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Author Topic: Shutterstock Reviewers Beating Me Up.... Anyone Else?  (Read 220296 times)

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« on: May 16, 2014, 16:58 »
Man, the last two weeks have been rough at SS for me. Everything I have tried to get in my portfolio has been kicked back at me and for stuff I feel like has not changed. Recently I am hearing that my images are out of focus and I know they are not. I check them close at 100% but still they are kicking my butt on this.

Anyone else seeing this? SS is the only place I have sold much lately so it is discouraging, to say the least.


« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2014, 18:11 »
Yep, got slammed today (67% failed) for noise. Let's see I took them on a tripod using ISO 100 with my Canon 1D. Yep, that will for sure produce a ton of noise! When I get rejected I just say, "Whatever" and move on...
« Last Edit: May 16, 2014, 19:01 by Goofy »

« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2014, 18:37 »
After a round of what I considered unreasonable reviews a few weeks back (discussed in the downsizing thread) I decided to take a break from uploading there for a while. I'll resume when my tolerance for the rollercoaster is higher. One could get whiplash from the lurch from 100% acceptance a lot of the time to 100% rejection now and then.

« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2014, 19:45 »
Well, it is at least comforting to know it isn't just me. I was starting to think I forgot how to use my camera while I was sleeping or something.

Thanks for the replies......

« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2014, 19:56 »
its really a crapshoot these days

« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2014, 01:47 »
same :/ i created a ticket.

noise - there was none
focus - with one object on the picture in focus

etc. looks like the work has been outsourced to totally different people.... :(?

« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2014, 02:30 »
Last batch got rejected for: At this time, we are not accepting images that contain large amounts of foreign text.

Not sure how to translate buildings outside English speaking countries to English and also how does a customer ever find it if not using the original name. Like Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore has to be basilica of Saint Mary Major? Yeah kudos to the customer who comes up with that while searching for it.

I'm also taking a break from uploading to SS, not worth the effort if everything gets rejected for some bs reason.


« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2014, 02:31 »
just got a review with my images only in there for 5 hours- 100% passed thus time to submit your images... 8)


« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2014, 02:57 »
I never had a reviewer beat me up.... yet  8)

(I did get my fair share of rejections)

« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2014, 03:06 »
Same here today 100% rejected, focus issue.. and they are not!

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2014, 05:46 »
It does seem like if you use any selective focus or shallow DOF, they are kicking those back as "focus not appropriate" or out of focus. I do like a shallower DOF but just as a test I sent some in that were shot at f/11 with everything in the image in focus and they booted those too. Yup, for focus. Lol.

« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2014, 05:47 »
Same here today 100% rejected, focus issue.. and they are not!

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

frustrating isn't it? I just got new glasses so they can't tell me I can't see. Lol

« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2014, 06:31 »
It's not just a SS thing. Pretty much all the microstocks seem totally averse to picture elements that make an image interesting. The "golden hour" that photographers love around sunset/sunrise will result in a lower color temp than the reviewers can tolerate. Wrong white balance. Cross lighting or back lighting to show modeling or drama. No. Exposure issues. Full frontal lighting, flattening the subject and reducing tonal values. Oh yes! Scans of 70-year-old negs that would be of great interest to some buyers are out because of (horrors!) film grain or artifacts. And inconsistencies in editorial policies? Don't get me started.

So SS has their product: 35 million bright vacuous happy isolations on white.

Thanks. I feel better.

Beppe Grillo

« Reply #13 on: May 17, 2014, 06:49 »
From the beginning of the month I have uploaded about 250 photos.
I have got three rejected.
Two of these have been accepted then, after that I corrected some little issues.

Some time ago I had many inconsistent rejections for images of the same quality standard.
As I have already written, I think that sometime the inspection is a kind of lottery (except that you never win millions).

Beppe Grillo

« Reply #14 on: May 17, 2014, 06:53 »

So SS has their product: 35 million bright vacuous happy isolations on white.

No, this is Fotolia.

With the difference that they have only 28 million of isolations on white.

Sorry 26

hmm sorry again 24

Ooop 20 now


« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2014, 07:49 »
I'm new to SS, so I'm not yet familiar with the reviews.  However, I just had a batch refused yesterday all for noise.   :-\

« Reply #16 on: May 17, 2014, 10:09 »
I've posted in the past about my belief that SS has partially automated their reviewing and that these crazy rejections are the result of software algorithms that are supposed to evaluate focus and noise but aren't really all that sophisticated.   Is anyone ready to believe me yet?

« Reply #17 on: May 17, 2014, 10:16 »
I had a batch 90% rejected last week after an almost perfect acceptance record.  What was odd was that they were from a shoot where I've had everything accepted both before and since, and the editing was the same in both accepted and rejected images.  The subjects were both Indian, and the only difference I can see was that they were both wearing dark clothing.  I guess the combination of dark subjects isolated on white gave one reviewer heartburn.

I contacted Support, who said they thought my subjects were evenly lit.  (Yes, I guess even lighting is a problem.)  But they said I should resubmit, which I've done.  Waiting for the verdict.

Update 5/19: All of my resubmitted images were approved this time around, as were all the others I'd submitted while waiting.  Well, not all: some really harshly lit images were rejected, but even a few of those made it through.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2014, 11:43 by disorderly »

« Reply #18 on: May 17, 2014, 10:31 »
Lately all I've uploaded to SS have been abstract backgrounds & textures - digitally created from my photos - and they've all passed and some even sold on day 1 so they're in the mix.

The last time I had any rejections it was for unusual stuff like keywording and logos on buildings in a city skyline so I feel your pain...

I've been concentrating more on no-micro stuff but had planned to upload a bunch of photos from Rome and Venice taken with my D70 since they are 6MP and not something I'd be likely to sell much on the macros these days, but now I worry they'll be rejected if the names that anyone - English-speaking or Italian ... or from anywhere else .... would use to find certain landmarks will cause the image to be rejected. I have a few of the photos that I couldn't initially upsize to 50MB for Alamy in the old days on SS and other micros and they sell so it seemed like a good idea.

« Reply #19 on: May 17, 2014, 10:31 »
Yeah, me too! 87 of 87 rejected for poor lighting. I have over 2500 accepted images on SS with an approval rating of at least 70%. I usually resubmit the exact same images with a note to the reviewer that says they were previously rejected but I've fixed the images. Works half the time...


« Reply #20 on: May 17, 2014, 13:05 »
Now, one thing that has crossed my mind is that I feel it is often a 'soft' let down on the rejections but the main reason I am rejected is that the category is over saturated.  Rejections are very subjective to say the least thus if the reviewers are told to be very hard on say 'Flowers' that they will find any reason to reject a technically perfect flower shot by me.     

Just my deep thoughts...

« Reply #21 on: May 17, 2014, 14:42 »
I am not sure about the automation thing but maybe. All I know is that I can not seem to get a shot in there lately. Sad too. Some of what has been rejected has sold on other agencies so I feel like it might have done well on SS.

I guess I will take a break this week. Maybe I will go ready my camera's operation manual and see what all those buttons and stuff are for. Maybe I turn the wrong dil or hit the wrong button.......  ;D

« Reply #22 on: May 17, 2014, 14:53 »
Yes! same here and has been like that for some time.
It's hard to understand, but at least if an image is going to be rejected we deserve a proper reason, not ones that are so blatantly wrong!

« Reply #23 on: May 17, 2014, 15:51 »
SS are now just a bit more picky than the others and can afford to be - I've had a few over the last year vs none elsewhere and can see why (whether or not I agree)

« Reply #24 on: May 17, 2014, 16:01 »
SS are now just a bit more picky than the others and can afford to be

That's a part of it, but not all of it.

They've certainly upped their standards, but there are enough totally idiotic rejections - such as wrong white balance for pre-sunrise/sunrise/sunset images - that aren't borne out by sales if you talk them into accepting the image.

One just broke my top 50 list and they rejected that (Jan 2013) for incorrect white balance until I resubmitted with a note that the light is that color at that time of day.

I believed the automation theory in the first place - not that they don't have human inspectors but that there is some type of pre-screening (and I'm fairly sure one of their early earnings calls made some reference to automation of the review process).


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