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Author Topic: Someone tricked the Shutterstock algorithm?  (Read 10581 times)

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« Reply #50 on: May 03, 2021, 13:20 »
+1
check out the sizes of this photos, he has the largest resolution for most photos in any search, tree 7157 4774px, beach 6000x4000px but the rest is smaller. i believe shutterstock favours bigger larger resolution. i think one of their blogs says to submit the largest resolution possible. not sure if thats why, but could be one of the reasons.


« Reply #51 on: May 03, 2021, 13:22 »
0
I tried something simple to check if it is the keywords or the title:
(a) Original image from OlegRi: https://www.shutterstock.com/de/image-photo/red-white-rose-on-black-background-1589147812
(b) My image submitted with the exact same keywords and title: https://www.shutterstock.com/de/image-photo/red-white-rose-on-black-background-1961404534

Results:
(a) OlegRi's images is very high if you look for flowers or rose
(b) My image cannot be found within the first thousands of images

So its not the keywords nor the title...

your image has smaller resolution, try submitting the same size image, or larger even, and see what happens

« Reply #52 on: May 03, 2021, 17:21 »
0
your image has smaller resolution, try submitting the same size image, or larger even, and see what happens
Interesting idea, let me get my Zoom #1 program and do some hires images.
I will try another photo with a higher resolution... lets see how this will perform :-)

Edit:
For this resolution try I opened Shutterstock and searched for "landscape".
The first image is by OlegRi: https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/beautiful-landscape-field-ripe-rye-blue-1774166006 (7734x5159px)

Have just uploaded two images (10000x6667px) with the same kind of motif and exactly the same title and keywords in the same order, as soon as they are accepted I give you the links here.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2021, 17:51 by JustAnImage »

« Reply #53 on: May 04, 2021, 05:59 »
0
check out the sizes of this photos, he has the largest resolution for most photos in any search, tree 7157 4774px, beach 6000x4000px but the rest is smaller. i believe shutterstock favours bigger larger resolution. i think one of their blogs says to submit the largest resolution possible. not sure if thats why, but could be one of the reasons.

Im not convinced the algorithm favours larget images - a lot of my cropped or low res sell more than high res (although even getting a high res accepted with the focus AI is hard...).

I suspect a lot of these guys images are small because they're stolen off flickr and free wallpaper sites.

Having said that, with GigaPixel or Adobe Super Resolution, upscaling is easy and pretty good most of the time now.

« Reply #54 on: May 04, 2021, 06:22 »
0
I am pretty sure the algorithm does NOT favore large size images. We just had that discussion in the SS forum yesterday, because I always advice people who get lots of rejections for noice and grain to submit their images in as small a size as possible. So, I browsed the SS database for some keywords like "dog" and pretty much all top image search results have a size of 2500-3000pixel.

steheap

  • Author of best selling "Get Started in Stock"

« Reply #55 on: May 04, 2021, 10:14 »
0
My guess is that the Shutterstock admin system has ways to manually change the normal search position of an image or a contributor or (as we suspected in the past) to put newer (lower cost in the old plan) contributors higher in the results.  So that admin system gives certain people a lot of power to alter how things are displayed. With all the hacks into company systems recently, it isn't beyond belief that someone has hacked into this admin system to make changes to their or other contributor positions. Not as illegal as stealing money through a hack, but it still could work to generate extra income. Of course, blackmailing an employee would have the same impact. I have no proof that this has been done, or that the contributor we are discussing has done any of this! He might just be a great photographer...

Steve

Horizon

    This user is banned.
« Reply #56 on: May 04, 2021, 12:10 »
0
Hope you all realize that we as contributors see a different search then the registered buyer!!...old news I know but still!...if I was to search using a certain keyword which is highly popular I have 7 pics on the first page and they would of course sell like crazy but they dont!!  not even once!....why? because in reallity and with the buyers search the pics are probably way down the line!

I have a customer account and I see the same problems

I also have a customer account and I see the same BUT thats because I registered in my real name, same as you!...same name as contributor because you ID yourself!....dead easy to manipulate a search!....btw. this is old news!

« Reply #57 on: May 04, 2021, 13:36 »
+1
Hope you all realize that we as contributors see a different search then the registered buyer!!...old news I know but still!...if I was to search using a certain keyword which is highly popular I have 7 pics on the first page and they would of course sell like crazy but they dont!!  not even once!....why? because in reallity and with the buyers search the pics are probably way down the line!

I have a customer account and I see the same problems


I also have a customer account and I see the same BUT thats because I registered in my real name, same as you!...same name as contributor because you ID yourself!....dead easy to manipulate a search!....btw. this is old news!
I think you are being paranoid. Just log out of your account, customer or contributor and you'll still see the same search results.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #58 on: May 05, 2021, 08:49 »
0
Hope you all realize that we as contributors see a different search then the registered buyer!!...old news I know but still!...if I was to search using a certain keyword which is highly popular I have 7 pics on the first page and they would of course sell like crazy but they dont!!  not even once!....why? because in reallity and with the buyers search the pics are probably way down the line!

* Lagereek, I thought you left to create new anonymous accounts? How ridiculous can you be. I have a registered buyer account! So all your usual conspiracy garbage is a waste of time. Old news, well you said it first?  :)

Hope you all realize that we as contributors see a different search then the registered buyer!!...old news I know but still!...if I was to search using a certain keyword which is highly popular I have 7 pics on the first page and they would of course sell like crazy but they dont!!  not even once!....why? because in reallity and with the buyers search the pics are probably way down the line!

I have a customer account and I see the same problems


I also have a customer account and I see the same BUT thats because I registered in my real name, same as you!...same name as contributor because you ID yourself!....dead easy to manipulate a search!....btw. this is old news!
I think you are being paranoid. Just log out of your account, customer or contributor and you'll still see the same search results.

Waste of time, he's full of imaginary conspiracies and will make up answers without a speck of truth. ps I have a contributor account in a false name, I see the same results logged in or not, and from a different browser with a VPN turned on. Over the years, most of us have learned to ignore anything Christian Lagereek writes. Leaf banned Christian Lagereek and his many accounts, for life. But apparently he got in again.

check out the sizes of this photos, he has the largest resolution for most photos in any search, tree 7157 4774px, beach 6000x4000px but the rest is smaller. i believe shutterstock favours bigger larger resolution. i think one of their blogs says to submit the largest resolution possible. not sure if thats why, but could be one of the reasons.

Interesting ideas!

My guess is that the Shutterstock admin system has ways to manually change the normal search position of an image or a contributor or (as we suspected in the past) to put newer (lower cost in the old plan) contributors higher in the results.  So that admin system gives certain people a lot of power to alter how things are displayed. With all the hacks into company systems recently, it isn't beyond belief that someone has hacked into this admin system to make changes to their or other contributor positions. Not as illegal as stealing money through a hack, but it still could work to generate extra income. Of course, blackmailing an employee would have the same impact. I have no proof that this has been done, or that the contributor we are discussing has done any of this! He might just be a great photographer...

Steve

Also interesting.

I tried something simple to check if it is the keywords or the title:
(a) Original image from OlegRi: https://www.shutterstock.com/de/image-photo/red-white-rose-on-black-background-1589147812
(b) My image submitted with the exact same keywords and title: https://www.shutterstock.com/de/image-photo/red-white-rose-on-black-background-1961404534

Results:
(a) OlegRi's images is very high if you look for flowers or rose
(b) My image cannot be found within the first thousands of images

So its not the keywords nor the title...

your image has smaller resolution, try submitting the same size image, or larger even, and see what happens

This is enterta8ining to watch, I wish I had more time to join in. Good luck finding the flaw.

It seems the latest plausible theory is that these people spam their images to the max after acceptance, wait for them to pick up speed and when they find a place in the top results they remove the spam to appear regular. Apparently many users do this. Look at these:
https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/mountain-waterfall-landscape-mountains-1780718075
https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/winter-mountain-snow-camp-scene-camping-1780718078


Heck, another good theory.  ;D

I think I'm going to upload a gigapixel image, some huge stitched panorama. I generally save these for Alamy or FAA or someplace and send SS the 6MP version. Now I need to test if size matters? Lets see... I know, sliced tomato, my all time favorite. I'll make the biggest sliced tomato ever uploaded, macro, stitched, huge!

Whatever anyone eventually finds out, in fact, hacked, or manipulated or whatever, it's SS that's broken and someone just found the loophole.


« Reply #59 on: May 06, 2021, 06:49 »
0
your image has smaller resolution, try submitting the same size image, or larger even, and see what happens
Interesting idea, let me get my Zoom #1 program and do some hires images.
I will try another photo with a higher resolution... lets see how this will perform :-)

Edit:
For this resolution try I opened Shutterstock and searched for "landscape".
The first image is by OlegRi: https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/beautiful-landscape-field-ripe-rye-blue-1774166006 (7734x5159px)

Have just uploaded two images (10000x6667px) with the same kind of motif and exactly the same title and keywords in the same order, as soon as they are accepted I give you the links here.

The two images with higher resolution are accepted now:
- 8000 pixel width: https://www.shutterstock.com/de/image-photo/beautiful-landscape-field-ripe-rye-blue-1968577168
- 10000 pixel width: https://www.shutterstock.com/de/image-photo/beautiful-landscape-field-ripe-rye-blue-1968576751

This would remove the "resolution"-reason, after keywords and title are already shown to be not the key to high ratings ;-)

« Reply #60 on: May 06, 2021, 10:25 »
0
I think SS is rewarding contributors in search after upload rate.
The more uploads in a period, the higher ranking.

« Reply #61 on: May 06, 2021, 15:33 »
0
I think SS is rewarding contributors in search after upload rate.
The more uploads in a period, the higher ranking.

This could be the reason and a plausible guess.
Do we know a concrete proof, not just for ss but also for other stock companies?

« Reply #62 on: May 06, 2021, 16:44 »
+1
Who cares he is still only getting .10c an image.
all you lot who are still uploading and having images on this site are doing a disservice to the rest of us by keeping recompemse for OUR CREATIVE WORK DOWN.
Don't you get the con here. They are laughing all the way to the bank paying themselves I am sure multimillion dollar salaries and commissions.
None of the site where I have images do I get this sort of ROI on MY CREATIVES.

OM

« Reply #63 on: May 06, 2021, 17:10 »
+1
Posted by: Uncle Pete

Quote
Whatever anyone eventually finds out, in fact, hacked, or manipulated or whatever, it's SS that's broken and someone just found the loophole.

Yup.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2021, 17:12 by OM »

« Reply #64 on: May 06, 2021, 19:16 »
+4
all you lot who are still uploading and having images on this site are doing a disservice to the rest of us by keeping recompemse for OUR CREATIVE WORK DOWN.

So you'd rather people instead of earning a few hundred or thousands of dollars a month just settled for a guaranteed $0 on principle?

Its really hard to buy food on "principles".

Work also doesn't sell itself if its not available to be sold anywhere that buyers frequent.

« Reply #65 on: May 07, 2021, 02:52 »
+1
A search algorithm takes into account tens, if not hundreds, factors with different weights. And today thanks to AI these factors change automatically without human intervention.
Image resolution may be a factor, it may weight 0.1% or 10%. It is almost impossible for us to do tests from the outside since you can only modify one factor with each upload, and even if you delete and upload your image dozens of times, your position will be affected by the rest of the photos that have been uploaded in the meantime.

Probably what most positions an image is the view / download ratio, that's why SS prohibits you from buying your own images. For every reason that you think it does, you will find someone else whose experience tells you just the opposite.

It is also possible that the algorithm is a monkey dancing on a touch screen with the new photos and thus assigning them points.

duns123

« Reply #66 on: May 07, 2021, 06:24 »
0
I say it's witchcraft.

SS should be forced to look into this because it's an abuse of the system and if it's been hacked they probably stolen images.


« Reply #67 on: May 07, 2021, 06:52 »
0
I say it's witchcraft.

SS should be forced to look into this
And how do you want to "force" SS to look into this?

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #68 on: May 10, 2021, 11:22 »
+1
I say it's witchcraft.

SS should be forced to look into this
And how do you want to "force" SS to look into this?

Oh stop being so rational, I think we should sue, write to Congress and contact the FBI, CIA and NSA to have them investigate what's going on.  ;)

A search algorithm takes into account tens, if not hundreds, factors with different weights. And today thanks to AI these factors change automatically without human intervention.
Image resolution may be a factor, it may weight 0.1% or 10%. It is almost impossible for us to do tests from the outside since you can only modify one factor with each upload, and even if you delete and upload your image dozens of times, your position will be affected by the rest of the photos that have been uploaded in the meantime.

Probably what most positions an image is the view / download ratio, that's why SS prohibits you from buying your own images. For every reason that you think it does, you will find someone else whose experience tells you just the opposite.

It is also possible that the algorithm is a monkey dancing on a touch screen with the new photos and thus assigning them points.

I like that and the other plausible guesses. Including the last line as well.

Mostly though, sometimes people take this too personally and assume that a few clicks and some magic (or Witchcraft...) will change the placement. Oh the double keywords, the spam and change, the size, number of uploads, a favorite is, where the contributor lives. But you have the best non-specific answer, and I'd agree. Many, many variables, that change according to the clicks and searches, and I mean for everyone. More popular keywords on that day, will be moved up.

Used to be simple, how many days online, how many sales (and maybe a few other things like size) and bingo, rank. You could watch on IS new images to the top, then slow decline in placement as they aged. SS was the same. But of course the secret machine learning changes we have now, change according to the market, the day, the location, and like you say, possible 100 or more other factors.

I'd like to know how this guy tricked the system. That's my interest. Not politics, accusations or conspiracies. And when SS figures that out, they will change the system so he's ranked properly, as they wish, not as we'd wish, like the rest of us. We are all entitled to be treat crappy on an equal basis? :-\

Yeah, he can be first with his bad images, and he still doesn't make many sales. When he does he still gets a crappy dime. Best of luck.

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #69 on: May 11, 2021, 11:31 »
0

Probably what most positions an image is the view / download ratio, that's why SS prohibits you from buying your own images. For every reason that you think it does, you will find someone else whose experience tells you just the opposite.


Right on the second part, there are many ways we can see the same things. We don't really know.

About buying your own, or having someone else do that. We have seen accounts closed for "suspicious activity" where a buyer buys a disproportionate number of images from the same artist. So if A FOAF is buying these to raise the rank, that's not going to be the answer either.

For now I'm going with (totally WAG and hypothetical) each one of these could be OR as well as all?

1) He's got links from every free site on the planet, to his SS collection.

2) He's contrived a click app to go look at and zoom his images.

3) He has found a way to add data to the EXIF that we don't know is read and used by SS. Say he changes the camera to "Hasselblad H6D-100c" and SS is pushing hidden data from camera models to the top.

I like #3 best but it's just not Xfiles enough for the forum I'd guess? Those would be, inside deal, Ukraine is ranked higher, someone in review is giving him special priority, which would all say to me... why would they do that, especially considering the quality of some of his images? Nonsense.


« Reply #70 on: May 12, 2021, 09:11 »
+1
What I dont get is this (and I have obsessed far too much about it and will definitely stop after this post!): if he's doing this intentionally doesnt matter how why doesnt he shoot more profitable subjects?

If I had a magic button that rockets every picture I take to number one in the search, I would quickly rig together a semi-professional setup use a set, hire some models, maybe even throw some money at a professional photographer to coach me on lighting and posing etc, so that my shots look the best they can.

If youre guaranteed to get to the top for simple but profitable subjects like woman uses computer to shop online, man gives his girlfriend/wife a gift, couple fighting, woman holding a bill looking worried and so on, you would get rich very quickly, wouldnt you? Maybe my examples arent the best, but you get what I mean, right?

He seems like a dude who mostly just shoots some editorial of bikers and motorbikes, because that's where he hangs out anyway. Maybe this is all shittystocks fault and he has nothing to do with it? Maybe he doesn't even know it's happening!?

« Reply #71 on: May 13, 2021, 04:12 »
0
I think SS is rewarding contributors in search after upload rate.
The more uploads in a period, the higher ranking.

This could be the reason and a plausible guess.
Do we know a concrete proof, not just for ss but also for other stock companies?
The reason for my guess is that SS already showed that it's the present number of downloads that gets rewarded, when they introduced the new earnings structure.
So I guess that they also want to reward contributors with high upload activity, and one way could be to rank them higher in search.

« Reply #72 on: May 13, 2021, 04:25 »
0
We already saw examples of portfolios, photo and vectors with high rate of upload (there are threads about spam ports). SS could do many choices, anyway they are not in favor of commodity who actually are the contributors. Only in favor of itself, SS. It will be naive to expect any changes or a good will. Just look at the ancient threads. Insider version is highly probable.

« Reply #73 on: May 13, 2021, 05:37 »
+2
I submit photos to Shutterstock pretty much daily and I don't see my photos ranking No. 1 with every keyword I use, so that certainly can't be what's happening here.

« Reply #74 on: May 13, 2021, 10:30 »
0
He's got the first 6 results for puppy. That's crazy. Why can't SS do something about it.


 

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