Textbook Rates Go Down

Posted on 12/5/2012 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (1)

If you think there is still a decent market for textbook usage of stock photos – think again. The following is a summary of a conversation yesterday between a picture researcher for a major U.S. textbook company and renown travel photographer Wolfgang Kaehler.
    Kaehler said, “Earlier this year I submitted one image for publication to a major US textbook company. Yesterday I received a sample permission letter. The letter asked for the image to be published in any media, language and worldwide distribution with an unlimited print run.  I got back to the photo researcher and gave her my price for a print run for up to 2 million.  Almost immediately I received an email back that their "high rate" stock houses are requesting $350 regardless of size. After a few email exchanges, I asked if it would be possible to put a print run limit on this project, but she could not.  My final answer was that I don’t have RF images (I consider this usage with unlimited print run RF) and she would need to find another image to replace my image.” 
He added, “The stock photography market is being destroyed by these kinds of deals. Unfortunately too many agencies fall for this and I believe that they are digging their own grave with this short term thinking. I just closed my account with Alamy because I saw deals like this and much worse over the past months in my statements. Photographers should wake up and don’t be in the stock photography business if they make deals like this.”
If you are not familiar with his work check out his web site at www.wkaehlerphoto.com.
Then consider what it cost to produce those images.  

Also, read our report on what Ken Carson, EVP and General Counsel of Cengage Learning had to say at the PACA International Conference in October.

Copyright © 2012 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.  


  • Bill Bachmann Posted Dec 5, 2012
    I agree with Wolfgang! Don't give your work away...


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