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Topics - StockManiac

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1 / StockXpert: Rest in Peace
« on: February 11, 2010, 21:28 »
It looks like StockXpert was just shutdown a little while ago.

The search feature is now gone, so buyers will not be able to purchase any new images.

General Stock Discussion / Who Offers Cheapest Extended License?
« on: September 28, 2009, 18:39 »
From a buyers perspective - which site has the cheapest Extended Licensing (for resale items - mugs, tshirts, mousepads, etc)?

General Stock Discussion / U.S. Taxes
« on: December 27, 2008, 09:19 »
It seems like it is that time of year again.

Which sites send out 1099s?

If I remember correctly, last year it was:


I believe that iStockphoto will also be sending out 1099s this year (since Getty is U.S. based).

Does that seem correct?  Or are there other sites that will send out 1099s?

4 / What SS Tier Are You In?
« on: May 13, 2008, 13:41 »
Since the new SS raise is based off of your tier, I was wondering how many of us are actually in the upper tiers.

I would like to say thanks to StockXpert for listening to our gripes about the subscription services.

It is a breath of fresh air to have a company listen to the concerns of the contributors.

The opt-in/out option alone is a big risk on their part, which is much appreciated.  And upping the royalty to 0.30 is enough to make some of us cross that gray line.

Once again, thanks.

6 / Is This Spamming?
« on: October 05, 2007, 06:27 »
The image below has the following keywords:

1940-1980 abandoned action adult advertisement air airplane airplane algorithm alternative angle announcement antique architecture arms arrow artificial back backgrond bad banner baroque barren beam beautiful beauty bizarre blade body botany branch bubble buddhism burnt bush business butterfly cartouche chaos child circle classic clip coat coil coiled cold color colored communications complexity composite concepts condition conservation cool copy cracked creation cross culture damaged dance dark day de dead deflated defocused deformed depth development distorted dividing dizzy dreaming dreams drop energy environment environmental exploding faded falling fashion fiber fibonacci figurine fine flame flash fleur floral flower fly flying foliagг foliage footpath forecasting forest form four fragility frame fun funky galaxy gallery garbage garden geometric geometry glass global glowing gothic graffiti grafic grass green group growth halloween heat helix high hippie horror house icon ideas idyllic igniting illness imagery imagination in industrial industry infinity insignia interior intricacy kitsch label larry laser lasershow leaking life liquid lush lys material mathematical mathematics medicine meditating mental message messy micro mid-air military monochrome moving multi multi-layered museum music narcotic nautilus net netting nouveau nova objects obsolete ocean old old-fashioned orange organism organized ornamental over painted part peeling people perfection periodic photographic piazza placard planet plant plastic poster presentation product projection prop psychedelic pump purple rag rainforest ray reality red remote renaissance render rendered repeat repetition retro retro-styled revival ring rock rocket roof room row run-down runs sailing scene science screen scroll sea senior serene sharp shell shiny ship shivering shredded silhouette simulator single sky small smell smoke smooth smudged softness sparse speed spiked spiral splashing splattered spooky spotted spray spring stain stained stream striped style sunbeam table tall technician tek tentacle text textile ticket torn tranquil tree triangle tropical tube turning twisted unpleasant up urban vek vibrant victorian vine virtual visual vitality waiting warrior wave waving weather white woods yellow youth zen-like zoom

Some artists offer their images on microstocks (IS, SS, etc).

Some artists offer their images on macrostocks (Alamy, MyLoupe, Photographers Direct, etc).

Some artists offer their images on both.

Some artists think it is immoral to offer images on both (because of the large price difference).

Where do you offer your images?

8 / Should LO Change Their Watermark?
« on: September 14, 2007, 14:42 »
As the title suggests, do you think that LO should change their current watermark?

There are some that believe the current watermark is weak and encourages image thefts, while others believe that the watermark is fine and should be left alone.

What do you think???

9 / New DT Search Engine Sucks!
« on: May 15, 2007, 18:30 »
The new search engine at Dreamstime SUCKS!

Do almost any search and you will find that the first few pages have the same contributors over and over again.

For example, search for "business people" and you will find that out of the first 40 images, 30 images are from only 4 contributors.

Not much of a selection for buyers, especially since many of the images are different shots with the same models.

I'm sure that buyers will be complaining about this new "feature" soon (or maybe they will just shop elsewhere).

On top of that, the new search engine takes into account the "performance of the contributor" and "exclusivity".  What does the "performance of the contributor" or "exclusivity" have to do with the "relevancy" of the image?  This means that a contributor with thousands of downloads is now automatically "relevant" for every search that their images are in.  And in the converse, someone just starting out that might have very relevant images will be stuck at the back of the search results just because they are a newbie.

10 / Istockphoto - Dollar Bin, Phase II
« on: April 28, 2007, 06:45 »
Istock is now implemented a second phase of the dollar bin.  This phase will include some automation.  The new phase will start on 5/1/07.  Any image that has had zero (0) downloads since 6/1/05 will be placed in the dollar bin.  That timeframe gives the image almost two (2) years to get at least one download.  It also gives the image at least one full season to sell (if the image is seasonal).  Supposedly, this only accounts for another 10,000 images.

Once the image is in the dollar bin, it will only have 30 days to get a sale or it will be dropped totally from the IS database.  If it gets sales, then the 30 day lease is renewed on every sale.

Here is the skinny:

DT claims that they treat all submitters alike, and that everyone must follow the daily upload limits (which are currently set at 40/day).

But don't believe the hype.

1. The current upload limit of 40 images/day started on 03/13/07 (see here

2. Before 03/13/07, submitters were allowed to submit 100 images/day.

3. One of their newest members, Iofoto, now has 3,750 images online.  I will show that getting this many images up in such a short time period would be an impossibility for most submitters.

4. Iofoto's first image submitted is # 2037002.  It was uploaded sometime between 03/04 and 03/05/2007.

5. From 03/04 (when Iofoto submitted his 1st image) thru 03/13/07 (when the new upload rules came into effect), there are 10 days.  Submitters were allowed to submit 100 images/day during that time frame.  So someone could have submitted a total of 1,000 images (10 days * 100 images/day) during that time.

6. From 03/14 thru 04/11/07 (today), there are another 29 days.  Submitters were only allowed to submit 40 images/day during this time frame.  So someone could have submitted another 1,160 images (29 days * 40 images/day) during that time.

7. If we add the two time frames together, the most that a normal submitter could have submitted during that time would be 2,160 images (1,000 + 1,160).  Yet Iofoto managed to get 3,750 images approved during that same time frame!

8. Of course, this does not take the following into consideration:

a. The current queue wait is around 10-12 days.  So images that were submitted during the last 10-12 days would still be in the queue waiting for inspection.  So we would need to subtract at least 400 images from the total (10 days * 40 images/day).  This leaves 1,760 images (2,160 - 400).

b. Nobody has a 100% acceptance ratio.  According to another thread on this board (, the highest acceptance ratio from people on this board is around 90%.  Most acceptance ratios are much lower.  So at least 10% of the images would be rejected, or 176 rejected images.  This leaves 1,584 images (1,760 - 176).

But mysteriously, Iofoto seemed to get 3,750 images online.  Over double the amount that most others would be able to do.

So it seems that the rules only apply to some submitters and not to all.

If you have an image on DT that is close to image # 2037002, please post the upload date for that image.

EDIT: My initial calculation is 03/12/2007.  Let's see how close I can come to the actual date.

13 / What Was Previous Upload Limit on DT?
« on: April 11, 2007, 06:55 »
Before the new upload limit (of 40 images/day) was put into place, what was the upload limit?

Adobe Stock / Fotolia About to Cross the 1 Million Mark?
« on: December 21, 2006, 11:57 »
Well it looks like Fotolia is about to go over 1 million images.

Even though their site says it is nearing 2 million, we all know that they exagerate greatly on their site.

Don't believe me? Just look at their image sizes: medium, large, and xlarge.  Where is small???

15 / LuckyOliver Watermark
« on: October 17, 2006, 18:04 »
Dear LuckyOliver:

Please change your watermark to be more secure.

While I love the fact that you display extra large thumbnails for potential buyers, your watermark can be very easy to edit out (depending on the image).  The watermark currently consists of a bunch of text areas that display "Lucky Oliver" around the image and then an "Annoying Watermark" at the top right of the image.  While the "Annoying Watermark" is secure, the other areas can be very insecure.

For example, with an image that consists mainly of light areas, the "Lucky Oliver" text areas are barely visible.  The following photo is an example of this (where the image mainly consists of light areas):

Not only does the example image mainly consist of light areas, but the upper-right hand corner consists of blue sky (where the "Annoying Watermark" is located).  This could very easily be removed with any image editing program.

My suggestion is to change the "Lucky Oliver" text from ONLY light-colored text to alternating light and dark-colored text.  This will work for almost any image and will make the image much more secure.

Securing the watermark will help the site in many ways, among them:

- Giving photographers the confidence to submit their photos knowing that their photos will not be hijaaked

- Reducing "lost" sales to those Internet surfers that would hijaak an image if it was easy, but would buy one if it was properly secured

Please note that there is no charge for my consultation services to your company and hope that you can prosper from said advice  :)



16 / LuckyOliver Implements New Reviewing System
« on: October 17, 2006, 17:48 »
According to their website, LuckyOliver has implemented some sort of new reviewing system.  Does anyone know what it is?

Here is the exact text from their site (@

Hey carnies, in order to combat our queue of images awaiting review I've made a new reviewing system which will allow us to bring on more bouncers and get through images faster. We're going to begin using it today, so don't be surprised if you get newly formatted responses to your submissions. This should enable us to review images quickly and still give carnies the custom responses they've come to expect.

Please let us know if you experience any odd reviews or bugs. Due to some heavy processing presently going on there might be a delay before your accepted photos actually show up in your portfolio after being reviewed, but this delay is temporary and should be through with by the end of the day. You can look forward to the reviews coming in faster in the coming weeks and from here on out.

I have an image that was accepted over 4 months ago. I recently received an email that they might remove it because of a copyright problem.

The image has had over 30 sales, and I was wondering if they remove the image, would they also remove the sales that I received???

Has anyone had something like this happen? If so, I would appreciate if you would share your experience...

It seems that Shutterstock is having so many sales that they have had to shut down the stats servers in order to give priority to buyers.  Stats are only being updated in the middle of the night.

I have been having record sales everywhere and was wondering how is everyone else doing?

19 / What Nefarious Villain Has Taken Over iStock?
« on: October 10, 2006, 14:50 »
NOTE: Please remember to cast your vote in the poll on the left-hand side. <------


The Joker is a master criminal with a clown-like appearance. He is literally a killer clown, driven by a disordered mind to pursue destruction and chaos with as much panache as possible. For Joker, each transgression he commits is an elaborate joke in which he tries to leave his victims dying with laughter - literally.

Holy utility belt! Are all of the new iStock releases a part of a grand joke? There have been reports of users doing searches on "photocopier", "french flag", and "easter bunny" and coming away laughing. Is this just the beginning?


The Riddler is is obsessed with riddles, puzzles, and word games.

Is the new tagging system a riddle that will overtake the microstock world? What does it mean? Are the deleted posts a part of the plot? How can it be solved?


Egghead considers himself to be the "the world's smartest criminal".

Are the new searches too difficult for the average human to figure out? Is this one of Eggheads egg-streme and egg-cessive crimes? Are we all doomed?

Mr. Freeze:

Mr. Freeze is a mad scientist who plots his crimes around ice and cold.

Has iStock been frozen solid? Will it thaw in time for the Christmas season?


No image available.

Peebert wields the hammer and is known to lock a thread faster than the original poster can hit the Submit button.  Has he gone too far this time?


No image available.

Bitter is the former owner of iStock, but it has been reported that he has turned to the dark side (as his name implies).  Is he out to make everyone else as bitter as he is?

Can someone please call the Commissioner to put up the bat-sign so that order and justice will prevail...

Adobe Stock / Does Fotolia Really Have Over 1 Million Images?
« on: September 08, 2006, 07:13 »
I just read a thread on another microstock forum that questioned whether Fotolia actually had more than 1 Million images.

The poster gave some facts (which I have verified) that give some food for thought.

Here are some excerpts from the thread:

- on Istockphoto - they have 1.048.000 picture online and the last
picture added has the ID #2.097.832 because of the rejected images I think
- on Dreamstime - 609.000 pictures and the last added picture has the
ID #1.040.224
- on Fotolia ( - 1.242.000 and the last
ID is #1.229.603 (???) so they accept everything?

I've tried to search some popular strings:


Istockphoto 78842 results
Dreamstime 44094
Fotolia 35304


Istockphoto 123571 results
Dreamstime 76597
Fotolia 72679


Istockphoto 136031 results
Dreamstime 127648
Fotolia 99319


Istockphoto 72074 results
Dreamstime 49627
Fotolia 47841


Istockphoto 95952 results
Dreamstime 61718
Fotolia 50591

Maybe this would explain the lack of celebration by Fotolia for the "one millionth image". Maybe they don't have 1 million accepted images yet, but rather 1 million submitted images.

Any thoughts?

General Stock Discussion / September: Boom or Bust?
« on: September 03, 2006, 07:52 »
Many people have been waiting for September for a variety of reasons. Here are just a few:

- The summer is over and everyone is back to work
- Europe supposedly goes on vacation in August
- Christmas is just over the horizon

So many people have been hoping that September will be great.

But will it live up to expectations or be a big disappointment?

What do you think?

NOTE: Remember to add your vote to the poll on the left-hand side <--

Photoshop Discussion / Don't USM Sharpen?
« on: September 01, 2006, 14:12 »
I have read a lot of threads where posters say that they don't use USM for sharpening.

Why not?  What is so bad about USM?

23 / Average Royalty Per Month Is Dropping
« on: September 01, 2006, 07:50 »
I have noticed that although I am having more and more sales each month at iStockphoto, my average royalty per month has been consistently dropping.

For example, here are my last six months at iStockphoto:

MonthAvg Royalty

Please note, that for someone with a 6 or 8 MP camera, if sales were equal between all of the sizes (Small, Medium, and Large), then the average royalty would come out to 60 cents. For example, if you had (10) .20 cent sales, (10) .60 cent sales, and (10) 1.00 sales, then the average royalty would by 60 cents.

So it seems that the 20 cent sales are becoming more and more popular over time.

Anyone else seeing this?

P.S.: Please don't include extended licenses in your averages, as they obviously throw the figures way out of whack.

I found this on one of the threads today and thought it was hilarious:

General Stock Discussion / Top Producing Site (Take II)
« on: August 27, 2006, 19:07 »
This has been done before, but I figured that it is time to see if things have changed any since the last time.

What is Your Top Producing Microstock Site? (see poll at left)

Please explain if you choose "Other" or if you have any extenuating circumstances. For example, if you are Exclusive at a site, then you should disclose that. Or if you are only on two sites, it would be nice to share...

- Edited to make poll more obvious

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