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An increasing number of iStock’s most productive contributors seem to be pulling back on their production of new images. Of the 430 photographers and illustrators we have been tracking for more than four years only 34% have added more than 100 images to their collections in the last six months. That leaves two-thirds of this group of contributors who have added fewer than 100 images or removed images from the collection.
Since 2009 I have been tracking the image downloads of some of iStock’s leading contributors. Beginning in 2012 I increased the number of individuals tracked on a semi-annual basis to 430. While 430 is only a small percentage of iStock’s total contributors which number more than 100,000 combined this small group has at least 55,479,000 downloads and given the way iStock reports these numbers possibly as many as 58,416,000 downloads. I believe these numbers represent about one-third of all iStock downloads since the company’s founding in 2002.
Downloads for 430 of iStock’s leading contributors have continued their steady decline in the first half of 2015. Getty had hoped that the launch of iStock subscriptions
in April 2014 and the launch in September 2014 of a single price for images
, regardless of the file size needed, would turn iStock’s fortunes around and bring customers back from its competitors. Neither strategy seems to have worked.
, has altered its subscription plans to feature a monthly instead of daily quota of downloadable images, and is allowing the carrying over of unused downloads. The company says, “users will now effectively never ‘lose’ image downloads as unused downloads will roll over into the monthly quota amount, making Dreamstime the most convenient and flexible solution in the industry today.”
(https://picsbuffet.com/#) offers a new method of image search that allows users to easily, visually explore huge sets of images. The images are laid side by side in a “map style” format with similar images close to each other.
, a marketplace for digital services, and Getty Images, have unveiled a partnership that puts premium creative services in the hands of small and medium businesses (SMBs), empowering them to produce creative once only thought possible for large enterprises. Fiverr sellers, which include graphic and web designers, can tap into an unrivaled trove of the world's best images from Getty Images
to produce eye-catching ads, social content, fan pages, apps and just about any other creative design imaginable.
At its annual General Meeting (AGM), held this year in Paris member owned Magnum Photos
nominated six new members: a record breaking number. They include: Matt Black
, Carolyn Drake
, Lorenzo Meloni
, Richard Mosse
, Max Pinckers
and Newsha Tavakolina
(ASX: NWZ) is pleased to announce that it has entered a strategic partnership and content syndication agreement (Agreement) with Alamy
. Newzulu’s crowd-sourced news archive will be featured among Alamy’s collection of over 50 million images from which the platform has generated over US$154 million for its contributors in the last 15 years. Newzulu and Alamy will work together to generate revenue through the sale and licensing of Newzulu’s crowd-sourced content to Alamy’s editorial, creative and commercial clients worldwide.
Getty Images has been granted “interested party” status in the European Commission’s investigation into anticompetitive behavior by Google. Getty Images provides specialized image search and shopping services to end users in direct competition with Google.
Several of my readers have differing opinions with regard to the meaning of the term “no exchange of equity” as it appeared in Masterfile’s May press release
. I thought it meant that no money changed hands. I asked Steve Pigeon, CEO of Masterfile, for clarification.
has re-launched its free Pond5 plugin for Adobe® Premiere® Pro CC which gives editors instant access to nearly 5 million royalty-free video and audio clips.
. and Penske Media Corporation
(PMC) have agreed to form an alliance that will create and license entertainment and fashion images and videos to the world’s top media, publishing and creative companies. (Check out PMC brands
Tired of giving up 70% to 80% (and often more) of what a customer pays to use your image to a distributor? Consider Picfair
. Unhappy with the prices distributors are charging for your images and want more? Consider PicFair
Suppose there was a smartphone app that automatically sent every image capture to the cloud and stored all the metadata including date, time and exact location down to within 100 feet or less of where the picture was taken. (Also imagine if camera manufacturers built that into cameras.) It's coming!
Thanks to Adobe Stock
gross microstock revenue will start to decline. Let me explain why. I estimate that about $143 million of Shutterstock’s 2014 revenue
came from subscription and that there were about 114 million subscription downloads. It all those customers were to switch to Adobe Stock they could probably get all the images they need for $43 million or less and save $100 million annually
. Check out the numbers.
Matt Munson, CEO of Twenty20, recently made the case for why User Generated Content (UGC) will be The Death Of Stock Photos
. He argued that “stock photos do not depict reality” and that “brands that use them risk coming off as generic and out-of-touch” with consumers.
Adobe has launched [St] Adobe Stock
as part of its Adobe Creative Cloud subscription offering. Creative Cloud customers are now able to launch Adobe Stock directly within CC desktop software such as Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop or After Effects, and add watermarked or licensed images to their Creative Cloud Libraries. This will allow them to access and work with images across multiple desktop tools.
Visual Connections has announced the dates for its October conference in New York. This year Visual Connections New York 2015
will be on October 28th immediately following the DMLA (formerly PACA) Annual Conference
that runs from Sunday October 25 through Tuesday the 27th. And if that isn’t enough photo related events for you PhotoPlus Expo
will be October 22-24, 2015 at the Javits Convention Center.
LMKtag (also Lamark
) has developed a relatively inexpensive system to embed tags, invisible to the naked eye, in digital images files. These tags link back to a LMKtag database that contains the image creator’s name and contact information as well as whether the image is available for licensing. The database can also include caption information and other metadata about the image and the creator can adjust this information at any time.
is a relatively new social media site (launched in September 2013) that is designed to encourage photographers to shoot more pictures, work on assignments, participate in contests, build cool portfolios and socialize with each other.
Should traditional agencies be making more of an effort to source images from cell phone users? Sixteen months ago Alamy
introduced its Stockimo app
and started accepting images into its collection that are taken with cell phones. To date about 350,000 images have been submitted and about 170,000 accepted.
During the CEPIC Congress
in Warsaw a Russian stock photo agent told me that Russian photographers can live and support a family very comfortably on 50,000 roubles a month. At today’s currency exchange that works out to about $886 per month or $10,632 per year.
Last week I wrote a story about “Microsoft’s Research On Captioning Photos Automatically
." I argued that this technology is a long way from being of much use to stock photo customers who trying to find useful photos for their projects. However, helping users find photos
may not be what Google, Microsoft and Yahoo are really trying to accomplish.
Microsoft recently published an article about the advancements they are making in developing technology that can automatically caption pictures. (See here
.) However, from the point of finding images on the Internet there is one big flaw in where they are headed. In most cases there will be a huge number of choices that can reasonably have the same caption.
Many traditional suppliers of stock image (those that have been in business 15, 20 years or more) need to give some thought to what the image producing crowd wants. They need to consider possible ways of adjusting their business model in order to meet some of the needs of these part-time image creators. And they need to recognize how these photographers may change the entire stock photography licensing business.