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Messages - louoates

Pages: [1] 2 3 4 5 6 ... 31
1
General Stock Discussion / Re: Death to the stock.....
« on: December 18, 2013, 11:51 »
Interesting concept. The end game seems to be able to sell the images in narrow categories. A subscription plan focused on very specific needs. The proof is always in how many will actually pay. I'd be interested in seeing if the technique of sending the images monthly is a valid one. It certainly eliminates the keyword problems.

2
General Stock Discussion / Re: Veer sales - am I the only one?
« on: November 27, 2013, 16:23 »
I rarely check this poorly performing site (for me) but this thread caused me to take a look: $21.02 since January 2013. I'll check again in 2023 and see if things have picked up.

3
I'm still not seeing any chains attaching me to any one agency. All of us non-exclusives have options to come and go as we want. Most of us can agree that the microstock business was created to minimize image costs for both the user and the provider, including a sustainable profit margin, and subject to the immutable laws of supply and demand.

yes and? leaving BigStock?

I no longer upload to any of my 5 sites, mostly due to many of the shrinking-income complaints noted here. I'm just content to keep reaping commissions as they come in. I totally agree with Sharp on this issue. I'll add that none of us has any upfront investments in any of the sites,  and no say in their management decisions. Like us, they're doing what they need to survive. I don't begrudge them whatever marketing strategy they choose.

4
I'm still not seeing any chains attaching me to any one agency. All of us non-exclusives have options to come and go as we want. Most of us can agree that the microstock business was created to minimize image costs for both the user and the provider, including a sustainable profit margin, and subject to the immutable laws of supply and demand.

5
General Stock Discussion / Re: Do you enter Photo Contests?
« on: September 30, 2013, 10:22 »
I've won awards at photo contests and local art shows. I just say "award winning" in bios without detail. Nobody has ever questioned me further than that. I suspect that nobody much cares what you say in this regard.

6
General Stock Discussion / Re: FirstCovers.com
« on: September 20, 2013, 18:30 »
Apart from not knowing what a Facebook Cover is, I am not surprised one bit with such an agreement. It will become a standard agreement for anyone ignorant enough to send images to such a site.

7
General Stock Discussion / Re: The Queen is coming, Advice?
« on: July 21, 2013, 08:09 »
Think what fun if you hired a queen lookalike with crown, etc.  frolicking nude in the surf at sunset.

8
General Stock Discussion / Re: Rough shadows from paper
« on: July 08, 2013, 14:07 »
I am using #1 super white widetone seamless background paper and often get ugly, rough grainy looking shadows where a black object meets the paper.  They look really noisy. 

More light or different paper/material ???   Even when I light with three and pop it with two SB 700's I can still occaisionally get this dark rough area.

Post a picture.

9
General Stock Discussion / Re: Do customers really care?
« on: July 03, 2013, 16:30 »
I have a tendency to upset people by things I write, probably because what I say is always rubbing someone the wrong way. No matter how intelligent or dumb or true or false my comment is.

You admit to writing dumb things that are false and wonder why people get upset. Might be your attacks at people. Then you want to be burying the hatchet all should forgive you. Might be better to stop wiritng mean posts at people with false information. Be nice and everybody will be nice back. You reap what you sew. GALATIANS 6: 7-9 (KJV)

Often it is the language used that upsets people. Most folks are not professional writers and often choose a word or phrase that has loaded meanings.  For example if I wrote "you claim to say..." it is very different than "you say..." and "you don't have a clue..." is far different than "are you sure of that information?..."

If you were conversing face to face you have the benefit of facial expressions and body language to mold the language in ways impossible when using just the written word.  The use of emoticons  :-\  attempt to replace that personal interaction.

10
I wonder if your browser is showing what mine does. I see titles quite well on mouse-overs. As to the "blob" comment, I understand your reasoning. However, it is showing images as a "Photostream" as labeled and not as a personally designed web site.

11
I love the new interface.
Are you not seeing your set 'cover image' all over the place in the square crop? I see it in my sets in FF, IE and chrome, and it's the same for the sets of my contacts. It looks really naff, IMO.

Yes, I'm not thrilled with their crop for sets. I quickly found that if i mouse over the image and start to drag it a bit the full image shows. It may be that mousing over it should auto-show the full image.
But the full impact of this new interface is much better than before and I imagine much easier for users to find content.

12
I love the new interface. I don't really use storage there beyond a 800p wide jpg upload.

13
You need to be careful when calculating hours worked vs. image income from any one site or all sites combined. Lots of folks here overlook the continuing income stream with no new working hours.
For exemple, you only have 1 image that took 1 hour to shoot and process. You then keyworded and uploaded that 1 image to 10 sites. That took another 1 hour because you're a lousy typist.
So you've spent 2 hours of time.
Now you sit back and wait for the money to come rolling in. Unfortunately, the image sells only so-so, let's say 1 sale per month per site, averaging $0.50 commission per sale. That totals $5 per month income. So you could say that you earned $5 the first month for an hourly rate of $2.50.
That's a crappy income stream. So you decided to retire from micro-stock and you're too lazy to remove your 1 image. So it sits there earning a meager $5/mo.
Two years later you re-calculate your hourly rate and discover that your 2 hours of labor has actually earned you $120, or $60 per hour.
Three years later you found that your 1 image earned you $90 per hour.
Hmmm. Maybe micro-stock wasn't so bad after all.

14
General Stock Discussion / Re: Public Domain
« on: April 06, 2013, 21:05 »
I hAve been seeing more and more of these bait and switch sites. The good thing about them is at least they are sending people to the sites to buy, but then again people were attracted to the site in the first place because they were looking for free. Not sure whatnthe conversion of cheapskates to actual buyers is.

I found some of my images there also and was redirected to Shutterstock. It doesn't bother me that some call it bait and switch because they obviously have lots of give-away images there but the suck percentage is pretty high. As long as customers to whatever degree find what they're looking for so much the better. I doubt sites like this are much competition.

15
General Stock Discussion / Re: search this!
« on: December 19, 2012, 17:48 »
And...?

16
I've had a dozen or so raw requests through DT. Every time I emailed them about additional money IF I wanted to sell the raw file. I never received any answers. So I guess they are incompetent at selling raw files, incompetent at contributor relations, and incompetent at buyer relations. At least I have something definitive to rely on.

17
General Stock Discussion / Re: I sit here and upload.
« on: November 08, 2012, 13:40 »
The business failure landscape is littered with companies who mistreated their suppliers. The month that IS adopted their unambiguity scheme my sales dropped 60% and never recovered. For years IS has been the last to get uploads from me due to much of the comments voiced here. And don't get me started on their insane category monstrosity.

18
If you can't afford the $9,000 there is a taxpayer-funded government program to provide up to 100% of the purchase price. Find out more at: www.wheresmine.gov.

19
General Stock Discussion / Re: Sales on Potokore
« on: October 16, 2012, 16:35 »
I prefer the badges I got when in Cub Scouts.

20
General Stock Discussion / Re: SS back to lousy editors?
« on: August 21, 2012, 08:34 »
I've had somewhat similar rejections at SS when submitting bright sunlit shots from the desert southwest. My conclusion is that some reviewers have little experience in such conditions and it looks "wrong" to them, leading to a "incorrect white point" or "poor lighting" rejection. I'd resubmit, as is, and hope to get a different reviewer. Lots of post seldom pays off unless you can automate the batch.

21
General Stock Discussion / Re: TAX Questions
« on: August 20, 2012, 17:30 »
If Canada's tax folks are anything like the U.S.'s your home office deduction is a red flag. You may as well tattoo "audit me" on your forehead.

This used to be the conventional wisdom, but according to my CPA that is no longer the case.  So many people are working from home the past decade or so that it is now very commonplace to use the home office deduction.  If you are legitimately using a home office for your business there is no problem claiming it.   Worst case scenario, even if you were to be audited, as long as it meets the rules you should be okay. 

Kiplinger still lists the home office in its top 12 IRS red flag dangers. Most run afoul of the "exclusive use" rule of the home office. Lots of wiggle room for the IRS interpretation on that one during an audit. Count me gun shy on this one. I'd still advise doing an estimate on the small deduction it would offer against the risk of an extremely expensive and time-consuming IRS audit. Even if your deductions are 100% accurate and you have all the paperwork in order are you prepared to also assemble your last two or three years worth of documentation including all bank savings and checking accounts? Remember, that you will be hosting one or two agents in your home and provide them every record they request and that they earn their employment recognition for finding every possible reason to disallow any other expense on your return.

The additional risk is not just limited to the IRS. Every IRS audit I've gone through involved similar interest by the state. I can't say for certain that they "work together" but in my case both IRS and state audits came suspiciously close together. If the state gets involved you will almost certainly will be assessed a penalty and/or back charges from "use taxes" you haven't paid on out-of-state purchases for any of your business-expensed items. Don't know about the Use Tax? Most folks don't nor do they pay it. That line is on most state income tax forms. The kicker is that the Use Tax applies to both business and personal purchases.  When the state goes through the last few years of your purchase receipts, including personal purchases, you will get a rude awakening. And a sizable state invoice.

In theory you may be in the "right" to claim such a deduction. But you also have a "right" to jump over a pond of alligators.

22
General Stock Discussion / Re: TAX Questions
« on: August 20, 2012, 15:18 »
If Canada's tax folks are anything like the U.S.'s your home office deduction is a red flag. You may as well tattoo "audit me" on your forehead. An audit becomes more likely the more the expense end of it, including equipment, outweighs the income end. I've come to the conclusion that claiming that deduction in the US is not worth the hassle.
I don't know what the current regulations are but it used to be that you need to maintain more records with that deduction as the amounts over the years must be "reclaimed" as offsets when you sell the house and may thus push you into owing more taxes on that transaction.
If you are in business you must have an accountant who can explain all these wrinkles. The multiple audits I've been through in several of my businesses have caused me to be super-conservative in such matters.

23
I got an email from some American professor last week asking if she could use one of my pics from my personal website in a book she was writing. No payment was mentioned, but, and wait for it - I had to fill in a form for her, granting her permission to use the pics - she wasn't offering to sign an RM agreement for me, AND I had to size/crop to a particular size and send it as a tif!

So I wrote back and gave her the option of purchasing a similar (E+) from iStock or licensing the one she wanted directly from me for $70, an amount I arrived at from the iStock price of the similar plus the bother of looking for the file, resizing it, converting it to a tif and sending it to her.

Have I heard back from her? You guess! (There are no Googlable alternatives on the web apart from the set on my website, though, so she'll just have to do without.)

At least she didn't just steal it from your site. The form may have been for the publisher who would know about such things. But sometimes this process takes some time. I would recommend that you email her back as any good salesperson would do seeking a sale.

24
I've been "retired" from uploading for about 1 1/2 years due mainly to the decreasing cash flow and the haphazard inspection process. I'm quite content to sit back and cash my payouts while staying in touch here hoping something new and exciting comes along.  

25
That point would be different for everyone because everyone values their time and energy differently.

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