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I know this topic has been discussed many times before, and I don't normally moan about the prices my images fetch these days, we all know they're derisory.

 

However, it's getting rather laughable lately...

 

Gross sales:

£6.89 for a UK national newspaper 

£4.15 for a magazine

£2.87 for a website

 

What's the point in going out and shooting fresh material, it's just no longer viable.

 

 

 

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I think it needs roughly five sales from the lowest paying national newspaper to rent photoshop for one month, which seems ridiculous. 

 

 

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I haven't suffered sales quite that miserable, but they are certainly nothing like they used to be. There is no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, that's for sure. That's not just a moan; as you say, it is a great damper on shooting new material. I used to make a good living out of stock photography and I'm now finding it hard to go out and do photography just for the love of it. You might well respond: "well, that's your problem"

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8 minutes ago, Robert Convery said:

I think it needs roughly five sales from the lowest paying national newspaper to rent photoshop for one month, which seems ridiculous. 

 

 

Never thought of it like that.

Your comment made me laugh, but not in a good way!

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7 minutes ago, Robert M Estall said:

I haven't suffered sales quite that miserable, but they are certainly nothing like they used to be. There is no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, that's for sure. That's not just a moan; as you say, it is a great damper on shooting new material. I used to make a good living out of stock photography and I'm now finding it hard to go out and do photography just for the love of it. You might well respond: "well, that's your problem"

 

Good point, surely the the quality of new material is already suffering and will only get worse.

 

I used to take my camera everywhere, and normally come home with a couple of good stock images.

 

Increasingly now I leave it at home, yesterday I took the wife to Whitstable had a nice lunch and mooch about without thinking about getting a couple of stock shots, it was really quiet refreshing and relaxing.

 

And if I did go to all that trouble, spend hours on photoshop, etc, my reward...peanuts.

 

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You realise how bad things have become when your cleared balance is $1 .....

 

traditional pay packet full of peanuts monkey nuts cut on on a white background Stock Photo

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Strangely I had one come in today as follows.

 

Country: Worldwide
Usage: Editorial
Media: Editorial website
Industry sector: Media, design & publishing
Image Size: Any size
Start: 01 July 2019
End: 01 July 2024

$3.53

 

It is strange because the same image sold just over a 5 years ago in April 2014 for $32.45 with this usage.

Country: Worldwide
Usage: Single company, editorial magazine, print and or web, multiple use 5 years
Industry sector: Media, design & publishing
Start: 09 April 2014
End: 09 April 2019

 

Wonder if they have re-licensed the image or were caught using it after the finish date and given a charge by Alamy for another five years use.

 

Still it shows how license fees have dropped in just five years.

 

Allan

 

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It seems that photographers who sell mainly to UK publications might be suffering the most from low fees. For instance, I had a $5.10 sale (one page, inside or cover) to a UK magazine with a circulation of 500K show up yesterday. A print publication of that size in the US or Canada would have paid much more.

 

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16 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

It seems that photographers who sell mainly to UK publications might be suffering the most from low fees. For instance, I had a $5.10 sale (one page, inside or cover) to a UK magazine with a circulation of 500K show up yesterday. A print publication of that size in the US or Canada would have paid much more.

 

 

That's been my experience too, unfortunately most of my sales are within the UK.   

 

More generally I have a concern that at some point the whole pack of cards is going to collapse, and much of our work rendered useless. We've seen how the contributor share has diminished here, but maybe to stay viable Alamy has to take take drastic action. Motivation is becoming an issue for me, it's pointless spending money in order to shoot stock now, it has to be a by product of some other activity. Once I would always carry a bag of lenses, but these days increasingly it tends to be the camera and one fixed focal length lens. I guess that I should consider downsizing from the Sony A6500 and buy a compact with a built in zoom, but would that stand any chance of covering the cost?

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35 minutes ago, Bryan said:

 

That's been my experience too, unfortunately most of my sales are within the UK.   

 

More generally I have a concern that at some point the whole pack of cards is going to collapse, and much of our work rendered useless. We've seen how the contributor share has diminished here, but maybe to stay viable Alamy has to take take drastic action. Motivation is becoming an issue for me, it's pointless spending money in order to shoot stock now, it has to be a by product of some other activity. Once I would always carry a bag of lenses, but these days increasingly it tends to be the camera and one fixed focal length lens. I guess that I should consider downsizing from the Sony A6500 and buy a compact with a built in zoom, but would that stand any chance of covering the cost?

 

My modus operandi is similar. I usually carry around a small Tamrac bag, which has become my "murse", containing the a6000 with dreaded 16-50 "pancake zoom" and Sony 55-210. This kit is fairly light and compact, so I don't see any point in getting into (more) debt with an RX100. It would be nice to have one of these little gems of course, but recouping the cost would not be easy. My photo shoots are pretty casual. I plan to go out this afternoon on one. The sojourn will probably include a stop in a coffee shop, but that's all I'll spend. Future travel stock shooting shall be combined with vacations. Fortunately, my older images accumulated during years of travel are holding up well. When sales from these images collapse, I'll most likely be toast. C'est la vie...

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Posted (edited)

Unfortunately these rates are the result of fierce competition between stock photography companies. Alamy presently only takes 0.20% of the market and is ranked 15th out of the 30 top stock houses. One other stock library has close to a whopping 56% share of the market. Alamy is actually doing well for its photographers in this climate but clearly it's a buyers' market and the present trend would suggest photographers' earnings will deplete even further over time. It's a harsh world for photographers but hey....that's capitalism!

 

 

Edited by Dominic Robinson
Mention of other stock companies.
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I used to go out to take photos. Now I only take my camera out if I go somewhere if I am going for another purpose. Not worth wasting money on the fuel

 

kevin

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My last three sales (all August 2019) in 3 months time or so, will net me a total of $6.09.

One sale is for a print run of 500,000.

Q: What is the difference between a stock photographer and a pizza?
A: You can provide a meal for your family with a pizza.

 

Richard

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9 hours ago, Richard Tadman said:

My last three sales (all August 2019) in 3 months time or so, will net me a total of $6.09.

One sale is for a print run of 500,000.

Q: What is the difference between a stock photographer and a pizza?
A: You can provide a meal for your family with a pizza.

 

Richard

I can do better than that -my last 3 will net me $7.65. All to that mag with a 500,000 print run. Last month 4 sales to that mag averaged $2.78 so a drop of nearly 10% in a month! Still this is what happens when Alamy enter into deals with publishers with a stable of more than 100 magazines -every ones a winner except the photographer! 

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10 minutes ago, regen said:

I can do better than that -my last 3 will net me $7.65. All to that mag with a 500,000 print run. Last month 4 sales to that mag averaged $2.78 so a drop of nearly 10% in a month! Still this is what happens when Alamy enter into deals with publishers with a stable of more than 100 magazines -every ones a winner except the photographer! 

I'll see your 3 and raise you to 28 sales reported from that publisher last Friday.  Wonderful for my sales figures, lousy for my profitability.  The only consolation is that all my images are RM and they pay for each individual use - and some were used twice in the same issue or within the month.  Double dipping, yippee!

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On 24/08/2019 at 14:47, John Mitchell said:

 

Fortunately, my older images accumulated during years of travel are holding up well. When sales from these images collapse, I'll most likely be toast. C'est la vie...

 

I've noticed more recent searches for things Nicaraguan.  Wonder if you've also noticed that.  Still, my biggest payout was from fish. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, MizBrown said:

 

I've noticed more recent searches for things Nicaraguan.  Wonder if you've also noticed that.  Still, my biggest payout was from fish. 

 

Could be. I've had three sales of Nica images recently (one this month and two in July), all for OK prices. Two were taken at a coffee plantation, and the other one was a handicrafts shot (pottery).

Edited by John Mitchell

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8 hours ago, John Richmond said:

I'll see your 3 and raise you to 28 sales reported from that publisher last Friday.  Wonderful for my sales figures, lousy for my profitability.  The only consolation is that all my images are RM and they pay for each individual use - and some were used twice in the same issue or within the month.  Double dipping, yippee!

And well deserved your files are worth considerably more.  Used to be one of my best customers back in the day with 1987 direct sales at between £20 and £80 but gave up in about 2008 when prices started to fall.

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I still actively go out looking for pictures, but then photography is my full time job.  I spend €60 per week on diesel and am averaging 1000km in the week, that includes personal trips too.  I mainly shoot news and submit to Alamy, my county rag and 2 Cork based papers, one of which is a national.  I'm actually making a decent living from photography - I do news, commercial, events (have an event printer) and I teach.  Obviously everything could be a little better, but I'm never happy lol.

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4 hours ago, regen said:

And well deserved your files are worth considerably more.  Used to be one of my best customers back in the day with 1987 direct sales at between £20 and £80 but gave up in about 2008 when prices started to fall.

I wonder if any of those direct sales were used to illustrate any of my Amateur Gardening articles.  I sold a fair few back in the 80's and 90's.  £30 - £40+ prices back then, before I got the photography up and running.

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4 hours ago, John Richmond said:

I wonder if any of those direct sales were used to illustrate any of my Amateur Gardening articles.  I sold a fair few back in the 80's and 90's.  £30 - £40+ prices back then, before I got the photography up and running.

started supplying in 1991 but did not really take off until about 2000 (after scanning all my medium format trannies and supplying a drive with about 15000 pics mainly nature,organic gardening and DIY projects. Only wrote a few articles for AG but they knew i wrote every month for organic Gardening,water gardener and a few of the other hobbyistt mags. It was great until the recession hit in 2008.

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Here in Hawaii the local TV news stations daily use photos submitted by viewers in their newscasts.  They don't pay anything but you get to see your photo used if they like it.  I have to admit I once sent them a photo of surfers on a large wave I got a kick out of them using it and talking about it.  The local newspaper here the Maui News does the same thing and will use your photo if it is newsworthy and not pay anything.  Just curious if this is the case in other locations as well.

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2 hours ago, David Olsen said:

Here in Hawaii the local TV news stations daily use photos submitted by viewers in their newscasts.  They don't pay anything but you get to see your photo used if they like it.  I have to admit I once sent them a photo of surfers on a large wave I got a kick out of them using it and talking about it.  The local newspaper here the Maui News does the same thing and will use your photo if it is newsworthy and not pay anything.  Just curious if this is the case in other locations as well.

 

Yes they are all at it from giving away your rights if you enter a competition to the largest "charities" like the NT,RHS,BBC to name but a few. Local rags never pay for unsolicited material and numerous others offer a credit-trouble is you can't eat credits!

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one more peanut sale:

Country: Worldwide
Usage: Editorial
Media: Editorial website
Image Size: Any size
Start: 29 July 2019
End: 29 July 2024
One use in a single editorial article used within web versions of titles from the same group. Digital usage includes archive rights for the lifetime of the article. Country: United Kingdom


for $ 5.59

 

Can't they at least fix minimum fee? have not opted in on Novel use to avoid selling at such ridiculous prices

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