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Author Topic: Missed minimum payout for the first time in 8 years  (Read 11480 times)

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« on: August 18, 2020, 09:30 »
+7
missed minimum payout for the first time in 8 years (bar first few months), have my minimum set at $100, first time in 8 years no pay out, $93 for july, awesomeness

my best month on ss was $800, oh how the mighty have fallen


« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2020, 10:00 »
+9
So sorry for you. I've pulled all my work from them and went exclusive for video at Pond5 as a way to try and stave off canibalising cheap video sales at SS rather than full priced sales at other agencies.

Does it not bother you that all those sales at SS now needed to make just $90 may be wasted and that you may actually earn far more in the long run by just dropping them completely and working with a few select agencies?

We had a single sale yesterday on P5 where we earned $48. I can't help thinking that if we stuck it out at SS we would still be annoyed at them instead of just moving on and making plans elsewhere.

Your experience of going from $800 to less than $100 would indicate to me that it makes no sense to sell at SS at all. At worst you are probably looking at parity by ditching them completely. All this before your New Year's gift in January.

Shelma1

« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2020, 11:13 »
+20
For me, the sheer anger that any of my sales at Shutterstock just help make Oringer a billionaire keeps me from selling there. Of course, the reason hes successful is that most people would not make a temporary financial sacrifice in June in order to reverse the direction things were going. Instead people stayed, the library size remained 300 million, and the stock price shot up.

If you and everyone else had disabled your ports on 6/15, how different things would be today.

« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2020, 11:56 »
+17

If you and everyone else had disabled your ports on 6/15, how different things would be today.

Because in June when a large number of people suddenly had no day job and no income at all they couldnt afford (nor would it be sensible) to deliberately stop the few hundred/thousand dollars they'd get from SS just to make a point...

You need money to pay rent and buy food, not likes.

SS timing for them was either very lucky or very deliberate and i cant decide which.

Shelma1

« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2020, 12:17 »
+3

If you and everyone else had disabled your ports on 6/15, how different things would be today.

Because in June when a large number of people suddenly had no day job and no income at all they couldnt afford (nor would it be sensible) to deliberately stop the few hundred/thousand dollars they'd get from SS just to make a point...

You need money to pay rent and buy food, not likes.

SS timing for them was either very lucky or very deliberate and i cant decide which.

So its better to get much less over a period of years than to sacrifice two weeks of royalties once? If you disabled your port for the second half of June, at worst youd lose 4% of your Shutterstock income for 2020 (actually less, since you made higher royalties the first half of the year and June is usually a slow month). Instead most people stayed and are reporting 30-50% royalty decreases, which will only get worse in January.

Instead of losing two weeks pay, youre losing 13 weeks pay if you had a 50% royalty decrease for the second half of 2020. And in 2021 it will be much worse, because the vast majority of people wont get back to their old royalty rate, which is still 50% lower than it used to be, for months, if ever.


« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2020, 12:36 »
+18
Reality.  With so many people or their spouses out of work due to pandemic, some people simply cannot afford to close of any avenue of income-- it can mean the difference between being able to eat or not.

You can bet SS knew that and used the timing to their advantage.

That being said, earnings on SS are pathetic.  Sales with low earner agencies now overtaking SS. I just had 1 sale on new to me agency---that sale alreadhy more than made on SS this month.

I am not uploading new work to SS.  As soon as sales with new agencies add some income, wil lbe ditching SS.




« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2020, 12:45 »
+4
Quote
If you and everyone else had disabled your ports on 6/15, how different things would be today.

dry your salty tears, i've stopped submitting,

« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2020, 14:38 »
+5
The harsh truth is, SS and iS might be the worst, most exploitative agencies around but they are also the only agencies that bring in consistent money for contributors like myself. Adobe has been a big zero the last couple of months. On Alamy, you're lucky if you make a sale every couple of months. So if contributors like myself shut off our SS ports, we won't see any money. And we need the money.

So the protests are great but judging by responses from SS, they don't really seem to care. They're okay even if 80 percent of their contributors migrate elsewhere and if their trustpilot score drops to zero because most probably, they're headed to dump the company to some rich buyer and make billions. But people who aren't millionaires like myself need the money and will take whatever we get as long as there's a little bit of money to be made. Those are the times we live in.

The Stock Coalition made a deal with Pond5 and that's great. Great for video contributors. But people who sell images just can't afford to shut off their SS ports and move to Pond5 because pond5 hasn't sold a single image for some of us in years. They care as much for image ports as SS does for contributors.

Shelma1

« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2020, 14:46 »
+7
Reality.  With so many people or their spouses out of work due to pandemic, some people simply cannot afford to close of any avenue of income-- it can mean the difference between being able to eat or not.

You can bet SS knew that and used the timing to their advantage.

That being said, earnings on SS are pathetic.  Sales with low earner agencies now overtaking SS. I just had 1 sale on new to me agency---that sale alreadhy more than made on SS this month.

I am not uploading new work to SS.  As soon as sales with new agencies add some income, wil lbe ditching SS.

Reality sucks for me too. I was a very successful vector artist on Shutterstock. Disabling my port will cost me tens of thousands of dollars this year. Im currently unemployed. My guess is that the vast majority of contributors dont count on Shutterstock royalties to eat, though Im sure a few do.

Im not talking about a permanent disabling of accounts, though thats what Ive chosen to do. Im talking about a large number of people making a temporary sacrifice for two weeks.

The fact is that if most people had disabled their ports on June 15 things would have turned out very differently. Their library would have shrunk tremendously. Buyers would have been completely frustrated. Investors would have been asking what the heck happened. They would have had a massive loss of sales and would not have met or exceeded profit expectations. SSTK would have dropped instead of rising. They would have been forced to roll back the royalty cuts, and everyone might very well have regained their temporary loss when buyers either came back or switched to other sites for the assets they needed.

« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2020, 15:41 »
+4


If you and everyone else had disabled your ports on 6/15, how different things would be today.
 
...
So its better to get much less over a period of years than to sacrifice two weeks of royalties once?...


Instead of losing two weeks pay, youre losing 13 weeks pay if you had a 50% royalty decrease for the second half of 2020. And in 2021 it will be much worse, because the vast majority of people wont get back to their old royalty rate, which is still 50% lower than it used to be, for months, if ever.

sorry, that's not a fair comparison though - whether you boycott or not, you're still getting paid less, so any boycott loss is additional, not instead of, other losses

and you're still working on the assumption that the boycott would attract enough participants to make SS take notice - and as this was only a token gesture, SS knew it wouldnt last

deciding whether to keep a portfolio on SS is a personal/business decision - thinking it would change SS is wishful thinking

« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2020, 16:23 »
+2
So its better to get much less over a period of years than to sacrifice two weeks of royalties once? If you disabled your port for the second half of June, at worst youd lose 4% of your Shutterstock income for 2020 (actually less, since you made higher royalties the first half of the year and June is usually a slow month). Instead most people stayed and are reporting 30-50% royalty decreases, which will only get worse in January.

Instead of losing two weeks pay, youre losing 13 weeks pay if you had a 50% royalty decrease for the second half of 2020. And in 2021 it will be much worse, because the vast majority of people wont get back to their old royalty rate, which is still 50% lower than it used to be, for months, if ever.

It doesnt work like that.  For some people once june hit, suddenly, their June dayjob income became 0.  Nothing. Zilch.
Suddenly SS became their only source of income.  So the choice of getting a few hundred or more dollars a month where you can actually pay the rent, electricity and food vs guaranteed 0 where you can do none of that isnt a hard choice - you'll take some income and survival over zero income.
We're not talking of income averaged annually here, its real world income for this particular month.
There's also the fact that SS had planned all this and there is no way in hell they'll go back on it regardless of people disabling profiles.  There are always uploaders, always new recruits and the bigger, important studios they'd have done private deals with anyway.  All planned, wargamed and accepted before they introduced it. 

« Reply #11 on: August 18, 2020, 16:26 »
+3
The fact is that if most people had disabled their ports on June 15 things would have turned out very differently. Their library would have shrunk tremendously. Buyers would have been completely frustrated. Investors would have been asking what the heck happened. They would have had a massive loss of sales and would not have met or exceeded profit expectations. SSTK would have dropped instead of rising. They would have been forced to roll back the royalty cuts, and everyone might very well have regained their temporary loss when buyers either came back or switched to other sites for the assets they needed.

There is absolutely no evidence to suggest any of that is true.  None.  Its not happened with IS or any other agency who did similar.  SS arent stupid and know this.  There are plenty of uploaders, plenty of new recruits.  Most uploaders arent on this group or aware of any "boycott" - its a tiny self-selecting sample.  Lots of them probably dont even realise theres a paycut judging by FB group and their forum posts from confused individuals.
SS planned this, modelled for things like this and ultimately calculated its going to win short term and bigger long term.
What SS did is nothing new.  The boycott threats are nothing new. Its all happened before and the outcomes are known.

« Reply #12 on: August 18, 2020, 17:25 »
+1
I wonder If they could pull out paying 5 or even 1 cent per download in the future. Actually I even hope they will try. To charge hosting to contributors is also an idea worth considering. There is space for huge discounts plans for those who sell a lot.

Shelma1

« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2020, 17:47 »
+1
So its better to get much less over a period of years than to sacrifice two weeks of royalties once? If you disabled your port for the second half of June, at worst youd lose 4% of your Shutterstock income for 2020 (actually less, since you made higher royalties the first half of the year and June is usually a slow month). Instead most people stayed and are reporting 30-50% royalty decreases, which will only get worse in January.

Instead of losing two weeks pay, youre losing 13 weeks pay if you had a 50% royalty decrease for the second half of 2020. And in 2021 it will be much worse, because the vast majority of people wont get back to their old royalty rate, which is still 50% lower than it used to be, for months, if ever.

It doesnt work like that.  For some people once june hit, suddenly, their June dayjob income became 0.  Nothing. Zilch.
Suddenly SS became their only source of income.  So the choice of getting a few hundred or more dollars a month where you can actually pay the rent, electricity and food vs guaranteed 0 where you can do none of that isnt a hard choice - you'll take some income and survival over zero income.
We're not talking of income averaged annually here, its real world income for this particular month.
There's also the fact that SS had planned all this and there is no way in hell they'll go back on it regardless of people disabling profiles.  There are always uploaders, always new recruits and the bigger, important studios they'd have done private deals with anyway.  All planned, wargamed and accepted before they introduced it.

The op had their payout set to $100. So disabling their port for 2 weeks would have cost them around 50 bucks. We all know the vast majority of SS contributors make very little there.

Yes, there are other uploaders, but even with the relatively small number of people disabling their ports it took weeks for SS to scrounge up some new people to upload a bunch of almost identical vectors or a load of bad snapshots to try to make up the loss. You cant instantaneously replace all those files. It would have taken time, and their 2nd quarter announcement would have happened too quickly.

Yes, this was all planned in advance...but even so, SS failed to forsee all the tweeting that casued them to close social media accounts. Theyre not infallible.

« Reply #14 on: August 25, 2020, 22:21 »
+3
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.)
« Last Edit: August 26, 2020, 07:45 by stockmarketer »

« Reply #15 on: August 26, 2020, 07:04 »
+3
missed minimum payout for the first time in 8 years (bar first few months), have my minimum set at $100, first time in 8 years no pay out, $93 for july, awesomeness

my best month on ss was $800, oh how the mighty have fallen

I never liked the almost cult like worshipping of shutterstock. So many contributors were exclusive with ss even without them having an exclusive program. I'm not saying this is you. I'm just saying we are where we are because of contributors. The one and only solution there is, is for all contributors to spread all their work as far and wide as possible. Competition is the only thing that companies like ss understand. And so many contributors gave them a free ride by not helping their competition or potential competition. There are way too many gaps in the collections of smaller agencies and buyers will buy from agencies with the best collections. Makes no difference how much marketing an agency does if a buyer gets on a site and can't find what they want. We can keep blaming the agencies, but the fact is too many contributors adored the high selling agencies and that is what created this situation.

« Reply #16 on: August 29, 2020, 06:31 »
+8
Well I haven't missed payout since the start in 2005 but lets face it its game over with SS. Really game over! there are some members there who used to earn 8 or 9 grand a month and they are down to well under 1000 bucks and thats within the last 3 years.
Myself is down about 70% and fair enough I havent uploaded anything for the past year and a half but its still absolutely terrible. Not even worth the effort!


« Reply #17 on: August 31, 2020, 00:19 »
+3
Not even worth the effort!

I'd have to correct you there and say it's not even close to worth the effort!

« Reply #18 on: August 31, 2020, 01:35 »
+2
Not even worth the effort!

I'd have to correct you there and say it's not even close to worth the effort!

Youre right! not even close. Never experienced a stock-agency thats gone down the drain so fast. Just by a flip of a switch. OFF!

« Reply #19 on: August 31, 2020, 04:37 »
+1
A long time ago, many users have commented that the SS is something serious that we will soon see reality, they are dead.

It was evident that the problems of the SS were serious, but very serious.






" ....... Tenebroso
Reply #127 on: March 06, 2020, 15:29
QuoteModify#link0
The new collaborators I suppose ...... that in SS ....



I suppose the new collaborators will leave. It is not about tanned skin or lack of professionalism or weak mind. I believe that if someone comes to SS now, they leave before 30 days. Since they now use all the variety of excuses to reject.

There is a comment on the official forum of many fewer images, some millions of images less, will they be cleaning old files? They are no longer interested in being the Agency with the most files? I think that seeing the behavior, there is no doubt that they are doing very badly economically. It seems that we will soon know the extent of the real situation of a huge failure.


I think the situation is more serious than we can imagine......"


https://www.microstockgroup.com/shutterstock-com/ss-continues-to-deteriorate/msg546533/#msg546533

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #20 on: August 31, 2020, 11:45 »
+3
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.)

Some people, like you, are doing better. Some are doing worse, like me. But the people I've heard from, that I trust, like you, and who had high quality collections, and made money, are all doing the same or better. This is during a terrible business downturn.

So the impression and conclusion, shouting and protests, that "everyone" is making less, is not supported. Plus, while I'm not a SS agent, employee or secret paid forum disinformation specialist (as sometimes is claimed if anyone says anything reasonable), and I'm NOT defending the 10c minimum download promise. Just that the facts and flow of angry posts, are not supported by actual data of what's going on.

I'm pretty much getting, in round numbers, 30% of what I used to on SS. I don't have a premium collection or top material for Microstock. I'm getting what I deserve. No I'm not uploading and yes I'm disappointed and find no motivation to add anything new.


H2O

« Reply #21 on: August 31, 2020, 12:53 »
+3
I would say that just about every contributor must be really angry with the way Shutterstock has treated them, myself included having spent years uploading and key wording, I have put a great deal of time and money into their success.

I have stopped uploading and will never upload again, this is probably the position of many contributors, I take my hat off to those who have deleted or disabled their portfolio's, at the moment I can't do this, but as soon as I can I will.

The reality is the talent has walked and it will never go back, so the site will just slide down the rankings.

Part of this will be caused by all the negative comments about what they have done, they have miscalculated in as much as they seem to have forgotten that the people who sell on the site are also buyers and major influencers in Adervetising, Design Agencies and Corporate design and advertising departments.

Shutterstock is finished as a Company only they don't know it yet, nobody likes to be treated like a slave.

« Reply #22 on: August 31, 2020, 13:40 »
+5
My portfolio of 6,800 has been gone since June.  I have made payout in July and will again make payout in August with ZERO assets online.  Another few weeks and that will stop completely.  Well, it should.

« Reply #23 on: September 01, 2020, 04:20 »
+4
  ;D You are absolutely right. In any case you would still hear people on this forum and on the official one whining about how they cannot afford to loose the income that 1c images gives them to buy a new camera strap. A few would gladly pay for hosting too.

I wonder If they could pull out paying 5 or even 1 cent per download in the future. Actually I even hope they will try. To charge hosting to contributors is also an idea worth considering. There is space for huge discounts plans for those who sell a lot.

« Reply #24 on: September 01, 2020, 10:38 »
0
I had the fewest downloads in August than I have had in any month since I started in 2009 - pathetic!  And also missed the $100 payout.  Very depressing.

« Reply #25 on: September 01, 2020, 13:43 »
+4
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.)

Some people, like you, are doing better. Some are doing worse, like me. But the people I've heard from, that I trust, like you, and who had high quality collections, and made money, are all doing the same or better. This is during a terrible business downturn.

So the impression and conclusion, shouting and protests, that "everyone" is making less, is not supported. Plus, while I'm not a SS agent, employee or secret paid forum disinformation specialist (as sometimes is claimed if anyone says anything reasonable), and I'm NOT defending the 10c minimum download promise. Just that the facts and flow of angry posts, are not supported by actual data of what's going on.

I'm pretty much getting, in round numbers, 30% of what I used to on SS. I don't have a premium collection or top material for Microstock. I'm getting what I deserve. No I'm not uploading and yes I'm disappointed and find no motivation to add anything new.


Well fair enough but I have got to know quite a few of very big contributors over my 15 years with SS and with stunning portfolios! and believe me every single one of them is down and I mean down! and this time there is no light at the end of the tunnel. Sorry but this seems to be the new norm.

« Reply #26 on: September 02, 2020, 07:29 »
+6
The global economy hits the ground. Millions of business disappear off the screen. The Microstock market follows the trend. Only few industries benefit, when they have the right product at the right time. Same with the vast majority of the contributors. Those with the right product will survive.
Surprise, surprise?? No.


« Reply #27 on: September 02, 2020, 09:36 »
+3
I read an article that the microstock agencies were selling more with the covid.



I totally agree. SS plays the bum and disappears from the market. Adobe works and survives.

Les

« Reply #28 on: September 04, 2020, 19:30 »
+4
I'm pretty much getting, in round numbers, 30% of what I used to on SS. I don't have a premium collection or top material for Microstock. I'm getting what I deserve. No I'm not uploading and yes I'm disappointed and find no motivation to add anything new.

Absolutely true, I can confirm those numbers. SS killed their golden goose with a lot of decent videos and images, and destroyed any motivation to shoot and upload new assets.
 
 
« Last Edit: September 04, 2020, 20:12 by Les »

« Reply #29 on: October 15, 2020, 03:38 »
0
The new royalty system is still much lower at level 4. I moved to level 4 fairly quick which gives 30% royalty, I think previously I was on 33% and used to get lots of 0.33 cents per sale but now at level 4 at 30% it is still like being at level 1 with lots of 0.10 cent sales, to be honest Ive had everything from 0.10, 0.11, 0.12 etc onwards

« Reply #30 on: October 17, 2020, 06:28 »
+1
By nature of my job i know quite a lot of SS contributors.  Most are in the high hundred to low thousands of dollars a month bracket.
I dont know a single one who isnt doing at least 50%.  And they'd all in in the level 3 video or level 5 images bracket.

Video took a double hit with the pay cut and the introduction of ultra cheap packages so sub dollar commissions.  It'll be a triple hit in January when going back to level 1 because of the relatively low volume of sales in video vs the tiers.

Image wise im level 5 and for example subs have gone from 0.38c to an average RPB of 0.21c.  And for many people subs make up a large proportion of sales.

« Reply #31 on: October 28, 2020, 04:55 »
+1
I have made an updated statistics after 3 month of commission drop in September (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfIZ45QUnXg). The average commission per image dropped significantly. In my case, it is around 30 % less per image sale. And that is a lot. Nevertheless, after three months of very low sales in year-to-year comparison (June-August) and also in comparison with the beginning of 2020, September and October sales are somewhat better and it is comparable with previous system (the average value per download is still much smaller but number of sales is higher). So it seems that the regularity of payouts will probably not change much. I have disabled my video portfolio completely though. Curious what will happen in January and what will I do with my portfolio, that can be disastrous.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #32 on: October 28, 2020, 12:05 »
0
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but levels and January will hardly make a change in the cheap downloads or earnings. We're just looking at charts with smoke and mirrors. Most large package subscription downloads, at any level, barely change with the percentages.

I'm level 4 and I still get loads of 10 credits. Sure I also get more 19-16-14 which is something I should worry about making 4 cents less for a coupe months? or celebrate now for making 4 cents more?  :o



Salmon is $.10 commission
Yellow is under $.25 commission

50 images and less, we are all making more than before. (except, possibly, some of the level one 50 packs, and level 2 advance billing 50 pack)

Looking at the actual cost of the subs, for buyers, we are getting higher than the level percentages with the 10c minimum. In the past, some of these subscriptions, we were getting paid more than the buyer paid. So judging from what most of my downloads are now, most of my downloads in the recent past, were costing SS money, to my credit.


Les

« Reply #33 on: November 02, 2020, 03:05 »
+2
Looking at the actual cost of the subs, for buyers, we are getting higher than the level percentages with the 10c minimum. In the past, some of these subscriptions, we were getting paid more than the buyer paid. So judging from what most of my downloads are now, most of my downloads in the recent past, were costing SS money, to my credit.

In other words, SS is offering our images way below a reasonable cost. If a buyer wants an image, he would gladly pay a dollar or two for it. It would be still a bargain.

« Reply #34 on: November 02, 2020, 03:13 »
+8
missed minimum payout for the first time in 8 years (bar first few months), have my minimum set at $100, first time in 8 years no pay out, $93 for july, awesomeness

my best month on ss was $800, oh how the mighty have fallen

If possible there are 2 things that you should stay away in 2020: Covid and shutterstock.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #35 on: November 04, 2020, 16:57 »
+1
Looking at the actual cost of the subs, for buyers, we are getting higher than the level percentages with the 10c minimum. In the past, some of these subscriptions, we were getting paid more than the buyer paid. So judging from what most of my downloads are now, most of my downloads in the recent past, were costing SS money, to my credit.

In other words, SS is offering our images way below a reasonable cost. If a buyer wants an image, he would gladly pay a dollar or two for it. It would be still a bargain.

I'd agree. In fact I think the prices have been too low from the start. Now I've lost 30% of my more recent income. Also people were willing to work and create images, for 25c a download, flat rate, no levels, just 25c a download. Doesn't that seem wrong as well?

But what I pointed out that seems to be ignored, no business can survive by losing money on a majority of the big subscription package sales. They can raise the prices and lose the income from many customers, or run in the red, and lose money.

"Reasonable Prices" is a reflection of the competition and the market. For the basic economics of a business, they also need to consider, supply and demand and the cost of the products that are sold.

« Reply #36 on: November 05, 2020, 09:01 »
0
When sales go down, dont fix the blame on Shutterstock only. Maybe the portfolio is out of date by now, which may happen any time.


« Reply #37 on: November 05, 2020, 12:02 »
+2
When sales go down, dont fix the blame on Shutterstock only. Maybe the portfolio is out of date by now, which may happen any time.

artwork is not a supermarket product but your opinion seems to sound like one. 
what you think is "old" in SS will be NEW in other avenues.

« Reply #38 on: November 05, 2020, 12:43 »
0
When sales go down, dont fix the blame on Shutterstock only. Maybe the portfolio is out of date by now, which may happen any time.

artwork is not a supermarket product but your opinion seems to sound like one. 
what you think is "old" in SS will be NEW in other avenues.
S

Les

« Reply #39 on: November 06, 2020, 20:49 »
+3
Looking at the actual cost of the subs, for buyers, we are getting higher than the level percentages with the 10c minimum. In the past, some of these subscriptions, we were getting paid more than the buyer paid. So judging from what most of my downloads are now, most of my downloads in the recent past, were costing SS money, to my credit.

In other words, SS is offering our images way below a reasonable cost. If a buyer wants an image, he would gladly pay a dollar or two for it. It would be still a bargain.

I'd agree. In fact I think the prices have been too low from the start. Now I've lost 30% of my more recent income. Also people were willing to work and create images, for 25c a download, flat rate, no levels, just 25c a download. Doesn't that seem wrong as well?

But what I pointed out that seems to be ignored, no business can survive by losing money on a majority of the big subscription package sales. They can raise the prices and lose the income from many customers, or run in the red, and lose money.

"Reasonable Prices" is a reflection of the competition and the market. For the basic economics of a business, they also need to consider, supply and demand and the cost of the products that are sold.

A long time ago I was told by a seasoned businessman that the worst mistake you can make when starting a business, is to price your products too low. Well, SS is not starting a new business, but they are trying their best to ruin their existing agency. They have definitely ruined livelihood of many of their contributors.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #40 on: November 07, 2020, 21:56 »
0
Looking at the actual cost of the subs, for buyers, we are getting higher than the level percentages with the 10c minimum. In the past, some of these subscriptions, we were getting paid more than the buyer paid. So judging from what most of my downloads are now, most of my downloads in the recent past, were costing SS money, to my credit.

In other words, SS is offering our images way below a reasonable cost. If a buyer wants an image, he would gladly pay a dollar or two for it. It would be still a bargain.

I'd agree. In fact I think the prices have been too low from the start. Now I've lost 30% of my more recent income. Also people were willing to work and create images, for 25c a download, flat rate, no levels, just 25c a download. Doesn't that seem wrong as well?

But what I pointed out that seems to be ignored, no business can survive by losing money on a majority of the big subscription package sales. They can raise the prices and lose the income from many customers, or run in the red, and lose money.

"Reasonable Prices" is a reflection of the competition and the market. For the basic economics of a business, they also need to consider, supply and demand and the cost of the products that are sold.

A long time ago I was told by a seasoned businessman that the worst mistake you can make when starting a business, is to price your products too low. Well, SS is not starting a new business, but they are trying their best to ruin their existing agency. They have definitely ruined livelihood of many of their contributors.

I hate to break this to you as news, but agencies don't care about our livelihood. They care about their profit.

And to agree, the worst way to sell anything is "our price is lower" because that has nothing to do with quality. Anyone in sales and marketing will tell you that. The cheapest, low cost products are not the best products or best value.

I'll try this again? "Reasonable Prices" is a reflection of the competition and the market.

Competition in Microstock has been based for years on the cheap and weak, selling by charging less, and supported by artists who upload to those sites. Now the disease has spread to SS and now the same people care about pricing? Why did they upload to the cheap price cutting agencies, that had low sales and low prices and low income for us? SS didn't lead in price cutting, they followed.

« Reply #41 on: November 07, 2020, 23:38 »
+2
Seems this is how they've solved their problems

Need more customers, offer lower prices for video, one month free, and rock bottom subscription

Need more profits - lets cut the contributors share, offer 10c even at the so called 40% tier, reset them every year and let them claw their way back in the name of fairness to new folks

More profits - remove reviewers, use half baked AI

Guess its gone into the zone where the idea ia just to grow share value short term

« Reply #42 on: November 08, 2020, 08:23 »
+1
Another issue that doesn't seem to be touched on is the standard customer "base".

Reading Trustpilot and the end user Facebook/stock groups a *lot* of these people subscribe to the 1 month trial with no intention of ever paying for it after that.  They take what they need and that's it.
Dangling a carrot to lure people in is one thing but its counterproductive if everyone takes the carrot and never comes in.
Long term wise for a business, thats not good.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #43 on: November 08, 2020, 11:22 »
+1
Another issue that doesn't seem to be touched on is the standard customer "base".

Reading Trustpilot and the end user Facebook/stock groups a *lot* of these people subscribe to the 1 month trial with no intention of ever paying for it after that.  They take what they need and that's it.
Dangling a carrot to lure people in is one thing but its counterproductive if everyone takes the carrot and never comes in.
Long term wise for a business, thats not good.

A feeling of Dj vu I just read this exact message, minutes ago, in a different thread about Adobe?  :o

« Reply #44 on: November 08, 2020, 19:02 »
+1
.....
A long time ago I was told by a seasoned businessman that the worst mistake you can make when starting a business, is to price your products too low. Well, SS is not starting a new business, but they are trying their best to ruin their existing agency. They have definitely ruined livelihood of many of their contributors.

that's only true if you're selling widgets or services, but not for commodities - pork bellies or stock images -- for the latter, when supply meets of exceeds demand, lower prices will win 

Les

« Reply #45 on: November 08, 2020, 19:23 »
+1
.....
A long time ago I was told by a seasoned businessman that the worst mistake you can make when starting a business, is to price your products too low. Well, SS is not starting a new business, but they are trying their best to ruin their existing agency. They have definitely ruined livelihood of many of their contributors.

that's only true if you're selling widgets or services, but not for commodities - pork bellies or stock images -- for the latter, when supply meets of exceeds demand, lower prices will win

The commodities argument is true only for genuinely common images - like tomatoes, ducks or girls on the phone. Unfortunately in the current scheme of SS catalog structure, many unique and exceptional images are treated and priced in the same way as the former group.

« Reply #46 on: November 09, 2020, 20:31 »
+1
.....
A long time ago I was told by a seasoned businessman that the worst mistake you can make when starting a business, is to price your products too low. Well, SS is not starting a new business, but they are trying their best to ruin their existing agency. They have definitely ruined livelihood of many of their contributors.

that's only true if you're selling widgets or services, but not for commodities - pork bellies or stock images -- for the latter, when supply meets of exceeds demand, lower prices will win

The commodities argument is true only for genuinely common images - like tomatoes, ducks or girls on the phone. Unfortunately in the current scheme of SS catalog structure, many unique and exceptional images are treated and priced in the same way as the former group.

that's an artist's POV  - for buyers & the agencies, images are a commodity not fine art


50%

« Reply #47 on: November 10, 2020, 05:29 »
0
So sorry for you. I've pulled all my work from them and went exclusive for video at Pond5 as a way to try and stave off canibalising cheap video sales at SS rather than full priced sales at other agencies.
very wise decision!

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #48 on: November 10, 2020, 08:32 »
+1
.....
A long time ago I was told by a seasoned businessman that the worst mistake you can make when starting a business, is to price your products too low. Well, SS is not starting a new business, but they are trying their best to ruin their existing agency. They have definitely ruined livelihood of many of their contributors.

that's only true if you're selling widgets or services, but not for commodities - pork bellies or stock images -- for the latter, when supply meets of exceeds demand, lower prices will win

The commodities argument is true only for genuinely common images - like tomatoes, ducks or girls on the phone. Unfortunately in the current scheme of SS catalog structure, many unique and exceptional images are treated and priced in the same way as the former group.

that's an artist's POV  - for buyers & the agencies, images are a commodity not fine art

While you are both right, the actual collection is mostly the commodity type, Microstock, and the "unique and exceptional images" is the minority. Anyone with U&EI should leave SS or at the least, never upload those images to any Microstock site.

There's the difference. If you have fine art in a fine art gallery, for sale at appropriate prices, that's a match. If someone uploads "unique and exceptional images" to Microstock, they shouldn't expect more than what Microstock offers as payment.

If they (SS) want to give me $.10 then I'll upload the matching quality and content images. Same for IS and their Connect sales of $0.00643 and 0.00059 I mean how low can we go? $.05 on iStock for a commission? A crummy 5 cents?

Microstock has become a commodity business, a volume, over creative or artistic, kind of way to market.  Artists shouldn't expect anything more than that kind of returns. If your images deserve more money or more respect, put them where you can expect to receive the same.

ps sales on Adobe are going up in volume and value for me lately, and there's no reset in January.

« Reply #49 on: November 22, 2020, 05:06 »
0
It will take time though, for now SS continues to be in the top 3 per month with pond5 and Adobe contributing more to monthly income and SS dropping fast.

The scary part will be the coming few months where monthly income will go down

« Reply #50 on: November 22, 2020, 06:09 »
+1
In my case I endured the pain already. Dropped them as soon as they announced their new rules. At this point I am growing at a steady pace with my other agencies even with this pandemic situation. At one point or another people that take this career seriously will have to make the jump if they want to keep growing. Buyers are not that stupid that agencies are making us believe, they do look elsewhere and with your content on Shutterstock you will surely never really take off in the ones that pay you better royalties. Yes, buyers are price conscious but at this already rock bottom prices they follow where the content is. Many great contributors are abandoning Shutter and placing their content elsewhere, this are the ones you should be watching closely. Shutter raised because they understood this and now they will fall because of the greed of their management that wants to quickly sell their stock and invest somewhere else........

It will take time though, for now SS continues to be in the top 3 per month with pond5 and Adobe contributing more to monthly income and SS dropping fast.

The scary part will be the coming few months where monthly income will go down

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #51 on: November 22, 2020, 12:10 »
+2
It will take time though, for now SS continues to be in the top 3 per month with pond5 and Adobe contributing more to monthly income and SS dropping fast.

The scary part will be the coming few months where monthly income will go down

Remember when iStock was everyone's favorite and the darling of Microstock? Look at them now. Adobe is the future for most of us. Well managed, fairest pay, good buyer base and the free annual software deal is a fairly nice fringe benefit.

SS isn't dropping fast for me, but we all have different images and directions. Please don't remind me of this post in January when SS will obviously be dropping fast for me too.  :(

« Reply #52 on: November 24, 2020, 03:10 »
+1
Have stopped uploading to SS, but its not evident that Pond5 or Arobe have been doing really well with this new stuff content that only gone to them

But it's definitely a relief to not have videos selling at under a dollar at shutterstock. The one two sales at Adobe make it well worth losing 20-30 vid sales at SS

« Reply #53 on: November 25, 2020, 17:23 »
0
Have stopped uploading to SS, but its not evident that Pond5 or Arobe have been doing really well with this new stuff content that only gone to them...

there's not much change because the 'new stuff' is just a tiny portion of their normal intake

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #54 on: December 28, 2020, 07:29 »
+6
Only four more days before New Year reset event.



« Last Edit: December 28, 2020, 08:55 by Uncle Pete »

wds

« Reply #55 on: December 28, 2020, 16:37 »
+1
To this day, I don't understand why the agencies don't take the approach of inching up prices on strong selling images (and of course to proportionally pass the increased earnings on to the photographer). Surely they have enough data and modeling to make this work both for them and the contributor. I just don't get the only solution being to continue to lower prices....and cut commisions

« Reply #56 on: December 28, 2020, 16:51 »
0
In my country Venezuela, we have a saying, it says "Sarna con gusto no pica, y si pica no mortifica!"


Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #57 on: December 29, 2020, 11:35 »
+1
To this day, I don't understand why the agencies don't take the approach of inching up prices on strong selling images (and of course to proportionally pass the increased earnings on to the photographer). Surely they have enough data and modeling to make this work both for them and the contributor. I just don't get the only solution being to continue to lower prices....and cut commisions

Good idea. DT and Alamy at least have a benefit for Exclusive by image.



Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #58 on: December 30, 2020, 11:46 »
+2





« Reply #59 on: January 01, 2021, 12:31 »
0




@Uncle Pete Why didn't you continue the count down?

« Reply #60 on: January 01, 2021, 13:05 »
+4
Missed payout last month. Deactivated my account today. F*ck them.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #61 on: January 02, 2021, 08:44 »
+2
@Uncle Pete Why didn't you continue the count down?

Busy doing backups. Annual event, get organized, back up photos, videos, whatever, sort by dates, events, subjects. Go out at 5 and celebrate, be home by 7PM to avoid the young amateurs. Pop the champagne and have a cozy evening at home.




« Reply #62 on: January 19, 2021, 11:09 »
+4
Interestingly in addition to lower earnings, the number of sales is dropping for me at Shutterstock while it's going up at Adobe, Dreamstime and Alamy. Even Featurepics is rising from the dead with 3 x 3 dollars in December. A few years ago I would have called that a joke. Nowadays that's the equivalent of 90 typical sales at SS.

In June last year I said to myself that I'll remove my portfolio at SS when they sink below 30% of my earnings, thinking that it would take a couple of years. They're almost there already.

« Reply #63 on: January 19, 2021, 11:47 »
0
I don't understand why the agencies don't take the approach of inching up prices on strong selling images (and of course to proportionally pass the increased earnings on to the photographer).

DT used to do exactly that with images given ranks based on numbers of sales - the higher the rank the higher the price.  It was always nice when you got those level-five credit sales.  Unfortunately, it didn't seem to be sustainable, at least for agency profits.  Not sure if they even track the levels any more.

DT also had a very strict similars policy with the idea to keep the database clean for a better buyer experience.  Another idea that sounded good in theory but died in the face of reality.


 

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