasons. I think I am not alone in this, specially when we talk about people making a full time income from this industry.

So, is it possible to see your portfolio? Or is it too exalted for us less-clever folks?

You are right. I do when people act in ways that destroy the industry where I earn my money from, and more so if they blame the agencies when they are the ones that should look into the mirror.

Lol, nice try with the condescention (that means you look down on people btw).

Because I am 40% exclusive and have many files as E+ so my net average is maybe 10x times higher than any non exclusive. By the way I have not any video files at Getty/Istock as they pay 20% and they sell for very low prices, in the range of SS now.

And if you mean the connect files. Even if I hate those sales and I am strongly against them they are a pay per view scheme and not license use. If some day Instagram would also pay me for view I think I would accept that too. In any case those are negligible amounts that don't touch my average. If those would increase significantly I would be out in a heartbeat, but the average at Istock as an exclusive is still very high compared to non exclusive, more so now that the main competitor has decided to pay 0.10c as the most common commission.

Do I like Getty, their 15-20% non exclusive royalties. No, this is why I don't supply there as a non exclusive. Do I like how they treat contributors No, but as an exclusive image producer if you are in the top commission range (which I might loose this year for the first time) it still makes sense, although the level drop and my increasing returns of footage have shifted my production in this direction.

But I never sold for pennies nor will never do...
If you are on iStock/Getty, how did you manage this?

Well if you think I provided your point so eloquently then I really think you have really misunderstood  me.

People can do what they want with their images from earning thousands a month to giving them away for free. They transform themselves to idiots the moment they blame the fair paying agencies when they supply the same images to those that pay much lower royalties or sell them for peanuts and whine why they don't sell a dollar in the better paying ones. Yes those are idiots. Do you want me to repeat it again or it got through this time?.

People that now remain at Shutterstock will pester P5, Adobe, Stocksy, etc saying those sites don't sell. They might not sell the same content that is available elsewhere for very low amounts. Buyers are not so stupid as them. Agencies like SS neither as they are taking a very unfair advantage of them too. So for who is the prize of the clever clown of the day.  Not to difficult to figure it out ........ even for you.

Thank you for proving my point so eloquently and contradicting yourself too. You literally called people idiots for doing what they wish with their images, but it's not your business? I do hope your pictures are better than your debating skills.


Well nowadays niches are few and of unless you are the only one covering that field you better be good at it too.

I have never sold for pennies. Not at P5 not at Getty, not at Adobe. I had before their cash grab my videos (not photos as I am still exclusive Getty/Istock with stills) at Shutter netting 18-20$ sale, close to Adobe and something less that what I make at P5. At Getty my average is still over 3$ net sale. So no pennies here. At 3$ net I am already considering leaving the crown as it is too low and far from that 15$ avergafe I had years ago. Of course those 5 figure and 4 figure sales were not the norm. The average was more at 80-100$ sale but those 15$ sales crushed in absolute numbers my annual Getty revenue (the similar control policy, editor selection etc ) made submitting to Istock when subs did not exist more profitable. But I never sold for pennies nor will never do, this is why I disables my 3k video files from Shutterstock the day after the news hit the fan. Because I don't want to sell for low dollar what I sell for high dollars elsewhere.

You might not get it, maybe because you don't value yourself, maybe because you don't give a *. It is not my business what you do with your images and what income you generate. But someone who has an asset and cannot profit from it properly .....well you can't say he/she is very clever.....don't you think?

Meh, every site is different, every market is different. It doesn't matter how good you are, it has gone back to how scarce your niche is, who made "my single 5 figure and 4 figure single sales" now selling for pennies, calling people out for undervaluing their work.

I don't know if you are one of those idiots. You are if you if pile crap on the contributor friendly sites and pretend that those sell low while you have the same  files for sale for a tiny fraction of the price. I repeat myself "many idiots" on that front. It is not the agencies that I blame. It is people that undervalue themselves or make erratic decisions like giving their content to "fair" sites vs "exploitive" ones.

I don't know if your work was or is worth micro or nano prices. Everything has a place. I was in trad (not anymore as most trads are gone and I pulled out from Getty trad collections- as my single 5 figure and 4 figure single sales disappeared quite quickly.) but I can tell you while everyone was raving about Shutter , Bigstock, Deposit blabla bla I went exclusive with 3000 files at Istock to try out the field (not models at that time) and I was making over 100.000$ year with quite simple studio images (concepts on blackboards and easy stuff). Would I had made more on subs like SS, I doubt it. My rpd was 15$ average and some files were selling 5/6 times a day. My week days were 400-500$ every day. Of course with people having their same stuff at "expensive" Istock and ultra cheap subs SS it could not last long. Another point that helped demise was Gettys greed but that another point not in discussion here.

People always blame the "higher powers": politician, the agencies, the corporations. We are our worst enemy. It is what it is.

I guess I am one of those "idiots" who always believed that a 25/38 cent whatever payout was only worth the same level of effort going in. They got the work I was willing to put in with my thirty second photo shoots of my supper. My stuff is not, in my opinion, worth more than micro prices

*edit - its 3am and I can't sleep. Sorry for the essay :)

No they are not. Shutterstock is the one selling images for pennies since it exists and now it sells videos under 1 dollar too. It pays from 15 to 30% at most for 99.99% contributors. Pond5 never has and is selling images for pennies. You get 40-60% royalty. You establish your prices but it is quite logic that they control that people don't plaster a much higher price on their content while selling the same for peanuts on other sites. That is a rule from them that everybody knows the same as download unlimited content for a sub is not really download unlimited content from most sites.

Alamy P5 and many more contributor friendly have lowered their commissions because it is harder to compete for them with "idiots" giving their content away for free or near free on scavengers sites (SS, Bigstock,Freepik,etc). People are still stupid enough that sell the same videos on Adobe that asks for 169 4k while shutters and the like give them away for dimes. It is not P5 Adobe, Alamy ,etc who are to blame, it is the crooks that keeps selling content on those horrible sites

Pond5 offers 40% for non-exclusives, which used to be 50%. 60% is only for exclusives. And they randomly change your pricing to suit their algorithms. People seem to forget the crappy royalty cut Pond5 gave us last year, yet now they're seen as 'one of the last good agencies'. Well, they're every bit as evil as SS.

Edit: grammar

Cameras / Lenses / Re: add bmpc 6k or sell 5div and buy r5?
« on: August 12, 2020, 11:05 »
I use 5D MKIV for stills and BMPCC 4K and Gh5 for videos. Blackmagic is an amazing camera for the price. 60 fps BRAW or ProRes, beautiful color science and 12 reals stops in DR. Gh5 is nice specially because of IBIS. Photo quality ok but "only" 20mp but DR is quite poor.
But if I would buy now a new camera I would go for the R5 with and external Atomos and have everything in one package. Yes it overheats if you shoot internal but with the Atomos you can extend that with no more issues and having great still quality makes duplication no more necessary, so more portability which always is of great benefit for stock shooters.

Shutterstock.com / Re: Timing of the royalty cut
« on: August 11, 2020, 05:25 »
As I said. Rats are leaving the ship after pumping up, didn't think it would happen so fast and so blatantly in the face. Good luck of those that stay on this boat, ask for lifejackets so you don't be left with your feet's freezing once it goes under the floating point.


So you think the last important agency to join the race to the bottom was Shutterstock.
I would say that the first agency that started the race to the bottom has been SS. Remember there was a time when Istock had no subs, had Vettas and Agencies paying hundreds. Fotolia nad dreamstime were also paying better. Bigstock also was paying much better before taken over by the SS.
If there is one agency responsible for the ruin of this industry that is SS.
But as I see there are still a lot of delusionary people out there.

And as far as I am aware there are still agencies like Pond5 were you can price your content as high as you want and get 60%. There are still cooperatives like Stocksy that pay 50% and share benefits with their members, there is still Adobe that pays 33% and 35% video (lets see for how long).

The best that can happen is that pros and amateurs with top notch content turn forever their backs to this SS leechers so it can be riddled to a nightmare of the past in a few years.

The last important agency has joined the race to the bottom, and that was Shutterstock.
Microstock is dead.

Envato / Re: Envato Certified as a B Corp
« on: August 08, 2020, 02:11 »
For 14.50/month unlimited downloads.........This is surely "leading the way in using business as force of good" wait!.........    whatever..........

" lead the way in using business as a force for good."

Shutterstock.com / Re: Timing of the royalty cut
« on: August 06, 2020, 06:51 »
He is basically pumping up revenues short term while destroying the company in the long, stock will go up. At some point buyers will start disappearing when they realize they can not find anymore interesting content on the site. He and his gangster partners will be long gone and the stupid investors that bit the bullet, looking only at quarter revenue increases, will be left with spinning heads.

He very carefully watched how Hellman and Friedman trounced Getty and got away with millions while savaging the company. To those that have still confidence in Shutterstock you will be looking at a walking zombie in 3-5 years time. So plan ahead unless you are only in this industry for the quick buck.

If Adobe gets enough partners to implement this it will be really beneficial on many levels but as content creators for sure it is a welcome feature.
I think this is the most exciting thing created by Adobe in a long time.


4 sales video 0.77$ each today. Deactivated May 30. Waiting to the 90 days to go so I can start piling crap on them if they keep selling any of my files after that.

Adobe Stock / Re: Adobe Stock release UI improvement
« on: July 30, 2020, 23:37 »
Keyword order relevance is an archaic system that Adobe keeps dragging from the past. I hope it will go away someday as keyword relevancy should be commanded by buyers , never the contributor or the agency.

The only deluded one here is you. Or maybe confused. Or maybe you just don't have the experience or talent who knows. What is clear is that if you are making hundreds a month you are an amateur in this. Pros need to protect their income and asset value at all cost.

Things shift , it only takes time. When little Istock and Shutter appeared many were laughing about their contributors, me included. Why? because while people where initially making very little I and others were selling images for 4 figures very often and sometimes 5 figures too. But slowly the erosion got serious and many of us participated in that new market reluctantly I think that the high point of Shutter is over.  Once they beat contributors that bad they will not become more contributor friendly next morning.

My sales at Adobe and P5 are getting stronger and stronger. Maybe you don't sell at those places because buyers are price conscious (in spite of stupid marketing talk of agencies) and buy your images/videos at Shutterstock. We will see in the next years but I would not hold my breath that Shutter will maintain leadership. Adobe will slowly and ruthlessly climb to the top. I hope that P5 follows too.


But to think anything will change due to actions is utterly deluded.

Thank you for the posts specially to Jo Ann who describe some points in detail. What I get out of this is STAY OUT of this ghost town or you contributors before it is too late and focus your efforts on agencies that have respect for you and your work. You always have to watch out, others that are now respected might go this route (As SS and Getty did), this is a hard core business and always do what is in your best term (and better not short term but medium long) All the writing is on the wall. It is us to decide what we do with out hard to get/produce content.

I am surely not given mine to this bongheads ( I specially dislike by how they have conducted themselves Mr Oringer and Pavlovsky). Good luck to all the ones that stay with them. They will surely need it.

In the same boat as you Hard in the beggining but so satifying when all those 40$+ sales are rolling in. Good riddance to those scavengers and also to the people that support them with their work.

Choosing to not upload to SS and rather support agencies that offer better rates takes less energy and time than wasting effort on an agency that will just cannibalise your sales elsewhere.

Since going exclusive for video (what we mainly do now) at P5 we have been getting steady $40 - $50 sales. We upload to one place and get comparable commissions from AS which which they have a distribution agreement anyway. That saves time and energy.

Our overall earnings have been up on the same period last year.

While I personally always wanted SS to come around on their crazy ideas, I've realised that they are really no great loss. Maybe a bit of pain in the beginning - but ultimately the future without SS looks far brighter than hanging around while they destroy the value of our work. They can keep their 10c thanks - or whatever scraps they are throwing to the dogs for video licenses

Adobe Stock / Re: Adobe Stock release UI improvement
« on: July 19, 2020, 13:14 »
Great to hear it is a little easier for us contributors to work. The worst thing is a bad UI implementation where thousands loose time, so good news.

And about keywording.....I wonder as I guess Adobe must be investing a lot of resources into AI and machine learning, so it is weird that they still rely on manual processes like keyword ranking. With the million of clicks that content receives it should be customer keyword - content selection what drives keyword ranking and not the contributor choice. One day all this contributor keyword priority will rip, I hope sooner than later.

Darkhawk is not far off. I am full time stock photographer since 2008 and two years ago started to invest more and more in video. The cost to supply content depends on many factors but basically what type of content and how demanding you are with your work.

As a photographer I would say that equipment and models are the biggest cost. As an average every model shot costs me about 1000$ , with a few going above 2000$. International travel around 3000$ each. Photography equipment I would say around 6k year.  Computer & software 1-2 k/year.

As a videographer equipment cost are at least double ( cameras and accessories ) Computer and software at least 3x times.

I know there are people that shoot video & photo content with their phones or very cheap cameras. There are vector artist and motion graphics specialists that only need time and a computer.

Everyone has to figure it out. Shutterstock might be great (even after the cut) for some. In my case my time and money return is not worth to stay with them. I prefer other sites where I get better returns and will incentive to stay with those and not the ones that exploit artists. It is in my best interest for the medium and long term, so I don't feed a beast that bites my hand.

Will Shutterstock survive and maybe grow without me, probably yes. Will I survive and grow without Shutterstock and the likes, probably yes.
They have clients,..... I produce the content. I cannot reach clients directly but if my content is special and unique I can make those clients change provider. And I hope that many pros and amateurs crunch their numbers and take appropriate actions.

Accepting 15%-20% is not right if there are other sites much more contributor friendly and paying much better percentages.


Im full time since 2012 and i know very well my business, but thanks for the advices

Adobe Stock / Re: Aldobe stock earnings. Woohoo!!!!
« on: July 18, 2020, 10:45 »
Good months with Adobe -video content-. Hope that P5 also joins this trend.

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