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Contract Change 2021 - Official thread


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1 hour ago, MariaJ said:

I’m not a fan of tiered payment systems.  If a client licenses three photographs from three photographers for X dollars each, why should the payments to the photographer depend on how much they have sold before?   And in this case, it’s not even how many previous sales (like some other agencies), but how many $$ your images have sold for per year.

 

 

 

So those with a small portfolio who have fewer sales will get paid less per sale.  Earning less per sale than someone in the next tier which means they’ll have less income which keeps them at that low tier.  How is that fair or motivating to the photographer?

 

 

 

With my past sales history, I fit into the middle category.  Most of my images are exclusive, but I don’t see the point of that now.    The top tier isn’t even fathomable (I also initially thought the 25K was a typo).   So no motivation to even try for it.   Perhaps it’s just big agencies who fit into that top income category, but then they probably wouldn’t have many exclusive images anyways.

 

And how does this make alamy a better picture library?

I agree about the tiered systems.  If you think about the numbers the new contract provides a disincentive for Alamy to want the biggest sellers to sell more work.  Alamy will actually make larger profits if sales are spread out among lots of smaller contributors who are in lower tiers....  With a 50/50 split, they make money when you make money.  With a tiered system, the more contributors who have low sales and can't get to the next tier, the more money goes to Alamy's pockets. And with the massive number of images in this library I would imagine it would be to be super easy to spread those sales out.

 

The whole idea of working with an agency is that it is supposed to be symbiotic - we take the pics and they make the sales. If it's a fair business model, they make sales and both parties  win.  This new business model basically means they don't have to work as hard to increase their profits. With this business model, when you lose they win.  The more I think about it, the more I think this is a very unfriendly contract.

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12 hours ago, DJ Myford said:

Prediction for next year: Alamy will be renamed PA Picture Library and storage fees will be reintroduced for any images submitted by individual contributors rather than agencies.

At which point one definitely pulls down all images and closes account.

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It's interesting. The more you make in revenue, the higher your commission. Based on this model, if you don't make $250, then your commission drops. This drops makes it even harder to reach the $250 mark again.

 

 

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2 minutes ago, elacoste said:

It's interesting. The more you make in revenue, the higher your commission. Based on this model, if you don't make $250, then your commission drops. This drops makes it even harder to reach the $250 mark again.

 

 

 

 

currently it is written as based on " total License Fees for that year, net of any refunds:"

 

 

 

So it should not be affected by how much Alamy and distributors charge you for the service.  

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11 minutes ago, jillhyland said:

Alamy will actually make larger profits if sales are spread out among lots of smaller contributors who are in lower tiers....  With a 50/50 split, they make money when you make money.  With a tiered system, the more contributors who have low sales and can't get to the next tier, the more money goes to Alamy's pockets.

 

Mheh, I don't think this is entirely correct.  The agencies may have different contracts with Alamy, also.  Reuters provides the most news photographs in Nicaragua, but that's just the Central American staff which has at least two photographers in it.  So if you're dealing with an agency who has its own contracts with the photographers or has them in salary, it's less hassle for Alamy than dealing with thousands of minor accounts where the payments go to thousands of individual accounts. 

 

Agencies are mentioned in this revised contract and they have more discretion on pricing than individual contributors:  "If you are an Agency Contributor, you may set your own prices for your Royalty Free Licences (but not for Rights Managed Licences or Novel Use Licences). Agency Contributors can supply pricing via spreadsheet or via any other means agreed with Alamy. Alamy may discount these prices in accordance with this Contract at its sole discretion."

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5 minutes ago, MizBrown said:

 

Mheh, I don't think this is entirely correct.  The agencies may have different contracts with Alamy, also.  Reuters provides the most news photographs in Nicaragua, but that's just the Central American staff which has at least two photographers in it.  So if you're dealing with an agency who has its own contracts with the photographers or has them in salary, it's less hassle for Alamy than dealing with thousands of minor accounts where the payments go to thousands of individual accounts. 

 

Agencies are mentioned in this revised contract and they have more discretion on pricing than individual contributors:  "If you are an Agency Contributor, you may set your own prices for your Royalty Free Licences (but not for Rights Managed Licences or Novel Use Licences). Agency Contributors can supply pricing via spreadsheet or via any other means agreed with Alamy. Alamy may discount these prices in accordance with this Contract at its sole discretion."

 

I'm not sure I entirely understand what you're saying. I am not an agency contributor so I haven't had experience with those types of sales. 

What I meant by my statement was that if a sale is made for $100 and it goes to the lowest tier, Alamy pockets $80.  If it goes to the top tier Alamy only pockets $50. When they can make $30 more off the little contributor, it's a disincentive to promote their larger contributors. Their profits increase when ours decrease.

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I think that Alamy has made a HUGE MISTAKE, Gee where have we written and read that before.  

Unless there are some serious changes to this current contract, "I will not let the door hit me on

my way out."

 

I have an idea, If Alamy's average license fee drops below a certain amount per image during a calendar year Alamy

would receive a reduced commission?  

 

Chuck Nacke

Edited by Chuck Nacke
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51 minutes ago, jillhyland said:

 

I'm not sure I entirely understand what you're saying. I am not an agency contributor so I haven't had experience with those types of sales. 

What I meant by my statement was that if a sale is made for $100 and it goes to the lowest tier, Alamy pockets $80.  If it goes to the top tier Alamy only pockets $50. When they can make $30 more off the little contributor, it's a disincentive to promote their larger contributors. Their profits increase when ours decrease.

 

I think this is trying to force Alamy's agency suppliers into exclusivity agreements.   The small fry may be by-catch.

 

 

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Hi Alamy,

 

This may have been suggested earlier in the thread, I am in transit and don't have time to check.

 

Thanks for at least trying to be transparent about the changes.

 

Given that we (contributors) have no control over the price our photos are licensed for, and therefore no control over annual earnings - spectacular images can license for $3.00 or less - wouldn't it be fairer to gauge the platinum, gold, silver levels by NUMBER of sales per year for each contributor, rather than $$ gross earned?

 

This would be in Alamy's interests as it would at least provide contributors with an incentive to produce saleable images.

 

There is no way I can hit $25,000 gross per year if Alamy persists in licensing my images for a pittance.

 

Regards,

Suzanne

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, LSP said:

Hi Alamy,

 

This may have been suggested earlier in the thread, I am in transit and don't have time to check.

 

Thanks for at least trying to be transparent about the changes.

 

Given that we (contributors) have no control over the price our photos are licensed for, and therefore no control over annual earnings - spectacular images can license for $3.00 or less - wouldn't it be fairer to gauge the platinum, gold, silver levels by NUMBER of sales per year for each contributor, rather than $$ gross earned?

 

This would be in Alamy's interests as it would at least provide contributors with an incentive to produce saleable images.

 

There is no way I can hit $25,000 gross per year if Alamy persists in licensing my images for a pittance.

 

Regards,

Suzanne

 

 

 

 

Great idea. If Alamy sets prices so low, there is no way any of us can be successful. I made more money 5 years ago with far fewer images than I have now. Up until recently, for PU I got $20. Now it’s reduced to $11-13. Where will it end? Alamy is on a downhill slide to the bottom. 
Besides the fact of the last PU I had was of an ordinary run of the mill tree. For cards and prints? I don’t think so. Especially since it was zoomed, which means a regular customer bought it. And that’s been happening to many of us, over and over.
This business has become a joke. 

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17 minutes ago, Betty LaRue said:

Great idea. If Alamy sets prices so low, there is no way any of us can be successful. I made more money 5 years ago with far fewer images than I have now. Up until recently, for PU I got $20. Now it’s reduced to $11-13. Where will it end? Alamy is on a downhill slide to the bottom. 
Besides the fact of the last PU I had was of an ordinary run of the mill tree. For cards and prints? I don’t think so. Especially since it was zoomed, which means a regular customer bought it. And that’s been happening to many of us, over and over.
This business has become a joke. 

 

One thing is for sure, the ridiculous $25K Platinum Level threshold is a total joke. It should be reduced to a reasonable (given today's low prices) and obtainable amount, say $5K, if Alamy wants to stay in business. What kind of blind, woolly-headed thinking is going on at the top, one wonders. 

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They say:

 

"Since launching our infringements programme, we’re discovering that a significant minority of contributors have not been forthcoming about other arrangements, or forgot to change their settings when they listed elsewhere."

 

So I'm now wondering if the much lauded infringements programme was simply introduced to invent a reason to make this 20% cut. Surely it's not been in place long enough to come to any serious conclusion?

 

Cynical, moi?

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5 hours ago, Betty LaRue said:

You are right, I expect. When my husband began working for an utility company during his 20s, the management was run by engineers who had been there a long time. They cared about the employees.  One older man who’d been there for years digging up lines to repair, occasionally went on a bender. He’d miss a day of work throwing up his guts, then be back on the job working hard. The bosses closed a blind eye rather than fire a man who’d been working hard there for 35 years and mess up his pension. That type of kindness was widespread.

As time went on and the engineers retired, they were replaced with men who had Masters of business degrees. All they cared about was the bottom line and they didn’t care what bodies they ran over to make the most money. The whole feel of the company changed.

It was reflected by the employees having less and less loyalty, and many retiring early just to get out.

I guess I hoped Alamy still had a heart.

You’ve just described the new Alamy perfectly. That woman who’s now running it doesn’t give a shit about us, she’s only interested in how much she can extort from the hand that feeds her. As for her pathetic rant about contributors abusing the exclusivity thing, well that’s just a blatant lie. I changed all my images to exclusive the last time Alamy changed the commission structure and my images have remained exclusive. I haven’t abused that and am appalled at her suggestion. She still wants our images to remain exclusive?  Where’s the incentive?  There is none, so no doubt most contribs will change to non-exclusive. Essentially she’s made up that bullshit so she can feel good about what she’s done to us. Makes me want to vomit... 

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4 minutes ago, Sally R said:

I had had planned to shoot some stock this afternoon but now question what I am doing. Alamy, please use a moral compass and rethink what you are doing.

I was going to go on a stock shooting road trip this Saturday but I’m not going to bother now. It’s just pointless. 
 

As for Alamy having morals, well that’s just a joke. Alamy has turned into a terrible company since PA took over and things will only get worse. 

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No point in begging them for answers nor explanations. Do we, do you really expect them to come back and address all your concerns?

The most they might do, if even that, is to put some very vague and generic letter out acknowledging the fact that the new contract will take time for people to understand and that they will do what they can to help us along with the new changes (lies, blah blah).

 

So stop begging them. They do not deserve it.

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Hi there!

just a short question:

I‘m from Germany. Here, if someone makes changes to a contract, and the other side don’t agree, they can leave the contract. Is this the same in England? And: Does it mean if I don’t agree and cancel the contract the 45 days (or 180) of having the images on the Shop is canceled too? Or will they stay in the shop with the old conditions?

What do you think?

(please excuse my poor English)

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It's a lovely start to the day here in Norfolk weather-wise. Normally I would be up and out shooting stock but I've decided it's best to go to my barber and have a haircut and a friendly chat. I've realised there is a similarity. I'm a bit thin on top and maybe don't go quite so often but it's still subject to cut, cut, cut!! Soon there will be nothing left. Sad days. 

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11 hours ago, John Mitchell said:

 

Or the Onepercentium Level.

 

Actually my guess is that less than 1% of Alamy contributors make $25K annually. Whatever the number, they certainly are an "exclusive" group.

And how many of them are agencies who are not exclusive????

Phil

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18 hours ago, DJ Myford said:

Prediction for next year: Alamy will be renamed PA Picture Library and storage fees will be reintroduced for any images submitted by individual contributors rather than agencies.

 

Worse could actually happen. I've worked with one news-only agency who actually charge to remove images from their site! Here's to hoping that isn't their next idea.

 

 (the photographer has no access to their images after the upload, so can't amend heading, keywords or delete and image). Thankfully I had a very small port with them, just the occasional surplus news set that went to them, and luckily, nearly all were exclusive. I tend to not file the same images, but of course they are likely to be similar if it's a news event, and occasional accidents do happen with duplicates going out to two agencies. So I had to try and painstakingly go back through sets and identify those few duplicates and which sets went to that agency overall, so ensure I could tick the 'exclusive' button with Alamy. To make matters worse, said agency also distributed via the G agency (unbeknown to me at the time I signed their contract), but under one of their own pseudos, not under the photographer/agency name. So I then had to do a full image search on pics where I thought there might still be the occasional image of mine with G, but filed as whatevername/G, never as me. And I had to try and identify all the pseudos they used when distributing to Getty. Nightmare for very little gain, now that exclusive here is worth nothing. It's a very small number of images on there, but I won't pay to have them removed and at least they do still earn revenue. (given the small number, they actually earn a lot more per image than most pics I have on Alamy)

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19 minutes ago, Broad Norfolk said:

It's a lovely start to the day here in Norfolk weather-wise. Normally I would be up and out shooting stock but I've decided it's best to go to my barber and have a haircut and a friendly chat. I've realised there is a similarity. I'm a bit thin on top and maybe don't go quite so often but it's still subject to cut, cut, cut!! Soon there will be nothing left. Sad days. 

Lovely day here in Dorset - sun is shining, broad beans are growing, spuds planted 🙂

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