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At the CEPIC Congress in Barcelona on Wednesday June 12th there will be a discussion on a new initiative that could generate significant new revenue for image creators whose images are “crowd sourced” and posted without authorization to various domains on the Internet. This story examines the “Winston Project,” a system for collecting revenue for “Passive Image Use.” when a user uploads an image created by someone else to a “crowd sourced” domain, or when a user clicks on an image or shares it within the domain.
In the growing clamor and uproar about the free images available through Google Drive Rick Becker-Leckrone, CEO of Blend Images, made some points on the Stockphoto blog
that are worth examining. See the previous article
for more background.
This is the third in a series of articles on the image collection that is available to Google Drive users. (It looks like there may be many more articles as more details unfold.) To see the first two articles go here
. This is not just a microstock issue. Hundreds of traditionally priced RF images are involved.
Uniloc USA and Uniloc Luxenburg has sued DepositPhotos
and other stock photo licensors alleging that their business models infringe Uniloc’s U.S. patent number 7,099,848 filed by Russell P. Reeder and Raymond M. Haynes on December 28, 2001 and granted on August 29, 2006.
On December 17th Instagram
proposed dramatic changes in its "terms of service" that would give the company the right to sell users' photos without payment or notification, effective January 16, 2013. This sparked immediate outrage and revolt among Instagram contributors. Many started removing images from the site. The next day Instagram reversed itself and pledged to “remove” the language that sparked the revolt.
One of the programs at the recent PACA International Conference asked five industry visionaries to explore emerging trends and predict what the stock photo business will be like in 2022. There was general agreement that the current business model of licensing based on usage is broken
and that in a few years (probably a lot less than 10) it will be necessary to develop a completely different approach to licensing.
The buyer’s panel at the recent Picture Agency Council of America (PACA) conference in Chicago offered a number of ideas for ways individual sellers and stock photo distributors might adjust their search, delivery and pricing procedures to improve the chances of their images being chosen and used.
If we want to reduce copyright infringements we must make it easier for people to be honest. Reasoned education is not working. Aggressive pursuit of infringements is not slowing the number of infringements. This story suggests three steps that are technologically possible today and which the industry ought to be exploring.
Google has made a change in its search algorithm that may discourage web site creators from using unlicensed photos. Such use could result in their entire site appearing lower in search rankings and thus seldom, if ever, seen as a result of a Google search.
The American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP
) has created a free Model/Property Release app for iOS (iPhone and iPad) that makes it easy for photographers to enter their own and the models information. The forms require that a photo of the model be attached to the release before it can be completed. Once the form is filled out the model, the photographer and a witness can each sign the form using their finger or a pen in the same manner as electronic credit card purchases are normally signed. Then, a PDF of the completed release can be emailed to the photographer and the model.
A picture may be worth 1,000 words, but permanently attached
descriptions are worth a lot more as photos travel through the digital
world. A campaign has been launched calling for the embedding of
descriptive and rights information in digital media and retaining it
during the whole life cycle.
The big distributors are missing a huge opportunity to capture an even larger share of the market than they already control. Learn how visual search could help them grow revenue and take market share from the small suppliers.
Corbis Images (www.corbisimages.com
), has highlighted nine of its signature collections and described some of what went into the thinking when creating the collection. The imagery in these collections ranges from commercial images, to unforgettable moments in history to natural wonders and iconic celebrities.
Stipple Marketplace, the San Francisco based company with the goal of turning editorial images into e-commerce storefronts for consumers, has developed a system that allows publishers to earn money from the images they publish, not just sell ads around those images.
Few stock photo tasks are as idiosyncratic as keywording. Some
photographers just use their mental vocabularies while others consult a
thesaurus. I know a photographer who has blocks of often-used synonyms
he cuts and pastes into the right place. Everyone does it differently.
Equidyne Holdings LLC
, innovating in the field of digital and visual media, has announced the launch of a new subsidiary, Visual Steam
. Visual Steam is a new kind of sales services organization supporting the content licensing and creative services industries. The company’s goal is to generate revenue for clients. Visual Steam offers contract sales services to handle all or part of a client's sales efforts, customized training programs, workshops and complimentary marketing services.
) has unveiled a full redesign of its e-commerce checkout process in addition to several new e-commerce features that can help photographers sell more images from their PhotoShelter websites. Over 70,000 photographers use PhotoShelter websites and tools to sell photo prints and products, or license their photography as rights managed, royalty free or personal use downloads.
Today, the biggest problem for professional photographers is how to get their images seen by potential customers. Most photographers would agree that the way to get the widest possible exposure for their work is to get their images on gettyimages.com. Sources at Getty Images tell me that 96% of the company’s sales come from images customers find on the first three pages of the search returns. Customers have a choice as to how many thumbnails they want to see on any given page -- with a maximum of 100 allowed -- so three pages of images would be a maximum of 300.
An increasing number of stock photographers are fed up with low prices and low royalty percentages and are looking for a way to get out of the whole agency/distributor rat race. Many are setting up their own sites and are looking for ways deal more directly with their customers. They recognize that they won’t make as many sales, but feel that the higher fees they will receive for each use will generate more total income in the long run. It is not beyond the realm of possibility that by licensing their images directly to end users photographers would receive 10 or more times the revenue for each image licensed compared to what they are receiving from their agencies now.
At first glance, PicScout’s new ImageExchange
interface that isolates images that are easily licensable from any Google or Yahoo! search, and displays them in a right-hand panel next to all the returns delivered by these search engines, would seem to be a very helpful tool for professional users looking for images they can license legitimately.
In fact, the returns delivered may be more misleading than useful.
PicScout, which says it now commands the world’s largest index of fingerprinted and owner-identified images, released a new user interface for Google and Yahoo! The company is acting on research findings that show 70% of creatives using the two search engines to find images.