Getty Images Pulls out of Alamy

Posted on 8/6/2009 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (3)

Getty Images’ royalty-free brands are being removed from Alamy after the two companies were unable to agree on renewal terms of their distribution contract.

According to Alamy CEO James West, the Digital Vision, Photodisc and Stockbyte collections have already been removed, and the Jupiterimages collection will be taken down later this week. After all these images are removed, Alamy will still have more than 4 million royalty-free images and over 16 million total images on its site.

West said: “Sales from the Getty collections make up only a small percentage of our total revenues and represent a smaller percentage of total revenues than they do of the total number of images on Alamy.”

A couple weeks ago, Alamy had over 17 million images on its site; today it has 16.43 million. This probably means that somewhere in the range of 3% to 4% of Alamy’s total annual revenue—in the neighborhood of $1 million—came from Getty brands.

Other royalty-free brands still represented by Alamy stand a good chance of benefiting from this move. Obviously, Getty hopes that the Alamy customers who had previously purchased Digital Vision, Photodisc, Stockbyte and Jupiterimages content will now turn to

However, this could easily backfire. Most of Alamy’s customers probably already know that Getty exists, but still, for one reason or another, choosen to go to Alamy instead. My guess is that these customers will continue to use Alamy, and most will settle for the best image they can find there, rather than specifically seeking one of the four Getty brands. As such, much of the Alamy revenue previously generated by these brands seems likely to go to purchase images from other brands available on the site.

Copyright © 2009 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to:  


  • Gerard Fritz Posted Aug 6, 2009
    In the war to be the site with the broadest search base, Alamy has at least won this battle. Alamy suppliers have been reduced by one, while Getty gets no advantage from leaving Alamy.

    Many will turn to Alamy because they can do a search on "all" the sources.

  • Bill Bachmann Posted Aug 6, 2009
    Bravo alamy!!! Wish more people would stand up to Getty wanting everything THEIR way! I commend James West...

    Bill Bachmann
    Orlando, FL

  • Don Farrall Posted Aug 7, 2009
    As a Getty contributor, I see this in a different light. When my Getty images are sold through Alamy they become a "sub agent" sale, and I receive a considerably smaller royalty, from Getty. I would prefer the sale be originated through Getty directly. I was not particularly pleased when my images first appeared on Alamy, for this reason. I would agree that Alamy customers know about Getty, and yes I suppose some don't like to shop there. Still, as a contributor, I don't see an overall down side to this, as has been suggested. As for the statement "Getty wanting everything THEIR way!” I have to ask, "and what business doesn't", and "why shouldn't they". I am a fan of Alamy, and have a collection of images there as well. Getty sells a certain kind of image very well for me to a certain kind of audience, and Alamy, while not as profitable for me on an image-by-image basis, sells a certain kind of image to a certain audience that differs from Getty's performance.

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