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41 minutes ago, MizBrown said:

 

In Nicaragua.   We've got elections coming up and during the mess in 2018, we had people Photoshopping a tank in the streets of Leon, a video of a "murdered girl" who apparently answered her phone on the compete video.   One US political party also used stock photos and claimed they were various people who'd had objections to the other party's policy. 

 

I took photos of events in 2018 and was very careful to caption them neutrally.

 

Abusing Photoshop -- using it to make inflammatory composite photos. 

 

 

 

OK when you said here, I assumed you meant Alamy. What you are referring to is an abuse of the images or using them in a way that was not intended. That is quite different from abusing Photoshop. The meaning was obscure. 

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38 minutes ago, Brian Yarvin said:

 

Miz, while this has happened in the USA, it first happened in Canada. Since then, political parties all over the world have used stock images to make their points. It's one of several reasons I no longer do lifestyle work. 

 

Yeah i remember a Polish stock photographer finding with surprise his released image featuring his wife as model had been used in an anti-teacher attack campaign in Ontario. 

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6 minutes ago, MDM said:

 

OK when you said here, I assumed you meant Alamy. What you are referring to is an abuse of the images or using them in a way that was not intended. That is quite different from abusing Photoshop. The meaning was obscure. 

 

Abusing Photoshop for me is using it to create fake pictures that some faction tries to pass as real.  I don't consider work-arounds to Adobe's political policies to be abuse.   I once reported myself to Adobe and they don't really care either as long as my US credit card is good.

 

 

 

Edited by MizBrown
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All of my 30,000+ images are Exclusive to Alamy, except for those few falling under Alamy’s artificial definition requiring art works to be designated as non-exclusive. (They are not offered anywhere else, but Alamy’s definition of “Exclusive”  prevents them from being designated Exclusive.)  Alamy now asserts the right to pursue suspected infringements of Exclusive images without asking me, even though such images may have been legally licensed through other channels before they were withdrawn from other agencies and submitted exclusively to Alamy.  Leaving them as Exclusive subjects me to the risk of being charged legal fees (para 5.1) if Alamy seeks to collect for a suspected infringement and then discovers that the image was properly licensed.  Since the new fee schedule will only pay 50% commission to contributors achieving more than $25,000 in annual sales (a level I’m not likely to reach), what reason is there for continuing to designate any images as Exclusive to Alamy?  

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5 minutes ago, Ollie said:

Among the most appalling provisions in the new contract is para 7.1:  Alamy agrees to use its reasonable commercial endeavours to grant Licences in accordance with your instructions. Alamy will not be liable if it (or a Distributor) sells or otherwise makes available an item of Content outside the instructions specified by you.

 

In other words, if Alamy or its Distributor allows an image to be licensed for commercial use when it was designated for Editorial use only, and then gets sued, it will not be held liable for its own mistakes.

 

We are repeatedly asked to warrant that we will hold Alamy harmless for any offensive use of an image by a customer over whom we have no control.  Even if we have committed no error, if someone initiates legal action because of offensive use of an image it will be costly to prove our own innocence.

 

It is hard to imagine how one can continue to be part of an organization that seeks to evade all responsibility and, moreover, shifts any negative financial consequences to the contributors who provide the lifeblood of the organization. 

While I agree in general with your sentiments, to be fair this clause isn’t a new one. It is in the current contract.

https://www.alamy.com/terms/contributor-contract-changes.aspx

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1 hour ago, Nodvandigtid said:

Hi John,

 

Unfortunately I cannot answer that because about 99% or more of my images here at Alamy are genuinely exclusive to it.

I suspect there will be equally onerous contract terms out there with some stock agencies  and less onerous contracts with some others. It is up to us all individually to decide what we can accept and the risk a contract poses. 

Just for clarity here is how clause 5.1 of the Alamy contract is changing - Alamy have made this clear but  I have reformatted the wording and spread it out over more lines simply to make each sub-point separate for comparison purposes.  

 

 

Existing contract up to and including 30/06/21

 

5.1 You will indemnify, defend (at the request of Alamy) and hold Alamy and its sub-licensees and assigns harmless against any prejudice, damage, liability or costs (including reasonable lawyers' fees) which any of the indemnified parties incur arising from or in respect of any claim that there has been a breach of your representations, obligations and warranties in this contract. This paragraph will remain in force after the termination of this contract.

 

 

New contract from 01/07/21

 

    1. You will indemnify, defend (at the request of Alamy) and hold Alamy and its affiliates, Customers, Distributors, sub-licensees and assigns (the “Indemnified Parties”) harmless against any and all claims, damages, liabilities, losses, costs and expenses (including reasonable legal expenses) which any of the Indemnified Parties incur arising from or in in relation to

 

: (i) any claim that the Content infringes any third party’s rights including but not limited to any third party trademark, copyright, moral rights or other intellectual property rights, or any right of privacy or publicity;

 

  1. any use, exploitation or distribution of the Content by the Indemnified Parties;

 

  1. any claim against Alamy as a result of Alamy or its representatives pursuing an actual or suspected infringement of any Content; and

 

  1. any breach of any your representations, obligations and warranties under this Contract or the System.

 

This clause will remain in force after the termination of this Contract.

 

 

 

 

 

I just had a peek at the non-exclusive contract of a big, traditional stock agency where I have a few images (through another outfit). What looked strikingly different to me in their contract was that the agency seemingly agrees to "defend, indemnify and hold harmless contributors from all costs" in legal disputes. However, as mentioned, I'm really dumb when it comes to these matters, so I could easily be missing something. The other indemnification clauses look similar but not nearly as detailed as those in Alamy's new contract. This agency offers everyone a 50/50 deal as well. Whatever way you shake it, though, stock photography can be a risky pursuit these days.

 

 

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Posted (edited)
46 minutes ago, SeaKevin said:

I spent a lot of time this week thinking about my future here. It's been a good run. In my nearly 15 years, Alamy has landed me numerous book covers and a few advertising placements. But I also haven't bothered to upload anything here since the last contract change, even though I have a few thousand images fully keyworded and ready-to-go. For me, that's the ultimate sign any nonsense here just isn't worth it.

 

It's interesting to see the amount of "forum newbies" on here, who are in fact long time Alamy contributors - myself included. That on its own says something. 

 

I am in a very similar position to you SeaKevin. I too have had book covers and ads, and done quite well over the years.

I have a second collection of specialist images, which Alamy will not have many (if any, in some cases) "seconds" or true "alternates" for.

Like you, I feel that it is no longer worth it.

 

Is this finally the "straw that broke the camels back"? Feels like it is for many of us.

Edited by Michael Photo
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Unfortunately statements on this forum by management about “intention” or promises to “go softly” are of no value.  Para 25.4 makes this clear:  This Contract supersedes any previous contract between the parties relating to the Content and constitutes the entire understanding between the parties and is binding upon them, your executors, successors or assigns. Each party acknowledges that, in entering into this Contract, it has not relied on any representation made by the other party that has not been set out in the Contract.”   Only amendments to the proposed contract can ensure any modicum of balance and fairness to the relationship between Alamy management and its contributors.

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4 hours ago, MDM said:

 

What does this mean ???? Are you suggesting everyone here abuses Adobe licensing. I've had a legal licence for Photoshop since 1997. 

2004 for me. Paid through the nose every time about every other new update, sometimes each release, depending on what new things were offered. 

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Para 11.2 states “Content which is any way restricted may be excluded from the Distribution Scheme at Alamy’s sole discretion.”  Restrictions available on page two of the image metadata page include (1) advertising and promotion, (2) consumer goods, (3) personal use.  “Sell for Editorial only” is also available on page two, but it is not listed under the Restrictions heading.  So what is it if it isn’t a restriction?  It would appear that any use of restrictions (1), (2), or (3) would eliminate the image from the Distributors network.  Certainly there are many editorial images showing people or property which should not be available for use on consumer goods without releases.

 

Even if those restriction options remain on the image metadata page, para 4.1.5 grants Alamy the right:  4.1.5. except for any rights that have previously been licensed or granted in relation to the Content, there is not and will not be during the term of this Contract, be any limitation or restriction on Alamy’s ability to license the Content;”  

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Posted (edited)

It appears, if I decide to stay, I’ll be making my images non-exclusive.

Edited by Betty LaRue
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Posted (edited)

Just sent my termination email again, and got back a standard Alamy auto-reply, so looks like it took this time.

Edited by Bill Kuta
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14 hours ago, Nodvandigtid said:

Will that was the week that was, although I still find it a tad ironic that the topic above this thread for the majority of the last six days is entitled "The importance of being accurate with marking images as “Exclusive to Alamy.”!

 

I logged in last Monday, 13 years to the day that I joined Alamy. Above the dashboard sat an ominous warning that a new contributor contract would be coming into force from July 2021. I read Emily Shelley's words about why the change to commission was, in her eyes, necessary along with the comments on exclusivity and the and the new infringement team.

 

In a former life, I worked for a company that derived its income through agents/intermediaries.30% of the agents supplied roughly 70% of the business and of course the other 70% of the agents only supplied 30% of the income. Filter in costs, upkeep etc and it was obvious what had to happen and it did,

 

It is a similar position that most contributors here on the forums now find themselves in. Whenever Alamy backtracked on the commission cut to 40% in return for being exclusive at 50%, one of the questions I asked James West, was that would he confirm that all contributors regardless of size would have their commission reduced to 40%. (the original proposal). For obvious reasons it was the only one of the questions he didn't answer when he replied to me.

 

There is an old saying; “if it smells like b******* then it is b*******” and Emily Shelly's message made it clear to me that the new PA/Alamy outfit does not have a positive outcome for individual contributors going forward. To compare the initial trading period of this year with the start of the pandemic last year and and pronounce a wonderful 45% growth figure really is an insult to most people's intelligence.

 

To then rub further salt into the wound, when a great number of us spent hours and hours going through and checking that our images were in fact exclusive by saying that a “significant minority” (what exactly does that mean in real numbers?) had images which weren't exclusive shows a lack of leadership because the offenders could easily have been dealt with.

 

The smoke though began to thicken whenever it it became clear that the new “infringement team” would be chasing only exclusive images, and of course there was no detail on what ultimately you or I, the contributor, could expect to get. Many of you have pointed out that this is likely to be similarly cloaked as the “DACS” system administered by Alamy - where we have no idea of the true value of the payments that Alamy may collect on our behalf in relation to what is ultimately paid out to us.

 

I would say it's fair comment that this infringement team will be pushing hard to get as much as they can (the parties to the deal – the rights chasing company and Alamy will set an incentivised contract aiming for that) and a small residue, possibly no more than on a normal licence fee after commission, will be made available to contributors.

 

When you see, as revealed on this thread by PA/Alamy, the small proportion of overall images that are actually marked as “exclusive” with Alamy, any plans for exclusiveness to benefit both PA/Alamy and contributors is a long way off, meantime it's about squeezing as much money out of images marked as exclusive..

 

I joined Alamy in 2008, I struggled in the early years with software, but since 2015, I have put extensive hours time and resources into building up a portfolio of just over 17000 images. At that time I started keeping tabs on this forum, and watched the likes off Sally Anderson (well done Sally – a prodigious output with growing sales) and Andy Gibson (living in the wonderful world of West Cork, a man selling Live News in increasing volumes via Alamy) start pushing their work through Alamy.

 

And the reality as has been clearly said on these forums is you need to be uploading regularly to make sales. In the last few years, I have earned enough to mean my average over the full 13 years of contributing is safely above the $250 figure, however there is not a snowball in hell's chance of me getting anyone here $25,000.

 

Would my collection be missed? Well the answer to that in the context of PA/Alamy's plans would be an obvious “No” (although some buyers might wonder where I have gone before commercial amnesia would set it in).

 

You will all have seen that PA/Alamy has sucked in a huge range of images from PA Media, Thomson Reuters, the Independent, and others.

 

I often wondered what PA Media paid for Alamy - please don't go to the end just yet - and whether or not what PA Media was in fact a suitable suitor for Alamy. The answer as far as the individual contributor is concerned is probably going to be “no“ over the next few years, and in fairness if any of us were sitting as the managing director of PA/Alamy and had access to the relevant data then we might come up with a similar conclusion on the way forward. That of course depends as well on what your future strategy for the business is is, and clearly agencies, (despite a small few uploading some dross, low quality images, uploaded without relevant keywords and impunity), many of whom are “connected” to PA Media will rule the day.

 

It suits both PA/Alamy and PA Media partners to get the highest rate of commission, and for the rest of us to continue perhaps staying on at a lower 40%, until the next commission cut comes along.

 

The Chief Executive of PA Media Group Limited is Clive Marshall, you may want to write to him as well, but for example, included in the 27 shareholders that own PA Media, are Century Newspapers Limited, Scottish Daily Record and Sunday Mail, Daily Mail and General Holdings, Trinity Mirror PLC, The Irish Times, DC Thomson and Co Ltd, and Guardian Media Group PLC – a formidable bunch of businesses.

 

Can PA Media's purchase of Alamy mean that it can continue to pay the highest rate to many of its related or associated companies? I also suspect that the purchase was to enable PA Media etc to benefit the greatest from pushing out images to different international markets that they had not previously great access to.

 

I could live with 40% commission if push came to shove, but what I cannot live with are the onerous terms and conditions that will be part of the the contributor contract from July.

As many of you have pointed out there are inaccuracies in there, some of you have referred to “contra proferentem” where if there is a dispute between the contract parties regarding wording interpretation, that it goes against the party who drafted it.

 

However that is definitely something that none of us should rely on; any legal action is expensive, and you or I have to weigh up the risk of that happening and if it does the financial implications and other implications under the terms of the contract.

 

In that former life, I had some dealing with indemnity clauses and legal liabilities, and I am glad to see that Keith Douglas for one has highlighted the the indemnity clause number 5, Look at the amount of additional liabilities imposed on the contributor.

 

Hold harmless agreements are nothing new, but the extent of them can vary, I have always checked the contributor contract at each update to know what the risk to me is is. Before you get into all the other problems regarding licensing exclusivity, model releases, and everything else, I do feel you really need to look at clause 5 and see whether or not you are prepared to live with that.

 

This is a kind of clause I would have seen many years ago where basically all the onus is put on to to the party signing up to the contract, There are other more acceptable versions used, where, for example, PA/Alamy would be responsible for the problems it causes, and you are I would be responsible for what we caused as contributors, and that is something which would be more amenable to most people.

 

I feel the new clauses shift a huge burden (including things well beyond the control of the contributor) onto the contributor. I suspect the practical reason for this is simply down to whoever reviewed the contract doing what I would term as “a belt and braces job” to make sure that they are protecting PA/Alamy to the fullest extent.

 

You will have seen in at least one of the PA/Alamy replies about what the intention of some clauses are (from a PA/Alamy perspective). The intention is irrelevant; unless you have personally got a written agreement or side contract making it clear that you are not responsible for certain things, then if a case goes to court you are bound by the terms of the contract and the way that they will be interpreted by a judge.

 

Quite simply the the financial implications of that are hugely worrying. PA/Alamy having paid their legal team to to devise these “new” terms and revise the contract, will not be back tracking on it,

 

The agencies, or most of them, will be able to pay for the relevant level of risk mitigation via insurance (professional Indemnity or legal expenses) and in some cases the agency will have the financial resources to more than easily cover it.

 

I cannot see the contract being changed so it looks like I am heading out an exit door soon, I would like to thank everyone for their contributions on the forum of the last number of years. Although I haven't posted, I have been on several times daily and I've got to know a great deal about many of you and found your experience and information provided helpful, I wish all of you well in the future.

 

In relation to my earlier question about how much PA Media paid for Alamy, here's an extract from the PA Media Group accounts up to the 31 December 2019.

 

In February 2020, the Group purchased 100% of the share capital in Alamy Limited, a provider of stock images. Cash consideration paid on acquisition was £32.6m. Deferred consideration of £9.2m to be paid in February 2021 and £4.6m to be paid in February 2022”

 

Sleep well Messrs West and Fischer.



 

 

Thanks Nodvandigtiv for your detailed and informative post, and particular thanks for picking up on my specific concerns about Clause 5.1.

 

Keith

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6 hours ago, Sally said:

While I agree in general with your sentiments, to be fair this clause isn’t a new one. It is in the current contract.

https://www.alamy.com/terms/contributor-contract-changes.aspx

 

I think it's the combination of that clause (and other clauses) with new clause 5.1 that causes me great concern. Not only will Alamy not be liable for any errors on their part (para 7,1) but the contributor will indemnify everyone as well for the consequences of their error (para 5.1). That's how I read it anyway.

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On 21/05/2021 at 17:18, Jill Morgan said:

 

But that's not what the contract says.  So this will be changed?

 

2.10. By marking Content as Exclusive, you grant Alamy the right to chase third party infringements of the Content without Alamy having to consult you. Where pursuing such infringements if it is found that the Content has been licensed through another licensing platform, Alamy has the right to recoup any fees incurred in the pursuit of any action taken.

It's just more blatant lies from Alamy.  My god, how can a company be so against its contributors?

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9 minutes ago, Gary Cook said:

Hi,

I don't suppose it will make any difference but I would like to add my comments to express my disappointment and opposition to the proposed contract changes.

I am an Alamy member from the very early days, joining in Feb 2001, and always felt it to be the most photographer friendly and fairest agency - even though the work required to keyword and categorise my images is greater than any other agency. I was disappointed in the past when the photographers share of the revenue was cut from the original 75% or 80% down to 50%, but to now cut it to 40% is a step too far. I believe that it is totally unfair to expect the creator of the images to receive less than half the sale fees.

This, together with the increasingly small fees received, and giving away full size files and wide ranging rights for single digit fees, means that it is becoming increasingly pointless in submitting images to Alamy. Sales and revenue peaked for me in 2008 with over 300 sales and $40k but have spiralled downwards ever since and are now just a fraction of those glory days.

I have submitted to various agencies in the past, both exclusive and non-exclusive, and have always stop contributing when they made similar steps to reduce the photographers share. I will now have to consider whether I wish to continue to submit images to alamy - I have another large batch almost ready to submit but will not now do so until the situation becomes clear. I am even considering cancelling my contract with Alamy and withdrawing my images completely. This is particularly disappointing as all my images with Alamy are exclusive, other than the sales I make myself direct to clients, and I withdrew the few which were nonexclusive from the other agencies so as to be exclusive with Alamy.

Can Alamy please reconsider, and maintain a minimum of 50% share for the photographer.

I must also say I am concerned about some of the other contract clause changes but haven't yet got my head around them.

 

I too would have no problem with 50% share for the photographer and would hope for a reconsideration but I fear it's already embedded in concrete.

 

I too am a fairly long standing contributor and this whole thing is demoralising. As has been mentioned by Ian above I am also reluctant to throw away 15+ years of work. I will take my time in considering options.

 

I've have a quick look at your work and it is stunning. If you withdraw your work I can only say it's Alamy's loss. You will have no problem selling your work but it's just disappointing that stock has now reached the level it has.

 

Jim 😐

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5 minutes ago, Broad Norfolk said:

 

I too would have no problem with 50% share for the photographer and would hope for a reconsideration but I fear it's already embedded in concrete.

 

I too am a fairly long standing contributor and this whole thing is demoralising. As has been mentioned by Ian above I am also reluctant to throw away 15+ years of work. I will take my time in considering options.

 

I've have a quick look at your work and it is stunning. If you withdraw your work I can only say it's Alamy's loss. You will have no problem selling your work but it's just disappointing that stock has now reached the level it has.

 

Jim 😐

"I've have a quick look at your work and it is stunning. If you withdraw your work I can only say it's Alamy's loss." - Thanks, Jim.

 

I agree - don't want to throw away 15 years work with Alamy, but if I have to I will - but will take time to consider it first.

 

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14 hours ago, MDM said:

Anonymity allows people to behave in ways that they would never do face to face.

 

Yes, like whistleblowing and other forms of perfectly legitimate protest under oppressive regimes. 🤔

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17 hours ago, Nodvandigtid said:

Will that was the week that was, although I still find it a tad ironic that the topic above this thread for the majority of the last six days is entitled "The importance of being accurate with marking images as “Exclusive to Alamy.”!

 

I logged in last Monday, 13 years to the day that I joined Alamy. Above the dashboard sat an ominous warning that a new contributor contract would be coming into force from July 2021. I read Emily Shelley's words about why the change to commission was, in her eyes, necessary along with the comments on exclusivity and the and the new infringement team.

 

In a former life, I worked for a company that derived its income through agents/intermediaries.30% of the agents supplied roughly 70% of the business and of course the other 70% of the agents only supplied 30% of the income. Filter in costs, upkeep etc and it was obvious what had to happen and it did,

 

It is a similar position that most contributors here on the forums now find themselves in. Whenever Alamy backtracked on the commission cut to 40% in return for being exclusive at 50%, one of the questions I asked James West, was that would he confirm that all contributors regardless of size would have their commission reduced to 40%. (the original proposal). For obvious reasons it was the only one of the questions he didn't answer when he replied to me.

 

There is an old saying; “if it smells like b******* then it is b*******” and Emily Shelly's message made it clear to me that the new PA/Alamy outfit does not have a positive outcome for individual contributors going forward. To compare the initial trading period of this year with the start of the pandemic last year and and pronounce a wonderful 45% growth figure really is an insult to most people's intelligence.

 

To then rub further salt into the wound, when a great number of us spent hours and hours going through and checking that our images were in fact exclusive by saying that a “significant minority” (what exactly does that mean in real numbers?) had images which weren't exclusive shows a lack of leadership because the offenders could easily have been dealt with.

 

The smoke though began to thicken whenever it it became clear that the new “infringement team” would be chasing only exclusive images, and of course there was no detail on what ultimately you or I, the contributor, could expect to get. Many of you have pointed out that this is likely to be similarly cloaked as the “DACS” system administered by Alamy - where we have no idea of the true value of the payments that Alamy may collect on our behalf in relation to what is ultimately paid out to us.

 

I would say it's fair comment that this infringement team will be pushing hard to get as much as they can (the parties to the deal – the rights chasing company and Alamy will set an incentivised contract aiming for that) and a small residue, possibly no more than on a normal licence fee after commission, will be made available to contributors.

 

When you see, as revealed on this thread by PA/Alamy, the small proportion of overall images that are actually marked as “exclusive” with Alamy, any plans for exclusiveness to benefit both PA/Alamy and contributors is a long way off, meantime it's about squeezing as much money out of images marked as exclusive..

 

I joined Alamy in 2008, I struggled in the early years with software, but since 2015, I have put extensive hours time and resources into building up a portfolio of just over 17000 images. At that time I started keeping tabs on this forum, and watched the likes off Sally Anderson (well done Sally – a prodigious output with growing sales) and Andy Gibson (living in the wonderful world of West Cork, a man selling Live News in increasing volumes via Alamy) start pushing their work through Alamy.

 

And the reality as has been clearly said on these forums is you need to be uploading regularly to make sales. In the last few years, I have earned enough to mean my average over the full 13 years of contributing is safely above the $250 figure, however there is not a snowball in hell's chance of me getting anyone here $25,000.

 

Would my collection be missed? Well the answer to that in the context of PA/Alamy's plans would be an obvious “No” (although some buyers might wonder where I have gone before commercial amnesia would set it in).

 

You will all have seen that PA/Alamy has sucked in a huge range of images from PA Media, Thomson Reuters, the Independent, and others.

 

I often wondered what PA Media paid for Alamy - please don't go to the end just yet - and whether or not what PA Media was in fact a suitable suitor for Alamy. The answer as far as the individual contributor is concerned is probably going to be “no“ over the next few years, and in fairness if any of us were sitting as the managing director of PA/Alamy and had access to the relevant data then we might come up with a similar conclusion on the way forward. That of course depends as well on what your future strategy for the business is is, and clearly agencies, (despite a small few uploading some dross, low quality images, uploaded without relevant keywords and impunity), many of whom are “connected” to PA Media will rule the day.

 

It suits both PA/Alamy and PA Media partners to get the highest rate of commission, and for the rest of us to continue perhaps staying on at a lower 40%, until the next commission cut comes along.

 

The Chief Executive of PA Media Group Limited is Clive Marshall, you may want to write to him as well, but for example, included in the 27 shareholders that own PA Media, are Century Newspapers Limited, Scottish Daily Record and Sunday Mail, Daily Mail and General Holdings, Trinity Mirror PLC, The Irish Times, DC Thomson and Co Ltd, and Guardian Media Group PLC – a formidable bunch of businesses.

 

Can PA Media's purchase of Alamy mean that it can continue to pay the highest rate to many of its related or associated companies? I also suspect that the purchase was to enable PA Media etc to benefit the greatest from pushing out images to different international markets that they had not previously great access to.

 

I could live with 40% commission if push came to shove, but what I cannot live with are the onerous terms and conditions that will be part of the the contributor contract from July.

As many of you have pointed out there are inaccuracies in there, some of you have referred to “contra proferentem” where if there is a dispute between the contract parties regarding wording interpretation, that it goes against the party who drafted it.

 

However that is definitely something that none of us should rely on; any legal action is expensive, and you or I have to weigh up the risk of that happening and if it does the financial implications and other implications under the terms of the contract.

 

In that former life, I had some dealing with indemnity clauses and legal liabilities, and I am glad to see that Keith Douglas for one has highlighted the the indemnity clause number 5, Look at the amount of additional liabilities imposed on the contributor.

 

Hold harmless agreements are nothing new, but the extent of them can vary, I have always checked the contributor contract at each update to know what the risk to me is is. Before you get into all the other problems regarding licensing exclusivity, model releases, and everything else, I do feel you really need to look at clause 5 and see whether or not you are prepared to live with that.

 

This is a kind of clause I would have seen many years ago where basically all the onus is put on to to the party signing up to the contract, There are other more acceptable versions used, where, for example, PA/Alamy would be responsible for the problems it causes, and you are I would be responsible for what we caused as contributors, and that is something which would be more amenable to most people.

 

I feel the new clauses shift a huge burden (including things well beyond the control of the contributor) onto the contributor. I suspect the practical reason for this is simply down to whoever reviewed the contract doing what I would term as “a belt and braces job” to make sure that they are protecting PA/Alamy to the fullest extent.

 

You will have seen in at least one of the PA/Alamy replies about what the intention of some clauses are (from a PA/Alamy perspective). The intention is irrelevant; unless you have personally got a written agreement or side contract making it clear that you are not responsible for certain things, then if a case goes to court you are bound by the terms of the contract and the way that they will be interpreted by a judge.

 

Quite simply the the financial implications of that are hugely worrying. PA/Alamy having paid their legal team to to devise these “new” terms and revise the contract, will not be back tracking on it,

 

The agencies, or most of them, will be able to pay for the relevant level of risk mitigation via insurance (professional Indemnity or legal expenses) and in some cases the agency will have the financial resources to more than easily cover it.

 

I cannot see the contract being changed so it looks like I am heading out an exit door soon, I would like to thank everyone for their contributions on the forum of the last number of years. Although I haven't posted, I have been on several times daily and I've got to know a great deal about many of you and found your experience and information provided helpful, I wish all of you well in the future.

 

In relation to my earlier question about how much PA Media paid for Alamy, here's an extract from the PA Media Group accounts up to the 31 December 2019.

 

In February 2020, the Group purchased 100% of the share capital in Alamy Limited, a provider of stock images. Cash consideration paid on acquisition was £32.6m. Deferred consideration of £9.2m to be paid in February 2021 and £4.6m to be paid in February 2022”

 

Sleep well Messrs West and Fischer.



 

I would like to echo the comments others have made about this being a well thought out and articulate post. Gives a lot of food for thought. And I am honoured to have the special mention, too. Given I do a lot of news, my portfolio has grown quickly, but it is now time to give it a severe cull, especially the early photos when I knew less than I do now.

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5 minutes ago, hotbrightsky said:

 

Yes, like whistleblowing and other forms of perfectly legitimate protest under oppressive regimes. 🤔

 

I was referring to anonymity on the internet (forums, social media) which easily enables trolling and all that entails (e.g. racism) as should have been clear from the context of what I wrote. Extracting a sentence and quoting it out of context is a favoured tool of the propagandist. 

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7 minutes ago, MDM said:

Extracting a sentence and quoting it out of context is a favoured tool of the propagandist. 

Steady on! It was a fair comment.

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