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Story 778PRESS RELEASES 9
November 16, 2005
JupiterImages Acquires French Image Distoributor, PR Direct
Jupitermedia Corporation (Nasdaq: JUPM) announced that its JupiterImages division has acquired all of the shares of >PR Direct SAS. PR Direct SAS, with offices in Paris and Menthon-St. Bernard, France, is a leading distributor of royalty-free digital images for business users and creative professionals. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
“The acquisition of the business and sales operations of PR Direct further aids in solidifying JupiterImages’ position in the important French image market,” stated Alan M. Meckler, Chairman and CEO of Jupitermedia Corporation. “PR Direct already distributes a number of our royalty-free brands, including BananaStock, BrandX, Comstock, Goodshoot, Thinkstock, ITStockFree and Creatas, so this was a natural acquisition for us. PR Direct’s sales operations complement our existing operations in France and will enable further expansion of our JupiterImages business throughout Europe. We anticipate significant sales and business synergies between PR Direct and our JupiterImages division,” added Meckler.
Tetra Images Ready for Take-off
Tom Grill, co-founder and chief photographer at the Comstock picture agency for over two decades, has launched a new royalty free image production company called Tetra Images.
“The underlying concept for Tetra Images is simple,” says Grill. “We are focused on lowering our distributors’ overhead and increasing their profits by achieving the highest possible RPI (return per image) in the stock photo business. And RPI is the only truly meaningful number in the stock industry.”
Images are only created for Tetra after extensive research into what picture buyers want, and the collection is focused exclusively upon the three subject sectors that have proven time and again to be most important to customers: Still Life Concepts, People and Scenics/Travel.
“There’s no fluff and nothing extraneous among Tetra’s images,” says Grill, “just images that will sell repeatedly.”
Tetra’s image production team is based in the New York City area and can claim over 35 years of prior stock industry production and sales experience. The team’s extensive background in commercial stock production taught them that what sells over and over again are clearly defined, well-executed concepts. Tetra’s pictures are clearly created with that idea in mind, and the headlines practically write themselves when you look at the collection’s imagery.
All of the images in the Tetra collection are created digitally, keyworded to the highest standard and model released. It’s a tightly edited collection aimed at Internet-based marketing/sales and currently includes approximately 2,100 images. By the end of 2006, it is projected that the collection will include approximately 8,000 images.
“What we’re really doing are classic stock themes but interpreted with contemporary styling,” says Tom Grill. “And, they’re shot with a global marketplace in mind, making it easy for distributors anywhere on earth to benefit from selling Tetra Images.”
Interested distributors may contact Tetra Images’ Director of Business Development Paul H. Henning by phone (414-607-9642) or e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org). A selection of pictures from the Tetra Images collection may be viewed at the company’s website, www.tetraimages.com.
Visual Footage Search Reaches The On Ramp
StockMotionFinder.com is launching its stock footage search engine, which is a professional research tool that displays footage clips in a single search that spans a variety of independent web sites and databased footage sources. StockMotionFinder.com is the first search engine specifically designed for aggregated search of visual content from multiple web sites in the stock footage industry. The initial phase of operations will be a soft launch period during which the footage search engine will be adding metadata and be introduced to its commercial market via one-on-one demonstrations.
The new technology promises to save time for footage licensees by using one search engine to quickly satisfy their needs for visual content instead of doing multiple searches at the many different web sites of stock footage agencies, filmmakers and videographers. Content can be searched by keyword or by a “similars” search process. Search results are displayed as static thumbnail images or looped sequences, or as a simple text list. Footage previewing is available depending on the source. The engine facilitates the finding of moving images for commercial and editorial uses and refers those qualified sales leads to the various web sites that participate in the search process. All footage licensing is handled directly between the user and the content sources, which are professional business-to-business licensing agents.
Company president, Randy Taylor, points out the value of converging multiple types of visual content from many sources into one aggregated search process. “There is a growing synergy between stock footage and photos,” he says. “Our large corporate clients are very excited to add search for footage because they have various divisions that use one content type or another or both. The convenience of ‘one stop shopping’ is important to our commercial users.”
Applying its advanced search technology to the vertical market of footage research and marketing, the StockMotionFinder.com search engine offers industry-specific tools that make searching for footage efficient. Users benefit from unlimited clip bins (or lightboxes) that enable selection, editing and sorting of both footage and photos from all the web sites that the company “spiders” for content inclusion. Notes can be added to each clip in the bin and emailed to coworkers.
By participating in StockMotionFinder.com, footage providers benefit from collective marketing and built-in functionality that facilitates client sales leads and requests, direct licensing and marketing research derived from datamining. Direct communication between the content licensee and the footage provider is supported in various ways. There is a Quote Request Form for users to ask for pricing for one clip or simultaneously for all clips in a bin. There is also a Research Request Form that sends a list of content needs to all providers. A hot button links directly to each footage provider from the clip. And, a Universal Registration Application Form speeds sign-up of new users across the network.
Special functionality also exists for the customized versions that are installed at closed corporate sites for their internal research. Corporations can mix search of their internal visual content with search results from any content providers they choose to include. This Digital Asset Management capability enables corporations to monetize their digital assets and increase cost efficiencies.
During soft launch, the company is scheduling appointments with footage providers to arrange for inclusion of their moving images in its marketing and search process. Demo version access is being setup at corporate user locations. Full launch of the aggregated search tool and related marketing is planned for January 1, 2006.
The search engine for moving images at StockMotionFinder.com is a service of New York based StockPhotoFinder.com, Inc., which also offers the industry’s stock photo search engine, the fastest growing centralized resource to locate images in the commercial photography industry. Over 400,000 users accessed millions of still images at this sister site in its first year of operation.
Search services at StockMotionFinder.com are free for users who desire to license content. The company receives revenue from marketing fees paid by content providers to have their web sites “spidered” for search, from advertising at its sites that appears in clearly defined areas, and from customization fees paid for corporate installations. Search results are “natural” or “organic” without any prioritization by content provider.
Onstream Media Enters into Strategic Partnership with Index Stock Imagery
Onstream Media Corporation (Nasdaq: ONSM), announced that it has entered into a strategic partnership with Index Stock Imagery (“Index”), one of the world’s leading stock photography agencies representing 1,700 photographers and serving 200,000 customers from around the globe.
This partnership continues Onstream's strategy of providing a broader range of integrated media products and service offerings to its growing customer base. Index's Photos to Go Unlimited product will be integrated into the Onstream Digital Media Services Platform (DMSP). Each user of the DMSP will be granted a subscription license to use over 80,000 royalty-free low resolution stock images from the Photos to Go Unlimited catalog. In addition, all DMSP users will have an option to upgrade to Index's premium catalog Index Open, which offers more than 80,000 high-resolution stock images.
Bahar Gidwani, chief executive officer of Index Stock, stated, “We are pleased to have Onstream Media as a partner. Our expansive library of over 1,000,000 stock images, when combined with the hosting services of the Onstream DMSP, offers businesses of any size a very powerful tool to integrate images, video, and other forms of media content to enhance their corporate communications, executive presentations, marketing collateral and other creative projects.”
Onstream will also offer its customers access to Index’s Image Management and Licensing Service (IMLS). IMLS includes image editing; analog to digital image conversion; digital image archiving; key wording positioning; infringement checking; and custom image set generation.
Through its 1,700-artist network and worldwide range of image sources, Index can generate custom sets of images for specific needs and users. Onstream Media believes the cost of this service is lower than the cost of licensing comparable images on the open market. Index can also distribute images on behalf of Onstream Media customers to more than 80 countries, through its own sales force, its Web sites, and a network of more than 100 distributors.
Randy Selman, president and chief executive officer of Onstream Media, stated, “Our agreement with Index will provide our DMSP customers immediate access to one of the world's largest source of images for the business consumer. In addition to a library of digital images, Onstream DMSP customers can access Index’s comprehensive service line at discounted rates. The cost of our monthly subscription fee to Index’s full version is less than the cost of two single royalty-free images, enabling us to deliver significant cost savings to our customers. Further, Index offers our DMSP customers the opportunity to distribute their own images throughout Index’s extensive international distribution network, which could potentially create a new revenue stream for our clients.”
Selman concluded, “We continue to strengthen the DMSP platform to meet the diverse needs of our client base as well as create new revenue-generating opportunities for our Company, our partners and our clients.”
iStockphoto Launches CopySpace to Simplify Designer Searches
iStockphoto has announced a revolutionary patent-pending design feature called CopySpace(TM). CopySpace speeds and simplifies searches for the right stock photo by giving designers an effective and intuitive tool to indicate exactly where on an image they need to insert text or branding. CopySpace then searches all of iStockphoto’s 475,000-plus files and returns only those that offer copy space where the designer has requested it. CopySpace can be combined with keyword, color, and/or image-size searches, so the resulting images are even more specific to the advertisement, brochure or other marketing collateral being created.
“What iStockphoto is doing for the design community is just brilliant. I've been a member since the very beginning, and I’m constantly amazed by how the breadth of images, quality of images and value they bring continue to grow,” said Scott Kelby, editor-in-chief of Photoshop User magazine. “If you haven’t checked out iStockphoto.com yet, you need to today (before your competition does).”
iStockphoto revolutionized stock photography in 2000, by offering affordable, high-quality, royalty-free stock images for as little as a dollar. iStockphoto has grown to more than 525,000 community members and nearly 20,000 international contributing artists. iStockphoto attributes its amazing growth to a commitment to addressing community needs, which is how the CopySpace feature was conceived.
Often, when designers lay out a creative idea for a campaign, they face a tedious process of finding images that allow them to include the amount of copy required to convey the message, and do it in the space they believe most appropriate. Other online image providers only offer a check box that returns all images with space for text, which can be unmanageable. This doesn't help the designer if she requires the free space in a specific area of the image.
CopySpace solves this problem with a simple user interface that offers designers a 3x3 grid and allows them to select three parameters on which to pinpoint their search: areas where copy is desired; areas where an image is desired; and areas where either is acceptable. All of iStockphoto’s files have been pre-processed to find contiguous areas of relatively flat, open space with room for copy, and optimized to ensure searches take designers very little time.
“As photographers and designers ourselves, we are driven to be leaders in developing trend-setting, inventive features such as CopySpace that help our designer constituents easily search, use and share the images we offer,” said Bruce Livingstone, founder and CEO of iStockphoto. “CopySpace also gives our photographers an edge that enables them to increase sales.”
CopySpace will be available immediately on www.iStockphoto.com and its sister site, www.iStockpro.com. Licensing enquiries should be directed to email@example.com.
ShutterStock Now Available in Japanese
ShutterStock announced that its website is now fully functional in Japanese at www.ShutterStock.jp. With this translation, ShutterStock will be able to further expand its already global customer base, offering its extensive collection of royalty-free images to the Japanese creative community in-language.
“We are very optimistic about the new site,” said Jon Oringer, ShutterStock founder and CEO. “Our ongoing goal is to make ShutterStoc as accessible as possible to the international design community.”
Accessibility and ease-of-use have always been central to ShutterStock’s operation. The site’s hassle-free subscription model has fueled its growth. For $139 per month, subscribers can download up to 25 images each day—or 750 per month—to be used royalty-free, forever. Customers who sign up for extended periods (three months, six months, or a year) are eligible for savings of up to 20 percent.
The Japanese version of ShutterStock launched just as the site’s photo library hit another milestone: the website has surpassed 400,000 premium, royalty-free images.