Fotolia Launches Free Stock Web Site

Posted on 5/21/2009 by Julia Dudnik Stern | Printable Version | Comments (7)

Those who think microstock is under-priced will be chagrined at today’s announcement of Fotolia’s latest offering. Today, the New York-based microstock announced the launch of PhotoXpress, an online stock-image bank offering visitors a collection of 350,000 images free of charge.

There is, of course, a catch—but compared to having to pay, it is a small one: visitors need to register, thus providing Fotolia with new marketing leads. PhotoXpress also limits downloads to 10 images per day and requires that all photos be properly credited.

Incoming Fotolia president, ex-iStock executive Patrick Lor, describes PhotoXpress as the largest free collection of high-quality images on the Web. However, that’s not entirely accurate: 8-year-old Stock.xchng, the original free pro-stock Web site, offers a larger inventory (its home page says over 350,000 images and recent news reports put it at 400,000). Following the recent acquisition of Jupiterimages, Getty Images owns controlling interest in the Hungarian Stock.xchng.

PhotoXpress inventory was sourced through a number of partnerships. Fotolia plans to grow the Web site daily, “by the thousands,” according to the company statement. All images are model-released and offered under royalty-free licenses at print resolutions. The Web site is operated from Hartford, Conn.

Copyright © 2009 Julia Dudnik Stern. 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


  • Bill Bachmann Posted May 21, 2009
    Next photographers will be paying clients to use the images!

    Oh for intelligence and good decisions in the photo world. Do people really want to be "published" this badly?

    Bill Bachmann
    Orlando, Florida

  • Jose Pelaez Posted May 21, 2009
    I have to wonder about the quality of the "leads" they will get from this site. All they are asking for is an e-mail address, from an applicant who wants something for nothing.

  • Mike Marlowe Posted May 21, 2009
    "PhotoXpress inventory was sourced through a number of partnerships."

    What are these 'partnerships' and with who? There is a lengthy user (member) agreement that includes how to file notice of infingement of copyright and they refer to a subsection of the US copyright act that is for online storage of media. So they are either acting like a kind of file sharing site or its a collection of orphan works.

    Has anyone else noticed that all these funky, sharing, new pardaigm etc etc business models have the most robust good ole fashioned one sided legal agreements behind them!


  • James l. Amos Posted May 21, 2009
    PhotoXpress is one of the first website with the new Fotolia Free Photos API which provides all free photos from Fotolia Community. Fotolia just send out a newsletter to their photographers that they can add their photos to the free API for 0,5 Credits per Picture. Their Photos will kept in their normal database for sale. If you see how many photographers join Fotolia every day, and i see that on my referes, then you know who are the "source" for this big portfolio.

    Anyway - good look Fotolia

  • Jagdish Agarwal Posted May 22, 2009
    Last month, I met one of our old clients, on the streets of Bombay, India and he mentioned that now he is able to source all images free. And his clients are happy. Can all stock photographers and picture agencies, scratch their heads and come up with a solution to this worldwide problem?

  • Manuel Cohen Posted May 22, 2009
    Does anyone know what is the business model of websites providing images free? I understand it has to do with building traffic. The question is: How can they make money with the traffic? Advertising, of course, selling list of contributors but this does not seem to be enough as advertising revenues are not yet consistent and may not cover costs of running such websites. Any idea?

  • James l. Amos Posted May 22, 2009
    The Business Model is: They have hundred thousands of free pictures already in their database. They now just promote them better via a API on PhotoXPress. The Costs of this Website are nothing so it worth to get attention and traffic.

    Do you know how much they pay to be visible at Google Adwords?

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