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Microstock

Bigstock Partners With WIX Website Builder

By Jim Pickerell | 349 Words | Posted 11/20/2014 | Comments
Shutterstock has announced a partnership between WIX and its Bigstock brand. Wix is a website creation tool designed for small businesses with 56 million users in 190 countries. Wix offers a “drag n' drop website building platform with HTML5 capabilities, 100s of designer made templates, top grade hosting, innovative Apps and tons of features for free.”

ImageBrief: The RF vs RM Question

By Jim Pickerell | 1139 Words | Posted 11/12/2014 | Comments
ImageBrief has updated its rules regarding RF and provided a long explanation here.  Evidentally, many ImageBrief (IB) contributors have been asking “Why is ImageBrief adding so many RF briefs?” IB’s answer is, “We’re responding to client demands and listening to the market.”

Shutterstock Reports $83.7 Million For Q3 2014

By Jim Pickerell | 1125 Words | Posted 11/7/2014 | Comments
Shutterstock has reported $83.7 million in revenue and total downloads of 31.2 million for Q3 2014. About 30 percent of the revenue was paid out to contributors in royalties. At the end of the quarter the company had 491 employees worldwide. The average price per download was $2.65 up from $2.35 in the previous quarter and an 13% increase compared to Q2 2013. This increase in the average price was due primarily to a growing number of Enterprise and Video sales.

Improving The RF Option

By Jim Pickerell | 1116 Words | Posted 11/5/2014 | Comments
There is a segment of the photographic community that insists on arguing that in order to get more reasonable prices for image use we must eliminate RF. Forget it; it’s impossible; it won’t happen. But there are other options.

Dreamstime App Brings In Thousands Of Images

By Jim Pickerell | 179 Words | Posted 10/28/2014 | Comments
Dreamstime, Inc. is experiencing massive growth via their newly released app, Dreamstime Companion  launched in July on iOS and Google Play. The app allows smartphone users to access the Dreamstime community and upload their mobile photos via their mobile devices. In about three months approximately 30,000 mobile images have been added to Dreamstime’s 25 million image collection.

Textbook Prices Climbing, But Not Image Use Fees

By Jim Pickerell | 826 Words | Posted 10/15/2014 | Comments
For those licensing images to textbooks National Public Radio published an interesting report recently that is worth a listen. It was pointed out that prices for college textbooks are often over $300 and climbing faster than the cost of food, clothing, cars and even health care.

Stop! Can An Image Of That Subject Be Licensed?

By Jim Pickerell | 456 Words | Posted 10/8/2014 | Comments
Did you know that it is illegal to license for commercial use pictures of hundreds of the most popular, beautiful and interesting venues around the world? In many cases it is also illegal to use such pictures for editorial purposes.

Press Release Use Of Images

By Jim Pickerell | 624 Words | Posted 10/7/2014 | Comments
Recently, Tyler Olson discovered by searching Google that one of his images (http://netropolitanclub.com/) had been used on over 1,640 web sites. However, all these uses were not the result of multiple sales, but of a single sale to the Netropolitan Club.

Getty Images Drives It's Customers To Use iStock

By Jim Pickerell | 391 Words | Posted 9/25/2014 | Comments
Getty Images appears to be trying to drive its www.gettyimages.com customers to iStock where the customers can get images for a fraction of what they would cost on Gettyimages.com.

Dreamstime Creates More Personalized Search For Users

By Jim Pickerell | 445 Words | Posted 9/23/2014 | Comments
Dreamstime has announced the release of a new personalization feature, as well as a new social media function.

GDI: New Publicly Traded Stock Photo Company

By Jim Pickerell | 2293 Words | Posted 9/22/2014 | Comments
At the International Photojournalism Festival in Perpignan earlier this month and in a later press announcement GDI Media Limited announced the aim to consolidate many smaller independent picture agencies into a single publicly traded company that will be traded on the AIM stock exchange in the UK.

Microstock Photography Survey Results

By Jim Pickerell | 651 Words | Posted 9/19/2014 | Comments
A few months ago Basar Hatirnaz surveyed microstock image producers for his doctorial thesis at Yeditepe University in Instanbul, Turkey. He got 400 responses from contributors with a wide range of experience in the microstock business. The results of his research provide some interesting insights into the microstock industry.

How Will iStock Prices Affect Gettyimages.com Sales?

By Jim Pickerell | 1103 Words | Posted 9/16/2014 | Comments
Yesterday, I outlined how iStock’s new pricing strategy may affect contributors. But, the bigger worry for iStock exclusive contributors and Getty Images may be what happens on gettyimages.com. Here’s why.

New iStock Prices Released

By Jim Pickerell | 1088 Words | Posted 9/15/2014 | Comments
Over the weekend iStock launched its new prices to compete with Shutterstock. The following chart shows the credit packages available at both iStock and Shutterstock and the average price per credit.

iStock Adopts Shutterstock Licensing Strategy

By Jim Pickerell | 1640 Words | Posted 9/3/2014 | Comments
On September 13th iStock will “throw-in-the-towel” and adopt the Shutterstock licensing strategy that all images should be equal in price regardless of the quality of the image or the cost of production. They will discontinue their practice of pricing based on file size delivered, and of having multi-tier price categories.

So You Want To Be A Stock Photographer

By Jim Pickerell | 1248 Words | Posted 8/27/2014 | Comments
Recently Dennis Davis, an experienced Los Angeles corporate, lifestyle, and food photographer (see his portfolio) posted the following on a blog. “I am moving out of commercial assignment photography into selling my photography after the fact. I am looking for recommendations on stock agencies and methods for selling fine art images and video.

How Does iStock Define “Most Popular”?

By Jim Pickerell | 918 Words | Posted 7/28/2014 | Comments
At iStock the “Most Popular” search option used to show images in order of popularity based on the number of times each image had been downloaded during its life of on the site. The first image shown was the one with the most downloads; the 2nd image was the image with the second highest number of downloads, 3rd had the third highest number of downloads and so on. This was true as late as the end of June 2014.

Fire!! Do You Have Off Site Backup

By Jim Pickerell | 272 Words | Posted 7/22/2014 | Comments
Fire! Can it destroy your business? Are your files protected? On May 30th Steve Cole and his wife woke at 2am with smoke in their bedroom. They had a couple minutes to get out of bed and escape the house. Luckily both got out with their dog, but their three cats that were very much a part of their family did not survive. They lost everything including everything work related in his home office.

PantherMedia Acquires Digitalstock

By Jim Pickerell | 318 Words | Posted 7/9/2014 | Comments
After 10 years in operation, and with more than 800,000 images, the German microstock agency Digitalstock.de has decided to cease operations and provide customers and photographers with an exclusive offer to continue buying and selling photos online at PantherMedia.net.

Is RM The Only Place To Find Great Pictures?

By Jim Pickerell | 6795 Words | Posted 7/8/2014 | Comments
Many RM photographers still believe that microstock images are of much lower quality than RM and that customers who want images of the highest quality will continue to go to RM sites for the images they need. Unfortunately, they are only kidding themselves. (Note the difference in number of downloads in this story.)

iStock: More Images Does Not Increase Sales

By Jim Pickerell | 5839 Words | Posted 7/4/2014 | Comments
For most of the 431 top iStock contributors adding more images to their portfolios does not seen to have had a significant impact on the growth in their number of downloads. In fact, those who grew their collections by the smallest percentage, or not at all, seemed to experience continued growth in sales. Seems counter intuitive.

Three Categories Of Image Creators

By Jim Pickerell | 6029 Words | Posted 7/3/2014 | Comments
Yesterday I provided a list of the 431 of the top iStock contributors in the order of the total number of image downloads they have had in their careers. In the coming week I will explore some other ways to look at the available data. It is important to recognize that not all the people on this list are photographers. I have separated them into three groups – Illustrators (I), people with a mix of illustration and photography in their collections (PI) and photographers.

iStock Downloads Continue To Decline, First Half 2014

By Jim Pickerell | 5418 Words | Posted 7/2/2014 | Comments
On average, there has been a continued decline in the number of downloads for 431 of iStock’s leading contributors during the first half of 2014.  I have been tracking the activity for these contributors for more than 2 year, and about half of them since 2009. Since these individuals joined iStock their images have been downloaded a combined total of at least of 54,291,100 times and a possible maximum of 56,658,200. (See for how I arrived at these numbers.)

Tracking iStock Downloads

By Jim Pickerell | 472 Words | Posted 7/2/2014 | Comments
Since early in 2009 I have been tracking downloads of 192 of iStockphoto’s most productive contributors. At that time istockcharts, a service of multimedia.de provided a daily listing of the total downloads of most of iStock’s contributors. This list could be indexed by downloads so it was easy to determine which contributors had the most iStock downloads in their careers.

Time To Retire RM Pricing

By Jim Pickerell | 1584 Words | Posted 6/6/2014 | Comments
It may be time to retire Rights Managed as a licensing model. RM pricing doesn’t work for most customers anymore. Moreover, it no longer really maximizes the potential earnings of photographers. There used to be a time when all image uses were in print. In those day when an art director purchased an image for a magazine ad, a book or a brochure she knew exactly how the image would be used in the layout and how many copies would be printed. Those days are mostly gone forever.