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Messages - stockmarketer

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General Stock Discussion / Storyblocks - what's going on?
« on: June 08, 2023, 13:44 »
Anyone else see weird numbers this month in your daily estimate?

It's early in the day and I'm already at around 4x to 5x my normal downloads and earnings for a weekday.

Anyone else seeing a really high volume today?

Does it seem like there was a search algorithm change? I was having a pretty great year on Storyblocks until last Wed or Thurs, when my earnings suddenly had a massive drop. Sometimes these hiccups happen at Storyblocks, then get corrected the next day, but this one has been going 5 days or so. Anyone else see something like this last week?

I saw a huge drop of well over 50%. Maybe a search change? But when I do searches today, my files still seem to show up in about the same positions. Not making sense to me.

Anyone still contributing to Storyblocks?

For those who are, did you see a big change in your estimated August earnings around Aug 16?

General Stock Discussion / Re: All down
« on: February 25, 2021, 06:50 »
Having a very strong week on AS this week and pretty good on SS.

I have no explanation for why every day this week AS earnings are at least double what they've been the last several weeks. I thought maybe I was one of their featured top sellers this week, but I checked and that's not the case. Maybe they're doing a strong advertising push?

Anyone else seeing very strong sales on AS this week?

7 / Re: SS sales January
« on: January 29, 2021, 13:11 »
For me, it looks like downloads will be flat, and revenue will be down 20%.  :(

Doing pretty well there and rising every month.  Like most here, I was pretty skeptical at the announcement of their new model, but decided to give them a few months to prove themselves. Still not crazy about the lack of transparency, but my earnings numbers speak for themselves.

Is it for everyone?  No, but what agencies are these days?

Is anyone else seeing an effect so far from this?

I don't want to jump to conclusions, but I had great sales on Tues and Wed, and today -- apparently the first full day of this being in effect -- my sales are in the toilet.  I'll probably end up 70% down from the last few days. Possibly lower than a Saturday.

Anyone else seeing this effect already?

10 / Re: Bigstock Bullsh*t Earnings
« on: September 24, 2020, 04:32 »
I've seen a falloff but not quite as severe as yours. I'm doing about $8 / day on BigStock, down about 30% vs 2019.

This is with a port of 10,000+ images.

For context, I have thousands of videos on both ss and as. Traditionally earn several hundred a month in videos at each site.

SS sales are up and AS are down. For the past several months.  Not what everyone here wants to see, but it's reality.

From the "your mileage may vary" file:

Somehow despite the SS changes (because of?) I have been making more -- compared to 2018 and 2019 -- each month since May. Yes I'm getting a lot of .10 subs but I'm also seeing many more than 1.00 each. Have they also messed with search around the time of the royalty shift?

I had taken a wait and see approach and so far I'm glad I did. Of course, come January if I see a huge drop like we are all expecting i may still stop uploading or even yank the port.

(FWIW I've been at this 10+ years, have a five figure port and a four figure monthly income at SS.)

I haven't seen any $.30 video downloads yet, but a ton of $1.00 earnings yesterday and today.  The higher priced commissions were coming in pretty regularly up until a few days ago, and it's like they turned off that faucet and turned on the $1.00 and less faucet.

I had been reserving judgment on the 'new normal' at Shutterstock, thinking my video earnings might be holding up fine in the new scheme. I was trying to give them the benefit of the doubt. No longer. Unless things turn around, you can count me in the camp removing their SS ports. I know I'm one of their top earners -- they've called me multiple times in the past to bounce ideas around, and in doing so said they were contacting their top 100 or so contributors by revenue.  I'm no Africastudio, but I think they'll take notice if I leave.

I was getting quite a few clip and cart sales in the $20-$30 range throughout June.

Then a few days ago they stopped, and now I'm seeing nothing but $1.00 Clip Pack sales.

Anyone else seeing these?

15 / Re: Shutterstock just became iStock 2.0
« on: June 12, 2020, 09:45 »
I was bracing for the worst when I saw the announcement, but so far, my June is looking better than June 2019. Yes, the .10 subs are awful, but I'm also seeing a high number of subs well over the usual .38 -- many over 1.00.  Video sales got off to a slow start, but now they're coming in at a nice pace.  And the dreaded 1.50 Clip Pack commissions are nowhere to be seen.  I'm seeing quite a few Clip Pack sales over 20.00 which rarely happened prior to the change.  So a mixed bag overall, but all in all it appears to be a net positive for my port. Everyone's mileage will vary, of course.

Still not looking forward to Jan 2021. The reset is an insult and needs to be changed.

Will be officially 1/3 through the month in a few hours, which makes for a good comparison of the old and new structure.

I'm Level 5, with a large port.

For me, RPD is looking about the same.

Earnings and downloads are tracking about 10% higher than June 2019.

So definitely not the disaster I was fearing, at least so far.  Of course, ask me again in Jan 2021 when I revert to level 1.  That is going to be terrible, I'm sure.

As the author of the original post, I might as well weigh in with my current perspective.

First, the tiny sliver of good news, at least for me. My 2020 'feels' pretty similar to 2019 so far. Even in these early days of the virus ravaging the planet (and yes -- these are still the early days -- it's going to get a lot worse before it gets better), my sales 'seem' pretty flat to last year. I say 'feel' and 'seem' because a few years ago I stopped doing detailed, daily tracking that I had been doing my first 8 years in micro. It had become too depressing tracking the downward spiral. So now I'll occasionally check SS or AS to see how much I made in the same month a year ago and based on these infrequent checks, I'm holding the line.

Now for the bad...

I decided a year or two ago that continuing to upload at a breakneck pace was pointless. New uploads just don't sell. For me anyway, they take a while to get noticed and then start selling. And this lack of instant gratification has been seriously demotivating. So now, I'm uploading a small fraction of my old daily output, for two reasons: I still get a bit of creative fulfillment, and I fear that if I completely stop, my sales will drastically drop. (Still have to 'feed the beast' just to keep it alive.)

My overall micro revenue is down about 1/3 from its peak in 2014.  At that time, it accounted for half my total income. I was comfortably supporting a family of six on my two incomes, and thankfully I had saved a lot for my kids' future college tuitions. Now the kids range from midway through college to about to start, and that financial burden is no longer a concern. So in a large way, my objective for microstock has been met, and my expectations for it to be a big money maker for me are no longer there.

Plus, my 9 to 5 career has done well as micro has been sinking -- earning a fair amount more in my "real job" than I did in 2014. So I don't lose sleep over micro's future. With the risks much lower for me, I'm even considering what I'll do when the inevitable happens and the big agencies start cutting our royalty rates. I'm toying with setting up a site that could eventually give away all my work for free, supported by Google and affiliate ads. Prior to doing micro, I ran a few sites like this and made a decent side income from it, and I may just return to those roots if and when the big players slash my micro income to the point of being a footnote on my tax returns.

So, thanks microstock, it has been a nice ride, and I'll continue to enjoy the view as the train slows for its eventual stop. But when that day comes, I'll move on, thankful for the experience but ready for the next chapter.

18 / Re: May sales drop dramatically?
« on: May 13, 2020, 02:59 »
For me... April, and May so far, tracking nearly identical to 2019.  So I guess everyone's mileage may vary.

(Been doing micro since 2008. Large port of both stills and video.)

It's a nightmare, if you don't file it right.  You have to make a line item on Schedule C for "duplicate reported income" or something along those lines.  I have to re-check my previous year's tax return every year that I file, because I forget.  One year I was soft-audited and it said I had owed 5 figures in back taxes.  HA!  If only.  It happened to me 2 years in a row, until I figured out how to correct it.

Hey there, thanks for that tip.  Still wondering how to handle it this year. If you find the specifics again, could you please share?

How about a update 5 years later....

Sure, only fair that I start, since I began this thread five years ago.

I just read my words from all those many moons back.  Boy, was I teed off.  I've since come to accept the fall.  The rise was too good to last, and too many copycats jumped in thinking they could steal our ideas and strike it rich.  They may not be swimming in cash like Scrooge McDuck (if there's a goddess in heaven they're not!) But they sure did screw up the search results and push down the work of the old timers (first time I've ever called myself that... yikes!)  Anyhoo, I've taken some deep breaths and decided to keep feeding the beast on my own terms.  I cut way back on my uploads and the work is far more enjoyable than it was at the peak.  All in all, that's a trade off I can live with.  The free fall in my earnings has leveled off, and I'm calmer now.  Life is too short to worry about dollars over all else. 

As long as I keep enjoying it, I'll stay on the ship, and if it sinks... well, I'll just doggy paddle over to the nearest island and reflect on what a nice cruise I had while it lasted.

General Stock Discussion / Re: old contributor back again
« on: February 23, 2020, 22:45 »
What you need these days is what you needed in the old days: ability to spot topics that are not adequately covered (more demand than supply) and supply it!  Yes, it's getting harder as competition increases, but as far as I can tell, 95% of contributors are copycats (probably more now than ever).  The copycats will eventually catch on to your new subjects and duplicate your work shamelessly, but by the time they're fighting over the scraps you've left behind, you'll be on to your next new subjects.  Always be staking new ground and staying a step or two ahead of the unoriginal thieves, and you're one of the smart ones and will continue to thrive.

Been at it for around 12 years.  Earning grew exponentially for 5 or 6 years, held steady for a few, and have been sliding ever since.  I have cut my uploads by around 75%.  It looks like I may have leveled out and my earnings may now be holding steady.  Down around 30% from my peak, but well worth spending around 30-60 minutes a day for a near 6-figure passive income.  Still helping put my kids through college and I'm hoping it will help me retire about 5 years earlier than I might without it.

General Stock Discussion / Re: Shutterstock vs Adobe Stock
« on: February 12, 2020, 00:00 »
For me:
- Nearly equal income on SS and AS
- Both earning about the same as 2019 so far
- Port is about 99% the same on both (due to a very infrequent 'similar' rejection on SS.)

123RF / Re: Is it the end of 123rf
« on: February 09, 2020, 07:38 »
I still like them because I earn over $50 a month. Things are getting so bad at SS and AS that it helps my income to have a bit extra. DT is really going downhill for me though.

Agreed.  Dreamstime is the real tragic story in microstock.  I remember regularly getting 50-60 downloads a day at my peak there.  Now it's more like 5-6.  But at least the RPD is good.  My few daily downloads are often in the $2-$10 range.

123RF / Re: Is it the end of 123rf
« on: February 08, 2020, 13:37 »
Haven't been checking in on 123 lately, figuring it's on the ropes and not worth worrying about.  But I just looked in on my feb earnings and I'm doing $20-$30 a day which is about the same as 2019, so maybe it's leveling out?

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