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Posted (edited)
1 minute ago, Russell Watkins said:

 

Yup they do. And they're part of UniDays so I get educational discounts at places like Apple. I've just bought a little printer with an educational discount from HP using my OU email address too.

 

I have used my nottingham.ac.uk email etc for software licence discounts. But nnot for Alamy, as Rusdsell said, BUGGER!

Edited by Martin P Wilson
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1 minute ago, Russell Watkins said:

 

Yup they do. And they're part of UniDays so I get educational discounts at places like Apple. I've just bought a little printer with an educational discount from HP using my OU email address too.

 

 

Wow discounts for being a mature student with OU. Now what can I sign up for?

 

Allan

 

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1 minute ago, Allan Bell said:

 

Wow discounts for being a mature student with OU. Now what can I sign up for?

 

Allan

 

 

There's quite a range of courses. I've been doing a mix of computing and maths/statistics modules and in the future, I'll be looking at arts/humanities subjects. 

 

But anyway... Coooeeeeh, Alamy...

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The catch with the OU is that is no longer free or even cheap. Open to correction here but to my knowledge tuition fees are similar to red brick and other universities - £9,200 a year equivalent. 

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, Russell Watkins said:

 

There's quite a range of courses. I've been doing a mix of computing and maths/statistics modules and in the future, I'll be looking at arts/humanities subjects. 

 

But anyway... Coooeeeeh, Alamy...

 

It's nice to see you back Russell by the way. I recall you had to retire from your medical career as a GP because of serious health reasons which you mentioned here before. 

Edited by MDM
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Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, MDM said:

The catch with the OU is that is no longer free or even cheap. Open to correction here but to my knowledge tuition fees are similar to red brick and other universities - £9,200 a year equivalent. 

 

Nearer £6K (just over £1500 per 30 credits). Not cheap but you can do it part time and you can do one 30-credit module per year, if you like. You need 360 credits for a bachelors degree and that will involve some 60-credit modules so in that case, you'll be paying the region of £3000 per year.

Edited by Russell Watkins
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3 minutes ago, MDM said:

The catch with the OU is that is no longer free or even cheap. Open to correction here but to my knowledge tuition fees are similar to red brick and other universities - £9,200 a year equivalent. 

 

£9,200 a year!!!!!  Need to be earning more. Better start uploading images to Alamy and fast.

 

Oh! I am going round in circles now.🤪

 

Allan

 

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3 minutes ago, MDM said:

 

It's nice to see you back Russell by the way. I recall you had to retire from your medical career as a GP because of serious health reasons which you mentioned here before. 

 

Thank you. Yes, I had to retire early (from hospital medicine).

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1 hour ago, Foreign Export said:

 

the clause clearly says exactly that - Alamy has the right to override- unless it has been licensed previously with different rights

 

And indeed, and one could argue Alamy already do this sometimes when they grant what look very like RF licence terms to images the contributor has marked as RM.

 

Mark

 

 

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Just now, Sally R said:

Well almost midnight here in the Land of Oz so I'm going to sleep. But good luck Alamy comrades for a hopefully positive and clear response to our concerns.

 have a nice restful sleep.  

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Martin P Wilson said:

 

That is what it says, whatever was originally intended. That is the interpretation I believe a court or arbitrator would apply. It is not about trsuting what Alamy say it means, it is what legal text says so that clause needs rewriting or our restrictions do not mean anything.

 

Indeed. I'm not particularly interested in a separate "clarifications", I want to see the clauses amended so that confusion can't arise in the first place.

 

In a previous employment our employer gave us a nice friendly booklet "clarifying" in plain English the terms and conditions of the company pension scheme. At the back, in small print" was a statement that said if there's any discrepancy between this booklet and the "Pension Trust Deed Legal Document", the Trust Deed takes priority. The Trust deed was a huge legal document full of legalise, so employees never read or understood it , and relied on the booklet. Then, when the pensions crisis struck, the Company did indeed exploit their legal "wiggle room" and overrode some of what was stated in the booklet. The contract is key. Clarification of intent may not carry legal weight, it's the contract we sign up to.

 

Mark

Edited by M.Chapman
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Seems like we have given PA/Alamy more to think about than they realised.

 

Allan

 

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Yes, where I ask if something in the contract can be clarified, I mean clarified in the governing document, the contract.

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Thank you to everyone who has emailed us or posted questions and comments in this forum thread about the changes to the contributor contract which come into effect on July 1. We have gathered the main topics and concerns that have come up and answered these below. These will also be posted on page one of this thread to make sure they are easily found.

 

If these contract changes do not have a significant impact on profits, why are you making them?

 

We are making these changes to ensure our core 40% commission rate is sustainable. They allow us to deal with some operational challenges around exclusivity and infringements, and around managing and growing distribution and affiliate partners. They simplify the rate structure and support fair growth of the contributor base, which has been exponential over the last 12 months. 

 

How can Alamy justify earning more from a sale than the photographer?

 

Our core rate for direct sales continues to be 40% for the vast majority of our contributors. We believe this is fair because we incur significant and rising costs bringing images to market – especially as competition increases. This allows Alamy to invest, as it is doing currently, in an improved website and platform, and in sales and marketing resource. It’s also one of the most generous rates available in a very competitive market.

 

Why have you removed the incentive to be exclusive for most contributors?

 

Around 17 million of the 260 million images for sale on Alamy are marked as exclusive to us. Our aim is to establish that these images really are exclusive and unlock infringements revenue, as exclusive images to Alamy will be given priority for infringement chasing. We will then review our plans to market a unique collection, and the value of this to customers. We’re aware that this changes the commission incentive for many contributors to sell exclusively with us, although there will be the benefit of potential infringements revenue. This will not stop you selling directly yourself.

 

Now you’ve removed the exclusive incentive for most contributors, won’t you be left with generic and poor-quality content?

 

Exclusivity is about which platforms the images are available on, not aesthetic uniqueness or quality. All kinds of images are sold exclusively on Alamy, and all kinds of images are sold non-exclusively on Alamy.

 

Why is the gap between the Silver commission tier at $250 gross sales and the Platinum tier at $25,000 sales so big? Isn’t the Platinum tier unachievable for most contributors?

 

We know that the majority of our contributors will be in the Gold tier and earn 40% commission for direct sales, including exclusive sales. We believe this to be a fair and sustainable rate. We have kept the 50% rate for exclusive images only for those earning above $25,000 gross, because these are the highest-selling collections. We’re aware that this changes the commission incentive for many contributors to sell exclusively with us, although there will be the benefit of potential infringements revenue as exclusive images will be given a higher priority in any work going on in this area. This will not stop you selling directly yourself.

 

If you chase infringements on my behalf for exclusive images, won’t this stop me selling directly myself?

 

No, that’s not the case. The same rules apply as before when marking images as exclusive – you can still sell your images directly and at the same time mark images as exclusive to Alamy. Our infringements chasing will not affect that and when identifying a potential infringement, we will always ask the user first whether or not they hold an existing licence before we pursue.

 

Why did you recently ask me if you could pursue potential infringements without informing me first, if you knew this contract change was coming?

 

The new contract does not come into force until the 1st of July. The infringements work has begun in earnest and this will help us secure infringement payments more quickly over the next 45 days prior to the new contract terms commencing.

 

Can you explain the changes to 4.1.5 and 4.1.6. Isn’t the contract now very one-sided?

 

4.1.5 –  This clause is intended to ensure that any prior restrictions and limitations that you place on the content are correctly disclosed and to ensure that these are accurate. It works in conjunction with the restrictions that you must supply under  4.1.10, which are automatically applied when Alamy licences Content through our website. When selling images Alamy will always respect any restrictions you place on your images and our customers are made aware of these restrictions and agree to abide by them in their terms of use. It is not in any way intended to grant Alamy the right to license content outside of those restrictions.

 

4.1.6 – By submitting content to Alamy you agree that you will not use the system to upload content that could be considered as threatening, insulting, racist, offensive, vulgar and/or indecent. Clause 4.1.6 details that, as a result of the submission of the content, any use of the content by Alamy, its customers or distributors will therefore not be considered threatening, insulting, racist, offensive, vulgar and/or indecent. In simple terms, you have to decide that it isn’t offensive, but also a wider audience, including Alamy and its customers and distributors, will also need to consider that it isn’t offensive.

 

Alamy tells the licensors of its Content that they should not use the Content in such a way that it could be considered defamatory, racist, etc. to take into account where local customs might be different.

 

In terms of the contract reference to ‘anywhere in the world’, this used to say ‘the UK, USA and elsewhere’. The change has the same meaning but is designed to be clearer.

 

What is the percentage split that is given to distribution partners, why are you not clear about this?

 

We work with around 80 different distributors and the rate varies per partner. We always negotiate for the best deal available with each opportunity. We cannot share details of these individual contracts. We are working to add more partners to ensure we can reach as many potential customers around the world as possible.

 

Isn’t the timing of these changes disrespectful given the global Covid pandemic?

 

We’re aware that some people are having a tough time at the moment, that’s true of our staff around the world too. This is likely to be the case for some time to come and business decisions still need to be taken. In terms of image sales for Alamy contributors, these were impacted during the first few months of the pandemic in 2020 - but since then we have seen a resurgence at Alamy and sales so far this year are significantly ahead overall. Every individual contributor’s account within those overall sales will be different.

 

By making these changes, aren’t you ending Alamy’s reputation for fairness completely, and becoming a corporation like any other?

 

Every business makes decisions that balance the needs of its suppliers, customers, staff, community, and shareholders – in the context of the global market. In Alamy’s case, decisions are taken with the goal of long-term growth and sustainability. Profits are reinvested into the business to support this, and we believe our rates to be fair and sustainable.

 

Best regards,

 

Alamy

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5 minutes ago, Alamy said:

Thank you to everyone who has emailed us or posted questions and comments in this forum thread about the changes to the contributor contract which come into effect on July 1. We have gathered the main topics and concerns that have come up and answered these below. These will also be posted on page one of this thread to make sure they are easily found.

 

If these contract changes do not have a significant impact on profits, why are you making them?

 

We are making these changes to ensure our core 40% commission rate is sustainable. They allow us to deal with some operational challenges around exclusivity and infringements, and around managing and growing distribution and affiliate partners. They simplify the rate structure and support fair growth of the contributor base, which has been exponential over the last 12 months. 

 

How can Alamy justify earning more from a sale than the photographer?

 

Our core rate for direct sales continues to be 40% for the vast majority of our contributors. We believe this is fair because we incur significant and rising costs bringing images to market – especially as competition increases. This allows Alamy to invest, as it is doing currently, in an improved website and platform, and in sales and marketing resource. It’s also one of the most generous rates available in a very competitive market.

 

Why have you removed the incentive to be exclusive for most contributors?

 

Around 17 million of the 260 million images for sale on Alamy are marked as exclusive to us. Our aim is to establish that these images really are exclusive and unlock infringements revenue, as exclusive images to Alamy will be given priority for infringement chasing. We will then review our plans to market a unique collection, and the value of this to customers. We’re aware that this changes the commission incentive for many contributors to sell exclusively with us, although there will be the benefit of potential infringements revenue. This will not stop you selling directly yourself.

 

Now you’ve removed the exclusive incentive for most contributors, won’t you be left with generic and poor-quality content?

 

Exclusivity is about which platforms the images are available on, not aesthetic uniqueness or quality. All kinds of images are sold exclusively on Alamy, and all kinds of images are sold non-exclusively on Alamy.

 

Why is the gap between the Silver commission tier at $250 gross sales and the Platinum tier at $25,000 sales so big? Isn’t the Platinum tier unachievable for most contributors?

 

We know that the majority of our contributors will be in the Gold tier and earn 40% commission for direct sales, including exclusive sales. We believe this to be a fair and sustainable rate. We have kept the 50% rate for exclusive images only for those earning above $25,000 gross, because these are the highest-selling collections. We’re aware that this changes the commission incentive for many contributors to sell exclusively with us, although there will be the benefit of potential infringements revenue as exclusive images will be given a higher priority in any work going on in this area. This will not stop you selling directly yourself.

 

If you chase infringements on my behalf for exclusive images, won’t this stop me selling directly myself?

 

No, that’s not the case. The same rules apply as before when marking images as exclusive – you can still sell your images directly and at the same time mark images as exclusive to Alamy. Our infringements chasing will not affect that and when identifying a potential infringement, we will always ask the user first whether or not they hold an existing licence before we pursue.

 

Why did you recently ask me if you could pursue potential infringements without informing me first, if you knew this contract change was coming?

 

The new contract does not come into force until the 1st of July. The infringements work has begun in earnest and this will help us secure infringement payments more quickly over the next 45 days prior to the new contract terms commencing.

 

Can you explain the changes to 4.1.5 and 4.1.6. Isn’t the contract now very one-sided?

 

4.1.5 –  This clause is intended to ensure that any prior restrictions and limitations that you place on the content are correctly disclosed and to ensure that these are accurate. It works in conjunction with the restrictions that you must supply under  4.1.10, which are automatically applied when Alamy licences Content through our website. When selling images Alamy will always respect any restrictions you place on your images and our customers are made aware of these restrictions and agree to abide by them in their terms of use. It is not in any way intended to grant Alamy the right to license content outside of those restrictions.

 

4.1.6 – By submitting content to Alamy you agree that you will not use the system to upload content that could be considered as threatening, insulting, racist, offensive, vulgar and/or indecent. Clause 4.1.6 details that, as a result of the submission of the content, any use of the content by Alamy, its customers or distributors will therefore not be considered threatening, insulting, racist, offensive, vulgar and/or indecent. In simple terms, you have to decide that it isn’t offensive, but also a wider audience, including Alamy and its customers and distributors, will also need to consider that it isn’t offensive.

 

Alamy tells the licensors of its Content that they should not use the Content in such a way that it could be considered defamatory, racist, etc. to take into account where local customs might be different.

 

In terms of the contract reference to ‘anywhere in the world’, this used to say ‘the UK, USA and elsewhere’. The change has the same meaning but is designed to be clearer.

 

What is the percentage split that is given to distribution partners, why are you not clear about this?

 

We work with around 80 different distributors and the rate varies per partner. We always negotiate for the best deal available with each opportunity. We cannot share details of these individual contracts. We are working to add more partners to ensure we can reach as many potential customers around the world as possible.

 

Isn’t the timing of these changes disrespectful given the global Covid pandemic?

 

We’re aware that some people are having a tough time at the moment, that’s true of our staff around the world too. This is likely to be the case for some time to come and business decisions still need to be taken. In terms of image sales for Alamy contributors, these were impacted during the first few months of the pandemic in 2020 - but since then we have seen a resurgence at Alamy and sales so far this year are significantly ahead overall. Every individual contributor’s account within those overall sales will be different.

 

By making these changes, aren’t you ending Alamy’s reputation for fairness completely, and becoming a corporation like any other?

 

Every business makes decisions that balance the needs of its suppliers, customers, staff, community, and shareholders – in the context of the global market. In Alamy’s case, decisions are taken with the goal of long-term growth and sustainability. Profits are reinvested into the business to support this, and we believe our rates to be fair and sustainable.

 

Best regards,

 

Alamy

But for most, are infringements truly that widespread that they will cover the 20% decrease in income from individual sales?

 

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HMMMM!!  🤔

 

Allan

 

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4 hours ago, MDM said:

 

A very good reason for not taking down images is the amount of work it has taken to get them up for sale in the first place. As long as we can trust Alamy that they will abide by any restrictions we put on our images and we ensure that our images are in line with Alamy's requirements, we might as well leave them in place. Otherwise we are in danger of cutting noses to spite faces. Leaving is understandable and I have not made my mind up yet while awaiting a response from Alamy. 

Hi Thanks, yeah I've not decided, I'll what the response is, but my images are already keywords etc, so easy to download or put elsewhere, but there doest seem any point in adding more, for such small fees, without giving it some thought.

 

Obviously people will have different opinions and may have better ideas, hence the question, but Alamy seemingly thinking it is ok to cut the commission rate, especially when they are telling us, their sales are up 45%, is a bit naughty. If the good photographers who earn reasonable money are up 45%, then fair enough, I'm obviously doing the wrong thing and may as well leave the way clearer for them, but the philosophy of the company has changed, we all know there are a lot of lousy images, or which have terrible keywords, but any image can sell, getting a load of them is the hard bit!

 

Chris

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Alamy has not covered the liability issues of the photographer in this statement.  So we can assume we are right in that we the contributor are supposedly liable for misuse of our images?

 

Jill

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3 minutes ago, Bill Kuta said:

So, there will be no changes to the new contract?

 

My guess is there won't be any this time around.

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10 minutes ago, Alamy said:

Our aim is to establish that these images really are exclusive and unlock infringements revenue, as exclusive images to Alamy will be given priority for infringement chasing. We will then review our plans to market a unique collection, and the value of this to customers.

So surely it makes absolutely no sense to reduce the main incentive (retaining 50% commission) for those contributors who have exclusive images to keep them exclusive. Not doubt you're already seeing the status of images being changed from exclusive to non-exclusive. A good track record on infringement chasing (the other incentive) is yet to be proven.

 

Mark

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21 minutes ago, Alamy said:

This allows Alamy to invest, as it is doing currently, in an improved website and platform, and in sales and marketing resource.

I won't be investing in any new camera gear for a while but at least there'll be an improved website.

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