Let's Talk About... #1 Stock Photography
Greetings, photographers and photo enthusiasts! :)
Starting today this series of public discussions, called "Let's Talk About".
Do you remember that lovely song by Salt-N-Pepa? :D
"Let's talk about STOCK, baby
Let's talk about you and me
Let's talk about all the good things
And the bad things that may be
Let's talk about STOCK
Let's talk about STOCK (A little bit, a little bit)"
Well, these are NOT the exact lyrics but still... let's do this :)
Let's discuss this controversial topic today.
Do you Stock?
Do you think it's worth it the time invested?
How much have you been paid in the last... month, year, ever?
What's your most favorite agency?
What's your least favorite agency?
How is that line of business changing?
Let's share our experience.
Image created in Adobe Express https://express.adobe.com/
The Youtube link to the original piece:
Let's start with sharing some experience of mine :)
The first agency I joined was Shutterstock in January 2015.
Probably a bit late to the game. Also, as I was running other photography-related gigs at the time, as portrait, event and travel photography, I never really spent more than, let's say ten hours in average per week.
Currently, my folio there is more than 3k photos and have about 1600 downloads. A couple of years ago, Shutterstock decided to decrease the minimal commission they are paying to the author from USD 0.25 to USD 0.10 and that was the time I decided to stop uploading there.
During the years, I tried more than a dozen of agency and in the last year and so I upload only to Adobe Stock, they still pay rather "fair" commissions.
Oh, tell me more about it 😂 I guess that's a painful topic for every photographer. Currently I am at deactivating my portfolio at the next agency - 5791 pictures one by one. I can't even delete my profile there and can't delete my pictures - every agency has its own requirements and clauses, none of which are in favor of the contributor. And I guess when you sign the contract with them, you don't read as much in detail or at least pay as much attention to the termination clauses because nobody thinks about termination in the very beginning. At least I never thought about it then.
I remember how two years ago, when the big changes at Sh^tterstock were introduced, a female photographer I didn't know even blocked me in one of the FB groups because I said that everyone has the right to decide for themselves whether to continue to be a contributor to this agency. And then I still had no intention of removing my account from there. But here I am already without a profile there. And while I have no intention of imposing my opinion in such an aggressive manner, I do not advise anyone to get into this dead, lost cause anymore. At least the photographers who respect their work.
I'd rather disagree here, as 0.33 cannot be a fair commission. But I use Photoshop almost every day, so I use Adobe products. There have been years where I have even earned free usage. So, this is an agency that not only takes but also offers something in return to its contributors unlike any other.
Gosh, that really sounds painful.
First, I know how much it takes to get such amount of photos approved and then, you have to remove them one by one? Nobody deserves such an attitude. That feels like slavery.
Yes, USD 0.33 doesn't sound right, but it's still 3.3 times more than what SS offer. Hopefully they don't get greedier ;)
I don't hope for anything anymore. Rather, I expect everything. The crisis of 2020 has shown the true faces of many people and businesses and many people and businesses have decided to take advantage of it. The funniest thing is that it is precisely the agencies with the biggest restrictions that pompously boast of their causes to support certain movements that have become very fashionable in recent years or the affected by the current war. But at whose expense - the people who create real value. That's why I don't trust anyone for anything anymore.
P.S. It's strange, I know there are many photographers here and I was hoping to read more experiences. My biggest mistake with these agencies is that I also got involved quite late (later than you) - when the machine had already worked in a certain way that it was difficult for new contributors to get involved. But there are people with entirely positive experiences, I'm sure.
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