FlashStock Inc., Another Distributor Of CellPhone Pics

Posted on 1/22/2014 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (1)

Do companies need an inexpensive catalogue of company-specific images showing their products and services being used by consumers? FlashStock, Inc. thinks they do. Do the companies still need such images if that are all shot by part-time, amateur photographers using cellphones?

Photographers will capture and share moments from their daily lives and be paid up to $200 per-month if they provide 10 approved photos per-day (300 approved photos per-month). Actual payments are prorated based on the number of photos submitted, quality of photos and more. The best photographers (they are known as Flasharazzi) will also receive prizes, trips, dinners and more in addition to having their work showcased by the world’s leading companies.

FlashStock promises its corporate customers that it will provide “simple, safe and easy to understand rights management, helping to reduce legal and ethical risks associated with the use of social media images in marketing campaigns.” Presumably, if people are in any of the images, the photographers will be required to provide model releases. If there are no releases it will be interesting to see what happens when photo subjects start seeing themselves in corporate ads.

Companies provide FlashStock with information about the kind of photos they are looking for. For a single brief that provides 150 new photos per month the fee is $1,250. For 10 briefs and 500 new photos per month the fee is $4,095. Flasharazzi can review all customer needs, choose what they want to shoot, “sign off on rights,” and upload in real time. Images are quickly vetted for quality and uploaded to the FlashStock image library, ready for immediate use by client brands. The “sign off on rights” may tell us who will be legally liable if a photographer’s subject becomes unhappy with how an image is used.

Will It Work?

What may be the most surprising thing about FlashStock is that investors think the people posting personal images on social media of things that just happened in front of them will take the time to learn what companies are looking for, go the trouble of shooting those specific images, get model releases or take on the legal liability if the subject of their photo is unhappy with how it is used, and do all of this for so little compensation. Marketwired has just announced that the company has completed a seed financing round for an undisclosed amount.

According to Michael Scissons, Executive Chairman of FlashStock, "Marketers around the world are struggling to access high quality, customized images at a reasonable price. FlashStock offers companies  a network of consumer photographers that creates the ability to build customized content catalogues based on their marketing needs."

"In my time at Facebook it became clear that high quality images (content) drove the best results," stated Tom Arrix, FlashStock board member and former Vice President of Global Marketing Solutions (North America) at Facebook. "Brands and agencies continue to struggle to deliver consistent, great content, at scale. Cost or lack of budgets to produce the content has always slowed things down. FlashStock is a platform that provides the ability to change this and I'm excited to see its impact on revolutionizing the industry."

"Far too many companies and agencies assume that it's okay to use unpaid photos shared via social media without requiring the photographer's and/or model's consent," opined Grant Munro, Chief Executive Officer of FlashStock. "In 2013 we saw a wave of litigation that continued to set precedents on these issues. Among FlashStock's key commitments, we strive to make rights management easy and safe for companies of all sizes."
FlashStock is currently accessible through an invite-only or closed beta platform. Companies/brands and photographers can request an invitation by visiting www.flashstock.com or by emailing vasb@synfufgbpx.pbz.  An official public launch will follow later this year.

For more information about FlashStock management check out this link. FlashStock is currently looking for photography managers in Toronto and New York.

Copyright © 2014 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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