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Messages - pancaketom

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General Stock Discussion / Re: Bad july.. How was yours?
« on: August 01, 2018, 10:12 »
Best month this year (a little better than an average month last year). Most sites were about average or a little better for these days with Canva down quite a bit and 123RF still really low (although almost double last month's really pathetic total).

Alamy made it a good month with a few big sales. While these are welcome, they are pretty random and certainly not anything I can count on. Still it lifted Alamy to my #2 site so far this year.

VideoBlocks / Re: Commission cut
« on: July 16, 2018, 15:40 »
So if members buy a clip are they going to give the artist a cut of the membership fee - say like 50% of it?

Keep using Fotolia then... I do!

Unfortunately that is not an option for some contributors.

It would be pretty cool if on the activity page after this specific sale it also listed all times sales #s and $s for that item and maybe upload date (although that can be estimated from the id # I suspect). Or maybe have a bunch of columns you can select and turn on and off.

Also a place you could list all of the stats ($, download #, withholding etc. all on one graph with over various times - day, week, month, yr would be nice.

Are you using different time zones for earnings / downloads and activity? 

Activity shows no sales July 5th, earnings and downloads show at least one.

This month SOD = 0.35% of my income at SS
June 2017 SOD = 3.0% of my SS income
June 2016 SOD = 8.8% of my SS income (and the total was almost 2x what I've made at SS this month)

I haven't had a "big" SOD in over a year, and now the ones I do get are usually between sub and OD values or for just sub value.

For me it seems like more of a gradual decrease in the number and the value of SOD sales than a sudden stop (but I haven't really looked at the numbers very critically).

I'm surprised there was nothing wider than 24mm - unless they converted everything to 35mm equivalent.

I also wonder what the not listed camera makes were - does this include vectors, or phones, or scans, or cleared EXIF files.

Thanks, it is nice to see some progress in this department as what was there before was really really limited and I for one can't see the Fotolia stats. I haven't fully tried to get useful stats out of this, but asking a few contributors about what they really want to see would probably be a good idea - don't do what SS did and hide the useful info and put the much less useful info all over the top in massive bold text.

I'd love to be able to see total sales, $,  and views for any image as well as overall sales and $ for any given time period.

The from and to order seems backwards to me, but I am a geologist so I can deal with stratigraphic order if I have to.

Now to go back and find where the small accounting discrepancy in my records compared to what AS has reported is.

134 / Re: huge sales drop for new images
« on: June 19, 2018, 14:49 »
What I wonder is . . . What's the reasoning behind it? Why does SS's algorithm greatly favor our old stuff? How does SS benefit?

Maybe using the older search algorithm settings shows too much of the new dreck, so they turn the settings back to favor older sellers and that makes the search look a little less messed up - the casualty is any sales on recently uploaded images. If they aren't going to quality control at the submission point then it is hard to put a lot of recent uploads in the search results without showing a lot of images with little quality control. I am guessing that in their A/B testing this puts off buyers so they change it. In the long run having no newer images seen in search will put buyers off too, but it won't be immediately obvious like overloading the search results with lots of recent lousy images does. Good or bad, if an image is buried immediately then there will be no data to use so the good images can rise in the search over time.

Buyers can choose "new", but that is probably even worse for many search terms.

I'm pretty sure if I added 5000 images this year let alone increased my port by 6X my earnings would have gone up a little. At least on a few sites that seem to be selling new content along with the old. Can you find your images in searches?

My experience is things seem to be bumbling along at about the new normal - slow decline compared to 2017, down about 50% from 2012. 123RF has fallen off a relatively low cliff, SS doesn't seem to sell much new stuff at all, but no huge drastic across the board sudden calamity.

I think Alamy said they were excited to open an office in the USA and would drop our percentage from 60 to 50% to pay for it (my earnings there have gone up quite a bit, so maybe that actually was exciting news).
My sales are up on Alamy also, but not my US sales, which isn't surprising given my extreme paucity of US content there.
So another example of how an Alamy 'exciting news' benefitted some at the expense of others. I have no more sales via the US office, but I lost money to fund the US office setup; and although they say results from opening the US office were better than anticipated, they show no signs of restoring the 60%.

From the reports on the Alamy forum, which is only a tip of the iceberg of sales, it seems that US content in general sell for a lot more $$ than 'the rest', but I still don't see why I should have had to help pay for that, and keep paying.
Robbing Sue to pay Tom (nothing personal!)

No problem. I was more trying to give them the benefit of the doubt in that the "exciting news" might have actually benefitted me. Lots of changes and decisions hurt some contributors and help others, you win some and you lose some. Sadly it seems most of the "exciting news" is of schemes to help the agency and hurt almost all contributors. I agree it would be more exciting if Alamy now that the US office was up and running and performing better than expected boosted our take back to 60%. That would be exciting.

I got over a grand from the Veer "dash for cash", so that was sort of exciting. I'm not sure they said it was exciting when they closed up shop or whatever they did.

I think Fotolia moved the levels goalposts a lot, I'm not sure they said that was exciting.

I think Alamy said they were excited to open an office in the USA and would drop our percentage from 60 to 50% to pay for it (my earnings there have gone up quite a bit, so maybe that actually was exciting news).

Unlike the exciting drop at 123RF - or as the sales suggest 321RF  - weren't they supposed to drop some more exciting news on us about now?

I think the whole IS-Getty fiasco probably takes the cake though.

I do miss getting raises at SS every few years - or maybe it was every year, plus actually moving up a level and getting more was nice. Getting a boost in sales for each batch of new uploaded images was nice too. I must be getting to be an old curmudgeon. sigh.

You should see the printout of my exclusivity estimator from 2007.

I think my exclusivity estimator from 2007 had me raking it in by now, so I am sure yours was through the roof and made up from unicorns, rainbows, and hearts or whatever they were smoking at that time.

General - Top Sites / Re: Life Expectancy of an image
« on: June 02, 2018, 15:04 »
I think on average over a large number of images and sites it is some sort of half life decay that has more to do with the onslaught of new images and the search engines than anything else. For individual images and sites I think the vagaries of the search engine and the image itself are pretty critical. The images I have paid attention to on sites with lots of sales - eg best sellers on SS have sold fairly steadily until one day the search changes and then sales plummet for good. Obviously some images with outdated technology and styles will drop off over time for those reasons.

General Stock Discussion / Re: So How was your May?
« on: June 02, 2018, 15:00 »
Better than average for these days, but not by a lot. (so down 30% from a few years ago). SS was a bit above average in both $ and DL although it has been over a year since any big sales there. 123RF (or perhaps more accurately 321RF was better than last month but my RC total still dropped by a substantial amount why they should get a larger percentage for failing at their job is beyond me. The real surprise was DT which had a completely pathetic first half of the month- only a few sub sales with an average RPD of .35 and then it came alive for the second half with subs and actual credit sales and posted the best month there in years - on really only 2 weeks of sales. I think it ended up as my 3rd best site for the month after SS and Alamy (just barely behind Alamy too).

As far as the long range picture - it is sort of bleak, but I hope it is a long slow glide path rather than a huge plummet to a crash and burn.

I'd say somewhere between 1$ per image per month to 1$ per image per year. This assumes decent images uploaded to multiple outlets. Probably a lot closer to the lower end. Upload a few images and see what you get and if you think it is worth your time. Spacestockphoto is probably including video in their answer.

yes, I pay taxes on my income. I also deduct a fair bit of the expenses.

Play with the settings and look closely at the photos. Are you off on the focus - ie is there somewhere that is in focus, just not where you want it? or is there nowhere really in sharp focus.  The suggestions above are good too. I am sure there are plenty of tutorials on the web talking about focus for portraits. Try a tripod and mirror lock up and timer and live view zoomed in focus on a static subject to see what the lens/camera is capable of.

You can make things look sharper with various sharpening in post or in camera, but you should first find the sweet spot settings for your lens/camera and start with the best image you can get.

I know my stitched panoramas don't make any more than downsized APS-C images at most (or any?) sites. There are advantages to a full frame or medium format camera, but I don't think more sales from microstock is very high on the list.

Easier workflow and the ability to crop and downsize with impunity might be the biggest advantage.

Canva / Re: Canva
« on: May 20, 2018, 22:32 »
ugh. I can't see how this is good for anyone other than maybe Getty and Canva. It certainly doesn't sound like good news for Canva contributors. Especially those that aren't selling through Getty for one reason or another. I wonder what the final amount the contributors would get - potentially from the 1$ sale .65 goes to Canva leaving .35 and then almost 30 cents for Getty leaving 5.25 cents for the contributor. Woo Yay?

I think there are a lot of other factors that go into the search "special sauce". For instance your location, the location of the buyer, zooms and views, previous search terms that were used for sales, sales, views with no sales, etc. Keywords, description, title... Previous purchases by that buyer (maybe they tend to buy high key stuff)... I think the searches are getting so complex that the programmers don't even know what exactly is always going on. Maybe in the short term of the A/B testing that yields more sales, but in the long run that might not actually be the case. I feel this is probably more likely at places like Getty and SS that think they are so clever...

Certainly on sites like SS I have a lot more mid aged image sales (2010-2015 or so than recent images or very old images). That is based on most the most popular in the last 3mo to 1 yr and also just what it looks like looking through the sales. Also the older images sell more than all but a very few recent ones. Compared to Adobe where new images seem to sell just as well (I have the same images, but they have all been uploaded in the last few years, so maybe if they were uploaded a long time ago they would be doing better).

On some sites like DT your overall portfolio and account is much more important (and thus contributor's work tends to clump in the results) not to mention there they seem to turn portfolios on and off.

123RF / Re: 123rf reducing commissions
« on: May 10, 2018, 11:37 »
I haven't heard any good news from them since before they decided to go with the credit scheme. They dropped me a level and moved into the "don't upload here anymore" camp. I think I get the lowest for sub sales there now. They might move into the "remove images" camp soon.

I'd say somewhere in between what Getty charges and what they pay us. A whole lot closer to what Getty charges.

In the past they wouldn't change you to a currency that was more profitable for you. In other words they were paying some people less.

a little bit better than Feb and Mar, a little worse than Jan. SS is bad even for the new normal. DT, 123RF, and BS are bad too. Canva, Alamy, and Adobe kept it from being a horrible month. Surprisingly good but still small potatoes were Featurepics and P5.

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