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Messages - astrocady

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General Stock Discussion / Copyright protection????
« on: July 31, 2009, 13:12 »
Boy am I ever confused of this.

I do some stock photography and I also do some website designing.  When I'm working on a website, I usually either take the pictures myself, or use the pictures supplied by the site owner.  Occasionally I'll buy a pix or 2 through iStock.

Lately I have been question my customers about the origins of the pix they provide, warning them they need to be careful about copyright infringement.  Of course they always ask "How can I tell if it's copyrighted?"  I usually tell them to assume it IS unless it specifically says "public domain."

I've been wondering lately how much I am sticking my neck out as a webmaster by publishing these files provided by my customers that I don't know for sure where they come from.  But it's there site, right?  And I shouldn't be responsible, should I?

I became even more confused today when I bought 2 pix from iStock for a website.  Whenever I use a purchased picture, I always edit the IPTC data, adding "Licensed by iStock to Carrolls' Creations for use on whatever.com" to the Copyright Notice field. 

Well, neither of the pix I downloaded today had any IPTC data -- NONE!  The Copyright Status field said "unknown."  And they were from 2 different photographers.  So if someone stumbles upon one of these pix somewhere, how are they to know it's copyrighted?  And as a webmaster, how do I know if my customer really took it himself (I always look) or if they swiped it from a google image search.

I'm really surprised and shocked that iStock doesn't insert some kind of copyright information into the IPTC data!  I'm equally surprised that not all photographers insert that information into their files before they are uploaded.

So, what do y'all think a webmaster should do in terms of pictures???

Steve Carroll

Veer / Re: Veer Marketplace watermark.
« on: July 23, 2009, 08:35 »
Pretty soon we'll have freaking lcd screens on our  dinner plates for pete's sake, just so we don't miss a precious email while we're chowing down on our dinner ;)  LOL

I've been looking for a new product to invest in.  Now I've found it!  Just have to make it "dishwasher safe!"

I install plugin (PS CS3), but cant find it in Filters menu?  :-\

Yea, that was my problem too.  I installed it right after Leaf first mention is, but could never find out how to access it.  It wasn't in filters menu or any of the others that I could find.  Figured it must not be compatible with cs4.

New Sites - General / Re: Pixamba - Please keep us informed!
« on: July 10, 2009, 08:39 »
Good response, David.  Sounds like Pixamba is willing to listen and keep and open mind.

If so, why would we not expect the same after being turned off at JUI and Photos.com?

Sorry if that part of my post was misleading.  I didn't mean that the subs at JUI and Photos.com had been cut off.  I was talking about WHEN they are cutoff... I think the projected date was August???

I think that's the $64,000 question, Warren.  Before the Jupiter buyout, I had reasonable pay-as-you-go StockXpert sales.  Once they started posting the ports on the other sites, the StockXpert sales started to drop, and within about 2 months they stopped.  At least for me. 

The original "deal" for StockXpert contributors whose pix were being transferred to the other Jupiter sites was horrible. There was a revolt among contributors, so there was LOTS of chatter on forums. At that time the StockXpert forum was very active (not the case anymore), so perhaps the buyers found out they could buy the same pictures on the other Jupiter sites for bunches less.  Don't know for sure why StockXpert direct sales dropped.  All I know if I've had 1 in the last 3 months.

Good 2 know you reached payout. I'm almost there too, but * , even the subs have dried up for me.
One question for you, astro:
     Why are you not cashing out? If something screwy happens (which I hope not, as I like StockXpert to revamp), you could wait forever to get paid. No? ???

I'm not cashing out, because I could get another $40 in sales between now and when StockXpert sales dry completely up.  If I had cashed out, I would be in the dreaded position of waiting and waiting for the final $10 in sales that never comes.

It would be different is StockXpert was a ma and pa outfit, deeply in debt and being forced out of business by creditors.  But I don't think Getty would deny its contributors payment once payment level is reached.

I'm still uploading, for now. 

My sales were good there before association with Photos & Jupiter.  After that merger, my StockXpert sales all but stopped, but the subscription sale were fairly strong.  Had a good spring with them, but have seen some slowdown since the whole getty/rape thing.  Since it's been a LONG time since I"ve had an actual StockXpert sale, I expect the site to dry up once their images are removed from the photos & jupiter sites. 

I just passed payout threshold yesterday, to I'm breathing a little easier.  I won't cashout now -- will wait and see what happens after the "split" -- but at least I know I won't be stock with $48 in my account waiting and waiting and waiting for sales that don't come to push me over the threshold  ;)

Photoshop Discussion / Re: Photoshop Camera Raw -- "Clarify"
« on: June 30, 2009, 08:08 »
Thank you all for your input.  I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one that uses it.  I usually go about 1/2 way from the default mid-point towards the right hand side (maximum)

Photoshop Discussion / Photoshop Camera Raw -- "Clarify"
« on: June 29, 2009, 14:20 »
I have a question about the "Clarify" adjustment in camera raw. 

Do y'll think it may cause artifacting?

I like the effect it creates and tend to use it quite a bit.  But I've been wondering lately if maybe I shouldn't use it as much as I do.  My monitor is not the greatest, and I have a hard time seeing the artifacts that reviewers see.  I also have a hard time picking out the examples of artifacting that have been posted on this forum.  Therefore I'm kinda in the dark, so to speak, on this so I'm hoping some of you can help me.

Bridge only lets you search for pix on your own computer (or local network, if you have one).  It does not reach out to stock agencies.

As an istock contributor, it is ease for me to go there convert my account balance to just the number of credits I need for that small pix I need for a web site.
The website owners just love these transactions, Istock have a basic commission of 26% and an earnings conversion rate of $1 = 1 Credit, but for ease lets round things and say your $1.00 of earnings came from 4 x $1 sales so we have the $4 of sales revenue, you then convert earnings and download an image, Istock now have $5 of transaction revenue after moving the $1 commission liability to sales revenue, and they will now only ever payout just $0.26 for $5 and not $1.30, a real commission of just over 5%.

David  ;D

That is true, but how would it be any different if I took a payout and then used that money to purchase credits from istock to buy the pix I need?  They still make the same profit and I still make the same piddling commission.

The only advantage is the hassle factor.  It's easy and quick for me.

Or course I don't buy very many -- I usually shoot my own -- but often it's cheaper for the client if I use microstock.

Interesting concept.  As a part-time web designer, I understand where you're coming from.  As an istock contributor, it is ease for me to go there convert my account balance to just the number of credits I need for that small pix I need for a web site.  But as it may be some time before I need another one, I would not purchase 12 credits at a time.

I may be the "hassle" factor, rather than the cost, that drive people to swipe pix from google image search for their blog or website.

Off Topic / Re: Do you need glasses? I got mine CHEAP!
« on: June 26, 2009, 08:11 »
Funny timing on this post.  Late last night on cable TV here in Florida, I say a commercial for a website almost identical to this one!  Same base price -- 8/pr including single vision lenses. Don't remember the ur, but I'm sure I've never seen it before.

speaking of economy. here's something to make us all feel more depressive.
i read somewhere that in each of our lifetime, each one of us will live to experience at least 3 Great Depression , ie. Market Crash where many lose jobs,etc..
Geesh, talk about bad karma  . Which of our ancestors fXck it all up for us ?   ::)

Seems to me we've been in one big depression every since I moved out of my parent's house 35 years ago!

Off Topic / Re: Do you need glasses? I got mine CHEAP!
« on: June 25, 2009, 08:13 »
thanks dragon & jorge.

Dragon already got his heart, but jorge is going to have to wait 15 minutes (hope I don't forget like I usually do).

I have a big fat nose and wear progressives, and I always have problems with the progressive starting to high, even when I go to full-featured optromitist.  

But when it comes time to replace my single-vision sunglasses, I'll keep this place in mind.

Edit:  I remembered -- jorge got his heart  :-*

StockXpert.com / Re: Are you still uploading there??
« on: June 20, 2009, 08:56 »
Now when StockXpert says it's not going to sell through Jupiter, people are going to stop uploading again. We microstockers are strange group.

I don't think the doubt is about the "loss" of Jupiter/Photos.com deal, but the changes that may come to StockXpert.  A reduction of our commissions is a fear.  However, I don't think StockXpert has a minimum time they retains our images, like DT and BigStock do, so it would not be a problem deleting new images should one decide to close the account with StockXpert.

Before StockXpert entered into the sub market with photos.com and JI, I had brisk sales at payasyougo prices.  Once the sup thing when into effect, the payasyougo sales have STOPPED.  I only get sub sales now.  I read this as most buyers are no longer shopping StockXpert since they know they can get most of the same pictures at photos/ji for less money.

I remember a few years ago there was a lot of fuss here in Florida about this same issue, on in regarding computers.  The Use Tax thingy has been on the books a long time but most people either don't know about it, or just simply choose not to remember.  Back then (5 or 6 years ago?) the state was requesting records from large mail order computer places for all sales made to Florida residences and then sending them bills for the tax.  I controversy then was over whether they had to right to require those records from out of state businesses.  As I remember, the State was successful in obtaining them.

So I wonder now if it is actually photographers they are going after or all major photography equipment purchases, like then did before?

I guess, Lisa, you can always think about all the interest you made off the state's money during the past 3 years, but if you're like me, who as the extra cash to let sit around collecting interest!

It is a shame more people didn't vote on which posts they thought were helpful, that was perhaps the real problem.  I also think it would have been nice if madelaide could have won something as she has given a lot to the community.  She was given a total of 11 useful post marks - 4 of those votes from me.  If you thought madelaide made useful posts, why didn't you vote any of her comments as useful sharply?

I agree 100%, Tyler.  We can only blame ourselves for not voting.  I know that I should have voted more. 

StockXpert.com / Re: Is StockXpert going down?
« on: June 17, 2009, 09:24 »

No business will ever compete with itself.. istock and StockXpert share the same business model, therefore StockXpert competes directly with istock, and that is not good business, in fact, it's business class 101, do not compete with yourself. There is no hope for those looking for some, the only hope was that StockXpert could be changed entirely so that it does not compete with istock directly, turn it into a subs site? No they want photos.com for that, so I'm afraid StockXpert is gone.

I think, after gutting it all they can, that they'll turn it into a really cheap pay as you go site.  Pictures for a buck with 10 cents going to the contributors. Then they will have...
iStock -- premium and unique products at highish prices
photo.com -- subscritpion site with iStock's low selling stock
StockXpert -- ultra cheap without the large upfront charge of subscription sites, offering non-istock photos competing directly with iStocks other contributors.

StockXpert.com / Re: Is StockXpert going down?
« on: June 16, 2009, 10:16 »
If , as pointed out elsewhere, they are planning to kill StockXpert, why would they resume the efficiency of their review system?

Because they don't care.  Because the fired all the reviewers.

Pardon me, but I've been around here for a while and have never heard of that person.

I had the same thought. The first two were expected, but when I got to the third name, I said "huh? who?"

Congrats, Lisa...well deserved! :)

Like they said --- especially about congrats to Lisa.  ;D ;D

5 cents is 5 cents -- but what really irks me is that they didn't tell us this up front.  There were even multiple questions about this on StockXpert's forum. 

Now, if I want to opt-in at istock, it's too late to click just one button -- I have to go to each image and click them separately!

And without the jupiter/photo.com sales, I'll NEVER reach payout level at StockXpert.  I've exactly one sale there in the past 3 months -- granted it was a $1.50 non-subscription sale, but that still only 50 cents a month!  At that rate, I'm only 9 years away from payout!  (assuming $100 payout limit.  Is that right?)

Mostphotos.com / Re: Canceled MostPhotos
« on: June 15, 2009, 09:09 »
For the first couple of months I was with MP I played their ratings game --- looking at others pix and rating them and thanking others for rating my pix.  But I never saw any sales so I stopped doing that.  I still upload, although I haven't been uploading much anywhere lately (need inspiration, can't think of what to shoot next).  We'll see what happens when the site upgrade and new search thingy comes online.

Newbie Discussion / Re: Basic beginers camera?
« on: June 11, 2009, 11:21 »
the k20 will accept ANY lens ever make by pentax -- so there is lots of good glass out there for this camera and very reasonable prices.  Some may not have auto focus, but with pentax, the image stabilization is build into the body, so you always have that no matter what lens you use.

Newbie Discussion / Re: Basic beginers camera?
« on: June 11, 2009, 08:38 »
if you're looking for bang for the buck, don't rule out Pentax.  They recently dropped the price on the k20d so you can now get a 14.5 meg camera with decent lens for $800 or less.  The reviews are good, and there are a couple on this group using them with good results.  I've been looking really hard at this one -- just need a few hundred more 25 cent sales!

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