Agencies/Distributors

Shutterstock Releases Background Removal Tool

By Jim Pickerell | 232 Words | Posted 10/9/2019 | Comments
Shutterstock has released a background removal tool as part Shutterstock Editor users can now easily remove the background from any image in the Shutterstock collection or their own images. (Shutterstock images must be purchased before they can be modified.)

Shutterstock Launches Reverse Image Search For Video

By Jim Pickerell | 361 Words | Posted 10/3/2019 | Comments
Shutterstock’s ongoing efforts to make the creative life of its customers easier continues with the launch of reverse image search for video. This new feature makes it faster than ever to find exactly the right video clip in Shutterstock’s footage library.

Shutterstock Custom Launches Smart Brief

By Jim Pickerell | 442 Words | Posted 10/2/2019 | Comments
Shutterstock, Inc. has launched Smart Brief, a new streamlined and guided experience to make it easier for photo users to quickly and efficiently improve the quality of the brief for a photo shoot. With this update, clients spend less time inputting briefs and more time leveraging collaboration tools to quickly obtain high-quality branded content and reduce the approval process time.

House of Pictures Joins Image Professionals

By Jim Pickerell | 354 Words | Posted 9/24/2019 | Comments
House of Pictures, the Copenhagen based interior and lifestyle feature agency, will become a brand of Image Professionals GmbH on October 1st, 2019. Pernille Schlosser, the founder and Managing Director will remain on board and in charge of the widely recognized boutique agency. House of Pictures, founded by Pernille Schlosser in 2000, is matching feature stories with high-end lifestyle publications around the world.

The Image Works Closing Soon

By Jim Pickerell | 196 Words | Posted 9/24/2019 | Comments
The Image Works CEO Mark Antman has announced that after thirty-six years of operation The Image Works will be closing in the near future. He added, "We have had a fantastic run, but it is time for me to close the business, retire and move on."

AdobeStock Revenue

By Jim Pickerell | 510 Words | Posted 9/4/2019 | Comments
For a long time, I’ve been trying to get some idea of the revenue AdobeStock generates annually. Adobe doesn’t share that information, but I’ve finally arrived at a strategy that may help. I’ve contacted a few of Adobe’s major contributors and asked them what their total royalty earnings were from Adobe in the last year and the total number of images they have in the collection.

Science Photo Library

By Jim Pickerell | 88 Words | Posted 9/4/2019 | Comments
Science Photo Library has announced a change in its distribution and future presence in the French market. As of September they launched sciencephoto.fr to further strengthen their presence.

StockFood Becomes Image Professionals

By Jim Pickerell | 428 Words | Posted 8/27/2019 | Comments
Effective September 1, 2019, StockFood will become Image Professionals. The Munich-based media service provider StockFood GmbH originally focused on food photography, but has continuously expanded its scope of business in recent years and is now emerging with a new company name. Image Professionals will bring together all of the company's specialized agencies and services. However, only the company is being renamed. StockFood, the food photo agency, will remain unaffected.

What To Do When Competitors Discount Prices

By Jim Pickerell | 489 Words | Posted 8/16/2019 | Comments
An editorial stock agent tells me that he is trying to hold the line, or increase, the prices he charges for images because his providers tell him that their costs are increasing. Meanwhile, a competitor who is offering dramatically lower prices in an attempt to win customers has entered the market. As a result, the agent's providers are seeing poorer sales. He asks for advice as to what he should do? I’ll give some answers, but I also want to invite my readers to chime in with any thoughts they might have, or strategies that have worked for them.

Storyblocks To Close Marketplace

By Jim Pickerell | 198 Words | Posted 8/13/2019 | Comments
Storyblocks will be closing the Marketplace segment of its business on September 10th and moving back to a subscription only offering. Contributors who have outstanding payouts will receive those payments sometime after September 10th even if the amount owed has not met the minimum payout requirement.

Shutterstock Q2 2019 Financial Results

By Jim Pickerell | 1346 Words | Posted 8/6/2019 | Comments
Shutterstock has reported Q2 2019 revenue of $161.7 million up 3% compared to Q2 2018 and down from $163.3 million the previous quarter. Revenue per download averaged $3.44 per image, compared to $3.41 in Q2 2018.?? Total image and video downloads for Q2 were 46.6 million, up from 45.2 million a year earlier, and down from 47.2 million in Q1 2019.

StockFood Studios: Pictures, Videos, and Recipes Made to Measure

By Jim Pickerell | 920 Words | Posted 8/1/2019 | Comments
StockFood has launched StockFood Studios, an innovative production service for food photography. The Munich-based food experts, whose international brand is synonymous with professional food photography, are expanding their portfolio to include commissioned productions. The website www.stockfoodstudios.com offers this new service.

User Generated Content

By Jim Pickerell | 638 Words | Posted 7/31/2019 | Comments
Forbes Magazine has a story entitled “Move Over Stock Photos, It’s Time For User Generated Content.” There certainly is an increasing demand for User Generated Content (UGC) and the market is being flooded with it, but there are a lot of unanswered questions regarding how much it is likely to take over the stock photo market.

RM Licensing No Longer Makes Sense

By Jim Pickerell | 1492 Words | Posted 7/30/2019 | Comments
Photographers trying to license their images as Rights Managed (RM) need to give some serious though about whether this strategy is still in their best interests. In theory, licensing based on usage should enable a photographer to occasionally get higher prices for certain uses, rather than giving away all future rights and allowing multiple re-uses for a low Royalty Free (RF) license. The following are some reasons why this “theory” no longer works.

Freepik Microstock Offering

By Jim Pickerell | 554 Words | Posted 7/26/2019 | Comments
Recently, I received a press release from Freepik.com. The name is a misnomer because not all the pictures on the site are free. They do have about 1,750,000 free vectors, icons and photos, all created or wholly owned by Freepik. In addition, they have over 4,185,000 Premium photos and illustrations supplied by about 8,000 individual creators and distributors of microstock. A little under half of the pieces of content are photos. The rest are illustrations, vectors and icons.

Selling Images Via The Internet

By Jim Pickerell | 766 Words | Posted 7/26/2019 | Comments
The Internet is a great place for selling things if the finished product must be delivered by FedEx or UPS. But if you’re trying to sell is a digital version of what you’re showing, then long range your business model doesn’t have much future. It’s too easy to “steal,” “appropriate” or whatever you want to call it.

Shutterstock Elements Offers Cinema-Grade Video Effects

By Jim Pickerell | 381 Words | Posted 7/17/2019 | Comments
Shutterstock, has announced its new footage offering—Shutterstock Elements. Over 3,000 elements captured on cinema-grade cameras and lenses have been added to the site, including transitions, lens flares, VFX (visual effects), video kits, film overlays, HUD (head-up display) and UI (user interface) elements. Compatible with all major video editing programs, Elements also includes detailed tutorials on how to optimize effects.

Will Photo Assignments Go The Way Of Stock

By Jim Pickerell | 874 Words | Posted 7/16/2019 | Comments
In the last decade we have all watched the decline of stock photography as more and more photographers got into the game, the total revenue spent by buyers grew very little if at all and even the best photographers have seen significant declines in their annual income. I suppose this benefited the buyers. Now they are able to get the images they need for much less than they had to pay before – and in most cases much less than their real costs of production.

Getty Moving Rapidly To Eliminate RM

By Jim Pickerell | 3380 Words | Posted 7/9/2019 | Comments
Getty Images is moving rapidly to eliminate RM images from its Creative collection. As of July 3rd, there were only 2,387,383 RM images representing about 8% of the total collection of 28,624,340 images. However, it gets worse. There are 54 independent distributors listed as having RM image collections on the site. But, if you search those collections individually you find that only 4 of them have any images for a total of 129,241 images. In most cases the searcher is told “zero results.” The vast majority of images still being licensed as RM are in the Getty wholly owned collections.

Are Your Images On Getty Being Seen?

By Jim Pickerell | 603 Words | Posted 7/9/2019 | Comments
It is interesting to note that when we searched the 210 individual collections and recorded the numbers in each the total came to 28,591,367. However, if you go to the site and search for all images you are only shown 26,240,654 images. For those who haven’t tried this you can simply go to gettyimages.com, enter any keywords and hit return. When the return come up with the “Filter” option on the left hand side of the screen remove the keyword, leave the search bar blank and click again. Now, you will be shown all the images for the “License Type” you have requested. Be sure the “License Type” is set on RF or RM. Then you can go to “Collections,” choose the one you want and see all the images in that collection.

iStock Facebook “Private” Group

By Jim Pickerell | 518 Words | Posted 7/4/2019 | Comments
A number of iStock contributors interact on the Facebook “private” group for iStock. In reviewing comments and complaints for the last couple years there seems to be general agreement that sales started to decline in late 2018 and the decline has continued into 2019. This is compared to what sales were in 2017 and early 2018.

Shutterstock Enterprise

By Jim Pickerell | 891 Words | Posted 7/3/2019 | Comments
One of the big questions about Enterprise sales at Shutterstock is “Why do big customers want an Enterprise deal?” On average Enterprise customers are paying more per quarter than E-commerce customers. What additional services do they get? In 2018 Enterprise customers generated about 40.9% of Shutterstock’s total revenue, or about $254.8 million. The average Enterprise customer pays Shutterstock $6,370 per year, but they could be getting 750 images per month for $2,388 a year. Maybe they are using a lot of video at $63.16 per clip, but there must be other benefits justifying the paying of the much higher fees.

Free Images on Chinese Website “Xiaba.com”

By Jim Pickerell | 214 Words | Posted 7/3/2019 | Comments
On the iStock contributor forum Brenda Bazylewski of iStock contributor relations recently reported the following. “We (iStock) were recently made aware of the Chinese website, “Xiaba” which was offering iStock imagery for personal educational use only, free of charge. According to the terms of their license, the imagery could not be used for commercial or editorial purposes."

CFO Steven Berns Leaves Shutterstock

By Jim Pickerell | 278 Words | Posted 6/26/2019 | Comments
Shutterstock announced yesterday that Co-Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer Steven Berns will depart from his roles at Shutterstock to pursue other opportunities, effective immediately to pursue other opportunities. Mr. Berns' departure is not due to a dispute or any matter relating to the Company's accounting and financial policies and operations.

Logos And Trademarks

By Jim Pickerell | 894 Words | Posted 6/24/2019 | Comments
Robert Kneschke’s story on Unsplash last week got me thinking about trademarks and logos. Professional photographers tell me that the inspectors for the major stock agencies – Getty, Shutterstock, AdobeStock and iStock – are increasingly rejecting photos with any identifying brand marks for fear of legal action by the brands.