Bowing to pressure from a coalition of artist groups, led by the StockArtistsAlliance, and recognizing that it may have given away too much in their initial offering of the $49 "web-resolution" license, Getty Images has announced several changes in this program that started at the end of August.
The key concern of the SAA-led coalition was that this product should "be restricted to short-term, highly limited, low-value usages and does not provide a substitute for high-value commercial and advertising online use licenses," according to Betsy Reid, SAA executive director.
Paul Banwell, director of photographer relations for Getty Images, said, "It was never our intention that large uses could be made of these images. Now we feel that we have a good clarification around volume and distribution. The product was designed for relatively brief usage, high-volume customers that are perhaps microstock users, but didn't think that Getty Images had a product that would work for them."
"We [have found a way] to give photographers access to a market that hasn't been using images from Getty, while still allaying their concerns around the high value licenses," Banwell continued.
Initially, customers were allowed to use any RM image "for one commercial or editorial Web site, Web ad, email, mobile or multimedia use for one year." They were allowed to use any RR images "in Web or electronic media for commercial or editorial projects for one year." A few weeks ago, Getty modified the one-year term to three months. Now it has made further modifications as follows.
For RM, the restrictions are:
Commercial: One of the following uses at a size up to 180x150 pixels - use on any single page in one corporate or promotional Web site for up to three months or one Web advertisement on no more than one Web site for up to three months or onÂ promotional email sent to no more than 10,000 recipients for up to three months.
Editorial: Editorial use on any single page of one editorial Web site at a sizeÂ up to 180x150 pixels.
For RR, the restrictions are:
Electronic or Web -- single use at a maximum of 180x150 pixels in Web or other electronic media for commercial, editorial or internal projects for up to 3 months.
Example uses include: Use on a single corporate, editorial or promotional Web site or intranet; or a single Web ad on one Web site or a single bulk email.
RF images can still be used multiple time for multiple projects without any time limit.
Not included in the definitions for RM or RR are power-point presentations uses which some would consider "multimedia" use and others "electronic media."
"We have had very positive dialogue with our photographer community, and this input has been invaluable in helping us evolve the product," said Banwell. "While keeping an important and relevant product for customers, the refinements address photographers' concerns specific to licensing duration, distribution and usage for the rights-ready and rights-managed products, while the royalty-free product remains unchanged."
"We are pleased at the outcome of our direct dialog and Getty Images' open-minded approach is an improved license product that resolves many of the concerns raised by photographers and our coalition, and expands new licensing opportunities for a growing market for very small digital uses where this type of product makes sense," said SAA's Reid.