From Books To iPads

By Jim Pickerell | 761 Words | Posted 6/17/2011 | Comments
What happens when the iPad becomes the primary vehicle for delivering educational information? Check out this story for some of the things we think will happen in the education business. Also see how what will happen to in the education business to content providers -- writers as well as photographers -- in the next ten years compares to how microstock has changed the stock photography business in the last decade.

Encyclopaedia Britannica Pricing For Picture Access

By Jim Pickerell | 1300 Words | Posted 6/13/2011 | Comments
Last week in a story entitles “Educational Products For Students” I discussed the new educational publisher strategy for making images available to students. In particular I examined the Encyclopaedia Britannica product called Image Quest and made some estimates about pricing and the royalties photographers might receive for the use of their images. Encyclopaedia Britannica has now provided us with more details of their pricing strategy and we need to revise our numbers.

Court Allows Pearson Education To Negotiate With Photographers

By Jim Pickerell | 313 Words | Posted 6/10/2011 | Comments
On Tuesday June 7, 2011 U.S. District Judge James C. Francis IV denied Norbert Wu’s request for a preliminary injunction and sanctions and refused to stop Pearson Education Inc. from communicating with members of a proposed class of photographers. Pearson had been temporarily restrained from negotiating with other photographers and stock agencies with regard to unauthorized use claims until the judge determined whether or not a class action could be certified. Now Pearson is free to move ahead and settle photographer's claims.

Educational Products For Students

By Jim Pickerell | 1693 Words | Posted 6/7/2011 | Comments
The educational market has always been a big segment of the stock photo business. Some agencies and individual photographers earn the majority of there revenue from sales for educational use. Until recently, most of the photographs used for educational purposes were published in textbooks. All that is changing with Britannica Image Quest that gives students and teachers unlimited access to a 2.3 million image file.

Negotiating "Life of Edition" Rights

By Jim Pickerell | 793 Words | Posted 4/27/2011 | Comments
Some textbook publishers have begun to ask photographers to invoice them for the right to use images for the “life of the edition” of a book. The following is the language from one such request. "Please bill us for publication rights for the life of the edition. … we would like by this permission request to sell additional units through the life of the edition...."

Images For Students: UIG and EB Do 10-Year Exclusive Deal

By Jim Pickerell | 1151 Words | Posted 4/26/2011 | Comments
Universal Images Group (UIG), and Encyclopaedia Britannica (EB) have entered into a 10-year License Agreement that makes UIG the exclusive provider of still pictures, video and footage for EB’s online educational image service, Image Quest. UIG, the distribution business of the Virtual Picture Desk (VPD), has provided 2 million educational still images for Britannica Image Quest and will subsequently provide motion content including video and footage clips. The Image Quest online subscription service went live in September 2010 with content from more than 50 world-class image providers.

Pricing Electronic Uses

By Jim Pickerell | 1918 Words | Posted 4/20/2011 | Comments
When customers first requested rights to use images in both print and online it seemed reasonable to charge a supplemental fee for the online use that was much less than the print price. Today, electronic use is at least equal to print and tomorrow it will be the predominate use of all imagery. If we continue to price electronic as a lesser usage we will be offering a huge discount on the price for the majority of our future licenses. Therefore we must come up with an entirely new strategy for licensing electronic uses.

Educational Publishing Trends

By Jim Pickerell | 331 Words | Posted 4/18/2011 | Comments
The Association of American Publishers (AAP) has reported that e-Book sales in February 2011 were $90.3 million, up 202.3% compared to February 2010. Higher Education sales for January and February 2011 were $406.9 million, down by 5.6% vs the same period in 2010. K-12 sales for the same two-month period were $173 million, a decline of  8.9% compared to 2010.

Death of Educational Market for Images

By Jim Pickerell | 3277 Words | Posted 4/13/2011 | Comments
Anyone who earns significant revenue from producing or licensing stock images for educational purposes should be looking, as soon as possible, for another line of business. Why? It is rapidly becoming impossible to earn enough from licensing images for educational use to cover the costs of producing them. For decades photographers have been willing to license rights for limited usage of their images with the understanding that if a greater use is made the photographer will receive additional compensation. This system was originally developed to help publishers limit their risk in the event that some of the book they produced did not sell well or generate as much revenue as hoped.

Educational Pricing Based On Unique Users

By Jim Pickerell | 1230 Words | Posted 3/28/2011 | Comments
Educational publishers regularly set up “preferred provider” agreements with image suppliers who represent large collections. Publishers outline certain standard terms and uses. The image provider is then asked to stipulate a fee that will be charged for each use. Based on the fees providers agree to charge the publisher decides which supplier to use. McGraw Hill School Education Group has recently requested quotes from potential preferred providers and they have introduced a new concept for determining circulation of the product. Instead of talking about the number of copies printed McGraw Hill now refers to the number of “unique users.”

Court Rejects Google’s Proposal To Settle Copyright Claims

By Jim Pickerell | 319 Words | Posted 3/24/2011 | Comments
Federal appeals court judge Denny Chin has rejected Google’s proposed settlement of copyright claims arising from the company’s digitization of books. Since the case is a class action, the court, and not the parties, must determine whether the settlement is fair, adequate and reasonable.

Science Photo Library Signs Licensing Agreement with Global Grid for Learning

By Jim Pickerell | 408 Words | Posted 3/23/2011 | Comments
Science Photo Library, has signed a licensing agreement with Global Grid for Learning, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cambridge University Press and one of the most comprehensive digital educational content collections in the world.

Image Licensors Should Be Given Passwords For Textbook Websites

By Jim Pickerell | 1213 Words | Posted 3/21/2011 | Comments
Those who license rights to use photos in textbooks should include language in their invoices that requires publishers to provide the licensor with a password to any web site where the licensors images are used.This story explains why it is important and provides recommended language.

Editorial Photographers Announces Education Grant Competition For Students

By Jim Pickerell | 159 Words | Posted 3/10/2011 | Comments
In an effort to recognize and support emerging photographers, the Editorial Photographers trade association [EP] has announced its Third Annual EP Education Grants student photo competition. For details go to: The Grand Prize winner will be chosen from among the finalists by internationally-acclaimed Magnum photographer Elliott Erwitt. More than $5000 in prizes will be presented to the Grand Prize winner, and more than $2000 each for the other five finalists!

Changing Textbook Industry

By Jim Pickerell | 543 Words | Posted 2/10/2011 | Comments
If you license rights to your photos for textbook use then here are a few articles you should read.

What Are Pictures Worth To Book Publishers?

By Jim Pickerell | 1164 Words | Posted 1/24/2011 | Comments
Do educational publishers place much value on the pictures they use in their books? Based on what they are willing to pay for such images, the role pictures play in the educational process has declined significantly over the last 10 to 15 years. The fees paid for images used in textbooks have not kept up with changing usage demands. There may be little photographers can do to alter this trend, but they need to be aware of and understand the problem as they plan future production for this market.

Business Ethics: Is This Statement An Oxymoron?

By Jim Pickerell | 1468 Words | Posted 12/30/2010 | Comments
Many believe the concept of business ethics has become an oxymoron. Do a Google search and you’ll find reams and reams of explanations of what ethical business practices are, or should be. Every major corporation has a place on its web site that outlines the company’s ethical principles. Some companies test all employees annually to insure that they clearly understand the company’s ethical policies and procedures. Often these principles seem to boil down to two over riding rules: (1) Maximize Shareholder and Manager Wealth and (2) Do What Is Legal.

Things To Consider When Licensing Educational Uses

By Jim Pickerell | 1105 Words | Posted 12/14/2010 | Comments
The use of images for educational purposes has always been about 20% of the total market for stock images. For some agencies and photographers, educational sales represent a much higher percentage of their gross revenue. However, as a result of technological developments and industry consolidation, it has become extremely difficult for creators to earn enough from licensing images for educational uses to enable them to continue to produce imagery for this purpose.

What Kind of Photos Work on the Web?

By Jim Pickerell | 319 Words | Posted 11/13/2010 | Comments

Eye tracking studies by Jakob Nielsen, a Web site consultant and author of a number of books about design and user interface, show that users pay close attention to photos and other images that contain relevant information but ignore fluffy pictures used to “jazz up” Web pages.

Textbook Licensing: Where the Clean-Up Meets the Cover-Up

By Dan Nelson and Kevin P. McCulloch | 1546 Words | Posted 10/26/2010 | Comments
Copyright lawyers Dan Nelson and Kevin McCulloch provide some background on how major U.S. textbook publishers have been—and, indeed, still continue to—systematically infringe photo the copyrights of the photographs they use in textbooks and various other materials.  They explore some of the various factors that allowed this situation to occur and go unnoticed, despite being an industry-wide practice that has given rise to some of the most egregious cases of copyright infringement in recent memory.

Ethics In The Textbook Publishing Business

By Jim Pickerell | 2108 Words | Posted 10/6/2010 | Comments
Photographers whose business it is to produce stock images that are designed for use in textbooks should IMMEDIATELY look for another line of work. For years the major textbook publisher -- not fly by night organizations -- have been paying fees based on minimal press runs. Then, with no regard whatsoever for the written contracts they executed with the sellers, they have made extensive additional uses of the images without making any attempt to compensate the image creators in any way for the use that exceeded the original license agreement. These additional uses have resulted in millions of dollars of extra revenue for the publishers. Such actions were not occasional oversights, but policy.

Individual Property Ownership And The Future Of Creativity

By Jim Pickerell | 2686 Words | Posted 10/4/2010 | Comments
In his biography, The Age of Turbulence, Alan Greenspan said, “The presumption of individual property ownership and the legality of its transfer must be deeply embedded in the culture of a society (emphasis mine) for free market economies to function effectively. In the West, the moral validity of property rights is accepted, or at least acquiesced in, by virtually the whole of the population.” I was struck by how this relates to the photography business today. The concept of individual property ownership is no longer deeply embedded in the culture of our society. A large segment of the population believes that certain property should be free to all and that the creators have no rights once the property is shown to anyone. Using the creative works of others without permission or compensation is becoming the morally accepted standard.

Locating Copyright Holders

By Jim Pickerell | 263 Words | Posted 10/1/2010 | Comments
ASPP has published a very informative guide for picture editors and researchers on locating copyright holders of imagery when the name and contact information is not readily attached to an image. The guide, and a link to a downloadable PDF, are available free or charge.

Pricing Textbook Uses

By Jim Pickerell | 2761 Words | Posted 9/9/2010 | Comments
There are two primary factors that should be considered when quoting a price for textbook use: image size (1/4, 1/2 or full page) and size of the print run. This article provides a historical perspective on pricing images for textbook uses and offers an update for the current economic climate.

Alert: Avoid Under-pricing Textbook Print Run Extensions

By Jim Pickerell | 915 Words | Posted 9/2/2010 | Comments
Photographers should be alert for textbook publisher requests for new image licenses to extend print runs on books that have already been printed without obtaining such licenses. In many cases, image owners may be entitled to high retroactive usage fees for copies already printed and distributed, as well as a fee for the new books the publisher intends to produce.