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Tony ALS

QC since 3 April 2020

Question

Hello all. As a newbie to Alamy I have been reading forum content to get a feel of what to expect and there are some very helpful contributors. I haven't uploaded much yet and I'm holding back at the moment as I have 26 images sitting in QC with the first one going back to the 3 April. I know there has been a weekend in between and we have the virus issue which may be interfering so delays are perhaps understandable. My first 38 uploads were all passed and I have a two star rating since I started. I have seen that 5 stars would speed things up yet there only appear to be a maximum of 3 stars available on my dashboard? Any feedback on whether this delay is normal at the moment would be helpful and should I wait until QC catch up before uploading more? Hope everyone is obeying the rules and keeping safe. Thanks in advance. Tony

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Thanks for that spacecadet. Is it normally better to wait until images have passed QC before uploading more in your experience?

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12 minutes ago, Tony ALS said:

Thanks for that spacecadet. Is it normally better to wait until images have passed QC before uploading more in your experience?

 

If you are positive the first upload batch will pass, there's nothing to stop you. If you are unsure, One Fail = All Fail includes ALL pending batches.

 

I'm a three star, there's only room for 3, that's not unusual. Seems like the software upgrades when someone gains the higher status. It also seems to be at the discretion of the reviewers, not based on a calculation. I have no problems at the level I'm at and you are correct, reviews do not occur on weekends.

 

I'm not one to worry that a photo that hasn't been anywhere, essentially forever, since the beginning of time, might take a couple more days to be seen by buyers. The exception would be News or current events.

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Thanks Klinger, by coincidence (or maybe not?!) I just got the email to say they have all passed. Better get on with making them available for sale.

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Hi all. Same situation again. I have been uploading more images since the 8 May but have stopped again as this has now reached 98 images sitting in QC. I am fearful that if I continue and have 300 sitting there that the whole lot get rejected and I have to start again. I do understand the strange circumstances we are in but find it difficult to believe that QC should be so affected when this must be people sitting in front of a screen which they could continue to do at home or anywhere. My main source of income involves regular international travel yet I have adapted to the current circumstances. I hope the staff and whoever checks images are all well and that the virus hasn't decimated Alamy! Apologies for being frustrated but life must go on and my impatient nature is a reason I get things done. This is a hobby for me not a profession so it isn't the end of the world if I never earn a penny from Alamy but if I'm going to put in the small effort needed to at least try to make this work then a continuous service needs to be available. I am with Shutterstock as well who seem to be coping better and I believe are New York based where as we all know the virus has been rampant. Please everyone avoid this virus at all costs. If you get it the long term affects could change your health for the rest of your life. My wife is a doctor so I hear on a daily basis how this is affecting patients. The truth is gradually coming out that a vaccine may never eradicate covid-19 and we are likely to have to live with it as with HIV/AIDS, measles, etc. Have a good day despite my gloominess and thank you to anyone who reads this and has any positive input, which I think I need to hear! Stay safe everybody.

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All uploaded photos passed today. Perhaps an end of week clear out? Relieved that I can get on with making them available and upload more. Have a good safe weekend all.

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I agree with your wife about sometimes long-term health issues from the virus. It’s frightening. Just coming out of it alive doesn’t necessarily mean one is out of the woods.

Happy your images passed.

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Hi all any tips, my images have been waiting since April 3rd . have uploaded 8 more batches but all in QC 

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Cookie 63 said:

Hi all any tips, my images have been waiting since April 3rd . have uploaded 8 more batches but all in QC 

 

Wait, and don't upload any more unless you're sure of your personal QC, because as you know if one fails they all do.

That is a pretty long time though. Maybe try an email to MS. It might get read eventually.

Edited by spacecadet
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So about a week before looked at by QC at the moment and regularly uploading has shot me in the foot as one image was deemed to be too grainy so all 169 images waiting were failed, yuk! Strangely the failed image is one which was passed by Shutterstock who seem fairly strict and at least with them if one image doesn't get through it doesn't mean everything is rejected which seems to be a more sensible approach. I guess it's because Alamy don't try to check every image while SS have a system which may well have some AI input from what I have read and theoretically looks at everything. SS are another story as most of you have heard I'm sure with their new payment structure which is why I have registered with Pond5 and may start using Adobe more where I have very small numbers. SS have at least provided regular sales in the short time (since February this year) I have uploaded images to them. Learning all the time about this business which certainly has its share of pitfalls! All fairly irrelevant in the general scheme of things but I will keep trying. Stay well and safe all.

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1 hour ago, Tony ALS said:

So about a week before looked at by QC at the moment and regularly uploading has shot me in the foot as one image was deemed to be too grainy so all 169 images waiting were failed, yuk! Strangely the failed image is one which was passed by Shutterstock who seem fairly strict and at least with them if one image doesn't get through it doesn't mean everything is rejected which seems to be a more sensible approach. I guess it's because Alamy don't try to check every image while SS have a system which may well have some AI input from what I have read and theoretically looks at everything. SS are another story as most of you have heard I'm sure with their new payment structure which is why I have registered with Pond5 and may start using Adobe more where I have very small numbers. SS have at least provided regular sales in the short time (since February this year) I have uploaded images to them. Learning all the time about this business which certainly has its share of pitfalls! All fairly irrelevant in the general scheme of things but I will keep trying. Stay well and safe all.

Shutterstock don't QC on image quality. Alamy only QC on image quality.

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41 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

Shutterstock don't QC on image quality. Alamy only QC on image quality.

Not true.  SS QC is for property release AND technical quality, but not image quality.   Technical quality is different thing from image quality.    Adobe QC is for image quality between other things, and you can fail even if your image is 100% technically superb if it has low sale potential by their standards.    Alamy QC is for technical quality only and not image quality (content).

 

Problem with SS QC is huge inconsistency.   Everybody that fails QC uploads again and again as long as it takes till QC hits most tolerant reviewer.  

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Ok, thanks for the clarification. The image in question passed first time with SS. 

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

    Alamy QC is for technical quality only and not image quality (content).

 

 

Thanks for the info but is there a language barrier here, or are we at cross purposes? By "image quality"  I mean technical quality- the term has nothing to do with content. I don't know anyone who would use the term "image quality" to refer to content.

For the avoidance of doubt, OP, Alamy QC does not consider the content of an image at all.

Edited by spacecadet

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9 hours ago, spacecadet said:

 I don't know anyone who would use the term "image quality" to refer to content.

For the avoidance of doubt, OP, Alamy QC does not consider the content of an image at all.

 

Adobe does,  and these are two different terms.  Content is just another word for image quality.

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6 minutes ago, Autumn Sky said:

 

Adobe does,  and these are two different terms.  Content is just another word for image quality.

I'm sorry, but it isn't, not in British English anyway.

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Pleased to see the spat has ended and don't want to restart it but I have to agree with spacecadet, content is what's in an image regardless of the quality whereas image quality isn't about the content. Fairly obvious I would have thought.

The subject of this thread is how long it takes to get through QC and I had re uploaded all the images without the offending image which caused 169 failures. A week later I get a fail message again with one of the images causing the 168 images re uploaded to fail again. Frustrating to say the least. This has meant I have re uploaded only 16 images this time which will take another week to check and will slow down how fast I can add to my portfolio on here. 

Shutterstock do at least check images fairly quickly and only reject those they find fault with rather than the whole batch as I'm sure most of you know. As they have today ruined the contract I have now registered with other stock sites to widen any potential earnings but a shame that Shutterstock decided to be greedy as they are the only ones I have seen regular sales with so far.

The 100+ images I created this morning are waiting to upload to Alamy but they will now wait until QC ok what is sitting there. Shutterstock are unlikely to get any new uploads from me unless they change the contract again soon (unlikely).

Meanwhile I will add to Adobe, Pond 5 and have registered with Yay Images too.

Thought this would all be so simple. Haha.

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16 uploaded now passed QC already. Another 35 waiting in QC now. Perhaps the waiting times are coming down. How quickly do sales appear typically? I saw my first sale within a month on shutterstock and there has been a steady (now badly paid) stream of sales since then.

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4 minutes ago, Tony ALS said:

16 uploaded now passed QC already. Another 35 waiting in QC now. Perhaps the waiting times are coming down. How quickly do sales appear typically? I saw my first sale within a month on shutterstock and there has been a steady (now badly paid) stream of sales since then.

 

Alamy is not Shutterstock. 

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9 minutes ago, geogphotos said:

 

Alamy is not Shutterstock. 

 

What he said. Until I disabled my portfolio, I got sales nearly every day on shutterstock for 12 years with anywhere from 10 to 500 images (and fewer than 100 the first few years). Alamy is a different animal. It can take several months before your first image is licensed and you need tens of thousands of images to see daily sales in most cases.

 

Alamy also does not pick and choose your best images, rejecting similars the way microstock sites do. It is up to you to choose only your best few images from a set - getting 20 of a similar scene online here is not a win - too many similar images and you will see your view to zoom ratio (i.e. your CTR = click through rate) plummet, and your images will not come up on the first pages of searches, making you chance for a sale even slimmer. 

 

Wander around the forum and learn. You have a lot of travel images, something a lot of Alamy buyers are looking for (or were before the pandemic at least), but don't upload everything that is good enough - pick and choose your best. In the long run, you'll have a better CTR and this should help you make your first and subsequent sales. Good luck. 

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Thank you Marianne, for looking at my portfolio and for your advice. I'll go through what I have uploaded so far and remove images which may not be at the standard I would like them to be and I understand what you have said about similar images.

Those who depend on stock for their income (which I do not) must be devastated by the Shutterstock situation which I cannot believe is sustainable in the long run as from what I have seen on the forum contributors are walking away and/or stopping contributing. A company that exists because of the hard work of so many talented people and who at the end of the day are distributors and should be making a good profit, unless it's really badly managed. Shareholders may well be the problem there with greed being the most disappointing human condition. 

I have stopped contributing there too and have decided to wait before pulling everything just in case there is a reassessment of the lunacy.

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12 hours ago, Tony ALS said:

16 uploaded now passed QC already. Another 35 waiting in QC now. Perhaps the waiting times are coming down. How quickly do sales appear typically? I saw my first sale within a month on shutterstock and there has been a steady (now badly paid) stream of sales since then.

 

All photos uploaded before QC checks the first batch will be considered the same batch.  They don't examine every photo; first photo to fail fails the batch.  Ckeck your photos carefully for grain, soft focus, chromatic aberration, and dust spots (birds that can be mistaken for dust spots). 

Generally a couple of hundred photos and some months before you have a first sale.  Some people have been faster, but not many.

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Thanks for replying Mizbrown. Many images have been checked before uploading to the competition but some are new so I need to check more closely. 

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Tony, you asked about sales. I had 500 images uploaded before seeing my first sale, then a few months before the second. But that was way back when Alamy had about 10 million images. The competition is way stiffer now.

Some people get a sale earlier than I did. I was heavy on birds in the beginning, which isn’t a particularly hot subject. I’ve diversified since then. It all depends on if your content is popular with buyers. If it is, then you might make an occasional early sale.
Used to, a decent portfolio averaged about 1 sale a month per thousand images. That doesn’t hold true anymore. The swing is wide, and usually comes down to content.

That said, the quality of the image is also important. If your image looks great in the thumbnail, it will draw interest.
Keep uploading, and as Marianne mentioned, stay away from too many similars. Work toward 3-5 thousand images and you’ll start seeing sales more often. But don’t stop there, keep adding images.

The main thing you need to understand is you cannot compare Alamy with MS.  It’s like comparing a chicken and an eagle. If you need instant gratification, Alamy isn’t the place to get it. This is a marathon, not a 50 yard dash.

Good luck and persevere.  You’ll be rewarded with a some $ sales, some $$ scattered in, and an occasional $$$. What you don’t get at the MS places. 
One thing to consider is that a lot of buyers search various agencies. If they can buy your image for pennies elsewhere, they won’t pay more at Alamy. Some people who have come from microstock have begun to shoot exclusively for Alamy, or at least not offer the same content at Alamy as elsewhere.

Betty

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Great insight Betty, I appreciate the advice. I am a bit overawed by some of the content I have seen which does sometimes look heavily manipulated but perhaps that's what it takes to get noticed. I'll keep uploading and see how it goes although exclusivity is a tricky one for me to know what's best at the moment. Thanks and stay away from trouble in the USA.

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