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Shutterstock Tests Lower Prices

By Jim Pickerell | 140 Words | Posted 8/28/2015 | Comments
Image users on the MicrostockGroup website report that Shutterstock has “dropped the price of single On Demand sales from 2 for $29 to $9.99 for each image.”

500PX Moves To Two-Tiered Pricing Model

By Jim Pickerell | 311 Words | Posted 8/28/2015 | Comments
Previously, 500PX had priced the images in its Marketplace at flat rates of $50 for web resolution, $250 for print resolution, and $750 for products for resale. Now they have introduced a second tier for images their editors deem of lower quality. The flat rate prices for images in this tier, called Core, are $35 for web resolution, $150 for print resolution, and $300 for products for resale. The prices for the first Prime tier will remain the same.

Earn Money When Your Images Are Photocopied In The UK

By Jim Pickerell | 459 Words | Posted 8/27/2015 | Comments
Every year millions of images are photocopied and used by commercial organizations around the world without any direct compensation to the image creator. Often this is because there is no practical way to track such usages, or because the creator cannot be easily identified. Nevertheless, commercial organizations recognize that they have an obligation, and a liability, to compensate creators for such uses.

Changing Demand For Images

By Jim Pickerell | 380 Words | Posted 8/26/2015 | Comments
Shutterstock has released a new infographic with information about how demand for certain subject matter is changing compared to a year ago. They have also included sample image in each category to give photographers a sense of what customers want.

ZUMA Press Partners With Australia’s Fairfax Media

By Jim Pickerell | 249 Words | Posted 8/26/2015 | Comments
ZUMA Press Inc. (www.zumapress.com), a leading visual media provider for the editorial community, has announced that it is now representing images from Fairfax Syndication (www.fairfaxsyndication.com), the most comprehensive range of Australian content from a portfolio of over 300 publications and websites.  

PDN PhotoPlus + Expo 2015

By Jim Pickerell | 482 Words | Posted 8/25/2015 | Comments
Over 4 days (October 21-24) attendees to this year’s PDN PhotoPlus International Conference + Expo at the Javits Center in New York City will have their choice of more than 100 seminars that include Photo Walks and Master Classes featuring the latest techniques and trends for photographers, filmmakers and digital imaging specialists.

Workbook Sponsors Visual Connections New York Image Expo 2015

By Jim Pickerell | 230 Words | Posted 8/25/2015 | Comments
Workbook, the leading marketing resource for commercial photographers and illustrators, will be the Principal Sponsor of this year’s Visual Connections Image Expo 2015 at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York on October 28.

Photographers Don’t Understand Creative Commons

By Jim Pickerell | 447 Words | Posted 8/24/2015 | Comments
TechDirt reports that photographer Art Dragulis took a photo of Swain’s Lock along the C&O canal in Maryland and uploaded it to Flickr. Roughly four years later, he discovered Kappa Map Group was using his photo for the cover of its Montgomery County, Maryland atlas. He sued for copyright infringement. And he LOST.

Customer Risks When Using RM Images

By Jim Pickerell | 743 Words | Posted 8/21/2015 | Comments (1)
When Rights Mananged images are represented by multiple distributors it is possible for agencies that had nothing to do with an initial license to collect a fee for secondary uses. Consider this situation.

Getty’s Bonds And Loans Rally

By Jim Pickerell | 220 Words | Posted 8/21/2015 | Comments
According to Bloomberg (July 30th) Getty Images Inc.’s bonds and loans rallied as a report to creditors showed improving profit after several quarters of sinking earnings.

Most Images Race

By Jim Pickerell | 271 Words | Posted 8/21/2015 | Comments
Shutterstock has won the most images race with Alamy. Shutterstock now has more than 60 million royalty-free images in its collection in addition to 3 million video and music clips for a total of over 63 million pieces of content.

Architectural Photographer Sues Multiple Listing Service For Copyright Infringement

By Jim Pickerell | 389 Words | Posted 8/21/2015 | Comments (1)
Alan J. Goldstein, a professional photographer located in Silver Spring, MD has commenced a legal action against Metropolitan Regional Information Systems, Inc. ("MRIS"), located in Rockville, MD, for violations of the Copyright Act and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The legal action is Case # 8:15-cv-2400 (TDC) (D. Md.).

Where Is The Stock Photo Industry Headed?

By Jim Pickerell | 117 Words | Posted 8/13/2015 | Comments
For new readers, or those who may have missed some of what I have written over the last few months, the following are a list of stories worth looking at to get a sense of where the industry is headed.

Adobe Digital Publishing Solution May Result In More Image Use

By Jim Pickerell | 836 Words | Posted 8/13/2015 | Comments
The new Adobe Digital Publishing Solution (DPS), the next generation in its groundbreaking Digital Publishing Suite, pioneers new ways for brands to deliver high-impact content to mobile apps and is likely to result in more images appearing in apps. It will also become increasingly difficult for image creators to know if their images are being used in apps, or not.

Why The Dramatic Decline In Shutterstock Share Price?

By Jim Pickerell | 648 Words | Posted 8/10/2015 | Comments
Is Shutterstock in Serious Trouble? On August 5th the SSTK stock price closed at $50.75. On August 6th the company announced its second quarter results and missed the projected revenue for the quarter by 1.5%. On August 7th the stock closed at $33.65, a 34% decline in 2 days. NO! The company is not in trouble. Rather, financial analysts that closely watch Shutterstock are finally waking up to the realities of the stock photo business.

Shutterstock Reports Q2 Results: Stock Declines Sharply

By Jim Pickerell | 1476 Words | Posted 8/6/2015 | Comments
Today, Shutterstock reported $104.4 million in revenue for Q2 2015, a 30% increase over Q2 2014. However, they missed their projected revenue estimate by $960,000. Investors were disappointed and the stock that had been trading at $50.75 per share the day before dropped 32.20% to $34.41 before the market closed. The average price per download during the quarter was $2.85 down from $2.87 in the previous quarter, and compared to $2.52 in Q2 2014. There were 35.9 million downloads in the quarter and they paid out about 28% of gross revenue in royalties to contributors.

Less Image Use Ahead

By Jim Pickerell | 625 Words | Posted 8/4/2015 | Comments (1)
In the subscription environment customers pay for -- and the image creators receive a royalty for -- many images that are never used in any type of deliverable product. Nobody knows how many. Adobe Stock has changed all that. Now Adobe gives users free use to any images considered during the users design and creative processes. Users only pay for the images that actually end up in a deliverable product. As a result, creators may begin to see a significant decline in the number of images licensed.

100% Royalties At Videoblocks

By Jim Pickerell | 562 Words | Posted 8/3/2015 | Comments
If you’re a videographer and have been discouraged by low prices and low royalties for your work it’s time to check out Videoblocks. In April at the National Association of Broadcasters conference the company added a new feature when they launched the Marketplace section of their site. Customers must have an annual subscription in order to access Marketplace. When they choose any of the Marketplace clips they pay an additional $49 if it is HD or $199 for 4K.

Stockphotoinsight.com

By Jim Pickerell | 453 Words | Posted 8/3/2015 | Comments
Responding to an increasing demand for reliable insights on the stock photography market three top stock photography industry experts, Lee Torrens, Paul Melcher and Amos Struck, have officially launched Stock Photo Insight, a consulting service providing calls with all three experts simultaneously.  

Corbis Motion Trends

By Jim Pickerell | 421 Words | Posted 7/30/2015 | Comments
If you’re trying to decide whether to get into video, or what to shoot, you may want to take a look at the Corbis Motion Trends Study. This information should be of great value to anyone producing stock video regardless of whether they license their work through Corbis, or not.

AP Shares 1 Million Minutes of History on YouTube

By Jim Pickerell | 284 Words | Posted 7/30/2015 | Comments
The Associated Press and British Movietone, one of the world's most comprehensive newsreel archives, are together bringing more than 1 million minutes of digitized film footage to YouTube. Showcasing the moments, people and events that have shaped the world, it will be the largest upload of historical news content on the video-sharing platform to date.

UGC vs. Stock Photography

By Jim Pickerell | 938 Words | Posted 7/29/2015 | Comments
What’s the difference between User Generated Content (UGC) and stock photography?
Maybe nothing! When people talk about UGC they are usually referring to pictures that can be found on the web (mostly on social media sites) that “someone else” may want to use. If that someone else wants to use the image (and doesn’t want to steal it) then technically it becomes a stock photograph.

Imagewiki Wants To Help Photogs Get A Share Of Online Ad Revenue

By Jim Pickerell | 1638 Words | Posted 7/27/2015 | Comments
The interests of the multi-billion dollar social media sites and photographers may finally be coming together thanks to DMCA and imagewiki. The safe harbor provision of the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) says, “Online Service Providers (OSPs) cannot receive any financial benefit directly attributable to infringing activity.”  Thus OSPs cannot place ads on user generated content unless they can identify the image’s owner and use policy.

ASMP Responds to Copyright Office Notice of Inquiry

By Jim Pickerell | 209 Words | Posted 7/27/2015 | Comments
ASMP has responded to the April 24, 2015 U.S. Copyright Office Notice of Inquiry, which set out to review “how certain visual works, particularly photographs, graphic artworks, and illustrations are monetized, enforced and registered under the Copyright Act.”

Future Of Subscription Licensing

By Jim Pickerell | 856 Words | Posted 7/24/2015 | Comments (1)
Subscription licensing is in for some dramatic changes. We know that a significant number of the images subscription customers download are used in the designer’s “creative process,” but never find their way into a deliverable end product. Traditionally, creators of all the images downloaded – whether used in a deliverable product or not – have received an equal royalty share of the revenue paid for the subscriptions.

Scott Braut, New Head of Content For Adobe

By Jim Pickerell | 776 Words | Posted 7/23/2015 | Comments (1)
Adobe has hired Scott Braut, formerly VP of Content at Shutterstock. He has been named Head of Content and will drive the company’s overall content strategy and operations for Creative Cloud. Adobe says content is a strategic area of growth and focus as it builds a growing, strategic creative marketplace. Scott has over 20 years of experience in content licensing, product development, eCommerce, and digital media.

Design & Emotion In Stock Photography

By Jim Pickerell | 125 Words | Posted 7/23/2015 | Comments
Shutterstock has released a new infographic on Design and Emotion in Stock Photography.

SIM Lets Contributors Set Image License Fees

By Jim Pickerell | 919 Words | Posted 7/21/2015 | Comments (2)
Hong Kong based Super Image Market launched in November 2014 has established a simple “Pathway” for making images available to customers rather that operating as a traditional agency or distributor. Contributors establish the license fee for each of their images on an image-by-images basis. SIM pays them 80% of every sale. (During the initial launch period until the beginning of 2016 contributors will receive 100% of every sale.)

500px Raises Another $13 Million

By Jim Pickerell | 472 Words | Posted 7/21/2015 | Comments
Toronto-based 500px has raised $13 million in a Series B round of funding. This round was led by Visual China Group led this round with an $8 million investment. The other $5 million came from existing Series A backers that include Andreessen Horowitz, Harrison Metal, and ff Venture Capital.

Image Brief To Launch MyMarketplace

By Jim Pickerell | 1035 Words | Posted 7/16/2015 | Comments
ImageBrief will be adding a stock search aspect called MyMarketplace in the near future. Right now they are reaching out to their premium photographers to collect images for this service. It is unclear when the actual service will be available for buyers to search, but it will add stock search to the briefing and finding a photographer they can hire directly features they already enjoy.

Shutterstock Stock Under Heavy Pressure

By Jim Pickerell | 512 Words | Posted 7/15/2015 | Comments
Shutterstock (SSTK) was under heavy pressure Tuesday (-7.2%) after Morgan Stanley initiated coverage on the stock with an Underweight rating and a price target of $40. The company traded down 6.49% on Tuesday, hitting $52.33.  About 6% (2,134,222 shares) of the company’s stock traded hands. Morgan Stanley analyst Dean Prissman said based on their proprietary AlphaWise study and bottom-up analysis, they believe Adobe's aggressive entry into Shutterstock's market is set to pressure growth.

Urgent Need: Tell ASMP About Problems You’ve Had Protecting Copyright

By Jim Pickerell | 241 Words | Posted 7/15/2015 | Comments
The deadline for responses to the Copyright Office’s April 24 Notice of Inquiry is rapidly approaching. ASMP needs more information from photographers about the problems they have encountered in protecting their copyright.

Visual China Group Resumes Trading Shares

By Jim Pickerell | 251 Words | Posted 7/14/2015 | Comments
Visual China Group (VCG), the Getty Images representative in China, has resumed trading on the Shanghai Stock Exchange and Shenzhen Composite market in China. The stock closed at 27.52 RMB ($4.40) per share up from 25.02 RMB ($4.00) last week when trading was suspended.

What Investors Want To Know About Stock Photography

By Jim Pickerell | 2080 Words | Posted 7/10/2015 | Comments (1)
Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of questions from investors trying to assess the stock photo industry growth potential and figure out where Shutterstock, Adobe and Getty Images are headed. In general here is what I’ve been telling them.

Adding Images To iStock: Contributor Trends

By Jim Pickerell | 6317 Words | Posted 7/6/2015 | Comments
An increasing number of iStock’s most productive contributors seem to be pulling back on their production of new images. Of the 430 photographers and illustrators we have been tracking for more than four years only 34% have added more than 100 images to their collections in the last six months. That leaves two-thirds of this group of contributors who have added fewer than 100 images or removed images from the collection.

iStock Photographer And Illustrator Comparisons

By Jim Pickerell | 5858 Words | Posted 7/6/2015 | Comments
Since 2009 I have been tracking the image downloads of some of iStock’s leading contributors. Beginning in 2012 I increased the number of individuals tracked on a semi-annual basis to 430. While 430 is only a small percentage of iStock’s total contributors which number more than 100,000 combined this small group has at least 55,479,000 downloads and given the way iStock reports these numbers possibly as many as 58,416,000 downloads. I believe these numbers represent about one-third of all iStock downloads since the company’s founding in 2002.

Sales For iStock Leading Contributors Continue To Decline

By Jim Pickerell | 802 Words | Posted 7/2/2015 | Comments
Downloads for 430 of iStock’s leading contributors have continued their steady decline in the first half of 2015.  Getty had hoped that the launch of iStock subscriptions in April 2014 and the launch in September 2014 of a single price for images, regardless of the file size needed, would turn iStock’s fortunes around and bring customers back from its competitors. Neither strategy seems to have worked.

Dreamstime Removes Daily Image Download Limits

By Jim Pickerell | 572 Words | Posted 7/1/2015 | Comments
Dreamstime, has altered its subscription plans to feature a monthly instead of daily quota of downloadable images, and is allowing the carrying over of unused downloads. The company says, “users will now effectively never ‘lose’ image downloads as unused downloads will roll over into the monthly quota amount, making Dreamstime the most convenient and flexible solution in the industry today.”

Picsbuffet: New Strategy For Image Search

By Jim Pickerell | 336 Words | Posted 7/1/2015 | Comments
Picsbuffet (https://picsbuffet.com/#) offers a new method of image search that allows users to easily, visually explore huge sets of images. The images are laid side by side in a “map style” format with similar images close to each other.

Getty Teams With Fiverr® To Supply Creative Services To SMBs

By Jim Pickerell | 247 Words | Posted 6/30/2015 | Comments
Fiverr, a marketplace for digital services, and Getty Images, have unveiled a partnership that puts premium creative services in the hands of small and medium businesses (SMBs), empowering them to produce creative once only thought possible for large enterprises. Fiverr sellers, which include graphic and web designers, can tap into an unrivaled trove of the world's best images from Getty Images and iStock to produce eye-catching ads, social content, fan pages, apps and just about any other creative design imaginable.

Magnum Nominates 6 Photographers For Membership

By Jim Pickerell | 249 Words | Posted 6/30/2015 | Comments
At its annual General Meeting (AGM), held this year in Paris member owned Magnum Photos nominated six new members: a record breaking number. They include: Matt Black, Carolyn Drake, Lorenzo Meloni, Richard Mosse, Max Pinckers and Newsha Tavakolina.

Newzulu Signs Partnership With Alamy

By Jim Pickerell | 448 Words | Posted 6/25/2015 | Comments
Newzulu Limited (ASX: NWZ) is pleased to announce that it has entered a strategic partnership and content syndication agreement (Agreement) with Alamy. Newzulu’s crowd-sourced news archive will be featured among Alamy’s collection of over 50 million images from which the platform has generated over US$154 million for its contributors in the last 15 years. Newzulu and Alamy will work together to generate revenue through the sale and licensing of Newzulu’s crowd-sourced content to Alamy’s editorial, creative and commercial clients worldwide.

Getty Granted “Interested Party” Status In EU’s Investigation Of Google

By Jim Pickerell | 524 Words | Posted 6/24/2015 | Comments
Getty Images has been granted “interested party” status in the European Commission’s investigation into anticompetitive behavior by Google. Getty Images provides specialized image search and shopping services to end users in direct competition with Google.

Masterfile Update

By Jim Pickerell | 465 Words | Posted 6/24/2015 | Comments
Several of my readers have differing opinions with regard to the meaning of the term “no exchange of equity” as it appeared in Masterfile’s May press release. I thought it meant that no money changed hands. I asked Steve Pigeon, CEO of Masterfile, for clarification.

Pond5 Relaunches Adobe® Premiere® Pro CC Plugin

By Jim Pickerell | 190 Words | Posted 6/23/2015 | Comments
Pond5 has re-launched its free Pond5 plugin for Adobe® Premiere® Pro CC which gives editors instant access to nearly 5 million royalty-free video and audio clips.

Shutterstock Partners With Penske Media: Editorial Imagery and Video Distribution

By Jim Pickerell | 390 Words | Posted 6/22/2015 | Comments
Shutterstock, Inc. and Penske Media Corporation (PMC) have agreed to form an alliance that will create and license entertainment and fashion images and videos to the world’s top media, publishing and creative companies. (Check out PMC brands and events.)

Unhappy With Image Pricing: Consider Picfair

By Jim Pickerell | 528 Words | Posted 6/22/2015 | Comments
Tired of giving up 70% to 80% (and often more) of what a customer pays to use your image to a distributor? Consider Picfair. Unhappy with the prices distributors are charging for your images and want more? Consider PicFair.

Authenticating And Protecting Cell Phone Images

By Jim Pickerell | 935 Words | Posted 6/18/2015 | Comments (1)
Suppose there was a smartphone app that automatically sent every image capture to the cloud and stored all the metadata including date, time and exact location down to within 100 feet or less of where the picture was taken. (Also imagine if camera manufacturers built that into cameras.) It's coming!

Microstock Image Revenue Will Decline

By Jim Pickerell | 562 Words | Posted 6/17/2015 | Comments (2)
Thanks to Adobe Stock gross microstock revenue will start to decline. Let me explain why. I estimate that about $143 million of Shutterstock’s 2014 revenue came from subscription and that there were about 114 million subscription downloads. It all those customers were to switch to Adobe Stock they could probably get all the images they need for $43 million or less and save $100 million annually. Check out the numbers.

Will User Generated Content Kill Stock Photos?

By Jim Pickerell | 573 Words | Posted 6/17/2015 | Comments (1)
Matt Munson, CEO of Twenty20, recently made the case for why User Generated Content (UGC) will be The Death Of Stock Photos. He argued that “stock photos do not depict reality” and that “brands that use them risk coming off as generic and out-of-touch” with consumers.

Adobe Stock Launched: Royalty Rates UP!

By Jim Pickerell | 779 Words | Posted 6/16/2015 | Comments
Adobe has launched [St] Adobe Stock as part of its Adobe Creative Cloud subscription offering. Creative Cloud customers are now able to launch Adobe Stock directly within CC desktop software such as Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop or After Effects, and add watermarked or licensed images to their Creative Cloud Libraries. This will allow them to access and work with images across multiple desktop tools.

Visual Connections Announces New York Conference

By Jim Pickerell | 313 Words | Posted 6/16/2015 | Comments
Visual Connections has announced the dates for its October conference in New York. This year Visual Connections New York 2015 will be on October 28th immediately following the DMLA (formerly PACA) Annual Conference that runs from Sunday October 25 through Tuesday the 27th. And if that isn’t enough photo related events for you PhotoPlus Expo will be October 22-24, 2015 at the Javits Convention Center.

Tracking Image Usage

By Jim Pickerell | 937 Words | Posted 6/15/2015 | Comments
LMKtag (also Lamark) has developed a relatively inexpensive system to embed tags, invisible to the naked eye, in digital images files. These tags link back to a LMKtag database that contains the image creator’s name and contact information as well as whether the image is available for licensing. The database can also include caption information and other metadata about the image and the creator can adjust this information at any time.

Does Anyone Like Your Photographs?

By Jim Pickerell | 690 Words | Posted 6/12/2015 | Comments
Photocrowd is a relatively new social media site (launched in September 2013) that is designed to encourage photographers to shoot more pictures, work on assignments, participate in contests, build cool portfolios and socialize with each other.

Sourcing Images From Cell Phone Users

By Jim Pickerell | 309 Words | Posted 6/9/2015 | Comments
Should traditional agencies be making more of an effort to source images from cell phone users? Sixteen months ago Alamy introduced its Stockimo app and started accepting images into its collection that are taken with cell phones. To date about 350,000 images have been submitted and about 170,000 accepted.

Competition: Who Has The Market Advantage?

By Jim Pickerell | 719 Words | Posted 6/8/2015 | Comments (1)
During the CEPIC Congress in Warsaw a Russian stock photo agent told me that Russian photographers can live and support a family very comfortably on 50,000 roubles a month. At today’s currency exchange that works out to about $886 per month or $10,632 per year.

Finding The “Right” Image

By Jim Pickerell | 607 Words | Posted 6/2/2015 | Comments (1)
Last week I wrote a story about “Microsoft’s Research On Captioning Photos Automatically." I argued that this technology is a long way from being of much use to stock photo customers who trying to find useful photos for their projects. However, helping users find photos may not be what Google, Microsoft and Yahoo are really trying to accomplish.

Microsoft’s Research On Captioning Photos Automatically

By Jim Pickerell | 592 Words | Posted 5/29/2015 | Comments (1)
Microsoft recently published an article about the advancements they are making in developing technology that can automatically caption pictures. (See here.) However, from the point of finding images on the Internet there is one big flaw in where they are headed. In most cases there will be a huge number of choices that can reasonably have the same caption.

What Does The Image Producing CROWD Want?

By Jim Pickerell | 1355 Words | Posted 5/28/2015 | Comments
Many traditional suppliers of stock image (those that have been in business 15, 20 years or more) need to give some thought to what the image producing crowd wants. They need to consider possible ways of adjusting their business model in order to meet some of the needs of these part-time image creators.  And they need to recognize how these photographers may change the entire stock photography licensing business.

Can Powerpoint Presentations Be An Important Market For Stock Photography?

By Jim Pickerell | 1443 Words | Posted 5/27/2015 | Comments
Microsoft say that worldwide there are about 400 new powerpoint presentations being prepared each second. That works out to about 12.6 billion presentations a year. A significant percentage of them use multiple images. Some are the creator’s personal images. But the vast majority are grabbed from the Internet via Google, Bing, Flickr or somewhere else. If users paid even $1.00 for each image used in such presentations the annual gross revenue might be more than 5 times the revenue generated worldwide by the stock photo industry.

Ideal Image Sizes For Social Networks

By Jim Pickerell | 66 Words | Posted 5/27/2015 | Comments
SumAll provides social media tools that may help users make more effective use of social media. Among the information offered is data from 300,000+ business users compiled in an infographic that shows the ideal image size for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest. Each of these sites has specific dimensions that you need to adhere to if you want your images to look their best.

Where Are The Editors?

By Jim Pickerell | 962 Words | Posted 5/26/2015 | Comments
As the stock photo industry has changed and revenue for many stock images providers has declined many traditional providers have been forced to cut back on staff, and in particular editors. This is also true of many photo users who previously had time to review portfolios, encourage new talent and support new photographers as they improved their skills. Now, most of the editors and picture buyers that are left have trouble keeping up with the images that fly across their desks, let alone find time to seek out the best images and encourage new talent. So who does the editing?

Masterfile’s European Operations Acquired By Mediapro

By Jim Pickerell | 335 Words | Posted 5/22/2015 | Comments
Masterfile Corporation (“MFC”) - a global licensor of premium stock images - has sold 100% of the shares of its European operations to Mediapro Mediamarketing GmbH of Vienna, Austria.  The transaction which closed on April 30th includes Masterfile companies in France, Germany, Italy and the UK (collectively “Masterfile Europe”). 

Social Media Landmines For Photographers

By Jim Pickerell | 213 Words | Posted 5/21/2015 | Comments
Posting images on Social Media sites can be a dangerous thing. What rights are you giving away? Can someone else use your image without your knowledge? Can they earn revenue from your image without sharing any of it with you? If someone else mis-uses your image are you legally liable?

How To Get Tons Of Stock Photos Quickly

By Jim Pickerell | 241 Words | Posted 5/19/2015 | Comments
PicHit.Me, Microsoft and Shutterstock have teamed up to offer over $10,000 worth of prizes and Microsoft hardware to photographers who participate in the My World contest. Any photographer, amateur or professional, can enter and may interpret the theme of the competition any way they like. As a result PicHit will undoubtedly get images on every conceivable subject

Pond5 Partners With 48 Hour Film Project

By Jim Pickerell | 262 Words | Posted 5/19/2015 | Comments
Pond5 has announced a partnership with the 48 Hour Film Project, the largest and most dynamic timed film competition in the world. As the official stock media sponsor for all 135 cities participating in the competition, Pond5 is offering 100 hand-picked audio tracks to contestants for free. All participants will also receive $25 in Pond5 credit.

Future Of Crowdsourcing

By Jim Pickerell | 593 Words | Posted 5/18/2015 | Comments
Are we about to experience another major shift in the photography market similar to the shift from RM to RF and the dramatic changes brought about by Microstock? At the CEPIC Congress in Warsaw on Friday June 5th at 10:00am I will be moderating a panel discussion on Crowdsourcing and how it is likely to impact the stock photography business in the near future.

Image Content Recognition: A Stillbirth?

By Jim Pickerell | 452 Words | Posted 5/18/2015 | Comments
Be sure to read Paul Melcher’s story in his Kaptur Magazine about where image recognition software is headed.

Stockmile Offers Free Images

By Jim Pickerell | 301 Words | Posted 5/15/2015 | Comments
Stockmile promotes itself as offering “FREE images” and says it has become an excellent source of photography, vector graphics, illustrations, clipart, handpicked bundles, and more for personal and business use.

LookLagoon Launches New Website

By Jim Pickerell | 335 Words | Posted 5/15/2015 | Comments
LookLagoon has launched a new website that features professional, high quality images of nature, wildlife, and landscapes. Individual photos are available under royalty-free licenses at prices that range from $3 to $10 depending on the file size of the photo purchased.

Declines In Average Royalties At Shutterstock

By Jim Pickerell | 1290 Words | Posted 5/14/2015 | Comments
If the blogs are any indication more and more Shutterstock contributors seem to be complaining about declining revenue. While individual royalties may not have been as high as some would have liked, for several years they were at least going up steadily month to month to month, or compared to the same month a year earlier. Within the last year or so an increasing number of contributors are complaining about revenue stagnation or decline.

Getty Using Instagram To Find Photographers

By Jim Pickerell | 510 Words | Posted 5/13/2015 | Comments
Getty Images, in collaboration with Instagram, has announced a call for entries for a new grant to support photographers using Instagram to document stories from underrepresented communities around the world. The three winners will each receive $10,000.

Microsoft Promoting PicHit.me – New Image Source

By Jim Pickerell | 1157 Words | Posted 5/12/2015 | Comments
The launch of Windows 10 later this year could dramatically change the way people find pictures. On April 29th during the annual Microstock Build Developers Conference in San Francisco Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella described how Microsoft intends to (1) Build the Intelligent Cloud, (2) Reinvent productivity and business process and (3) Create more personal computing.

Shutterstock Reports $97.5 Million For Q1 2015

By Jim Pickerell | 1261 Words | Posted 5/7/2015 | Comments
Shutterstock has reported $97.5 million in revenue for Q1 2015, a 34% increase over Q1 2015. There were 33.4 downloads for the quarter. About 28% percent of revenue for the quarter was paid out to contributors in royalties. The average price per download was $2.87 up from $2.68 in the previous quarter and a 17% increase compared to Q1 2015. There were 51.6 million images in the collection as of March 31, 2015 plus 2.6 million video clips. At the end of the quarter the company had 542 employees worldwide.?

Shutterstock Premier Selects

By Jim Pickerell | 476 Words | Posted 5/6/2015 | Comments
In March, Shutterstock began testing a new collection called Premier Selects that is only available to Enterprise customers. For more about how it works check out https://premier.shutterstock.com

Congress Considers Modernization Of Copyright Laws

By Jim Pickerell | 138 Words | Posted 5/5/2015 | Comments
Maria Pallante the current Register of Copyrights and Director of the United States Copyright Office testified before the House Judiciary Committee on April 29th and offered a number of ideas for modernization of the copyright office. You can access the entire testimony here.

Dreamstime Releases New Mobile App

By Jim Pickerell | 460 Words | Posted 5/5/2015 | Comments
Dreamstime has announced the release of Stock Photos by Dreamstime, a new mobile phone app geared toward customers interested in purchasing and downloading images directly onto their smartphones and tablets. With the new mobile app, the Dreamstime team will be able to offer its popular, high quality digital images to an even greater range of on-the-go customers.

What’s The Most Popular Professional Camera?

By Jim Pickerell | 97 Words | Posted 5/1/2015 | Comments (1)
Shutterstock has provided a list of the 10 most popular cameras used by their contributors in 2014. (See Chart.) They obtained this information by extracting the EXIF data from the photos uploaded.

Pond5 Uses Artificial Intelligence To Auto-Tag Images

By Jim Pickerell | 373 Words | Posted 4/30/2015 | Comments
Pond5, has unveiled auto-tagging technology that they claim is the first of its kind in the stock media industry. Built with artificial intelligence, this pioneering feature automatically generates keywords for each photo and video uploaded to the Pond5 platform.

What Is Considered “Fair Use” Of Photographs?

By Jim Pickerell | 242 Words | Posted 4/30/2015 | Comments
The U.S. Copyright Office has created a Fair Use Index to assist creators and user in understanding what is considered “Fair Use.” Fair use is a longstanding and vital aspect of American copyright law. The goal of the Index is to make the principles and application of fair use more accessible and understandable by presenting a searchable database of court opinions.

Shutterstock Panorama

By Jim Pickerell | 338 Words | Posted 4/28/2015 | Comments
Want to know more about the people who are producing images that are licensed at microstock and subscription prices? Shutterstock Panorama is worth a look.

Rights Managed Image Exclusivity and Sharing Sites

By Jim Pickerell | 1485 Words | Posted 4/27/2015 | Comments
Recently, I was asked to comment on whether a photographer under exclusive contract with a stock agency that licensed the work as Rights Managed could simultaneously post the same images on one of a series of social media sites.

ACSIL Footage Expo In New York

By Jim Pickerell | 185 Words | Posted 4/24/2015 | Comments
If you’re interested in stock footage you may want to attend the ACSIL Footage Expo 2015 in Manhattan next week. The event will take place on Wednesday, April 29, 2015 between 10:30am and 5:15pm at the Midtown Loft & Terrace, 267 Fifth Avenue, (29th Street), New York. NY. Many of the major footage distributors will be exhibiting.

The Dilemma When Chasing Unauthorized Uses

By Jim Pickerell | 633 Words | Posted 4/23/2015 | Comments (3)
In order to earn significant money from licensing stock images it is almost mandatory to make the images available through more than one large stock image distributor. But having images with multiple distributors also makes it almost impossible to determine if there has been an infringement. While it is easy enough to determine if an image has been used on the Interne, it is often almost impossible to determine if the image was legally licensed.

Photography As A Career

By Jim Pickerell | 209 Words | Posted 4/22/2015 | Comments
It’s that time of year when high school seniors are waiting for college acceptance letters and thinking about future careers. If you know someone who is thinking about photography as a career you might want to point them to the stories listed below.

EyeEm Gets $18 Million In VC Funding

By Jim Pickerell | 258 Words | Posted 4/21/2015 | Comments
EyeEm has raised $18 million in new venture capital and currently has a community of 13 million photographers across 150 countries.

How To Make Money As A Travel Photographer In 2015

By Jim Pickerell | 111 Words | Posted 4/21/2015 | Comments
PetaPixel has a great story by 30-year-old Brendan van Son about how he has been supporting himself for the last 5 years as a travel photographer/journalist. During that time he has visited almost 80 countries. He provides a lot of very valuable detail for anyone thinking about travel photography as a career.

Major Advertisers Find FOAP

By Jim Pickerell | 236 Words | Posted 4/20/2015 | Comments
Foap, is hosting a NYC photo contest that awards $200 each for the best New York City photos in four different categories. The contest is in partnership with Mastercard

ACSIL Stock Footage Survey: Executive Summary

By Jim Pickerell | 1292 Words | Posted 4/17/2015 | Comments
In March we reported that an ACSIL survey of stock footage distributors concluded that globally $550 million in revenue was generated from the licensing of stock footage in 2014. The 53-question survey was sent to over 400 companies that license stock footage and 90 responded. The following is an executive summary of the results.

Google Formally Charged With Manipulating Search Unfairly

By Jim Pickerell | 466 Words | Posted 4/16/2015 | Comments (2)
The European Commission has sent a Statement of Objections to Google alleging the company has abused its dominant position in the markets for general Internet search services in the European Economic Area (EEA) by systematically favoring its own comparison shopping product in its general search results pages. The Commission's preliminary view is that such conduct infringes EU antitrust rules because it stifles competition and harms consumers.

$15 Per Hour

By Jim Pickerell | 624 Words | Posted 4/15/2015 | Comments
I received a note from a stock photographer who was one of the more successful full-time image producers in the 1990s and early 2000s. He called my attention to a CNN story about “Workers Striking For $15 An Hour.” He is envious of those who will earn $15 per hour for their work. He is looking for a new career because he can no longer earn anywhere near $15 an hour in present value for the time and effort he puts into producing new images.

Licensing Based On Trust

By Jim Pickerell | 1085 Words | Posted 4/14/2015 | Comments
Most Rights Managed stock images can be used in many different non-conflicting ways by a variety of customers. The theory behind RM licensing is that the fee charged to use an image should have some relation to the value the customer receives from the use. RM photographers are encouraged to carefully negotiate, and spell out in detail in a license, the rights and limitations of each use. It is assumed that an honest customer will then track its usage. If the customer wants to make additional use of the same image the customer will then come back and negotiate an additional license. Is that working?

Bridgeman Studio Awards Competition

By Jim Pickerell | 278 Words | Posted 4/13/2015 | Comments
he Bridgeman Studio has launched its second annual Awards competition with a theme of  “The Great Outdoors.”

Does Constantly Adding Images To A Stock Collection Make Sense?

By Jim Pickerell | 1288 Words | Posted 4/10/2015 | Comments (6)
If you’re goal is to earn a significant portion of your livelihood from the images you produce, and you already have a significant number of the best image you know how to produce with all the agencies and distributors who represent your work, does it make sense to regularly add even more images of the same general subjects to these collections?

Pond5 Introduces Backlots and Backlots+

By Jim Pickerell | 271 Words | Posted 4/9/2015 | Comments
Pond5, unveiled two new types of video content today—Backlots and Backlots+. Provided by partner CT Image, these digital backlots allow editors to flawlessly simulate background scenery from 25 of the world’s major cities in their video productions.

Shutterstock Workshops

By Jim Pickerell | 217 Words | Posted 4/7/2015 | Comments
If you’re thinking about submitting images to Shutterstock you might want to check out the next ShutterTalk Live streaming workshop, “Preparing Your First Photo Submission,” on Thursday, April 9 at 11am EST.

Shutterstock Eliminates Daily Download Limits

By Jim Pickerell | 388 Words | Posted 4/6/2015 | Comments
Shutterstock continues to make it easier customers to get the images they need via their subscription products. Until last week customers that purchased a subscription were limited to 25 downloads a day and a maximum of 750 per month for customers in the U.S. and Canada.

Photojournalism: What Is Too Much Post-Processing?

By Jim Pickerell | 451 Words | Posted 4/3/2015 | Comments
A photojournalist’s goal should be to supply the publications they work for with the best possible image that accurately reflects what they saw. If readers are to trust newspapers and magazines they must know that the images and information provided are an accurate representation of what really happened.

EyeEm Market Opens

By Jim Pickerell | 330 Words | Posted 4/1/2015 | Comments
In August 2014 EyeEm announced that it would be introducing a “Market” aspect to its social media site. Market has finally been launched. EyeEm was established in 2011 and currently has over 13 million users who post photos taken with their cell phones and comment on each other’s work. It is unclear how many images are on the site.

Surfacing Images For Greater Revenue

By Jim Pickerell | 975 Words | Posted 3/31/2015 | Comments (3)
One of the biggest problems for stock photographers is the percent of their images in major collections that haven’t been shown to any customer for years. I suspect that most of the major distributors aren’t even tracking this figure. If I had to guess I would estimate that as many as half the thumbnails in most online collections have not been viewed by any customer in the last two years.

Scoopshot Partners With Newzulu Expanding Crowdsourced Journalism

By Jim Pickerell | 379 Words | Posted 3/31/2015 | Comments
Global crowd-sourced media platform and live-streaming company, Newzulu, and mobile photo and video crowdsourcing service Scoopshot, have partnered to collect and market citizen generated content and offer untapped revenue opportunities to brands and publishers around the world.

Alamy Contract Changes

By Jim Pickerell | 586 Words | Posted 3/30/2015 | Comments
In mid-February Alamy published changes in its standard contract that were due to go into effect April 1st (45 days later). A number of photographers, particularly in the UK, had issues with certain clauses and a lively discussion ensued on the EPUK website.

BAPLA Rights Group Survey

By Jim Pickerell | 457 Words | Posted 3/27/2015 | Comments
In preparation for the BAPLA Focus on Copyright event in London on May 14, 2015, BAPLA is surveying its membership on the standards and pricing members employ for Web, Social Media and App use.

Marcel Saba Launches Vault Archives

By Jim Pickerell | 266 Words | Posted 3/27/2015 | Comments
Vault Archives has announced its debut into the stock photography industry. The New York-based agency offers the editorial and commercial photography market high-end imagery that is tastefully curated with authentic real life moments.

Getty’s Turnaround Potential

By Jim Pickerell | 1208 Words | Posted 3/26/2015 | Comments
I’m getting more frequent requests from long/short hedge fund investors about Getty Images’ turnaround potential in 2015. Getty’s $550 million of 7 percent unsecured notes due in October 2020 are selling for approximately 50 cents on the dollar. Investors are trying to determine if that is a good price, or if they could go even lower. (Getty also has about $2 billion in additional debut.) Here’s some of what I tell them.

Is Stock Too Expensive? Must Prices Go Down?

By Jim Pickerell | 425 Words | Posted 3/24/2015 | Comments (1)
Back in the early 2000s Graphic Designers started complaining that Royalty Free stock was too expensive and began looking for less expensive ways to get the photos and illustrations they needed for their projects. That was the birth of microstock. Now Christian Toksvig, former Getty Images VP, Christian Toksvig,, thinks there is new demand for still lower prices. He has founded StockUnlimited and is offering unlimited vector downloads for $9.99 per month.

New York Times Digital Revenue

By Jim Pickerell | 109 Words | Posted 3/24/2015 | Comments
According to Meredith Kopit Levien, New York Times EVP of Advertising, speaking to OMMA SXSW in Austin, TX recently, “Last year the Times did about $180 million in digital advertising and almost that much in digital subscriptions. That puts us at a digital business that’s in the $350 million range."

Novel Expressions Looks To Fill Void

By Jim Pickerell | 168 Words | Posted 3/24/2015 | Comments
Royalty free stock image agency Novel Expression and Jenn LeBlanc of Illustrated Romance are launching the Exclusive Jenn LeBlanc for Novel Expression collection. The initial collection will feature images of male and female same sex couples in both contemporary and historical costumes.

HMH – Is $300 Per Picture A Deal?

By Jim Pickerell | 1329 Words | Posted 3/23/2015 | Comments (1)
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) has started requesting images directly from some very experienced stock photographers and offering them $300 for all-future-rights, including copyright, to any image they select.

Old Stock Agencies Never Die – Imagestate Liquidated Again

By Jim Pickerell | 198 Words | Posted 3/20/2015 | Comments (1)
Under the title “Imagestate Media Partners Limited – In Liquidation” the Joint Liquidator in the UK reported on 6 March 2015 that Imagestate had been liquidated.

MPEVImages: What’s In A Name?

By Jim Pickerell | 876 Words | Posted 3/18/2015 | Comments (1)
Bond traders are asking “If Getty Images changed its name, but had all the same content and pictures, would this have a significant impact on sales/marketing?” The reason for this question is that revenue has been declining for Getty for at least eight quarter and it is becoming increasing apparent that there is likely no way to turn the business around.

iStock Stages 10th Anniversary iStockalypse In Dubai

By Jim Pickerell | 334 Words | Posted 3/17/2015 | Comments
iStock by Getty Images will stage the UAE's first ever iStockalypse event in Dubai from 26 thru 28 March, 2015. Specifically chosen as a fitting venue to mark the 10th anniversary of iStockalypse events, iStockalypse Dubai will bring together a select group of both local and global photographers and videographers for three-days of creative shoots and visually themed talks.

Stock Photography - A Two-Sided Market

By Jim Pickerell | 2728 Words | Posted 3/16/2015 | Comments (2)
Stock photography is a two-sided market. For the most part image producers need a distributor to make potential customers aware of their work. Image buyers need distributors to make it easier for them to find what they need when they need it. The distributor needs to cover its cost of providing the service and make a profit. But the distributor must also manage the delicate balance between what customers are willing to pay and generating enough royalty for contributors to encourage them to continue to produce.

Klein Steps Down As Getty Images CEO

By Jim Pickerell | 660 Words | Posted 3/13/2015 | Comments
Jonathan Klein, Co-Founder and CEO of Getty Image, has stepped down as CEO 20 years to the day after he and Mark Getty founded the company. Klein will continue as chairman and will remain instrumental in determining strategy, direction and vision for Getty Images. As Klein transitions into his new role as Chairman the company is expected to “expand its footprint in the consumer space.”

80 Stock Photography Trends For 2015

By Jim Pickerell | 150 Words | Posted 3/13/2015 | Comments (1)
Stock Photo Secrets has put together a list of 80 Stock PhotographyTrends For 2015, In 2014 Stock Photo Secrets surveyed stock agencies and put together a list 50 trends of the kinds of imagery customers were buying. This year 16 agencies responded with the 80 most popular subjects their customers are requesting and using.

Bridgeman Images Acquires Rue des Archives

By Jim Pickerell | 407 Words | Posted 3/10/2015 | Comments
Bridgeman Images has acquired Rue des Archives, the premier French archival photo library, and expanded the company’s range of historic imagery and personalities for licensing. Rue des Archives is an exceptional resource with photography ranging from the cave paintings of Lascaux to 21st century Parisian life.

Shutterstock Contributor Earnings

By Jim Pickerell | 494 Words | Posted 3/9/2015 | Comments (1)
Shutterstock has put together a very interesting Infographic related to Contributor Earnings. Everyone engaged in stock photography -- regardless of whether they have ever licensed an image through Shutterstock, or any other microstock distributor -- should examine this Infographic carefully. It contains a lot of important insights.

Lived In Images Awarded Damages For Copyright Infringement Claims Against Content Farm

By Jim Pickerell | 320 Words | Posted 3/9/2015 | Comments
Clear Arts – ImageProtect (www.imageprotect.com) an image tracking company has successfully negotiated a six figure damages settlement for copyright infringement of images belonging to Lived In Images, Inc. against Buzzle.com, an online content farm. Lived In Images, Inc., is a stock photo archive specializing in home, garden, and interior design pictures.

Microstock Market Size

By Jim Pickerell | 1324 Words | Posted 3/6/2015 | Comments
The Microstock segment of the stock photography business has grown rapidly over the last few years. I estimate that in 2014 gross microstock revenue, worldwide, was approximately $850 million. Sales by the Big Four distributors – Shutterstock, iStock, Fotolia and Dreamstime – represented about 85% of this total.

Pearson Education Sourcing Images Through Scoopshot

By Jim Pickerell | 323 Words | Posted 3/6/2015 | Comments
Scoopshot, the leading mobile platform for photo and video crowdsourcing, has partnered with Pearson. In an effort to reach out and engage millennials, Pearson is using Scoopshot to crowdsource photos from around the world to illustrate its publications.

Stock Footage Business At $550 Million Annually

By Jim Pickerell | 567 Words | Posted 3/5/2015 | Comments
The third ACSIL Global Survey of Stock Footage Companies (AGS3) reports a rapidly growing business for companies who have set up dedicated units to market and sell footage. The $550 million global business in 2014 represents a 40% increase in the three years since 2011 when the market was estimated at $394 million.

Program Info For March 26 Visual Media Expo In Boston

By Jim Pickerell | 386 Words | Posted 3/5/2015 | Comments
On Thursday, March 26 Boston will, for the first time, host Visual Connections’ spring visual media expo at the modern and accessible Joseph B. Martin Conference Center at Harvard Medical School.

Promoting iStock: Will This Generate New Business?

By Jim Pickerell | 186 Words | Posted 3/4/2015 | Comments
Almost every day another blog publishes a story ridiculing and putting down stock photography. They highlight images found on some of the major stock web sites that no one in their right mind would ever want use, except as a joke. Some examples can be found here.

Are Crowdsourced Photos Really The Wave Of The Future?

By Jim Pickerell | 456 Words | Posted 3/2/2015 | Comments (1)
A new mobile-oriented, crowdsourced photography service called Twenty20 was launched recently. They claim to have the world’s largest crowdsourced commercial image catalog with 45 million imagers from 250,000 photographers based in 154 countries.

Getty’s Midstock Decline

By Jim Pickerell | 1007 Words | Posted 2/26/2015 | Comments (3)
On February 24th at an invitation-only conference hosted in Miami by JPMorgan Chase & Co. Getty Images executives told investors that midstock revenue had declined 15% in Q4 2014 compared to Q4 2013. This decline was on top of a 9.8% decline in Q3 2014 compared to a year earlier. Getty’s midstock division includes iStock, Thinkstock and Photos.com.

Correction: CEPIC Awards Competition

By Jim Pickerell | 51 Words | Posted 2/24/2015 | Comments
The information supplied yesterday in our story CEPIC Stock Photography Awards Competition Opens was incorrect. See the revised story here. Instead of there being winners in six different categories of competition there will be a single category of Creative Stock and monetary prizes given to the First, Second and Third place winners.

AP and NFL Extend Exclusive Photo Licensing Deal

By Jim Pickerell | 303 Words | Posted 2/24/2015 | Comments
The Associated Press and the National Football League today extended their commercial photo agreement, solidifying the AP’s status as the worldwide commercial licensing agent of the NFL through the 2017 season.

CEPIC Stock Photography Awards Competition Opens

By Jim Pickerell | 297 Words | Posted 2/23/2015 | Comments
CEPIC, in conjunction with East News Photo Agency, has launched the first edition of the CEPIC Stock Photography Awards competition with a 3,000 Euro prize and a title of CEPIC Stock Photographer of the Year.

Come Alive Images Offers Stock Buyers Animated GIFs

By Jim Pickerell | 698 Words | Posted 2/23/2015 | Comments
Jerry Tavin and Joe Panker launched Come Alive Images. This site is dedicated to the commercial potential of GIFs—motion graphics, cinemagraphs, animated photography, looping illustrations and animation, 3D stereo photography and photo/video hybrids.

Getty’s Lean In Collection: One Year Later

By Jim Pickerell | 570 Words | Posted 2/23/2015 | Comments (1)
Getty Images, the world’s leader in visual communication, and LeanIn.Org, the women’s non-profit founded by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, are celebrating one year of partnership with the anniversary of the Getty Images Lean In Collection – a curation of images devoted to the powerful depiction of women, girls and the communities who support them. Images from the collection have been licensed in over 65 countries, including Qatar, Kuwait and Korea, with sales doubling since the collection’s inception in February, 2014.

StockFood and PhotoCuisine Sign Global Partnership

By Jim Pickerell | 483 Words | Posted 2/20/2015 | Comments
StockFood and PhotoCuisine, the world’s two largest agencies for food photography, have signed a global partnership agreement. The two companies, widely recognized as market leaders in high-end culinary photography, will join forces from March 1st 2015.
 

Did Getty's Midstock Strategy Last September Work?

By Jim Pickerell | 929 Words | Posted 2/18/2015 | Comments
I understand that Getty Images won’t be releasing Q4 2014 information to bond traders until April. Investors are anxiously awaiting the results and hoping Getty has been able to turn around its Midstock division (iStock, Thinkstock and Photos.com) in the first full quarter since its dramatic change in pricing strategy last September.

Geoff Tompkinson: Career Of A Timelapse Photographer

By Jim Pickerell | 1644 Words | Posted 2/17/2015 | Comments (1)
Recently, I asked Geoff Tompkinson to share a little about his 35-year career in stock photography and where he thinks the business is headed. Before reading his story I suggest you take a look at Geoff’s amazing work – still photography, timelapse and hyperlapse  -- and then begin reading.

Aurora PremiumRF

By Jim Pickerell | 811 Words | Posted 2/16/2015 | Comments
Aurora Photos has launched a highly curated Premium RF collection that places some of the company’s best images into a simple and easy to understand pricing model. The $250 for a small: 3mb/72 dpi image file and $500 for a 50mb/300 dpi file is a direct copy of the pricing used by Shutterstock for its Offset.com collection.

Shutterstock Reports $91.4 Million For Q4 2014

By Jim Pickerell | 1547 Words | Posted 2/13/2015 | Comments
Shutterstock has reported $91.2 million in revenue for Q4 2014, a 34% increase over Q4 2013. There were 33.5 million downloads for the quarter. About 28 percent of revenue for the quarter was paid out to contributors in royalties. The average price per download was $2.68 up from $2.65 in the previous quarter and a 10% increase compared to Q4 2013. There were 46.8 million images in the collection at the end of 2014 plus 2 million video clips. At the end of the quarter the company had 513 employees worldwide.

Explosion Of Photographs

By Jim Pickerell | 227 Words | Posted 2/12/2015 | Comments (1)
The oldest photo on record is of a man on a Paris street getting his shoes shined. It was taken in 1838. In the first 170 years of photography up to the year 2000 it is estimated that 85 billion photos were taken. In 2014 alone, thanks to selfies, almost 1 trillion photos were taken and the number is expected to grow in 2015.

The Cost Of Acquiring New Customers

By Jim Pickerell | 232 Words | Posted 2/11/2015 | Comments
Getting new customers can be difficult. During Q3 2014 Shutterstock spent about 25% of its gross revenue on sales and marketing. At that rate sales and marketing costs for all of 2014 could be in the range of $80 million.

Searchmyimages.com: Find Unauthorized Uses

By Jim Pickerell | 277 Words | Posted 2/10/2015 | Comments
Photographers with a limited number of images that they market directly from a single online site may want to check out the Australian company Searchmyimages.com. For a reasonable monthly fee photographers can upload their images to this site. Searchmyimages will then constantly search the web for these images and informs the photographer when and where uses are found.

Is There A Drone In Your Future?

By Jim Pickerell | 393 Words | Posted 2/9/2015 | Comments
More and more photographers are looking to drones as a cheap way to do aerial photography and a look at subjects from new perspectives. But it is entirely possible that there will be severe restrictions on the private use of drones – at least in the U.S.

Photojournalism Contest For Asia Photos: $10,500 In Cash Prizes

By Jim Pickerell | 285 Words | Posted 2/5/2015 | Comments
Popular photo services platform LightRocket is accepting submissions for a photojournalism competition with prizes worth US$10,500, including US$4,000 for the Photographer of the Year.

CEPIC: Early Registration Discounts To Close

By Jim Pickerell | 141 Words | Posted 2/5/2015 | Comments
Early-bird registration discounts for the CEPIC Congress 2015 in Warsaw, Poland will end on February 8, 2015. Always a highlight of the year for stock photo distributors, the Congress itself will take place at the 5-star Sofitel Warsaw Victoria Hotel beginning on June 3, 2015 and continuing through June 6th.

mauritius images CEO Hans-Jörg Zwez Retires

By Jim Pickerell | 141 Words | Posted 2/5/2015 | Comments
After 44 years as owner and CEO of mauritius images GmbH Hans-Jörg Zwez has retired. Stefan Ploghaus has taken over as new owner and CEO of the photo agency.  The purchase price was not disclosed.

More Thoughts On Adobe/Fotolia

By Jim Pickerell | 755 Words | Posted 2/2/2015 | Comments
After reading “If I were Adobe” Zeke Koch wrote, “I don’t totally get it. Why do you think we should avoid adding stock to Creative Cloud subscriptions?” I probably didn’t make my arguments clear. The following may help.

age fotostock Redesigns Website

By Jim Pickerell | 490 Words | Posted 2/2/2015 | Comments
age fotostock, a stock photography agency based in Spain with offices in Barcelona, Madrid, New York, and Paris, launched a new look on their website this week.

If I Were Adobe

By Jim Pickerell | 507 Words | Posted 1/30/2015 | Comments
Adobe’s acquisition of Fotolia is expected to close in February (second half of Adobe’s fiscal Q1 2015). Assuming everything goes well the next question on the minds of everyone in the stock photo industry is what will Adobe do with Fotolia and how will that affect the rest of the players.

Christina Vaughn New CEO Of CueSongs

By Jim Pickerell | 452 Words | Posted 1/30/2015 | Comments
CueSongs, the one-stop music licensing hub for online and digital media, is delighted to announce Christina Vaughan is taking up the position of CEO from the 1st of February. Christina will remain as Chairman of Image Source but will relinquish day to day operations of the business to Anthony Harris, who becomes Image Source’s CEO.

Dramatic Royalty Increase At VideoBlocks Marketplace

By Jim Pickerell | 644 Words | Posted 1/29/2015 | Comments
Image creators always want a higher royalty. How’s 100% of what the customer pays? At Videoblocks Marketplace that’s what contributor will receive when their HD and 4K video clips are used. Too good to be true? Read on.

Want To Sell More Pictures? Look Down!

By Jim Pickerell | 374 Words | Posted 1/26/2015 | Comments
Based on the searches they have been getting in the last few months Shutterstock has just released a new infographic on 2015 Creative Trends in the demand for still images, illustration and video clips. One of the interesting trends for photographers is that searches for “top view” have increased 66% in the past year.

Sports Illustrated Lays Off All Staff Photographers

By Jim Pickerell | 233 Words | Posted 1/26/2015 | Comments
Last week Sports Illustrated, one of the most photo oriented magazines in the world, laid off all six of its staff photographers. They included Robert Beck, Simon Bruty, Bill Frakes, David Klutho, John McDonough, and Al Tielemans. In the future all images in SI will be shot by freelancers, or the wire services.

Who Owns The Rights?

By Jim Pickerell | 747 Words | Posted 1/23/2015 | Comments (3)
Have you gotten tired of reading all the “terms and conditions” on the social media sites? Or have you just given up and assumed they are OK. If you really read (and understand) all the terms on these sites is there any time left to engage on the sites? Is there any time left to take pictures?

Pond5 Launches the Public Domain Project

By Jim Pickerell | 253 Words | Posted 1/22/2015 | Comments
Pond5 has announced today the launch of the Pond5 Public Domain Project, ( the first library of free public domain content designed specifically for media makers. The initial collection includes 10,000 video clips, 65,000 photos, thousands of sound recordings, and hundreds of 3D models.

Visual Connection To Stage Boston Visual Media Expo

By Jim Pickerell | 196 Words | Posted 1/22/2015 | Comments
Visual Connections, best known for its annual expo in New York, has added Boston to its schedule with a marketing event for stock image/footage agencies on Thursday, March 26th at the Joseph B. Martin Conference Center at Harvard Medical School. The Boston Visual Media Expo will follow a similar format to previous popular and successful events in Chicago and Toronto.

Dreamstime Does Deal For Google Docs Templates

By Jim Pickerell | 437 Words | Posted 1/20/2015 | Comments
Dreamstime has been selected as a “beta provider of stock photos for Google display ads.” According to the explanation on the company’s online forum contributors will be paid roughly $2 per image selected during the “beta” license period which is 12 months.

The Power Of Buyers Who Are Also Sellers

By Jim Pickerell | 731 Words | Posted 1/19/2015 | Comments
In the next year image creators who are also image buyers may determine the future of stock photography. One-third or more of the images purchased may be bought by people who are also trying to sell their images. As buyers they want the lowest possible price. With their seller hat on they want the highest possible price.

Is Shutterstock Ready To Take On Getty In The Editorial Space?

By Jim Pickerell | 324 Words | Posted 1/16/2015 | Comments
Yesterday, Shutterstock paid $33 million in cash to acquire London-based Rex Features.  
In the technology section of its website Crain’s New York Business says, “The purchase of Rex puts Shutterstock in direct competition with Getty Images for a share of the editorial stock photography market, and ends long-held speculation that Shutterstock was looking to knock off its London rival.”

Shutterstock Expands Editorial And Music Offerings

By Jim Pickerell | 459 Words | Posted 1/15/2015 | Comments
Shutterstock has announced that it is expanding its editorial and music services businesses with the acquisition of two companies -- Rex Features and PremiumBeat.

Will Adobe Introduce An Image Search Tool To Its 3.4 Million Customers

By Jim Pickerell | 485 Words | Posted 1/14/2015 | Comments (1)
Will Adobe offer a tool that makes it possible for its Illustrator and InDesign customers to discover if the images they find on microstock sites (particularly Shutterstock or iStock) are also available at Fotolia where they can be purchased for much less?

Young Photographers Alliance Announces Resignation of President and Treasurer

By Jim Pickerell | 404 Words | Posted 1/14/2015 | Comments
President Bob Hendriks and Treasurer Deborah Free have quietly announced resignation from their Young Photographer’s Alliance (YPA) positions as of December 31st 2014.

Is Image On Demand Pricing About To Decline?

By Jim Pickerell | 735 Words | Posted 1/13/2015 | Comments
When Adobe takes over Fotolia will Shutterstock and iStock be forced to lower their Image On Demand (IOD) prices? Basically, since Getty lowered iStock prices last September non-exclusives images on iStock and Shutterstock images are priced about the same – roughly $10 per image for any file size. However, Fotolia images are priced 25% to 60% lower than Shutterstock on a yearly basis, and 60% to 75% lower if the customer purchases a Fotolia image pack on a monthly basis.

Where Do Microstock Producers Come From?

By Jim Pickerell | 5140 Words | Posted 1/12/2015 | Comments
After last week, readers probably feel they have more information about iStock than they ever wanted to know. But an analysis of where contributors who produce microstock images live provides some additional insights into the future of stock photography. I promise this will be the last analysis of iStock data until July.

Do More Images Generate A Proportionate Increase In Downloads?

By Jim Pickerell | 5948 Words | Posted 1/9/2015 | Comments (2)
Most stock contributors want to believe that if they continue to produce more and better images more of their work will be downloaded (purchased by customers), and they will make more money. That’s not the way it seems to have worked at iStock in the last two years.

Downloads Of Leading iStock Contributors

By Jim Pickerell | 5663 Words | Posted 1/7/2015 | Comments
Since 2009 I have been tracking sales of some of iStock’s leading contributors and beginning in 2012 I have tracked 430 of them on a semi-annual basis. While 430 is only a small percentage of iStock’s total contributors which may number over 100,000 at the end of 2014 this small group had a combined total of over 54,982,100 image downloads in their careers with iStock. I believe this is about one-third of total iStock downloads since the company’s founding in 2002. Thus, the combined experience of this group is significant.

iStock Downloads Down Significantly In 2014

By Jim Pickerell | 773 Words | Posted 1/5/2015 | Comments (1)
Getty’s simplification and dramatic lowering of iStock prices in September in an effort to better complete with Shutterstock doesn’t seem to be working. The number of images downloaded in the last half of 2014 for 431 of iStock’s top producers was down about 34% compared to the first half of 2014.

Profit/Loss Calculations For Stock Photography

By Jim Pickerell | 1202 Words | Posted 1/2/2015 | Comments (4)
Should the price paid to use a photo cover the cost to produce it? Most stock photographers recognize it is highly unlikely that they will regularly recover the cost of producing an image from a single sale. The profit and loss calculation is much more complicated.

ImageBrief’s Photographer Search

By Jim Pickerell | 823 Words | Posted 12/30/2014 | Comments
Early in December ImageBrief introduced a Photographer Search feature. It’s a great idea and something photographers need, but it still needs a little work. This story identifies some of the problem areas and offers suggestions that make "Photographer Search" more user friendly.

The Future of Advertising

By Jim Pickerell | 1916 Words | Posted 12/29/2014 | Comments (5)
Before reading this colloquy between Paul Melcher and myself the reader should review my story on “Authentic And Real Images” and all the comments that started our whole conversation. Paul makes some excellent points. To a large extent I agree with his entire analysis. There is about to be some dramatic shifts in the way advertising is delivered. These stories look at some of the implications for photographers.

Authentic and Real Images

By Jim Pickerell | 933 Words | Posted 12/23/2014 | Comments (4)
The not so new buzzwords in stock photography are “Authentic” and “Real.” In theory, a photo can’t be authentic or real unless it is captured as a grab shot of something that happened in front of you as you move through life. Many would like for you to believe that if the image is staged in any way by a professional it can’t be authentic or real, no matter how hard the professional tries to make it look that way.

Shutterstock Tribute To Great Film Directors

By Jim Pickerell | 56 Words | Posted 12/23/2014 | Comments
Shutterstock has put together a video tribute to 5 great movie directors -- Wes Anderson, Quentin Tarantino, David Fincher, Alfonso Cuaron and Terrence Malick – using only clips from their collection of stock video footage.

U.S. Copyright Office Updates Practices

By Jim Pickerell | 258 Words | Posted 12/23/2014 | Comments
The Copyright Office has released the official 1,288 page version of the Compendium of U.S. Copyright Office Practices, Third Edition (the “Third Edition”). It is available on the Office’s website at http://copyright.gov/comp3/.

2014 Stories You May Have Missed

By Jim Pickerell | 906 Words | Posted 12/19/2014 | Comments (1)
For many the end of the year is a time to review past experiences and consider whether it makes sense to chart a new course in the year ahead. Stock photography has changed dramatically for professional image creators in the past few years and in general it looks like it will continue on a downhill slope. The following are links to several stories we’ve published in the last year that provide some prospective on where the business is headed. New readers, or long-term subscribers who might have missed some of what we published, may want to check out some of these stories.

2015: Interesting Year Ahead For Stock Photography

By Jim Pickerell | 1228 Words | Posted 12/18/2014 | Comments
It seems likely that we will see some major shifts in the stock photography business as the three major players – Getty Images, Shutterstock and Adobe/Fotolia – jockey for position in a market that is experiencing very little, if any growth. At the end of 2014 Getty’s total revenue will be somewhere around $870 million, but $260 of that will be editorial. Shutterstocks will be about $328 million and I estimate Fotolia’s at somewhere in the range of $110 million.

Panoramic Images Awarded $403,500 For Copyright Infringement

By Jim Pickerell | 406 Words | Posted 12/17/2014 | Comments (2)
Panoramic Images has been awarded $403,500 in a copyright infringement case against educational publisher John Wiley & Sons. The publisher was found to have used 6 images outside the scope of the license agreement. The case was heard before a jury in the Federal District Court the Northern District of Illinois.

Moody’s Downgrades Getty Debt From Stable To Negative

By Jim Pickerell | 371 Words | Posted 12/16/2014 | Comments
Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") changed the rating outlook of Getty Images, Inc. to negative from stable due to continuing declines in Midstock revenue. Moody's also revised its forecast indicating very high leverage over the next 12 months with reduced free cash flow. Moody's affirmed the B3 Corporate Family Rating, B3-PD Probability of Default Rating.  

Finding An Accurate Picture Of Africa

By Margi Sherad | 786 Words | Posted 12/15/2014 | Comments
Margi Sheard of the Greatstock (www.greatstock.co.za) agency in South Africa recently published a story that raised an important issue about the world’s perception of Africa and the African people. The news media’s focus on tragedy and problems often provides an inaccurate picture of the real Africa, but it raises the issue of whether there is any way for photographers to do more to show the world the real Africa of the 21st century.

Adobe To Acquire Fotolia

By Jim Pickerell | 610 Words | Posted 12/12/2014 | Comments
Adobe has announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire privately-held Fotolia for approximately $800 million in cash. Fotolia will be integrated into Adobe Creative Cloud, providing current and future Creative Cloud members with the ability to access and purchase over 34 million images and videos.

$6.5 million Photo Of Antelope Canyon

By Jim Pickerell | 174 Words | Posted 12/12/2014 | Comments (1)
Peter Lik, Australian fine art photographer of landscapes, recently sold one of his images  entitled “Ghost” for $6.5 million, the highest price ever paid for a single image. To see the photo of the very popular Antelope Canyon, Arizona check out PetaPixel.

Will Getty Sell Editorial Division?

By Jim Pickerell | 351 Words | Posted 12/11/2014 | Comments
There are widespread rumors that, in an effort to get out from under some of its crushing debt, Getty hopes to sell its Editorial Division early in 2015. It has been reported that Q3 2014 sales for this segment of their business was about $65 million up 21% year-on-year. Editorial represents about 30% of the company’s gross revenue.

New Features Added To Alamy’s Stockimo App

By Jim Pickerell | 418 Words | Posted 12/10/2014 | Comments
Alamy has added new features to its successful mobile app Stockimo that was launched last February. To date more than 180,000 images have been submitted through the app and 99,000 have been accepted for marketing. These images can be found among the almost 53 million images on Alamy.com using the keyword “Stockimo.”

FOAP Raises $2.3 Million

By Jim Pickerell | 339 Words | Posted 12/9/2014 | Comments
The crowdsourcing site FOAP has raised a fresh $2.3 million in funding from some interesting names like CNN Worldwide President, Jeff Zucker; CEO and Co-Founder of VaynerMedia, Gary Vaynerchuk; Upshot Chairman and Protagonist LLC Partner, Jordan Rednor; and CEO of Delivery Hero, Niklas Ostberg, among others. The company raised another $1.5 million in August. Total funding now stands at roughly $5 million but they’re not quite ready to call this a Series A yet.

More Changes At iStock

By Jim Pickerell | 598 Words | Posted 12/5/2014 | Comments
iStock contributors have been advised that on January 15, 2014, the accounting operations of Getty Images and iStock will be combined into one unified system. Since Getty acquired iStock in February 2006 the two brands have been operated as separate businesses with separate accounting departments.

Pricing For Profit

By John Harrington | 576 Words | Posted 12/4/2014 | Comments (1)
If your are a photographer who works hard, but has trouble earning much of a profit then you need to read John Harrington's advice. John is an award-winning Washington, DC based photographer who covers the world of politics as well as doing a wide range of commercial assignments. His success is due in no small part to his excellent business skills.

Hacking At Shutterstock

By Jim Pickerell | 591 Words | Posted 12/3/2014 | Comments
On Monday I mentioned several search innovations that Shutterstock is testing at Shutterstock/Labs. Most of these ideas were developed during company wide hackathons.

What’s A Book Cover Worth?

By Jim Pickerell | 86 Words | Posted 12/3/2014 | Comments (3)
You'll never guess what attendees at the annual Self-Publishing in the Digital Age conference in London were told to pay for a photo that would attract readers and help sell their book. You'll be surprised. Check out this story.

Creative Commons Ripoff Enriches Flickr And Microsoft

By Jim Pickerell | 1029 Words | Posted 12/2/2014 | Comments
Many photographers who thought they were being good Net Citizens when they made their images available with Creative Commons Licenses and allowed anyone to use the images for free have recently received some nasty shocks. Microsoft and Flickr have decided to use those images to enrich themselves. Forget about any benefit to the creator.

Improving Search

By Jim Pickerell | 884 Words | Posted 12/1/2014 | Comments
One of the biggest problems in the stock photo business is search. As the most popular search engines gobble up more and more images it has become harder and harder for clients to find the best image for their projects. No buyer has the time to review even a fraction of the returns from most keyword searches.

Scoopshot Offers Image Embed With IAN

By Jim Pickerell | 670 Words | Posted 11/26/2014 | Comments
Scoopshot is the latest to jump on the embed bandwagon. When users find an image they want to use they have the option of paying the listed price for a download or “Use For Free.” Get more information about how it works.

Lattice: New PhotoShelter Initiative

By Jim Pickerell | 1150 Words | Posted 11/25/2014 | Comments
Recently, Photoshelter launched Lattice, a Pinterest like curation and discovery experience designed to show off the best of more than 200,000,000 images from the 80,000 pro photographers that use PhotoShelter. Currently “boards” are created by in-house staff and “invited curators.”  The vision is that eventually anyone will be available to create boards. Photographers can recommend certain of their best images for addition to boards, but for right now they cannot add images to boards directly.

George Sinclair Dies

By Jim Pickerell | 315 Words | Posted 11/25/2014 | Comments (2)
Following a brief illness George Sinclair, founder and executive director of Universal Images Group, Ltd. died from cardiac arrest on Thursday November 20, 2014, at 9:30pm in London.

6 Reasons For No Revenue Growth

By Jim Pickerell | 1155 Words | Posted 11/20/2014 | Comments (2)
I am constantly challenged on why I think there is likely to be little or no revenue growth in the stock photo business. Many point out that clearly there is a huge explosion in the use of imagery online. Therefore, why won’t that be reflected in the growth of stock photo revenue? They also point to Shutterstock’s consistent 40% growth per year over for the last three years. Here are 6 reasons why industry revenue growth is and will continue to be in the very low single digits, until it finally turns negative.

Bigstock Partners With WIX Website Builder

By Jim Pickerell | 349 Words | Posted 11/20/2014 | Comments
Shutterstock has announced a partnership between WIX and its Bigstock brand. Wix is a website creation tool designed for small businesses with 56 million users in 190 countries. Wix offers a “drag n' drop website building platform with HTML5 capabilities, 100s of designer made templates, top grade hosting, innovative Apps and tons of features for free.”

Drone Photography And Where It’s Headed

By Jim Pickerell | 196 Words | Posted 11/18/2014 | Comments (1)
At PhotoPlusExpo in New York last month there was tremendous interest among videographers and photographers in the DJI Phantom 2 Vision Quadcopter with Integrated FPV Camera. This piece of equipment seems to offer great potential for a host of commercial photography uses. But, there are two major issues with the use of drones for photography – laws regarding aircraft safety and personal privacy. The air safety rules come under the jurisdiction of the FAA. Privacy laws are traditionally state laws.

What Are The Most Popular People Images?

By Jim Pickerell | 4316 Words | Posted 11/14/2014 | Comments
Recently Getty Images has started allowing its customers to organize their search returns by the “Most Popular” images as well as the default “Best Match” that has been the only option for years. I thought it would be interesting to see which photographers that shoot people produce the work that is in greatest demand at Getty images. I looked at the first 500 images returned when a customer does a search for “People” and narrowed the search to “Most Popular,” “RF only” and only photography.

ImageBrief: The RF vs RM Question

By Jim Pickerell | 1139 Words | Posted 11/12/2014 | Comments
ImageBrief has updated its rules regarding RF and provided a long explanation here.  Evidentally, many ImageBrief (IB) contributors have been asking “Why is ImageBrief adding so many RF briefs?” IB’s answer is, “We’re responding to client demands and listening to the market.”

Is Copyright Benefiting Image Creators?

By Jim Pickerell | 1435 Words | Posted 11/11/2014 | Comments (2)
A couple weeks ago I was talking with a well known picture researcher. He said, “I wish all these copyright cases were over!” He pointed out that every time someone files a copyright suit he gets a new list of people whose images he can’t use when searching for images for a new project. Is there some way to protect your rights and still license a reasonable number of new images?

Shutterstock Reports $83.7 Million For Q3 2014

By Jim Pickerell | 1125 Words | Posted 11/7/2014 | Comments (2)
Shutterstock has reported $83.7 million in revenue and total downloads of 31.2 million for Q3 2014. About 30 percent of the revenue was paid out to contributors in royalties. At the end of the quarter the company had 491 employees worldwide. The average price per download was $2.65 up from $2.35 in the previous quarter and an 13% increase compared to Q2 2013. This increase in the average price was due primarily to a growing number of Enterprise and Video sales.

Shutterstock Introduces Sequence For Video Editors

By Jim Pickerell | 296 Words | Posted 11/6/2014 | Comments
Shutterstock, Inc. has introduced Sequence, an in-browser editing tool designed to provide an easy way for anyone to create and quickly share videos with colleagues and clients. Sequence allows users to seamlessly integrate their own footage and music with Shutterstock’s collection of more than 2 million high-quality video clips and music tracks to spark inspiration and bring their vision to life.

Advertising Trends In 2014

By Jim Pickerell | 433 Words | Posted 11/6/2014 | Comments
According to eMarketer’s 2014 Global Media Intelligence Report the revenue generated from global ad spend in 2014 is expected to be $545.24 billion. While total ad spending is expected to increase 5.7% compared to 2013, the percentage of this total spent for newspaper and magazine advertising continues to decline compared to the previous year while the percentage spent on digital will rise dramatically.

Pricing Images For Educational Use

By Jim Pickerell | 838 Words | Posted 11/5/2014 | Comments
Stock photo sellers need to join together through their trade associations and stop licensing rights to their images to educational publisher for the use in online products until publishers agree to a new compensation strategy for such products. Historically, the licensing of photo uses for textbooks and educational materials has been treated in much the same way as the licensing for magazines and newspapers. That needs to change.

Improving The RF Option

By Jim Pickerell | 1116 Words | Posted 11/5/2014 | Comments
There is a segment of the photographic community that insists on arguing that in order to get more reasonable prices for image use we must eliminate RF. Forget it; it’s impossible; it won’t happen. But there are other options.

New Strategy For RM Licensors

By Jim Pickerell | 541 Words | Posted 11/4/2014 | Comments (1)
Are more and more of your customers asking for RF licensed because they must have the flexibility to use the image in any way that develops and for an unlimited period of time? Hans Halberstadt of MilitaryStockPhoto used to dismiss inquiries for RF licenses out of hand, but in recent years has found that many of his ad agency customers insist on the flexibility of an RF licenses.

Updating The U.S. Copyright Law

By Jim Pickerell | 278 Words | Posted 10/30/2014 | Comments
Register of Copyrights Maria A. Pallante has released a public draft of the Compendium of U.S. Copyright Office Practices, Third Edition (the “Third Edition”). This is expected to be the first major revision of the law in more than two decades.  The draft presents more than 1200 pages of administrative practices and sets the stage for a number of long-term improvements in registration and recordation policy.

Footage.net Adds Clip Sharing Capabilities

By Jim Pickerell | 240 Words | Posted 10/30/2014 | Comments
Footage.net has added a new clipbin sharing capability to its online stock footage search platform. The newly released feature allows users to share clipbins via email, streamlining the review and evaluation of stock footage screening clips and supporting greater collaboration.

Dealing With An “All Rights” Request

By Jim Pickerell | 557 Words | Posted 10/28/2014 | Comments (11)
In today's world most editorial or marketing pieces can be delivered in a variety of different ways over a long period of time. Customers licensing rights to photos don’t want to take the risk that plans will change and somehow an image will be used beyond a narrow and specific RM license. Consequently they often ask for "all-rights" to use the image. Here are some thoughts on how to deal with such requests and still hang onto the customer.

Dreamstime App Brings In Thousands Of Images

By Jim Pickerell | 179 Words | Posted 10/28/2014 | Comments
Dreamstime, Inc. is experiencing massive growth via their newly released app, Dreamstime Companion  launched in July on iOS and Google Play. The app allows smartphone users to access the Dreamstime community and upload their mobile photos via their mobile devices. In about three months approximately 30,000 mobile images have been added to Dreamstime’s 25 million image collection.

Imgur.com Sued For Failing To Respond To DMCA Request

By Jim Pickerell | 228 Words | Posted 10/27/2014 | Comments
Seattle photographer Christopher Boffoli has sued the popular image-sharing site for failing to remove his images after he sent the site proper DMCA notice.

Alamy Opens New Office In Australia

By Jim Pickerell | 153 Words | Posted 10/27/2014 | Comments
Alamy has announced the opening of its first office in Australia in order to support strong growth across Australia and New Zealand.

Advertising Uses 2.0

By Jim Pickerell | 969 Words | Posted 10/24/2014 | Comments
In the olden days (20th Century) when someone wanted to promote a product of service they placed an ad (that usually included a photo) in a magazine, newspaper or on TV. Many photographers were paid substantial fees for the use of their photos in these ads. Now the future of advertising may be in social media and embedding images. See here for how this could dramatically change the market.

GDUSA Stock Survey

By Jim Pickerell | 452 Words | Posted 10/24/2014 | Comments
The results of the annual GDUSA Stock Survey of graphic designers in the U.S. is now available online. For several years nearly every graphic designers has answered that they use stock sometime during the year, but this year, for the first time, two-thirds of those answering the survey use stock more than 20 times a year and one-third use stock imagery more than 100 times a years.

Is Embedding The Future?

By Jim Pickerell | 632 Words | Posted 10/23/2014 | Comments
One of the most interesting panels at the Digital Media Licensing Association (DMLA formerly known as PACA) annual conference in New York this week was on “Opening New Markets Through Image Embedding.” Back in March Getty Images launched its Image Embed Tool and made 35 million images available for free embedding on social media sites. That number has now jumped to about 50 million.

ASMP Board Selects Tom Kennedy As Executive Director

By Jim Pickerell | 383 Words | Posted 10/21/2014 | Comments
The Board of Directors of the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) has announced the selection of Thomas R. Kennedy as the Society's Executive Director, effective January 1, 2015. Kennedy is an internationally known visual communicator with extensive experience in print and online journalism.

More On New UK Copyright Laws

By Jim Pickerell | 540 Words | Posted 10/17/2014 | Comments (1)
Yesterday, I made an attempt to explain what is happening in the UK with regard to making it easier for consumer to use images that are truly “orphaned,” or if it is just difficult to find the name of and locate the creator. (See story) Today, I had the following exchange of emails with Andrea Stern, Director of MOCA: Ministry of Copyright Cultural Creators’ Assets in the UK.

New UK Copyright Laws Take Effect

By Jim Pickerell | 640 Words | Posted 10/16/2014 | Comments
As of October 1, 2014 authorized legal entities in the UK will be able to collect payments for the use of your photographs even if you are not a member of the organization. This is known as Extended Collective Licensing (ECL).

Textbook Prices Climbing, But Not Image Use Fees

By Jim Pickerell | 826 Words | Posted 10/15/2014 | Comments (1)
For those licensing images to textbooks National Public Radio published an interesting report recently that is worth a listen. It was pointed out that prices for college textbooks are often over $300 and climbing faster than the cost of food, clothing, cars and even health care.

Exclusive Licenses Of Rights Managed Images

By Jim Pickerell | 804 Words | Posted 10/14/2014 | Comments (1)
One of the arguments for licensing images as Rights Managed is that only then can they be licensed for Exclusive uses because all the uses of the images are controlled and limited. With Royalty Free customers can continue to use the images they acquire in unspecified ways long after initially licensed with very few limitations.

Footage Marketplace USA’14

By Jim Pickerell | 192 Words | Posted 10/14/2014 | Comments
The Footage Marketplace is signing up exhibitors for footageMarketplace USA’14 that will be held at the Art Directors Club in New York on November 19, 2014. The event will start at 11:00 am and continue until 7:30 pm.

Eleven-Year Trends for RM and RF Sales

By Jim Pickerell | 1281 Words | Posted 10/13/2014 | Comments
Using numbers from Getty Images it is interesting to look back at the RM and RF unit sales and revenue trends over the last decade. Between 2003 and 2007 when Getty was a public company they provided investors with very precise gross revenue and average price per image figures. This made it possible to make a reasonable estimate of the number of images licensed in each category.

Footage.net Deploys Solr Search Engine

By Jim Pickerell | 315 Words | Posted 10/9/2014 | Comments
Footage.net has adopted Solr search technology to power its online stock footage search and screening platform. The newly deployed search engine allows Footage.net to better manage huge datasets, organize diverse metadata fields, perform a vast number of simultaneous searches and filter search results dynamically. It's also extremely fast, significantly expediting the footage search and discovery process for Footage.net's global user base.

Stop! Can An Image Of That Subject Be Licensed?

By Jim Pickerell | 456 Words | Posted 10/8/2014 | Comments (3)
Did you know that it is illegal to license for commercial use pictures of hundreds of the most popular, beautiful and interesting venues around the world? In many cases it is also illegal to use such pictures for editorial purposes.

Press Release Use Of Images

By Jim Pickerell | 624 Words | Posted 10/7/2014 | Comments
Recently, Tyler Olson discovered by searching Google that one of his images (http://netropolitanclub.com/) had been used on over 1,640 web sites. However, all these uses were not the result of multiple sales, but of a single sale to the Netropolitan Club.

Rise of Illustration: Decline of Photography

By Jim Pickerell | 293 Words | Posted 10/7/2014 | Comments
Customers looking for a visual solution are turning more and more to illustration and seeking photography less and less. This does not mean that the use of photography is disappearing, but for photographers it is worrying trend. Photographers should recognize that the overall the demand for photographs, particularly for use in advertising and marketing is declining relative to the use of illustration.

Grant Heilman Wins Infringement Case Against McGraw-Hill Education

By Jim Pickerell | 308 Words | Posted 10/3/2014 | Comments
In the case of Grant Heilman Photography, Inc. vs. McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. before Judge Michael M. Baylson in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania a jury has found in favor of Grant Heilman and awarded them the amount of $127,087 for the unauthorized use of a total of 53 images.

Using Owned Photos To Promote A Brand

By Jim Pickerell | 336 Words | Posted 10/3/2014 | Comments
In his Kaptur blog last week Paul Melcher pointed out that in the near future brands may want to wholly own the photography they produce so they can then give it away just as Apple did with music when they partnered with U2 to make a massive release of U2’s new “Songs of Innocence” album.

Who’s Got The Most Images?

By Jim Pickerell | 841 Words | Posted 10/1/2014 | Comments
Many stock agencies focus on the number of images they have in their collections. But does the customer really care? Rather than numbers, I think the customer is looking for where they can find (1) the right image, (2) quickly and easily and (3) at a price they can afford. Often sheer numbers don’t produce the best results.

CEPIC 2015 Congress Scheduled For Warsaw

By Jim Pickerell | 224 Words | Posted 9/30/2014 | Comments
The next CEPIC International Congress will be held in Warsaw on June 3rd through 6th, 2015. The CEPIC Congress is the premier annual event where stock agencies and image distributors from around the world meet to conduct business and get updated on the latest trends in the stock photography industry.

Stock Footage Industry Survey Underway

By Jim Pickerell | 558 Words | Posted 9/29/2014 | Comments
ACSIL and Thriving Archives have teamed up again to conduct the ACSIL Global Survey of Stock Footage Companies 3 (AGS3). Like their two previous collaborations, the AGS3 will explore and assess overall business conditions within the stock footage industry, discover how things are getting done, track evolving trends and provide strategic, action-oriented data to footage industry leaders. All footage companies worldwide are invited to participate.

Search Online For Your Name

By Jim Pickerell | 357 Words | Posted 9/26/2014 | Comments (1)
Search for your name on Images.Google.com or Images.Bing.com. You may be surprised at the results. And there may be money waiting for you.

Getty Disconnect: Is More Images And Less Editing Working?

By Jim Pickerell | 703 Words | Posted 9/25/2014 | Comments
I recently received a note from a frustrated Getty Images RM photographer who has been with Getty since they acquired Tony Stone Images in the 1990s, and whose images have earned millions of dollars for Getty in more than two decades. This photographer would like to contribute more images to the RM collection, but is limited to 20 images per-quarter. Images were recently returned to him because he submitted them before the beginning of the new quarter.

Getty Images Drives It's Customers To Use iStock

By Jim Pickerell | 391 Words | Posted 9/25/2014 | Comments
Getty Images appears to be trying to drive its www.gettyimages.com customers to iStock where the customers can get images for a fraction of what they would cost on Gettyimages.com.

More About GDI

By Jim Pickerell | 211 Words | Posted 9/23/2014 | Comments
Here are answers from Charles Taylor to a few follow-up questions I asked after publishing the GDI story yesterday.

Dreamstime Creates More Personalized Search For Users

By Jim Pickerell | 445 Words | Posted 9/23/2014 | Comments
Dreamstime has announced the release of a new personalization feature, as well as a new social media function.

GDI: New Publicly Traded Stock Photo Company

By Jim Pickerell | 2293 Words | Posted 9/22/2014 | Comments (1)
At the International Photojournalism Festival in Perpignan earlier this month and in a later press announcement GDI Media Limited announced the aim to consolidate many smaller independent picture agencies into a single publicly traded company that will be traded on the AIM stock exchange in the UK.

Microstock Photography Survey Results

By Jim Pickerell | 651 Words | Posted 9/19/2014 | Comments
A few months ago Basar Hatirnaz surveyed microstock image producers for his doctorial thesis at Yeditepe University in Instanbul, Turkey. He got 400 responses from contributors with a wide range of experience in the microstock business. The results of his research provide some interesting insights into the microstock industry.

Visual Steam 2014 Buyers Survey

By Jim Pickerell | 537 Words | Posted 9/17/2014 | Comments (2)
In June 2014, Visual Steam surveyed thousands of U.S. art buyers, art directors, art producers, creative directors and marketing professionals to better understand stock image buying behavior today (still photography and motion). The company has published the results of its 2014 Buyers Survey. 100% of the respondents are buyers of stock photography.

How Will iStock Prices Affect Gettyimages.com Sales?

By Jim Pickerell | 1103 Words | Posted 9/16/2014 | Comments (1)
Yesterday, I outlined how iStock’s new pricing strategy may affect contributors. But, the bigger worry for iStock exclusive contributors and Getty Images may be what happens on gettyimages.com. Here’s why.

New iStock Prices Released

By Jim Pickerell | 1088 Words | Posted 9/15/2014 | Comments
Over the weekend iStock launched its new prices to compete with Shutterstock. The following chart shows the credit packages available at both iStock and Shutterstock and the average price per credit.

Seeing Declining GI Sales? Think Search Return Order

By Jim Pickerell | 2184 Words | Posted 9/12/2014 | Comments (3)
Are your Getty Images sales declining? It may have nothing to do with the quality of your images, the subjects you shoot or your keywording. It could be that customers rarely, if ever, get a chance to see your images. Currently Gettyimage.com has 4,278,804 RM and 6,034,642 RF images on the site for a total of 10,313,446 in the creative section of the site. Getty has images from 103 different RM collections and 98 RF collections.

Licensing Photo For iPhone 6 Background

By Jim Pickerell | 543 Words | Posted 9/12/2014 | Comments
Photographer Espen Haagensen didn’t know his photo of the Milky Way had been chosen for the background image on iPhone 6 until a colleague who was watching the iPhone 6 announcement gave him a call.

Declining Employment In Motion Picture Industry

By Jim Pickerell | 415 Words | Posted 9/10/2014 | Comments
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in the motion picture and sound recording industry has dropped from as high as 368,000 in 2013 down to just 298,000 in August, a 19% drop in just over two years. (See MarketWatch story for more details.

Photographers Settle Litigation Over Google Books

By Jim Pickerell | 236 Words | Posted 9/9/2014 | Comments
A group of photographers, visual artists and affiliated associations have reached a settlement with Google that ends four years of litigation over copyrighted material in Google Books. The parties are pleased to have reached a settlement that benefits everyone and includes funding for the PLUS Coalition, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping rightsholders and users communicate clearly and efficiently about rights in works. Further terms of the agreement are confidential.

Prime.500px: Is It A Place To License Images?

By Jim Pickerell | 1027 Words | Posted 9/8/2014 | Comments (1)
Is Prime.500px.com a viable market for stock photographers? It advertises itself as offering “Inspirational Royalty Free Photos” and certainly there are some beautiful images in the collection.

Microsoft Backs Down On Bing Image Widget

By Jim Pickerell | 213 Words | Posted 9/8/2014 | Comments
Computerworld reports that following a lawsuit from Getty Images, Microsoft has temporarily removed the beta of the Bing Image Widget from its website. However, for those people who uploaded the Widget prior to the Getty challenge the Widget still works.

Getty Images Sues Microsoft Over New Bing Photo Widget

By Jim Pickerell | 291 Words | Posted 9/4/2014 | Comments (2)
Reuters reports that Getty Images claimed in a lawsuit filed in federal court in New York on Thursday that a new Microsoft product that allows website publishers to embed digital photographs on their sites is a “massive infringement” of copyrighted images.

How Bing’s Image Embed Tool Could Benefit Creators

By Jim Pickerell | 1243 Words | Posted 9/4/2014 | Comments
With its new Image Embed tool Bing is making free use of photos to promote and advertise its site. See the little Bing logo at the bottom left of each picture display. Bing is now able to advertise its brand, free of charge, on an other site that uses Image Embed.

Getty Images Prestige: A New Collection

By Jim Pickerell | 374 Words | Posted 9/4/2014 | Comments
Getty Images has pulled together from its many collections a group of images that they call Getty Images Prestige. They say it is a “carefully curated selection of the world's most powerful imagery. Prestige images are distinguished by their unique aesthetic approach, exceptional craftsmanship and uncompromising quality - all available for use exclusively.”

iStock Adopts Shutterstock Licensing Strategy

By Jim Pickerell | 1640 Words | Posted 9/3/2014 | Comments
On September 13th iStock will “throw-in-the-towel” and adopt the Shutterstock licensing strategy that all images should be equal in price regardless of the quality of the image or the cost of production. They will discontinue their practice of pricing based on file size delivered, and of having multi-tier price categories.

Getting Started With 4K Footage

By Jim Pickerell | 1107 Words | Posted 9/2/2014 | Comments (1)
Footage Net has asked a several footage licensing experts how they deal with the increasing demand for 4K footage.  With roughly four times the pixels of standard HD footage (8.3 million versus 2 million), 4K footage offers remarkable sharpness, a great sense of depth and a much subtler color range. It is quickly becoming commonplace in the footage business. The experts asked to weigh in on the ins and outs of working with this new format include: Carol Martin of FootageBank, Sterling Zunbrunn of Nature Footage and Peter Carstens of Framepool.

NYTimes Interview With Jonathan Klein

By Jim Pickerell | 475 Words | Posted 8/29/2014 | Comments (2)
Be sure to read Getty Images CEO, Jonathan Klein’s comments in James Estrin’s interview that appeared in the New York Times August 27th.  Among the key takeaways are:

So You Want To Be A Stock Photographer

By Jim Pickerell | 1248 Words | Posted 8/27/2014 | Comments (1)
Recently Dennis Davis, an experienced Los Angeles corporate, lifestyle, and food photographer (see his portfolio) posted the following on a blog. “I am moving out of commercial assignment photography into selling my photography after the fact. I am looking for recommendations on stock agencies and methods for selling fine art images and video.

More Fun With Bing Image Widget

By Jim Pickerell | 945 Words | Posted 8/26/2014 | Comments
After my story on Bing Image Widget yesterday I decided to do some more searches for photographers and stock agencies to see what I could find. The results are revealing. I started with “John Harrington photography.”

Bing Image Widget

By Jim Pickerell | 611 Words | Posted 8/23/2014 | Comments (6)
Microsoft's Bing has created the Bing Image Widget making It possible for any Bing user to imbed, free of charge, on their web site of blog any images found in a Bing Images search. Here's a simple demonstration of how it works.