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2 hours ago, andremichel said:

 

Putting "premium images" on RH is a gamble that isn't paying off for me currently. I have slightly more images than you on there and my May statement had 2 sales for 44p net. Both distributor from big G.

 

On the subject of microstock, for nearly 10 years I have been one of those fighting against the tide. Recently I've done the odd experiment with small numbers of images. For example only 7 images on the 'Tier 1 MS site' earned me $11 net last year.

 

But with prices getting so low on Trad stock agencies, I don't know whether there is any point in resisting anymore - as I don't see much of a difference.

 

A year ago I submitted my RM images to another Trad stock library, which then distributed them to big G and several other places. I am talking trad stock RM not ms. I recently received my quarterly statement with 164 sales. A handful were good prices with one grossing $$$$, but after both libraries got their teeth into it I got just $190 from that one sale. What was really shocking though, was that 140 out of 164, were below $10 gross and many below $1. The lowest one earned me just 3 cents.

 

 

I guess it comes down to how comfortable you are with the MS business model and whether or not you are willing to commit thousands of images to it. Personally, I don't see myself ever being anything more than a curious dabbler in MS, even though some Trad stock agencies can be just as exploitative, as your experiences illustrate. There is also the question of sustainability. Even that big "Tier 1" MS agency that you mention is showing signs of trouble. I don't think that you can build on quicksand and not expect the building to start sinking at some point. Despite falling prices, increasing competition, etc., Alamy still has a relatively sturdy foundation IMO. 

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I think Alamy has to decide which way they want to go as a company.   Commission drop from 60 to 50 to 40 (which will I believe settle at 25%);   more and more frequent micro sub prices, etc. etc.  is one direction.   At the end it is a business, and if not profitable it will fold, so you try to keep up with rest of the pack that seems to be leading the way.

 

It is simple economics: demand and supply.   Demand remains constant or maybe rises slightly, but supply rises exponentially.  Like John I also think quantity-first model is ultimately not sustainable -- dreamy micro, one of oldest, is now dying because flood gates are open wider than elsewhere with literally no QA control for a long, long time.  Then there is factor of image stealing (of which brasilnut has done extensive "whackamoles" study).  All of this adds to the point where it is harder and harder for Alamy to sell images at prices it used to. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Autumn Sky said:

I think Alamy has to decide which way they want to go as a company.   Commission drop from 60 to 50 to 40 (which will I believe settle at 25%);   more and more frequent micro sub prices, etc. etc.  is one direction.   At the end it is a business, and if not profitable it will fold, so you try to keep up with rest of the pack that seems to be leading the way.

 

It is simple economics: demand and supply.   Demand remains constant or maybe rises slightly, but supply rises exponentially.  Like John I also think quantity-first model is ultimately not sustainable -- dreamy micro, one of oldest, is now dying because flood gates are open wider than elsewhere with literally no QA control for a long, long time.  Then there is factor of image stealing (of which brasilnut has done extensive "whackamoles" study).  All of this adds to the point where it is harder and harder for Alamy to sell images at prices it used to. 

 

That dreamy place you mention also has an unrealistic $100 payout threshold. There seem to be contributors with fairly large portfolios who have been there for years and have yet to reach the magic number. A few other outfits that I've checked into aren't doing any better. Caveat emptor!

Edited by John Mitchell

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Posted (edited)
49 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

 

That dreamy place you mention also has an unrealistic $100 payout threshold. There seem to be contributors with fairly large portfolios who have been there for years and have yet to reach the magic number.

<deleted>

(Sorry I missed the 'dreamy' allusion.)

Edited by Cryptoprocta

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What interests me the most about this thread is that it doesn't look at agency financials at all. Signs of life and death are based solely on the experiences of a handful of photographers. While we can't see the books of several formidable stock agents, it would be possible to see enough to get a real sense of industry direction. What's the story? Jim Pickerell is good at checking numbers and who else? What we really need to know is if the revenue flowing towards photographers is increasing or decreasing and the small group of us that posts here doesn't really offer a solid foundation of data.

 

The state of the industry and its major players is the real question and we need some way to answer it.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Brian Yarvin said:

 While we can't see the books of several formidable stock agents, it would be possible to see enough to get a real sense of industry direction. What's the story

 

 

Well, major and prob. best SSTK micro is publicly traded

Same with several other.  Info you get from stock chart directions says a lot.

 

Second indicator is contributor percentage.  If company slashes contributor earnings, that is large red flag  -i.e certain micro that pays 15%.  So it's not like insight is not available.

 

No, main problem are wide open micro flood gates that led to saturation & this drags Alamy down as well.

 

Edited by Autumn Sky

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8 minutes ago, Autumn Sky said:

 

Well, major and prob. best micro is publicly traded  https://ca.finance.yahoo.com/quote/SSTK?p=SSTK

Same with several other.  Info you get from stock chart directions says a lot.

 

Second indicator is contributor percentage.  If company slashes contributor earnings, that is large red flag  -i.e certain micro that pays 15%.  So it's not like insight is not available.

 

No, main problem are wide open micro flood gates that led to saturation & this drags Alamy down as well.

 

 

Explicit references and links to information about competitors is a very quick way to get posts or even entire threads deleted by the Alamy moderators. It contravenes  their forum rules.

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For me Alamy died several years ago when it became impossible to produce new material and make a profit based on the prices they were (are) achieving. They are still only a float by giving themselves a 20% increase in their bottom line (I have not seen any major changes to indicate they are spending this money to improve my situation) at the suppliers expense. It still works for the hobbyist who wants to recover some cost but producing and uploading new material -Nah sell the camera because the economics do not add up to make a viable business.

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Posted (edited)

To the OP

 

This is usually where I mention the door hitting you on the way out, but I will try to be polite.

 

I have a small number of images available on Alamy and have for a few more years than you.

I do not sell images, I have agencies or libraries that license my images and Alamy is doing

just fine for me.  I've also been in the business for decades and have been very happy

to contribute to Alamy.  I DO NOT CONTRIBUTE TO "DEAD LIBRARIES"  Alamy is far from dead

from my experience.

 

The oldest rule in this business: "If your images are not being used, there is mostly something

wrong with your images."

 

Chuck

 

PS, A Dying Agency or Library is one that cannot pay its photographers when their payments

are due and in 15 years Alamy pays me on time every time and is the only agency or library that

in that time I have never once had to call to "SCREAM" about "Where is my money."

 

I've been a working photographer since 1976 and in my opinion the major problem with commercial

and editorial photography in the new millennium are amateurs trying to do it commercially.  To all,

Please do not take that as putting down "amateurs," Was not intended to discourage anyone, just those

who do not understand the business.

 

Edited by Chuck Nacke
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This is usually where I mention the door hitting you on the way out, but I will try to be polite.

 

why change the habit of a lifetime!

 

 I DO NOT CONTRIBUTE TO "DEAD LIBRARIES"  Alamy is far from dead

from my experience.

 

Good for you keep submitting

 

17 minutes ago, Chuck Nacke said:

The oldest rule in this business: "If your images are not being used, there is mostly something

wrong with your images."

Read the post-where did i say my images were not being used! They still sell 10 or so a month but the prices are low and dropping year on year so producing NEW MATERIAL for Alamy is no longer profitable for me. if it is for you then good luck

 

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Posted (edited)

Bla Bla

Edited by Chuck Nacke
my mistake
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47 minutes ago, regen said:

For me Alamy died several years ago when it became impossible to produce new material and make a profit based on the prices they were (are) achieving. They are still only a float by giving themselves a 20% increase in their bottom line (I have not seen any major changes to indicate they are spending this money to improve my situation) at the suppliers expense. It still works for the hobbyist who wants to recover some cost but producing and uploading new material -Nah sell the camera because the economics do not add up to make a viable business.

 

And there it is, I agree wholeheartedly with you. 

The writing has been on the wall for the last 10 years with threads like this one cropping up every month or so. Its a slow death but the ability of the "industry" to pay the crowdsource (us) any meaningful return going forward to warrant investmnent from a purely financial sense is long gone for 95% of us. Even if some industry players could, they dont have to anymore.

I like Alamy, they are the only people I have a residual collection with. But the party is long over in stock town..

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1 hour ago, Chuck Nacke said:

The oldest rule in this business: "If your images are not being used, there is mostly something

wrong with your images."

 

Hi, Chuck,

I appreciate you trying to be polite. But it is also a matter of courtesy to read the complete contributions of your counterpart. And at least to try to understand them.  
I had revealed how high my merit is in MS. And with what little personal commitment I achieve it. 
From this it can be deduced that my pictures are very well bought and used. As far as I could research it, they are used for all conceivable WEB pages and partly also for print media. A very mixed circle of users. So the problem is not with the pictures.  If there is a problem with it, it could be the KWs. Somehow I still haven't quite seen through Alamy in this point.

But the pictures sell themselves, and very well. As far as I can understand it, clearly better than average. But only with MS and not with Alamy. Apparently Alamy lacks market access in certain areas. That was exactly the reason for me to open this thread.  If I wish a picture criticism, I turn to the appropriate forum.

 

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator

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Posted (edited)

For me, the more images I build - the less sales, and when they do come the prices are now tiny compared to what they used to be. I hope Alamy isn't dying but from my experience sales are getting less and less for less and less. No incentive to keep exclusive images here much longer.

Edited by Marb
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10 hours ago, Chuck Nacke said:

To the OP

 

This is usually where I mention the door hitting you on the way out, but I will try to be polite.

 

I have a small number of images available on Alamy and have for a few more years than you.

I do not sell images, I have agencies or libraries that license my images and Alamy is doing

just fine for me.  I've also been in the business for decades and have been very happy

to contribute to Alamy.  I DO NOT CONTRIBUTE TO "DEAD LIBRARIES"  Alamy is far from dead

from my experience.

 

The oldest rule in this business: "If your images are not being used, there is mostly something

wrong with your images."

 

Chuck

 

PS, A Dying Agency or Library is one that cannot pay its photographers when their payments

are due and in 15 years Alamy pays me on time every time and is the only agency or library that

in that time I have never once had to call to "SCREAM" about "Where is my money."

 

I've been a working photographer since 1976 and in my opinion the major problem with commercial

and editorial photography in the new millennium are amateurs trying to do it commercially.  To all,

Please do not take that as putting down "amateurs," Was not intended to discourage anyone, just those

who do not understand the business.

 

 

I agree with Chuck. Whenever anyone complains, in an effort to be helpful, I look at their portfolios by clicking on the number beside Images: . My opinion usually is, for most complainers, that there are very good reasons for their low prices and/or low sales, and it is not due to Alamy.

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17 hours ago, Brian Yarvin said:

What interests me the most about this thread is that it doesn't look at agency financials at all. Signs of life and death are based solely on the experiences of a handful of photographers. While we can't see the books of several formidable stock agents, it would be possible to see enough to get a real sense of industry direction. What's the story? Jim Pickerell is good at checking numbers and who else? What we really need to know is if the revenue flowing towards photographers is increasing or decreasing and the small group of us that posts here doesn't really offer a solid foundation of data.

 

The state of the industry and its major players is the real question and we need some way to answer it.

 

That's true, but you can tell quite a bit about the health of an agency by the way it behaves. Also, contributor forums like this one can reveal a lot. Agencies and their contributors tend to have a symbiotic relationship of sorts. The Alamy forum seems to be alive and well, which is probably a good sign. There are agencies out there -- both MS and traditional -- where forum discussion has stopped almost altogether in recent years.

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50 minutes ago, Bill Brooks said:

I agree with Chuck. Whenever anyone complains, in an effort to be helpful, I look at their portfolios by clicking on the number beside Images:

 

It is true that my photos are not news photos, but this is, as far as I know, also not required. 
It was Chuck, who talked my PF down. In fact @Bill Brooks you are right, everybody can look at the fotos.

In my PF and in the PF of Chuck.  

So everything is ok for me. 

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Posted (edited)

Spiegel,

 

I've been in the Photo Agency business for many decades around the world.

I have been a contributor to Alamy for a bit more than 15 years,  I also contribute

to a few other major agencies and libraries in the U.S., EU and Asia.  During my

years contributing to Alamy they have treated me well and paid me monies owed

to me promptly.  Any time there was a problem or I had a question Alamy has

responded to me quickly.

 

Until Alamy gives me reason to cease contributing, I will voraciously defend Alamy

and the good people at Alamy that I have communicated with for all of these years.

As all with experience know, the last decade has been difficult for everyone in the

photo industry and I believe that Alamy has done the best that they can for their

contributors.

 

If I ever have a serious problem with Alamy or feel that they do not deserve my respect

or my contribution, I will let everyone know and I will provide the documented reason (s)

for my anger, I do hope that day does not come.

 

I felt that I went out of my way to not 'talk down' your PF, what does PF mean anyway?

You did not ask for my opinion of the images that you have on Alamy and I don't think

you would like hearing them anyway.

 

There are some really great images on Alamy and there is some dross, sort of how life

is......

 

To put it in perspective: I drive my 2001 MB e320 4matic every day.  my wife drives a

2012 E350 4matic.  the 2001 is a great vehicle and solid as the day it was driven off the lot.

The 2012 is cheaply made and in my opinion it is junk.  Does

that mean that Mercedes Benz is "Dead"?

 

Chuck Nacke

Edited by Chuck Nacke
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7 hours ago, Chuck Nacke said:

To put it in perspective: I drive my 2001 MB e320 4matic every day.

 

I drive a Romanian bolide, the Dacia. New. 

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Hi everyone

 

We have deleted the last couple of comments as they were becoming personal (as one of you pointed out). We'll be locking the thread down as we feel the main points have been covered. 

 

Many thanks,

Alamy 

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