264 RANDOM THOUGHTS 13
November 10, 1999
Paul Hurschmann, President of the NAFP (National Association of Freelance
Photographers) has announced that NAFP ceased operations as of October 31, 1999
after three-and-a-half years of representing photographers interests.
NAFP had aligned itself with The Newspaper Guild/Communications Workers of America,
but according to Hurschmann the alliance was "a complete and utter failure" due to
miscommunication and unrealistic expectations on both sides. The inability to
obtain insurance for its members also contributed to NAFP's demise.
NAFP encourages active and vigorous participation in one or more of the many
organizations serving photographers and furthering the fight against the erosion of
our collective rights, especially the burgeoning Editorial Photographers group
At least one client of NCS Recovery Corporation has served Robert Tod and Todtri
Productions in an effort to collect monies owed for more than two years. Other
suits are pending and service is expected in the near future. Picture Perfect is
one of Tod's companies.
(See Story 192)
Once served, Todtri has 30 days to answer. If the company fails to answer there
will be an inquest hearing where attorneys retained by NCS will ask for a default
judgement. If the court grants a default judgement, NCS can then attach any and all
assets of Todtri.
Joe Lipsom of NCS Recovery has instituted successful collections for many in the
stock photo industry. He can be reached in New York at 1-800-836-2655.
Getty Acquires Newsmakers
Getty Images expands editorial holdings with addition of leading photojournalism
Getty Images, Inc. has acquired Newsmakers, a digital news agency covering current
events, news and celebrity photography. The acquisition of Newsmakers' entirely
digital business furthers Getty Images' strategy of migrating its press and
editorial brands to a fully digital distribution model.
"Newsmakers is a natural fit with our plans to move our Press and Editorial channel
to a completely e-commerce-based distribution model," said Jonathan Klein,
co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Getty Images. "News-oriented material is
in high demand, and time-to-customer is a key factor for success in this area. We
currently offer one of the strongest digital delivery capabilities in the industry,
and this acquisition serves to enhance that capability."
The press and editorial channel serves customers in the publishing sector, including
newspaper, magazine and book publishers, web publishers and broadcast news
businesses. Newsmakers' founder, Richard Ellis, will remain President of Newsmakers
and has been named Chief Executive Officer of Getty Images' New York Press and
"Getty Images' e-commerce focus and its dedication to creating tailored solutions
for press and editorial customers will drive its continued success in this segment,"
said Richard Ellis, President of Newsmakers. "As part of the Getty Images
international distribution network, Newsmakers will be able to continue growing and
expanding its customer base."
Newsmakers' collection of 50,000 images is entirely digitized and is currently
available through the company's website, www.newsmakers.net. Newsmakers was one of
the first news photo agencies to operate exclusively on the Internet, and its
customers include publications such as Time, Newsweek and People Magazine, websites
such as MSNBC and newspapers including the New York Times, Washington Post and USA
Ellis told Selling Stock that Newsmakers produced about $300,000 in royalties for
photographers in the past year.
Corbis E-Commerce Sales
Leslie Hughes of Corbis has indicated that 70% of the company's rights protected
sales in September involved some element of E-commerce.
It should be noted that this figure did not include the Outline division of Corbis
whose sales are currently 100% analog. It also did not include the Digital Stock
divison which is royalty free. One hundred percent of Digital Stock's sales could
be considered E-commerce because the files are either delivered on-line or on
CD-ROM. No film is ever delivered.
It should also be noted that "E-commerce" in this context does not mean that there
was no human intervention in the process. For example research may have been done
online, negotiation and billing might have been done in the traditional manner, and
delivery of the digital file was done on-line. No statistics were available for the
percentage of sales that were "full E-commerce" with no human intervention.
These figures point to an impressive shift in buying habits. However, some
photographers suggest there may be a different explanation. Given Corbis' digital
focus they may not be paying as much attention to researching the film and print
files as was the case under the prior management of the various divisions before
they were acquired. Thus, the total volume of sales may be off as the percent of
digital to analog is increasing.
Selling Stock estimates that the annual sales of Corbis' rights protected operations
will be approximately $40 million and that the Digital Stock royalty free division
will be about $30 million for a total in the range of $70 million.
PACA International Conference
The 4th annual PACA (Picture Agency Council of America) International Conference
was held in New York on October 31st
and November 1st with 466 individuals representing 237 companies from 36 countries
Many stock agencies used the opportunity to show off their catalogs and seek
marketing relations with other companies around the world. The focus of the
seminars was, "The state of stock around the world," "eCommerce: What, How, Why,"
and "RF: What have we learned, What's next?"
Photonica Appoints Mayes COO
Amana America Inc. (parent company of Photonica) has appointed Stephen Mayes as
Chief Operating Officer of American operations..
Mayes has worked for Amana since 1998 as Creative Director with responsibility for
European and American content. During this time the Western creative teams have
published three innovative catalogs under the Photonica brand: Hot (No.36), Blind Me
(No.43) and 44. November also sees the introduction of a new product line with
Work, the first volume of aka Photonica (more accessible stock imagery through the
eyes of Photonica's photographers) and the publication of Plastock, a revolutionary
approach to stock catalogues produced in partnership with CSA Design of Minneapolis.
Amana America will continue to develop the Photonica brand while introducing a
growing diversity of products and services supported by a full Internet presence in