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Messages - lewis larkin

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Your first post? 

I don't suppose you would have a commercial reason for posting? 

2 / Re: No views
« on: October 18, 2016, 15:22 »
IMO iStock has become mainly a subscription site - certainly in terms of d/l numbers; 

'normal' downloads are still significant in terms of revenue, though d/l numbers (and views) have plummetted...  (cannibalised by subscriptions, I believe). 

difficult to be optimistic...

General Stock Discussion / Re: ImageBrief and Exclusivity
« on: July 24, 2016, 10:03 »
I quite like the helpful approach of the Imagebrief staff. 

I have had some little success with sales, but not enough to justify paying a yearly premium. 

Yes, of course you can sell them wherever you want.   

I think the images will remain on your personal Imagebrief marketplace unless you actively delete them.  In this case, there is a (small) possibility that they might be selected for purchase by another client, which you would not be able to complete, if they had been sold as RF on a cheaper site. 

As I said, it is a small possibility. 


I don't know that credit sales are dead, but in my case, they are certainly very unhealthy. 

My portfolio is too small to be statistically significant (to anyone other than myself), but my impressions are ... 

1. Subs sales are trending upwards.
2. Credit sales are trending downwards.
3, Revenue is either flat or decreasing (dependent on whether Getty bails out the figures.

Overall,  I believe that subs are cannibalizing credit sales (from an anecdotal survey of image sales), and that the medium term looks uncertain enough to motivate me to look elsewhere for future revenue.

6 / new istock forums
« on: August 14, 2015, 19:59 »
Previously, I didn't have much hope that the 'new' iStock forums would be useful, or interesting. Now that they are up and running (limping?), I don't see much signs of life in the corpse - a few stalwarts posting, the usual moderators posting the increasingly tired company pap - but maybe I am just being a negative, change-averse nay-sayer (BTW, I think that getty/iStock are a bit optimistic if they think there would be anything interesting enough on these forums to warrant forbidding re-distribution!). 

Having stated my own obvious (and possibly biased) reservations on the new forums, I would welcome any contrary indications... 

Does anyone see any real utility in these new forums? 


7 / Re: Is this replacing the old Istock forums?
« on: August 02, 2015, 20:01 »
I won't be troubling the 'new' forums with lots of posts.  I think I will only check to see what the latest lunacy   exciting developments are in the pipeline...   And try to avoid the snide and abusive posts of the  prize pillock sorry - 'Contributor Relations Manager' or some such inanity ...

8 / Re: Balance above $100, not removed?
« on: June 08, 2015, 20:05 »
Interestingly, my balance was zapped briefly on or around last Friday (for approximately the correct amount, though I didnt make a note of it).  However next day, the balance had reverted to the previous amount. 

I did toy with the idea of flagging it to iStock, but decided to do something else, equally futile - I assume the update crashed and the system rolled back and now they are trying to fix whatever went wrong,,, 

....  when you make less money this month than last ... 

10 / Re: What forum thread will you miss?
« on: April 29, 2015, 09:25 »
The critique forum USED to be a great place for advice - nowadays, it is mostly stuff about copyright issues, since there appear to be no rejections for technical reasons.

11 / Re: Huge April slump
« on: April 28, 2015, 04:57 »
Numbers have plummeted to about a third of March - but the numbers are so low that they are statistically insignificant. 

Not sure why the OP thought things were 'on the up'...

Because my sales for Jan/Feb/March were increasingly on the up. What else could I think ?

Happy that you had good sales for a while at least.

Sadly in my case. any short term increase is usually followed by a 'correction', so I am very wary of concluding that iStock in general has somehow reversed their historical trend.

12 / Re: Huge April slump
« on: April 27, 2015, 07:24 »
Numbers have plummeted to about a third of March - but the numbers are so low that they are statistically insignificant. 

Not sure why the OP thought things were 'on the up'... 

13 / Re: What forum thread will you miss?
« on: April 26, 2015, 17:43 »
I used to check a few of the forums, when there was a reasonable exchange of information going on - now they are mainly moribund.
I still check the discussion forum, as that is about the only way to find out out about the state of ongoing cockups, er, developments... 
I long ago ceased to provide more than minimal feedback, as I hate listening to myself...
Also I still check one of the social forums because I know a lot of the people there, but this has just about been overtaken by facebook, and I expect it to die quite soon...   

I doubt I will miss the forums in their current state - iStock will still need to find a mechanism for bug reports, and information dissemination. 

I would like to add my voice to the chorus of not-missing that churlish, obnoxious waste-of-space, whose name you can guess (normally I would not be rude in a public forum about someone I have not met in person, but in my opinion he has forfeited the right to normal courtesy). 

14 / Re: iStock | 15 Year Anniversary
« on: April 25, 2015, 16:14 »

 It's as censored and full of fake high fives as reading a North Korean propaganda newspaper anyway.

I think that's a bit unfair to the People's Republic of North Korea....

15 / iStock's novel approach to system testing
« on: April 24, 2015, 19:18 »
I come from an IT background, where we used to perform various layers of software testing (functional, regression, load test ...) before signing off new code for release to the operational environment.  It was sometimes tedious to do, but it did minimize the numbers of errors that found their way into the live system.

iStock seem to have adopted a new approach to the problem, which became evident lately with the apparently random phased introduction of the new Asset Detail Page, whereby a percentage of users might see/not see the changes dependent on some variable criteria (whether logged on, what cookies were active and possibly more). It was difficult for the contributor base to do more than point out the more glaring inconsistencies, before the new ADP would disappear, change or revert. Of course, this effect must be evident to the buying public too, but as they don't in general post on the forums, I can only guess what their reaction would be to this randomly changing interface. 

IMO this method of using a percentage of the live user base as guinea pigs for incompletely-tested code is shambolic and 'no way to run a railroad'.  I had thought that maybe I was just being a bit nit-picky, and maybe not seeing the hidden beauty of their method, but Braddy unashamedly states in the recent Newsletter ...

We continue to slowly release the Asset Detail Page (ADP) to a larger segment of the community. We hoped to have the new ADP live for the entire community this month but we want to ensure we have everything working as intended before we crank the dial to 100%.

There are a number of features that are currently present on the new ADP that aren't entirely optimized at this point.

To me this means " we released buggy software but , hey, not to everybody - way to go  !!! " 

He (Braddy) goes on to confirm that they are doing the same thing with the search results... 
We briefly introduced our new Search Results Page (SRP) last week. It's definitely a departure from our previous interation, but it still needs a bit of work.

Which as above, means " we released buggy software but , hey, not to everybody - be grateful !!! " 

I am just completely gob-smacked that a Senior Exec/Director of the company can be comfortable peddling such dirty linen in public - perhaps he/they do not see any issues with this way of running a software-based company. 

On the other hand, I do have issues with such disrespect for the user/customer base. It just looks like they have settled for damage-limitation as a way of introducing new features.  Of course, I have no grasp what impact/damage might be done by this piecewise suck-it-and-see methodology.

I can only hope that my analysis is overly gloomy and that the 'improvements' will be just that - improvements - which are worth any collateral damage, in which case, I will happily add my Woo-Yays to the chorus. 

General Stock Discussion / Re: Getty Is Twenty Years Old
« on: March 13, 2015, 12:43 »
Quite a mixture of corporate-speak gibberish and truth-economies... 

In one of the few instances where I could understand the mangled verbiage, it was interesting that iStock was labelled as a "midstock" offering... 

I have no clue what the "consumer and data space" might be...  unless that is a reference to their embedded image giveaway option... 

I did however have a look at their " bold new consumer website" ...  confusingly, when I clicked through to the Subscription & Custom Solutions page, the iStock Subs are listed as $199 and $499 for Essentials and Signature respectively, but when I clicked through to the iStock page, these subs are $99 and $199 ??  

My fault... the website lists in Dollars, which changes to UKPounds on clickthru to iStock... 

[thanks to Tickstock for clearing up my confusion]

I am very resistant to paying in advance for unknown sales... 

So far I have been shortlisted a handful of times but no sales... 

I will continue to submit where I can fulfill a brief, as it only costs my time so far.

I do get suspicious of the number of briefs that never complete, with some excuse like "client changed their mind" etc etc  I sometimes wonder if some briefs are just trawling for free ideas...     the vagueness of some briefs is also a concern - do Imagebrief not vet them? 

Still - wait & see...

This is only the second time I have used the useful 'ignore' feature of the site...

19 / Re: Tax Interview
« on: January 24, 2015, 20:50 »
In UK, I believe (hope?) that the national insurance number can be used as the foreign TIN.  It is a unique reference, but easier to remember than the UTR.  I think I found a document on UK .gov site that listed both and implied they were equivalent...  of course, I can't remember the reference...

20 / iStock removes Links from image descriptions
« on: January 19, 2015, 15:24 »
AS per thread in Discussion forum on SEO , Lobo confirms that the image & lightbox links we spent ages generating, are to be removed...

"...They will be going away from the public view on the Asset Detail Page eventually. I wouldn't spend any additional time on them. ..."

Words fail me ,.

21 / Re: iStock has got so bad I now owe THEM money
« on: September 29, 2014, 15:07 »
This is either the work of a genius at iStock to completely kill off all sales for Exclusives or the worst thought through plan ever. I can't decide which.

I doubt there are that many geniuses at iStock... or maybe their genius lies in double-think and marketing-speak
which probably tends to the second option...

For my part, I fail to see the logic of endangering ANY revenue stream (first XS, then S what next?) ... I just wonder how the apologists for the new system justified this?  {maybe some crap like 'we dont need bottom-feeding bloggers, lets concentrate on leveraging multiple sales of 'real' image-buyers' or some such drivel} . 

What especially galls me is the tripe that gets spouted by the iStock staff in the forums - e.g. 'buyers will continue to download the image size that is appropriate for their needs' - This condescending and erroneous twaddle just displays a contempt for the intelligence and experience f the contributors...

Back on track - I think you do an injustice to the iStock geniuses, when you say it is the 'worst thought through' plan ever - do you really think they cant come up with something worse?  History would indicate otherwise ...

And please do retain some hair - it may be a cold winter...

22 / files not indexed
« on: August 25, 2014, 18:26 »
I couldnt see this commented on in the forum. So just be aware that some files uploaded recently are not searchable, nor do they appear in portfolios.

No information about whether this will be fixed. Thread open in Help forum.

23 / iStock penalising Diamonds ?
« on: August 04, 2014, 06:17 »
From an unscientific trawl of the last couple of months posts about downloads/earnings, I get the impression that an increasing number of Diamond and Black Diamond contributors are reporting very bad figures. 

I am not in that league, being on the minimum percentage, where monthly variations are statistically insignificant, so I cant add any useful data.

However it would make sense (from a bean-counter perspective) to reduce sales where the contributor get 40% and promote sales at 25%, thus improving the bottom line at the stroke of a Best Match twiddle.

Of course, iStock would never do that to their beloved contributor base, would they?   ::)

24 / iStock purging rejected files
« on: July 23, 2014, 17:51 »
From my observations of activity on my account, it looks like iStock are purging (i.e. deleting) all their storage of rejected files (why they originally decided to keep them is another question). 

I am guessing that this may be a direct result of their new ingestion policy (i.e.  no upload limits, and accept any old [email protected]),  so perhaps they are having to free up some storage. 

Could also be why the rate of ingestion (i.e. sloooow inspections) has slowed down. 

25 / Re: iStocks new rollovers.
« on: December 11, 2013, 20:51 »
I like it too...  I won't deny it (so I am not a DENIER [isn't that some kind of nylon stocking? :)  )...

I would have liked it even better had this happened 10 or so days or (however many days it was) ago...

I would have positively LOVED it  (so I guess I can't be a HATER) , if the original cock-up hadn't taken place..

I guess that makes me a MALCONTENT -

Isn't it strange that I am 'malcontented' because my agent/distributor/whatever doesn't act in a timely way to stem a revenue-destroying site bug? Maybe it is because it is partly MY revenue, even though iStock apparently couldn't care less about losing their lion's share of the dollars I earn for them...

I am sure it must be my fault because I can't appreciate the Big Picture that governs the actions and strategies which the iStock mavens put in place to make us into a world-beating enterprise...

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