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Contract Change 2021 - Official thread


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13 hours ago, sb photos said:

I just noted an article in the Oxford Mail on-line listing food from supermarkets that has been withdrawn due to incorrectly labelling contents that may cause allergies, and that may contain glass, metal, plastic and a hepatitis risk.  A stock photo of a supermarket basket illustrates the article, captioned 'Aldi, Asda and Tesco urgently recall food items and issue health warnings. (PA)'. If Alamy had licensed such an image from an Alamy contributor for a similar article, and companies recognised their products in the basket and didn't request a  correction that their products weren't affected and it went legal, under the currently proposed new contract, we would be financially responsible for all costs. This example is likely just one of many potential horrendous implications. The sooner conflicting reports from Alamy are resolved and we know exactly where we stand the better.

Any such legal danger could be easily mostly-mitigated by requiring that end users add 'stock photo' to their caption. Other agencies require that.

I saw a PA-credited photo of a woman on the BBC website a few days back of which one could 'reasonably' have inferred she was implicated in the subject-matter of the article, and I thought then that the caption should say 'stock photo' (or 'posed by model' if appropriate - I wasn't sure whether it was a posed shot or not, could have been either). The PA credit alone doesn't indicate that a person or product isn't implicated in the topic of the article - as often they will be.

Edited by Cryptoprocta
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1 hour ago, Vitor from Portugal said:

That's the correct way to do the job, and the responsibilities of the illustration tags on the articles is without any doubt a responsibility of the publisher. 👍

 

 

but if grieved party decides to take action against the stock agency for not enforcing their own contract, even if they are found not responsible, as per the contract we were made to agree to, the cost of Alamy's defence would be our responsibility. 

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15 minutes ago, meanderingemu said:

 

 

but if grieved party decides to take action against the stock agency for not enforcing their own contract, even if they are found not responsible, as per the contract we were made to agree to, the cost of Alamy's defence would be our responsibility. 

As it ambiguously stands just now.

We have to wait for the rewrite.

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3 minutes ago, Russell Watkins said:

 

It's taking a suspiciously long time to just revert it to what it was.

They said "early next week".

It would be nice if the length of time they're taking is reflecting the care they're taking over the revision. But maybe that's just wishful thinking.

 

It seems that there were quite a few unfavourable clauses in the old contract most of us had somehow 'skimmed over', but this revision has highlighted some of them, as well as the new ambiguities they introduced.

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7 minutes ago, Cryptoprocta said:

It would be nice if the length of time they're taking is reflecting the care they're taking over the revision. But maybe that's just wishful thinking.

 

Yup. I'm still pondering whether it's cockup or conspiracy.

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2 hours ago, Cryptoprocta said:

Any such conflicts could easily mitigated by requiring that end users add 'stock photo' to their caption. Other agencies require that.

I saw a PA-credited photo of a woman on the BBC website a few days back of which one could 'reasonably' have inferred she was implicated in the subject-matter of the article, and I thought then that the caption should say 'stock photo' (or 'posed by model' if appropriate - I wasn't sure whether it was a posed shot or not, could have been either). The PA credit alone doesn't indicate that a person or product isn't implicated in the topic of the article - as often they will be.

 

My view too. In most instances as in the Oxford Mail (a Newsquest daily) article, 'stock photo' is used. But as in this Oxford Mail article, that doesn't always happen. Journalism is going down hill.

 

Earlier today I was reading another agencies contributor contract. It was fair that the contributor could only be held financially responsible if they broke the contract terms. Not as Alamy's new contract is currently written, where we would be responsible for all issues outside our control.

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21 hours ago, GaryK said:

 Alamy's sorting the wheat from the chaff,  it'll be a sort of self-cull in a way, and it needs to happen.   

 

 

I don't believe the "chaff" will care much about the 20% cut. They'll be happy just to get something.

The "Wheat", however, will care. 

 

At this rate it's the wheat that Alamy will be - inadvertently? - culling.

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16 minutes ago, Michael Photo said:

 

I don't believe the "chaff" will care much about the 20% cut. They'll be happy just to get something.

The "Wheat", however, will care. 

 

At this rate it's the wheat that Alamy will be - inadvertently? - culling.

hahahahaha 🙂 what a larf you are matey 🙂 maybe Alamy is fed up with wheat and want a more mixed grain approach - enjoy your self importance lolol

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14 hours ago, Colin Woods said:

I think its more finely calculated than that. Its low enough to appear attainable so as to not put people off but high enough to ensure that very few people will actually get to it. This is big business and big business doesn't make decisions randomly.

 

You're probably correct about that. I guess my disappointment with Alamy is really starting to show. However, I'm not sure that most individual contributors see $25K per year as attainable. It seems that not even the most financially successful forum members have managed to hit that magic number. It's difficult to see where the incentive lies. Keeping the fair 50/50 split would have been a much greater incentive. However, as you suggest, providing incentive is obviously not what all this is about.

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2 hours ago, Michael Photo said:

 

Self important I most certainly am not.

I have noticed on the forum a number of long-term contributors, with excellent collections, seriously talking about leaving Alamy. Some have already sent in their termination notices. In GaryK's terminology (not mine), whom I was responding to: the Wheat.

 

I think most industries that thrive on exploiting people need to believe that they're all interchangeable.

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12 minutes ago, Bill Brooks said:

Here is the way I see it.

 

The new contract is written to deal with 2 major Alamy problems.

 

Alamy commission structure and prices are way out of line with the industry average. Industry average being around 20% for the photographer and about $5 per RF sale, with no RM at all. The industry average cannot be ignored. Average Alamy sale price, and the photographers commission, have to be brought into line. This contract is not about a money grab, but about the long term survival of the fittest archive.

 

The second problem is that the collection is unedited. Presently the contents are too legally dangerous to both photographers and Alamy. To have knowledgable Alamy employees examine every single image, and edit the danger from the huge collection is too big a task. Alamy photographers are incapable of editing out the danger. Photographers have shown their incapability by the content they upload, and the discussion on this forum. The danger is much less at other archives, because they have been properly edited in house from the start. The new contract places all the danger of the unedited collection onto the Alamy photographer.

 

The stock photo business was disrupted circa 1995 by the entry of two of the richest people in the world. They moved their edited stock photo business by circa 2006 to a new business model like the business model that unedited Alamy occupies today in 2021. However that 2006 business model was further disrupted by the recession of 2008-2009. In 2009 microstock disrupted the stock industry yet again. Corbus was sold, and the other place moved toward microstock. Alamy today is mostly 2006. Alamy needs to move with the industry into 2021.

 

Alamy is not an island. The stock photo industry in 2021, with the exception of Alamy, is microstock. This new contract makes Alamy competitive with the rest of the industry.

 

Personally the stock photo industry today, is not for me. I am exiting the industry entirely. No stock photographs for sale anywhere, including Alamy. I still have things I want to explore in my photography, but the stock photo component has become a distraction. I had a great run that started in 1967, and lasted until 2010. 2010 is not a typo. No regrets

 

Thank you for sharing your thoughts. It makes sense to me. When I first started at Alamy I really didn't expect much. I had been told that the stock photography business was no longer profitable for photographers. Since I am not dependent on the income it has been very good for me to be here. I am always learning and I am making some return on my efforts. It pleases me that people like my work and I'm always hoping that I am helping animals by making people appreciate their beauty. I'm sorry Alamy doesn't seem to be able to continue as before but this is not causing me great harm. I feel bad for what this is doing to the people who really need the money.

 

Paulette

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45 minutes ago, Bill Brooks said:

Here is the way I see it.

 

The new contract is written to deal with 2 major Alamy problems.

 

Alamy commission structure and prices are way out of line with the industry average. Industry average being around 20% for the photographer and about $5 per RF sale, with no RM at all. The industry average cannot be ignored. Average Alamy sale price, and the photographers commission, have to be brought into line. This contract is not about a money grab, but about the long term survival of the fittest archive.

 

The second problem is that the collection is unedited. Presently the contents are too legally dangerous to both photographers and Alamy. To have knowledgable Alamy employees examine every single image, and edit the danger from the huge collection is too big a task. Alamy photographers are incapable of editing out the danger. Photographers have shown their incapability by the content they upload, and the discussion on this forum. The danger is much less at other archives, because they have been properly edited in house from the start. The new contract places all the danger of the unedited collection onto the Alamy photographer.

 

The stock photo business was disrupted circa 1995 by the entry of two of the richest people in the world. They moved their edited stock photo business by circa 2006 to a new business model like the business model that unedited Alamy occupies today in 2021. However that 2006 business model was further disrupted by the recession of 2008-2009. In 2009 microstock disrupted the stock industry yet again. Corbus was sold, and the other place moved toward microstock. Alamy today is mostly 2006. Alamy needs to move with the industry into 2021.

 

Alamy is not an island. The stock photo industry in 2021, with the exception of Alamy, is microstock. This new contract makes Alamy competitive with the rest of the industry.

 

Personally the stock photo industry today, is not for me. I am exiting the industry entirely. No stock photographs for sale anywhere, including Alamy. I still have things I want to explore in my photography, but the stock photo component has become a distraction. I had a great run that started in 1967, and lasted until 2010. 2010 is not a typo. No regrets

 Bill, I understand where you are coming from.  Some of your work are composites and special design work that isn’t just knocked out quickly. You’ve put time and thought into it, more than I have because you have more skills. Why would you want to do that anymore for decreasing earnings. Especially if it’s as you say, a distraction.

I for one, will be sorry to see you go, because I’ve always thought you imparted a lot of well-thought out wisdom to the forum.

You’ve seen what works best and given that knowledge with a dose of “Why”, and I thank you, because I’ve always been a Why person.

I suspect a lot of us might have done better if we’d listened closer. You’ve even explained your individual sales and why you think it sold.

Good luck, and I hope you don’t suddenly feel you’ve lost an arm.

Betty

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8 hours ago, Bill Brooks said:

Alamy commission structure and prices are way out of line with the industry average. Industry average being around 20% for the photographer and about $5 per RF sale, with no RM at all.

This is not true. You are talking about the microstock industry. But there is much more stock aside it. Nearly all premium agencies I know about offer 50:50 or at least 40:60. (And RM only)

When Getty left the premium segment and went RF/microstock there was a chance for Alamy, but obviously they did not take it.

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14 hours ago, sb photos said:

 

My view too. In most instances as in the Oxford Mail (a Newsquest daily) article, 'stock photo' is used. But as in this Oxford Mail article, that doesn't always happen. Journalism is going down hill.

 

Personally I wouldn’t put ‘Oxford Mail’ and ‘journalism’ in the same sentence!! 😀

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48 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

Nevertheless, I have to say that I think 2006 was much better for Alamy contributors.

For me it was 2007 and 2008. I Made more money in those 2 years than in the following 6 combined, and I've not had a $25k year for 9 years.

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Been a bit off the radar for a while, for so many reasons, only to come back and find this...

 

I dropped shutterstock last year for their shenanigans regarding contributor payout, and had been managing things with the aim of moving entirely exclusive here. I.e. I stopped pushing things to other places with intention of closing them.

 

Now, what a waste that has turned out to be. 

 

I think I "might" be ok to stay in that "gold" level - definitely based on last years earning, possibly based on this years earnings. But now not sure I should bother at all.

 

When I think of all the time I have put in, and what I have gotten out.... jeesh, this pays poorly!

 

Not entirely sure I should continue at all. Certainly not with anything "editorial" focused. Not that I was submitting great stuff on that front. Think will pull my focus to landscape (where I need practice) and wildlife (which I enjoy immensely), and focus more on improving in those fields and selling myself. Or something.

 

Stock industry just always seems like is intent on taking itself down.

 

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