Random Thoughts 16

Posted on 3/3/2000 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)



March 3, 2000

Changing Your Style

TSI and some of the other major agencies are telling some of the leading
landscape and travel shooters that they don't need any of the new shots they are
producing. The agents say their files are already full of everything they need
on these subjects. Their suggestion to the photographers: "Have you considered
changing your shooting style."

One photographer -- not one of the rejected, but who has great respect for the
work of some of the rejected -- said, "That's like telling Barbra Streisand,
'Have you considered hip hop."'

Corbis To Acquire Saba

Marcel Saba has notified his photographers that his agency will be acquired by
Corbis. Corbis acquired Tempsport in Europe last week.

Time-Life Books

Time Life Books in Alexandria, VA has had a major reorganization and downsizing.
Several researchers have been let go.

They have cancelled a couple projects that were in the works, and one source
says they will no longer be doing books themselves, but will possibly put some
projects out to packagers.

It is believed that Mary Davis Holt is the source for more information on their
plans, but at press time they were still having trouble figuring out who could
speak for the division. I was passed through four public relations people and
none of them could give me a straight answer. Ms. Holt can be reached at

Y2K Problems At Index Stock Imagery

At least one stock agency, Index Stock Imagery, has experienced Y2K problems
according to Bihar Gidwani. Their invoicing system would not recognize the year
2000 date, and they have found it necessary to install an entirely new
accounting system.

Many photographers report that their checks, which were supposed to be mailed on
January 15th, have still not arrived. Gidwani says most of the work on
photographer statements had to be done by hand. This was complicated by the
fact that Index has consolidated nine companies and each has a variety of
percentage arrangements. Gidwani believes that all of the January checks are
now in the mail.

The new accounting system is not expected to be fully functional until July.
Consequently there may be some problems with the April 15th payments, but
Gidwani expects those to be minimal.

New Directions

Flour Corporation in Orange County, CA just completed the assignment photography
work for their annual report. The art director on the project said that he
reviewed more portfolios for this project than he had seen in years. All the
photographers were saying that they had been heavily into stock, but now it
seemed to be drying up and they were back seeking assignments.


FootageNow, a business-to-business broadband media company that enables creative
firms such as ad agencies to purchase film and video footage online, has raised
$25 million in first-round financing led by new investor RRE Ventures. Corbis
contributed $8 million to the round.

Corbis and FootageNow will co-develop a channel on FootageNow's portal that will
give customers access to film and video content using Corbis's technology, and
which will include links to Corbis's still photography and fine arts media.

Footage Now expect to launch its site sometime in the second quarter of 2000 at
The company received $200,000 in seed funding from iXL Ventures.

FootageNow intends to use the proceeds for an acquisition of Second Line Search,
a privately held film and video archive based in New York, as well as for
operating expenses and management hires.

Other new investors were Bert Ellis, founder of iXL, Bessemer Venture Partners,
ComVentures, Guy Davidson, Infinity Capital, iXL Executive Fund, Morris, Manning
& Martin, Wakefield Group and WaterView.

Marshall Launches GlobalState

Sheldon Marshall has launched DigitalState, and internet digital content
provider that will provide content for film, television, advertising, publishing
and the Internet.

GlobalState's first rollout will be MusicState, a highly focused creative music
synchronization service for the professional user. It is Internet based and
provides carefully edited music tracks in MP3 format, making them available in a
seamless process to be researched, selected and immediately downloaded in full
broadcast quality. MusicState will be followed by other divisions specializing
in specific dynamic media.

Convergence Holdings invested an initial $3.2 million in GlobalState.
Convergence owns 75% of Invest TV, the digital television and Internet company
that produces "Simply Money", the UK's first dedicated consumer finance channel.

Sheldon Marshall is the former CEO of Visual Communications Group (VCG). During
his tenure which ended in January 1999
(Story 193) .
he grew VCG's revenues from
$15 million to $94 million over a four year period.

Speedpix Up And Running

Speedpix has launched their new stock photography site in the U.K.
They had 95,000 hits in the first week and already have 80 registered users.

Future plans include short digital video clips for television usage using a
similar search engine, but with streaming video instead of magnified previews.

For our original story on Speedpix go to
(Story 256) .

Digital Video Seminars

Want to learn about Digital Video? Adobe, Pinnacle Systems, Compaq, and
Microsoft are doing FREE half day seminars in seven cities in March.

The locations are: Vancouver, 3/7; Toronto, 3/9; Miami, 3/9; New York, 3/15;
Washington, DC, 3/16; Los Angeles, 3/21; and Chicago, 3/22. For more
information, or to register, go to http://www.adobe.com/dvtour or call

Calculating Your Retirement

Having trouble figuring out how much you need to put away for retirement? Check
out Fidelity's "Retirement Planning Calculator" on the web at

This interactive tool allows you to input information about your gross savings,
investments, annual income, age when you want to retire and how long you hope to
live. It will help you learn whether your current savings program is adequate
and how much more you should be saving to meet your goals. It also allows you
to adjust your assumptions about inflation and estimated annual growth of your

Copyright © 2000 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 www.selling-stock.com, 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: http://www.jimpickerell.com/Curriculum-Vitae.aspx.  


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