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Starsphinx

What do you want to seen in Contract changes APART from commission levels

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So a few weeks back Alamy poked a wasps nest by announcing a 20% cut in commission.  Yesterday it reacted by announcing it will keep 50/50 for exclusive images.  When the first announcment was made lots of good practical suggestions nothing to do with the commission were made - and I rather fear many if not all of these have been lost from view with the news about exclusivity.  I think this is a bad thing.

So we know come February there are going to be contract changes.  So let's get some things besides commission on the table and let Alamy know what we want and need to provide the images they want to promote their growth.  In this thread there should be NO commission comments and NO exclusivity comments - there are other threads for those subjects.

Off the top of my head issues that Alamy should sort in this commission change includes

  • Refund abuse
  • Personal use abuse
  • bottom line pricing
  • RM licences that look like RF
  • keywording
  • failure to chase misuse

I know there are others - and I am sure people will come up with things I have not thought about - so please let's let Alamy know areas they need to seriously focus on

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All very nice, but I saw no indication on either video that James is willing to entertain suggestions. Quite the opposite. Expect the new contract to appear in January, and an update from James in the next quarter. 

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All of the OP's suggestions are excellent and I totally agree.

Sadly, they've been brought up so often that I suspect Alamy sees that they'd cost them more than they stand to gain (imagine how much it would take to clean up keywords over the entire site, and even then false views come up because of correct keywords being unfortunately juxtaposed, lawyers are very expensive, need to keep customers ...), so at a time when Alamy have indicated a need to save money, I wouldn't hold my breath.

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41 minutes ago, KevinS said:

All very nice, but I saw no indication on either video that James is willing to entertain suggestions. Quite the opposite. Expect the new contract to appear in January, and an update from James in the next quarter. 

When he first announced the cut to 40% was there any indication (seen at the time not looking back) that he was willing to entertain changing exclusivity?  When the factory boss announces he is changing everyone's contract do the workforce sit there shrug their shoulders and say there is no indication the boss is willing to entertain suggestions or do they turn around and say right if you are doing this then we want this - meet us halfway.  Exclusivity is not half way - although it seems intended to look like it is.

8 minutes ago, Cryptoprocta said:

All of the OP's suggestions are excellent and I totally agree.

Sadly, they've been brought up so often that I suspect Alamy sees that they'd cost them more than they stand to gain (imagine how much it would take to clean up keywords over the entire site, and even then false views come up because of correct keywords being unfortunately juxtaposed, lawyers are very expensive, need to keep customers ...), so at a time when Alamy have indicated a need to save money, I wouldn't hold my breath.

I know they have been bought up often and ignored - but right now (unless enough people are lemmings) there is a very disgruntled contributor base that has just very clearly let Alamy know exactly how dependent the company is on them - right now is the time to stop suggesting nicely and say right then - get this in the change YOU instigated.   They obviously have the legal eagles out right now for making the changes they want - the 20% cut, and for modifying it, exclusivity, and at this point if Alamy have any brains those legal eagles are on a set fee for getting the new contract done so adding in our points should not cost more there.
As for costing more than they stand to gain - I would love to see the calculations on that, because I suspect actually mid to long-term they would save more than they cost and what is more generate a cleaner better more productive inflow to boot.

You cannot tell me that sticking a big notice on the shopping cart saying "YOU ARE PURCHASING IMAGES OF ITEMS NOT THE ITEMS THEMSELVES AND NO REFUNDS WILL BE GIVEN" is going to cost a huge amount to implement, and that it will not save both Alamy and us a fortune?

You cannot tell me moving "personal use" to the bottom of selections and making the default choice the most expensive licence will  cost a huge amount  (not to mention it is proven sales science that putting the most expensive first increases average sale price due to something called anchoring)

Those 2 alone are relatively cheap easy fixes that would both immediately result in an improved bottom line - more money for Alamy, more money for us.

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1 hour ago, KevinS said:

All very nice, but I saw no indication on either video that James is willing to entertain suggestions. Quite the opposite. Expect the new contract to appear in January, and an update from James in the next quarter. 

I made the observation above after 10+ years of being on Alamy. It's just my opinion, of course. Hope I'm wrong and things will get better in the stock world. I do believe that the contract will be released in January, to take effect 45 days later. After the release there will be another round of forum chat. This pattern has repeated many times since I joined.

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2 hours ago, Starsphinx said:


You cannot tell me that sticking a big notice on the shopping cart saying "YOU ARE PURCHASING IMAGES OF ITEMS NOT THE ITEMS THEMSELVES AND NO REFUNDS WILL BE GIVEN" is going to cost a huge amount to implement, and that it will not save both Alamy and us a fortune?

 

I can tell you that. Refunds on certain distance sales are a consumer right in the EU. See the Act.

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11 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

I can tell you that. Refunds on certain distance sales are a consumer right in the EU. See the Act.

So if you go to an image selling site, see a picture of some sweets, click buy, have a huge notice telling you that you are not buying sweets only a picture of sweets, click continue, then the EU says that if you complain you got a picture when you meant to buy sweets you should be refunded.

Yet still, people ask why anyone would want to leave.

It has already been observed on here that lots of other stock places do not refund when people complain they got a picture not what was in the picture - if your answer to that is because they are not EU based well give it 4 months and Alamy is not EU based and can plug one of its revenue losses by refusing to refund people just because they cannot tell the different between pictures and subjects.

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25 minutes ago, Starsphinx said:

So if you go to an image selling site, see a picture of some sweets, click buy, have a huge notice telling you that you are not buying sweets only a picture of sweets, click continue, then the EU says that if you complain you got a picture when you meant to buy sweets you should be refunded.

Yet still, people ask why anyone would want to leave.

It has already been observed on here that lots of other stock places do not refund when people complain they got a picture not what was in the picture - if your answer to that is because they are not EU based well give it 4 months and Alamy is not EU based and can plug one of its revenue losses by refusing to refund people just because they cannot tell the different between pictures and subjects.

 

The reality of PU abuse is not so much the few people who think they are buying an item, but rather that PU is the default licence option and the cheapest, so both the unwary buyer and the devious buyer simply click on 'Download' and 'bingo' you have a PU sale.

 

A far better strategy would be to make one of the more expensive licences the default. If the purchaser then chooses to select PU, a simple warning dialog indicating that it is an image they are buying AND stressing the limited uses of a PU licence, ought to weed out all but the truly devious buyer. No feeble excuses later on when Alamy chases them up!

 

The other thing I would say is that I don't think any of the issues you outline at the beginning are actually contractual matters; Alamy can, and does, change most of those from time to time anyway. They have all been raised before and at some length. If anything, if I were managing Alamy, the forthcoming changes to the contract would be first and foremost in my mind and any other potential (disruptive) changes which might affect the business would be put firmly on the back burner.

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54 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

I can tell you that. Refunds on certain distance sales are a consumer right in the EU. See the Act.

 

Interesting point, the distance selling regulations provide a variety of consumer protections. Am I right in thinking that media music downloads (e.g. from Amazon) and software downloads are non-refundable unless the product is defective?

 

Mark

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1 minute ago, Joseph Clemson said:

 

The reality of PU abuse is not so much the few people who think they are buying an item, but rather that PU is the default licence option and the cheapest, so both the unwary buyer and the devious buyer simply click on 'Download' and 'bingo' you have a PU sale.

 

A far better strategy would be to make one of the more expensive licences the default. If the purchaser then chooses to select PU, a simple warning dialog indicating that it is an image they are buying AND stressing the limited uses of a PU licence, ought to weed out all but the truly devious buyer. No feeble excuses later on when Alamy chases them up!

 

The other thing I would say is that I don't think any of the issues you outline at the beginning are actually contractual matters; Alamy can, and does, change most of those from time to time anyway. They have all been raised before and at some length. If anything, if I were managing Alamy, the forthcoming changes to the contract would be first and foremost in my mind and any other potential (disruptive) changes which might affect the business would be put firmly on the back burner.

Uh with the greatest of respect I have refund abuse and PU abuse as separate issues and have already said the most expensive item should be made default when discussing PU abuse.

They may not be formal contractual matters - but maybe it is about time we should consider if they should be.  Alamy says the contract changes it is making are essential for raising money - well how about Alamy making contract promises to raise money in other areas by stopping unnecessary abuses.

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5 hours ago, Starsphinx said:

So a few weeks back Alamy poked a wasps nest by announcing a 20% cut in commission.  Yesterday it reacted by announcing it will keep 50/50 for exclusive images.  When the first announcment was made lots of good practical suggestions nothing to do with the commission were made - and I rather fear many if not all of these have been lost from view with the news about exclusivity.  I think this is a bad thing.

 

 

First of all...I think we need to be clear and have a consensus on what actually happened a few weeks back, otherwise any momentum we might have as contributors could be eroded. I've seen lots of disagreement about the commission "cut" for example on Youtube, with some participants not even able to agree on the meaning of the word "cut". Some used it to mean "commission" or "share" while others used it to mean "reduction".

 

My view is that Alamy did not announce a 20% cut in commission. They announced a 10% reduction of the 50% commission being paid to contributors. The mathematicians here may argue that 10% of the 50% being received is a 20% cut, but to my simple brain it's not a 20% cut in commission. That was 10%, from 50% to 40%.

 

Anyway...

Changes I would like to see in the contract, are twofold:

 

1) A good start would be to let us see precisely where our images are being published.

2) Tied to this, I would like the right to show this to DACS without having to cough up 50% (or maybe even 60%) of an income to which Alamy don't even have a legitimate claim. As it is now, I claim DACS without involving Alamy at all. However, I know that my claim would be bigger if I could cite all of my publications (including the Alamy driven ones) and not just the ones I find myself. 

 

Edited by Steve Valentia
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4 minutes ago, M.Chapman said:

 

Interesting point, the distance selling regulations provide a variety of consumer protections. Am I right in thinking that media music downloads (e.g. from Amazon) and software downloads are non-refundable unless the product is defective?

 

Mark

CRA has replaced the DSRs, but yes, there are exemptions. I was merely suggesting that categorical statements about denying refunds weren't necessarily possible- or lawful. Alamy may have a generous refund policy for commercial reasons, but it may not want to risk falling foul of the general obligation to trade fairly, regardless of the letter of the law on digital downloads.

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I would like a definition of "exclusive to Alamy" in the contract.

For instance here is my "exclusive to Alamy" photo of a famous historic painting. My individual copy photo made from the original painting may be "exclusive to Alamy", but other copy photos made from the original painting by other photographers at different times are all over the internet. I have not uploaded my copy photo anywhere else but at Alamy.

 

Can exclusive to Alamy apply to my uploads of public domain images that would also be elsewhere on the internet?

 

If public domain images not exclusive, that means any upload of public domain images would have to be at 40%.

 

The Death of General Wolfe by Benjamin West oil on canvas painted 1776 Royal Ontario Museum ROM in Toronto Ontario CanadaStock Photo

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33 minutes ago, Joseph Clemson said:

The other thing I would say is that I don't think any of the issues you outline at the beginning are actually contractual matters;

The third item actually is, and would have to be changed for 'bottom line pricing'. Could happen, of course, but Alamy might cling hard to this one (think Custom Pricing such as Newspaper Scheme).

 

6.6. 

  1. Alamy is entitled to set and agree prices in its absolute discretion.
Edited by KevinS

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30 minutes ago, Starsphinx said:

Uh with the greatest of respect I have refund abuse and PU abuse as separate issues and have already said the most expensive item should be made default when discussing PU abuse.

They may not be formal contractual matters - but maybe it is about time we should consider if they should be.  Alamy says the contract changes it is making are essential for raising money - well how about Alamy making contract promises to raise money in other areas by stopping unnecessary abuses.

 

I didn't touch on refund abuse in my reply, only PU abuse. My apologies though on missing that you had suggested PU licence no longer be the default., I'd read your suggestion of setting a more expensive licence as default, them totally forgotten I'd just read it when making the suggestion myself! Such is the ageing process. I I have long thought that such a simple measure might  reduce PU abuse and am pleased to see it suggested by you. 

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13 minutes ago, Joseph Clemson said:

 

I didn't touch on refund abuse in my reply, only PU abuse. My apologies though on missing that you had suggested PU licence no longer be the default., I'd read your suggestion of setting a more expensive licence as default, them totally forgotten I'd just read it when making the suggestion myself! Such is the ageing process. I I have long thought that such a simple measure might  reduce PU abuse and am pleased to see it suggested by you. 

Apologies - it was the mention of people "thinking they are buying the item" which several posters have assured us is a thing and it is definitely refund abuse.  Buy image, download image, email Alamy claiming you thought you were buying the sweets/tablets or whatever not a photo of them, get your money back - while of course hanging on to the image you downloaded.

Personal use and refunds should be easy cheap fixes - if Alamy is so financially comfortable they don't need to notice them then fine - but if Alamy is so financially strained they need to reduce suppliers fees then they should be putting their own house in order too.  

Edited by Starsphinx
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I would also add the giving of our full size high-resolution files for PU sales. if you just need a photo for a presentation or to make a card from then you don't need my 24MP file for that. PU buyers should get a smaller sized file. 

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9 minutes ago, Colin Woods said:

I would also add the giving of our full size high-resolution files for PU sales. if you just need a photo for a presentation or to make a card from then you don't need my 24MP file for that. PU buyers should get a smaller sized file. 

I knew there were things skipped my mind when I made the first post - that was one of them.  Pricing should be reflected in size.

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