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Articles from March 2009

Google Invests in Pixazza

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 147 Words | Posted 3/31/2009 | Comments
A start-up that makes photos shoppable has gotten the attention of Google, who joined its $5.75 million Series A financing round.

AFP, Getty Images Cross-Distribute Video Content

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 115 Words | Posted 3/31/2009 | Comments
Agence France-Presse and Getty Images have extended their longtime still-image partnership with an agreement to distribute each other's video content. The worldwide deal, which allows both agencies to market content in English, is in place as of this month.

iStockphoto After Livingstone

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 799 Words | Posted 3/30/2009 | Comments
Beyond a higher level of personal involvement with Getty Images, iStockphoto chief operating officer Kelly Thompson does not think much will change at the Getty-owned microstock business after last week's resignation of its founder Bruce Livingstone. The newest member of the Getty Images executive committee shares the background of this decision and the company's plans for the near future.

Corbis Sponsors Portfolio Night 7

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 167 Words | Posted 3/30/2009 | Comments
For the third year, Corbis will sponsor the largest simultaneous advertising portfolio review in the world.

Where Are Pricing And Volumes Headed?

By Jim Pickerell | 4760 Words | Posted 3/28/2009 | Comments
In 2006 I examined many of the factors that are impacting on stock photo market and leading to price declines. There were also a number of factors leading to declining sales volumes to traditional customers. These include the general demand for printed products, the tendency to use images multiple times but only pay once, trends in book publishing, postage costs, crowdsourcing of images and various types of guerrilla advertising. Since that time the situation has become worse.

Tax Time: How to Categorize Expenses

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 298 Words | Posted 3/27/2009 | Comments
As tax time draws near in the U.S.,, the Web's only free bookkeeping, accounting and tax software service specifically designed for the solopreneur, offers photographers advice on the hardest-to-classify business deductions.

Do Production Costs Dictate Price?

By Jim Pickerell | 1009 Words | Posted 3/27/2009 | Comments (3)
Recently, the owner of a top microstock portal claimed that the cost of creating an image should dictate its initial price. However, this is not what happens---at either his agency, other microstocks or among traditional agencies. It is time to let go of the fiction that image pricing has anything to do with production costs.

Kursiv Celebrates 15

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 51 Words | Posted 3/27/2009 | Comments

Shutterstock Exceeds 100,000 Video Clips

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 229 Words | Posted 3/26/2009 | Comments (1)
New York-based subscription agency Shutterstock has announced that its stock footage library has exceeded to 100,000 clips. The company has been growing its inventory at roughly 2,000 clips per week since its launch of a footage offering in 2006.

Getty Sweeps Sports BOP Awards

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 219 Words | Posted 3/26/2009 | Comments
Getty Images continues to perform strongly at this year's photojournalism competitions. Getty photographers took all three top honors and an additional honorable mention in the sports photojournalism category of the Best of Photojournalism 2009 and several other top sports-photography prizes.

2 Magnum Photojournalists, 2 Students Receive Getty Editorial Grants

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 248 Words | Posted 3/25/2009 | Comments
Getty Images have selected photojournalists Magnum's Alex Majoli and Paolo Pellegrin as recipients of the first two of five 2009 professional editorial photography grants. Students of Germany's Fachhoshchule Hannover (University of Applied Arts and Sciences) and the London College of Communications won two of four 2009 student grants.

Survey of Microstock Photographers

By Jim Pickerell | 487 Words | Posted 3/25/2009 | Comments
Tyler Olson's recent microstock survey attracted 244 respondents, including 189 male and 55 female photographers. Their total gross 2008 revenue for the 242 who answered that question was $2,438,556, or an average of $10,076.68 per photographer.

Alamy Releases 2008 Revenues

By Jim Pickerell | 323 Words | Posted 3/25/2009 | Comments
Alamy has reported gross revenue of just under $31.2 million for all of 2008. This was broken down by currency, with $10,703,000 in U.S. dollars, 2,904,000 in euros and 8,974,000 in English pounds.

Kursiv Reps Albatross

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 38 Words | Posted 3/24/2009 | Comments

PicScout Redesigns Web Site, Signs SuperStock

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 39 Words | Posted 3/24/2009 | Comments

Livingstone Resigns iStock, Getty Images

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 293 Words | Posted 3/24/2009 | Comments (1)
Though it has, apparently, been planned for some time, the resignation of the industry's chief disruptor has come as a surprise to many. As of April 1, iStockphoto founder and chief executive and Getty Images senior vice president of consumer markets Bruce Livingstone departs the stock-image industry.

Stock Wins for Assignment Shooters

By Jim Pickerell | 125 Words | Posted 3/23/2009 | Comments
A leading advertising assignment shooter says that he is seeing a growing niche in high-end sales.

Selling Same Images at Different Prices with Customer Segmentation

By Jim Pickerell | 515 Words | Posted 3/23/2009 | Comments (3)
As part of the ongoing discussion in the stock-image industry about the ethics and implications of selling the same content at different prices, James Alexander, formerly of Adobe Stock Photos, has posted some thoughts on his personal blog. This issue was first raised by Microstock Diaries, and Selling Stock has also addressed it in the past.

GumGum Launches ShopThisLook, Expands Entertainment Offering

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 308 Words | Posted 3/23/2009 | Comments
Content-licensing platform GumGum has launched a product that allows users to shop for products contained in images---specifically the outfits worn by favorite celebrities. ShopThisLook is already in use by blogs, such as INF Daily and Splash News' online gossip pub.

Corbis Reps Science Faction

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 37 Words | Posted 3/20/2009 | Comments

The Image Works Releases New Woodstock Images

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 60 Words | Posted 3/20/2009 | Comments

Leibovitz Collaborates with Getty Images

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 171 Words | Posted 3/20/2009 | Comments
Getty Images' Orchard Represents and Annie Leibovitz have entered into a multi-assignment collaboration.

Who Loses by Focusing on Increasing Traffic

By Jim Pickerell | 897 Words | Posted 3/20/2009 | Comments (1)
Traditional photographers argue that it is impossible to make money by licensing their images at microstock prices. They say volumes will never make up the difference. Despite that argument, Getty Images is licensing more and more images at Premium Access prices, which are not all that far away from what microstock sellers charge. Getty's volumes are not making up the difference for traditional photographers, but that is because Getty is selling these images to volume customers who used to pay traditional prices---not reaching the new customer base that microstock addresses.

Alamy Revenues Shed Light on Subscription Plans

By Jim Pickerell | 243 Words | Posted 3/20/2009 | Comments (1)
A look at Alamy revenues gives a clear indication as to why the company felt it had to attempt to do something to recover some of their lost sales in the U.K.

Alamy To Offer Subscriptions to Newspaper Clients

By Jim Pickerell | 358 Words | Posted 3/19/2009 | Comments
Alamy has informed its contributors that this quarter it is seeing sales declines in sales to newspaper customers, ranging from 30% to 70% since last year. Major U.K. papers are going through a painful transition period exacerbated by the recession.

The Long Tail: Growing Traffic

By Jim Pickerell | 738 Words | Posted 3/19/2009 | Comments (1)
Previous articles in this series have addressed the long tail as it relates to stock photography, and why it is an increasingly important concept to understand for those who want to maximize earning. Constantly adding to your customer base, rather than earning more from existing customers, is at the core of the long-tail theory.

Getty's Flickr Strategy

By Jim Pickerell | 238 Words | Posted 3/18/2009 | Comments
Since Getty Images announced that the first 4,280 Flickr images have been added to its collection, there has been quite a bit of speculation about how this will benefit the company.

Fairey Case Sparks Questions on Using Photos as Art Reference

By Jim Pickerell | 328 Words | Posted 3/18/2009 | Comments (2)
As a result of the publicity surrounding Shepard Fairey's use of an Associated Press photograph, taken by Mannie Garcia, as reference for his very successful Obama Hope poster, a university inquired into standard stock-industry practices for the use of photographs as reference for fine or street art.

Local Advertising Decline, Shift to Digital Through 2013

By Jim Pickerell | 104 Words | Posted 3/18/2009 | Comments (1)
The Kelsey Group of BIA Advisory Services forecasts a reduction in local advertising spending in the U.S. through 2013. Kelsey also projects an increasing shift towards digital media.

Getty Images Cuts 5% of Workforce

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 377 Words | Posted 3/17/2009 | Comments
"I am writing to you today with some unpleasant news," begins an internal email from Getty Images chief executive officer Jonathan Klein. "We have tried very hard to avoid lay offs during the continued turmoil in the world's economy. However, it is now clear that we have no alternative."

Torstar Launches

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 179 Words | Posted 3/17/2009 | Comments
Canada's Torstar Syndication Services has launched, claiming that its 10-million-image inventory makes it the largest stock agency in Canada. The imagery comes from Alamy Images, Aurora Photos, TopFoto, IPNstock and Toronto Star Photos, among 21 agency-suppliers and an additional 40 individual photographers.

Is There a Long Tail Among Photo Buyers?

By Jim Pickerell | 993 Words | Posted 3/17/2009 | Comments (1)
The long-tail theory is indeed about inventory and not pricing. Andersons theory is based on giving away things that are abundant in order to get customers' attention and draw them back to buy scarce, unique and relatively controlled items. That does not work in stock photography, where there is no way to determine what is abundant and what is scarce in advance. Still, the long tail exists in stock licensing, and it is entirely the domain of microstock companies, making the discussion inextricably tied to how images are priced.

MILE Conference To Run During CEPIC Congress

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 145 Words | Posted 3/16/2009 | Comments
The European Council-funded Metadata Image Library Exploitation Project will hold its final international conference on June 3, during the Dresden-based annual congress of the Coordination of European Picture Agencies. The MILE Project event, "Know Your Rights: How to Cope with Image Rights," will be free to CEPIC attendees and carry a 15 Euro cover charge for others.

Defining the Long Tail

By Jim Pickerell | 714 Words | Posted 3/16/2009 | Comments (4)
"The long tail" is a phrase first coined by Chris Anderson in an October 2004 Wired magazine article. The concept describes a new way to look at markets and is illustrative of the business strategy of Internet companies, including and Netflix, that sell a large number of unique items, each in relatively small quantities, to a very large base of customers. This buying pattern creates what is called a power-law distribution curve or long tail. In this series of articles, Selling Stock will examine how the long-tail strategy applies to the stock-photo industry.

The Copyright Registry Offers Free Services to ASMP Members

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 280 Words | Posted 3/16/2009 | Comments
The Copyright Registry has announced that members in good standing of the American Society of Media Photographers are now eligible for free services. The Registry, which beta-launched in 2008 in anticipation of the passage of an orphan-works legislation in the U.S., offers a set of free services; however, registering as a creator carries annual fees, as do several other services.

Quantcast Sheds Light on Stock-Buyer Demographics

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 597 Words | Posted 3/13/2009 | Comments
Founded in 2006, Quantcast bills itself as "a new breed of audience [measurement] service, focused on helping buyers and sellers quantify the real-time characteristics of digital media consumers." The company's statistics on several leading stock-licensing companies provide a new dimension of information on image buyers.

Print Still Strong with Readers

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 246 Words | Posted 3/12/2009 | Comments (1)
A survey on current and future media, conducted by The Rosen Group, has revealed that the majority of American readers still read print publications and pay for subscriptions. Nearly half of the survey respondents think this will still be the case in 10 years.

Thought Equity Motion, NCAA Bring March Madness to iPhone

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 68 Words | Posted 3/12/2009 | Comments

Footagehead Launches Program to Support Hunger Relief

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 126 Words | Posted 3/12/2009 | Comments
Los Angeles-based Footagehead, a royalty-free division of FootageBank HD that recently launched to focus on the online and mobile markets, has made a commitment to donate a portion of its revenues to hunger relief.

Cutcaster Launches Credits, Corporate Accounts

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 208 Words | Posted 3/11/2009 | Comments
San Francisco-based Cutcaster has augmented its micro-payment pay-as-you-go system with credits and corporate accounts.

Getty Images Launches Flickr Collection

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 94 Words | Posted 3/11/2009 | Comments (2)
The Flickr Collection, which was first announced by Getty Images and Flickr parent Yahoo! in early July 2009, is now available for commercial licensing exclusively through

SAA Seeks Executive Director

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 68 Words | Posted 3/11/2009 | Comments

Shutterstock Discounts Video

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 251 Words | Posted 3/10/2009 | Comments
Microstock subscription leader Shutterstock has extended footage subscriptions from 30 days to full year without raising prices. The company has also announced a new low-resolution video product, confirming recent reports of recessionary pressure on stock footage.

Buyers Increasingly Seek Broader Image Rights

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 573 Words | Posted 3/10/2009 | Comments
A survey conducted by The British Photographic Council revealed a rise in client requests for copyright or very broad rights-transfers when commissioning or buying images, without a corresponding increase in fees. The pressure on photographers to accept these conditions has also increased, with photographers reporting significant losses of income to this practice. Though this survey was limited to the U.K., the wealth of anecdotal evidence, online discussions and media coverage suggests that the situation is much the same in most markets—and is increasingly prevalent in light of current economic conditions.

Correction: Getty Images Wins 17 POY, 2 World Press Awards

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 48 Words | Posted 3/10/2009 | Comments
"Getty Sweeps POY" of March 9 misstated the number of awards Getty Images' photographers won at two recent competitions. Getty photographers won not 19 but 17 Pictures of the Year awards and not one but two World Press Photo awards. The original story was revised on March 10.

Supreme Court To Revisit Tasini Case

By Jim Pickerell | 319 Words | Posted 3/9/2009 | Comments
The Tasini case has not reached a final resolution in 16 years of litigation and negotiations. In 2001, the U.S. Supreme Court had decided that a group of publishers infringed on the copyrights of freelance writers by digitizing and redistributing their contributions. However, not all plaintiffs in the Tasini v. New York Times had registered copyrights in their works. For this reason, a New York Court of Appeals declined to approve a negotiated settlement between writers and publishers, moving the case back to the Supreme Court level.

Art Resource Reps London's National Gallery

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 59 Words | Posted 3/9/2009 | Comments

PhotosIndia Joins THP Photo Services

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 33 Words | Posted 3/9/2009 | Comments

Erickson Releases <em>Relationships</em>

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 45 Words | Posted 3/9/2009 | Comments

Getty Sweeps POY, Corbis Shines at World Press

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 574 Words | Posted 3/9/2009 | Comments
Getty Images' photographers won 19 awards in the 66th Annual Pictures of the Year International Competition, far and away the most awards amassed by any news agency. More surprising, however, is that Corbis beat Getty and most others by placing among the three agencies scoring the most World Press Photo prizes.

Photocuisine Opens German Office

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 58 Words | Posted 3/6/2009 | Comments

Masterfile Updates Search Interface

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 49 Words | Posted 3/6/2009 | Comments

AudioMicro Reps "Family Guy" composer Ron Jones

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 99 Words | Posted 3/6/2009 | Comments has added over 170 original scores by "Family Guy" composer Ron Jones, who continues scoring the popular television show during its eighth's season.

moodboard Launches <em>One</em> Magazine

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 167 Words | Posted 3/6/2009 | Comments
U.K.-based moodboard has launched One, a 30-page quarterly digital magazine designed to promote the agency's offering.

2008 Survey of Self-Employed Photographers, Illustrators or Graphic Designers

By Jim Pickerell | 354 Words | Posted 3/6/2009 | Comments
How was 2008 compared to 2007? What are industry trends in the production and sale of stock images? Selling Stock has launched a survey to gather information on 2008 stock-licensing income and cost of doing business. Selling Stock encourages every photographer, graphic designer and illustrator who licensed rights to images in 2008 to respond to the survey's nine simple questions. The survey will remain open until April 15, and Selling Stock will publish an in-depth analysis of the results shortly thereafter.

Pepper Stark Sheds Light on Getty/Jupiterimages Layoffs, Offers Recruitment Discounts

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 138 Words | Posted 3/5/2009 | Comments (1)
An announcement from British industry consultancy Pepper Stark suggests that Jupiterimages' European operations have not escaped layoffs.

iStockphoto Warns Users of Phishing Attack

By Jim Pickerell | 209 Words | Posted 3/5/2009 | Comments
On Tuesday, iStockphoto experienced a phishing attack in its forums and through sitemail. This attack attempted to scam users into handing over their iStock usernames and passwords.

NEA: Photographers Among Artist Jobs Worst Affected by Recessionary Unemployment

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 401 Words | Posted 3/5/2009 | Comments
Artists in a Year of Recession: Impact on Jobs in 2008, a research study conducted by the Washington, D.C.-based National Endowment for the Arts, says that recession is affecting America's artists, and photographers in particular, more significantly than most other professionals. Artists are unemployed at twice the rate of all professional workers and are becoming increasingly discouraged with future job prospects.

2008 Survey of Self-Employed Photographers, Illustrators or Graphic Designers

By Jim Pickerell | 551 Words | Posted 3/5/2009 | Comments
In 2008 on behalf of Selling-Stock we surveyed photographers, illustrators and graphic designers designed to provide useful data for all those who license rights to their images. This story provides detailed results of this survey.

SAA Executive Director Reid Steps Down

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 60 Words | Posted 3/4/2009 | Comments

Corbis Highlights Solo Travel

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 292 Words | Posted 3/4/2009 | Comments
According to the latest Corbis Creative IQ report, solo travel is the latest trend—and not just for singles, who have historically held the "solo-cation" monopoly. Solo travelers now account for nearly a third (27%) of all vacationers.

Alaska Stock Expands Latin American, European Distribution

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 65 Words | Posted 3/4/2009 | Comments

ImageSpan Releases LicenseStream Creator 2.0

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 201 Words | Posted 3/3/2009 | Comments
The latest version of LicenseStream from California-based ImageSpan claims to deliver one-click buying of digital via a search-engine result. The company said LicenseStream 2.0 enables its users to publish content directly to global search engines.

Dreamstime Grows Inventory and User Base, Adds Features

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 157 Words | Posted 3/3/2009 | Comments
According to co-founder and chief executive officer Serban Enache, Dreamstime's user-base has grown by over 30% during the last 5 months. Enache, who thinks such growth is probably the highest in the industry, said: "[Our small-company clients] must be affected by the crisis more than high-end users budget-wise... Still, we see no sign of slowdown (records for sales, new members, received content)."

iStockphoto: Revenue Decline or Growth?

By Jim Pickerell | 429 Words | Posted 3/3/2009 | Comments
Selling Stock recently analyzed some iStockcharts data in an effort to assess iStockphoto’s revenues during the first two months of 2009 and predict the possible effects of recession on microstock. Though the original analysis suggested a decline in iStock sales, new information about iStockcharts makes this a questionable conclusion.

Electric Lane Repeats Keywording, Historical Image Courses

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 74 Words | Posted 3/2/2009 | Comments

JPG Magazine Finds Buyer

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 74 Words | Posted 3/2/2009 | Comments

Getty Plans Jupiterimages Layoffs, Office Closures

By Julia Dudnik Stern | 392 Words | Posted 3/2/2009 | Comments
As expected, Getty Images will be cutting staff after finalizing its acquisition of Jupiterimages last week. However, the severity of the cuts remains unclear.

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This stock photography news site focuses on the business side of photography with a special emphasis on stock photography. Our goal is to help photographers maximize their earnings based on the quality of their work and the commitment they are prepared to make to the trade. The information provided will be applicable to part-timers as well as full time professional photographers. We’ll leave it to others to teach photographers how to take better pictures.

Jim Pickerell launched his career as a photographer in 1963. In 1990 he began publishing a regular newsletter on stock photography. In 1995 the information was made available online as well as in print and was gradually expanded to a daily service. Click here for Pickerell's full biography.

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