8PRESS RELEASE 1
July 5, 2005
Some subscribers have complained that they have trouble determining whether the information in an article comes straight from a press release, or is something where I have done some independent reporting and analysis. Press releases serve a very useful function to make people aware of new developments, and often there isn't much more to say about the situation than the information included in the press release.
In future I will publish such information under a Press Release heading as a way of identifying when there has been no independent analysis or interpretation of the information. The following is the initial offering.
Veer Announces New Shuttleboard(TM) Interactive Lightbox
Veer, a provider of visual elements and design-related products to the creative community, has announced the addition of Shuttleboard(TM) (patent applied for) to the company's web site at veer.com. Shuttleboard is a new interactive web-based lightbox mode that significantly improves creative professionals' ability to view, sort, and manipulate images and type before purchasing. The new lightbox mode, with its large workspace and sophisticated functionality - such as scale, crop, and layer - offers creatives a flexible alternative to typical lightboxes.
Registered users on the Veer web site can now choose from standard mode or Shuttleboard mode on every lightbox at veer.com.
An overview of Shuttleboard features is available via the online tutorial:
Digital lightboxes are widely used by creatives to view, store, and share thumbnails of images on stock photography web sites. Since their introduction over ten years ago, lightboxes have been limited to a static "slides on a light table" metaphor. Veer's Shuttleboard moves beyond the constraining grid format of typical lightboxes to offer a more flexible and interactive view of products. Using Shuttleboard mode, users can resize, move, crop, and interact with images and type around a spacious work area.
Typeface samples are editable, allowing users to enter text, compare fonts side by side, or get a feel for how images and type work together before they purchase. Shuttleboard facilitates collaboration - lightboxes can be
e-mailed, edited, annotated, and shared by team members or clients who are registered on the Veer web site.
"Creative professionals are no longer bound by the outdated metaphor and technical limitations of traditional lightboxes," comments Blake Springer, responsible for technology and e-commerce at Veer. "Shuttleboard gives image buyers the functionality and sophistication that they've been waiting for. This proprietary technology gives creatives the freedom and control to do their jobs more quickly and easily. With the help of Shuttleboard, sorting, filtering, and prioritizing elements has never been easier or more fun."
"Shuttleboard dares to tread where other ordinary lightboxes have yet to set foot," comments Cameron Moll, well-known designer, speaker, and creator of the popular design blog Authentic Boredom. "To combine the utility of a
lightbox with a highly intuitive, online comping application is sheer genius. Veer's Shuttleboard is a better way to picture combinations of photography and type in a proposed layout. Designers can add several typefaces to a lightbox, customize the text and size for each typeface and compare them side by side. Shuttleboard shortens the process between search, comp, and buy."
This industry-first innovation follows in the footsteps of other exclusive Veer offerings like Image Zoom and Flont(TM), a type previewing interface. "By developing proprietary tools like Shuttleboard," says Brock Bohonos, responsible for brand strategy and business development, "Veer is further demonstrating its commitment to creative professionals. Not only do we provide tastefully selected visual elements, we deliver industry-leading tools that support the work lives of creative professionals. Our investment in Shuttleboard further differentiates Veer from the generic 'image vending machines' common to the stock industry today."
Veer has filed for a patent on its new proprietary Shuttleboard technology. Shuttleboard mode is now available to users registered on the Veer web site.
PictureArts Expands With IBID Partnership
PictureArts has announced an exclusive worldwide partnership with Ibid, a high-end rights-managed photography company based in Evanston, Illinois. Ibid is the fifth specialty image collection represented by PictureArts.
Through a number of specialty image collections such as FoodPix, Botanica, Nonstock and Brand X Pictures, PictureArts distributes original rights-managed and royalty-free imagery worldwide. The partnership with Ibid highlights PictureArts' ability to provide high-profile
exposure and distribute content from other photography companies, and further strengthens PictureArts' continued commitment to seek out fresh and distinct content.
Founded in 1966 as an exclusively black and white collection, Ibid is known for its evocative portraits and conceptual images. More recently, the company expanded its offerings to include select color photography. Of the new relationship with PictureArts, Eve Pellegrino, Vice President of Ibid, said, "It is great to finally find a company that understands the needs of both the client and the photographer by offering something unique in
"PictureArts is excited about working with Ibid," said Jeffrey Burke, President and CEO of PictureArts. "The partnership with Ibid adds a unique, high-quality body of work to PictureArts' growing portfolio of specialized collections. This relationship will provide Ibid with more exposure and revenue outlets, and PictureArts' large distribution network with new material previously unavailable from any source. Because both PictureArts and Ibid share a philosophy that is founded on a mutual respect for photographers and their art, this new partnership makes perfect sense," stated Burke.
Picture Arts Represents UK's Untitled Collection
PictureArts has announced an exclusive worldwide partnership with Untitled, a rights-managed picture company based in Kent, UK. Untitled is represented on the PictureArts website as a featured contributor within the Nonstock collection, and through selected agents worldwide.
PictureArts commitment to continually seek out new talent and specialized image content is realized again with the addition of Untitled images to the Nonstock collection.
Founded by UK photographer and filmmaker Nick Veasey, Untitled initially began with a collection of images that blurred the lines between science and photography.
"We are extremely excited to partner with a strong and growing company like PictureArts," says Veasey. "From the unusual to the ethereal, the bizarre and the beautiful, Untitled is a truly unique collection that will benefit from PictureArts' distribution as a part of Nonstock."
"Untitled is from a group of eclectic photographers whose eye for modern imagery fits perfectly with the new direction for Nonstock," says Amy Osburn, Senior Director of Imagery for Nonstock.
PictureArts has increased its worldwide network of agents to accommodate this unique collection. "We're excited about this new partnership, and have recently added 45 more agents around the globe to help distribute our products and better serve our clients abroad," states Stephen Hearn, PictureArts' VP of Worldwide Sales. "This initiative will help drive increased revenues of the Nonstock collection and expand its global reach."
Imagefood In Czech Republic
Profimedia Ltd.,a Czech Republic based picture agency, has launched of new brand called Imagefood (available on href="http://www.imagefood.com">www.imagefood.com).
The collection consists of top quality food and drinks rights-managed stock imagery including full text recipes and ingredients list. At the moment there are more than 10,000 images on the website with regular monthly updates, till end of 2005 the propose to have more than 20,000 images on site.
In comparison with other players offering culinary stock photography the majority of the images contain recipe and ingredients list so it is possible to sell them as a package - images + text. Such an offering is interesting to the many editorial clients who need to use both images and text.
Digital Railroad Raises $5.2 Million
Digital Railroad, Inc. www.digitalrailroad.net
has secured $5.2 million in venture capital from Morgenthaler Ventures www.morgenthaler.com and Venrock Associates
Digital Railroad will use the "Series A" funding to expand its online photo management, distribution and archiving platform. The company has developed a unique suite of Web-based services that enable professional photographers and photo agencies to manage, market, and sell their images with greater efficiency than with existing solutions.
Founder and CEO of Digital Railroad, Evan Nisselson, said, "We are pleased to have successfully completed this financing with two outstanding investment firms that can help our company expand and improve the Digital Railroad platform. Attracting Venrock and Morgenthaler as partners confirms the value we bring to the industry."
"Digital Railroad is the clear leader in providing professional photographers a way to control and streamline key aspects of their workflow, from production, sales, syndication to archiving," said Ken Gullicksen, general partner at Morgenthaler Ventures. "We see no comparable service in the market today."
Said Michael Brooks, general partner at Venrock Associates, "Evan has assembled an outstanding team that understands the needs of the professional photographer in creating personal, branded online photo-archives to better manage and market their work throughout the world."
Among the photo agencies that have selected Digital Railroad as their internet platform are:
In addition, over 100 photographers use Digital Railroad's system to distribute and sell their work around the world. Their photographs represent all subject areas -- from portraiture to wildlife, from advertising to photojournalism. They range from Pulitzer-Prize winners to photographers just beginning to grow their business. To see a directory of several member archives go to: http://www.digitalrailroad.net/corpsite/directory.html
Unlike other partial solutions, Digital Railroad's system provides the following unique features:
CUSTOMIZED BRANDING: You can easily customize your agency's homepage to reflect the branding of your business and to highlight your newest and best images.
MARKET AND DISTRIBUTE HIGH-RES IMAGES: Share specific groups and customized lightboxes with clients via email, and then grant them permissions to edit or download the images.
UPLOAD HIGH-RES ONCE; DISTRIBUTE IN SECONDS: FTP your images to clients and sub-agencies directly from your online archive. Use our servers to send images to multiple destinations simultaneously.
CONTROL ACCESS: You decide who gets to view and download your archive's images.
BUYERS GET EXACTLY WHAT THEY WANT: It is the only system where photo buyers can use just one membername and password at all archives powered by Digital Railroad and where buyers are provided with a portable, personal workspace for easy management of lightboxes, pricing requests and image shares.
Read more about what we can offer you here:
Imagestate Partners with Hachette Filipacchi Photos
Imagestate has signed a distribution deal with Hachette Filipacchi Media subsidiary, Hachette Filipacchi Photos (HFP) to market and distribute photography from their renowned historical, editorial and news collections.
Under the terms of the agreement, Imagestate has been named the exclusive licensee for the stock images provided by Hachette Filipacchi Photos for the US, Canada and the UK. The US and UK will represent images from a variety of Hachette collections including Hachette Illustration, Hoa-Qui, Jacana, Top, Explorer and Rapho.
Examples of the photography that will be available through Imagestate include:
World events - explosion of the Hindeburg over New York; Concorde - from prototype to flight; the Cannes Film Festival; both world wars and major political events.
Celebrity material ranging from the British Royal Family to Elvis Presley.
Award-winning and famous images, such as "The Kiss" from Robert Doisneau.
As an additional part of the deal, HFP will distribute photography from Imagestate's collections in France.
Albers Named to SuperStock Board
a21, Inc. has named A.D. "Bud" Albers to its Board of Directors. "Bud created the current generation of digital content delivery systems and now is looking forward to working with us to establish the next technology paradigm for our industry," said Albert H. Pleus, a21 Chairman and CEO.
Mr. Albers is Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for MusicNet, a leading business-to-business digital music service provider platform which recently announced a partnership with Yahoo!, Inc. He was also Chief Technology Officer for Drugstore.com, and Getty Images, Inc. At Getty, Mr. Albers played a key role in integrating more than 30 acquisitions and was responsible for leading a team of more than 300 professionals in the design, development and implementation of the world's largest distribution platform for commercial imagery and stock video footage.
"Bud's visionary approach and proven ability to integrate strategic acquisitions will help us create the next technology platform for this dynamic industry," stated Thomas V. Butta, a21 Vice Chairman and President and SuperStock CEO.
"a21 has assembled an outstanding group of seasoned experts from the technology and media industries," said Mr. Albers. "I'm excited to be a part of a team that is committed to achieving the convergence of technology with rich media content and driving the next generation of digital media content delivery."
Travel Photographers Network Sold by Nature Photographers Online Magazine
Nature Photographers Online Magazine Inc. (www.naturephotographers.net) has announced the sale of the Travel Photographers Network (www.travelphotographers.net) portion of its Web business to Buses on Diversion Ltd., a London-based company.
Jim White, the Managing Director of the purchasing company, has been the Editor-in-Chief at Travel Photographers Network for over a year. This sale represents an opportunity for Travel Photographers Network to enhance its offering to the international travel photography community.
Travel Photographers Network (TPN) is an online magazine and community geared to support the needs of the professional and aspiring travel photographers. It provides articles on photographic travel destinations, discussion forums for photography-related topics, and image forums with critical feedback from its international community of professional and amateur photographers. Started in October of 2003 as a parallel business to Nature Photographers Online Magazine, Travel Photographers Network has enjoyed steady growth in its membership and forum participation. Jim White, Managing Director of Buses on Diversion Ltd., has been the Editor in Chief of TPN for the past year.
Nature Photographers Online Magazine President Jim Erhardt was quoted as saying, "This sale represents a great opportunity both for Nature Photographers Online Magazine and for Travel Photographers Network. The Nature Photographers staff will be able to better focus on their core business, which is to support the community of serious Nature Photographers who enjoy the experience that NPN provides. And I am confident that Jim White will continue to grow Travel Photographers Network, focusing on the needs of Travel Photographers worldwide."