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Given the recent teaming up with the Press Association, would it be possible for regular contributors to the news feed to be provided with information about upcoming news events?
Other agencies do this as a matter of course and as a result those of us contributing to Alamy miss out on a lot of events that are covered by those contributing to rivals. 
I admit I am speaking from a very London-centric viewpoint - Westminster, and visits of foreign heads of state and so on - but such information would be in the interests of all news photographers as well as Alamy's sales and reputation for news coverage.

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👍 The Alamy desk used to do this, would be a poisitive step if it was re-introduced. Every little helps. I could have easily popped into Downing Street yesterday am to snap the Polish PM visiting/Boris handshake, before covering other things in Westminster. But I didn't know about that particular visit's timing. Downing Street press office info and email to individual photographers are sometimes sketchy and random of late. It is often not productive/cost effective to travel in for just one or two news events in a day. The only alternative is otherwise to go back to filing to multiple agencies again and rely on their desks sending out info in and around London and elsewhere. 

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That is an excellent idea.   Access to the PA news diary, for example, would be a great help.  I spend many hours just standing in DownIng Street on the hope of “catching” events.  There are no toilets, refreshments or shelter.  
 

Quite often I do catch visits etc bt I miss far more than I catch and I could be much more productive if I had a news diary or listing.   As Phil said this is quite London centric but there is a vast amount of national news activity in Westminster and the surrounds.

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Yes, it's a fantastic idea. Unfortunately unrealistic and naive. No agency nor PA, despite their current alliance with the Alamy, will want to share their exclusive information. As an individual, you are still a competitor to PA. Neither PA nor Alamy is interested in creating further competition in an already highly competitive market. Therefore, Alamy will do nothing to harm PA in any way

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5 hours ago, Radim said:

Yes, it's a fantastic idea. Unfortunately unrealistic and naive. No agency nor PA, despite their current alliance with the Alamy, will want to share their exclusive information. As an individual, you are still a competitor to PA. Neither PA nor Alamy is interested in creating further competition in an already highly competitive market. Therefore, Alamy will do nothing to harm PA in any way

Yes, but, I know of only one PA tog who covers my particular area of the country. The fact remains that this photographer cannot be in two places at once and it would be nice to know of other events elsewhere that I could attend.

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Yes, I fully understand. I also understand your logic. To understand each other. I'm in favor of freelancers receiving some information. Unfortunately, from Alamy's logic, it is impassable, as I explained above. It is also my many years of experience as a press photographer. News agencies are generally reluctant to share information. Why should they do that? Understand that the benefits of selling a photo do not weigh more than a good PA / Alamy relationship

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20 hours ago, Radim said:

Yes, I fully understand. I also understand your logic. To understand each other. I'm in favor of freelancers receiving some information. Unfortunately, from Alamy's logic, it is impassable, as I explained above. It is also my many years of experience as a press photographer. News agencies are generally reluctant to share information. Why should they do that? Understand that the benefits of selling a photo do not weigh more than a good PA / Alamy relationship

 

Radim, we are not asking PA to share their info. They operate on an entirely different, mostly shift/job based system anyway. And they receive quite a few exclusive jobs where other agencies aren't invited (in case of some many PR jobs, but also other pre-planned larger events), ditto other large agencies. We are asking Alamy to share its info, or if there isn't resource to collate, then perhaps re-think and allocate some resource to it, to make the operation more efficient for everyone involved. Alamy state the news desk operates independently from the PA and will continue to exist. 

 

I used to file to the R and the G, and still file to a non-UK agency (without overlap), and before that, many moons ago, to a London based entity that no longer exists. I stopped because the R and the G would not allow news only filing, and insisted that images will automatically become microstock after the news period, which I didn't like at the time, given the then pricing different between Alamy and microstock (which is fast becoming irrelevant). All of them sent out info on news schedules. Some of the papers still do, too, to all of their freelancers (and those rare few staffers, obvs). They also used to send out assignments (some paid as per job/shift, some unpaid on spec) arguably, this will likely not work any more with the majority of news togs now non-exclusive and assignments need to be exclusive. That is absolutely fair enough, it doesn't need to be on an assignment basis, but sharing the basic info across 3 or 4 major categories of news would help and ensure that those who till file to Alamy can cover them. Alamy used to do this!  (I'm not talking about the museum/gallery/PR event circle of 'pretty space fill pictures' which is mostly invite/contact based, but the actual 'news' side)

 

Otherwise, the only alternative is to go back to fire off sets to 3-4 agencies and get info from them instead, which means they end up just about everywhere (given all the distribution arrangements), but rake in lower per image fees for the tog and a lot of mess. Just look at the newsfeed - so many identical sets being dumped on the /news/ site.

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On 28/11/2021 at 06:02, Radim said:

PA, despite their current alliance with the Alamy, will want to share their exclusive information. As an individual, you are still a competitor to PA. Neither PA nor Alamy is interested in creating further competition

PA OWN Alamy. They are the same company. 

As long as Alamy continues to have a live news feed - and I certainly hope that continues - and has staff dedicated to running that news feed, it is in nobody's interest that they don't do a good job so as not to compete with another part of the same company.

As long as Alamy continue in the business of news it is in everyone's interest that they do it as well as possible. When we turn up in Westminster and see that Stefan Rousseau is there we know we all know a) we're in the right place and b) he's probably going to get the sales. But he isn't always there. PA can't be everywhere and it's best for the company if they get as many news stories covered as they can.

 

This information isn't 'secret' or exclusive to one agency. It just needs someone to spend a bit of time to collate and circulate it.

 

Edited by Phil Robinson
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On 27/11/2021 at 09:55, Phil Robinson said:

Given the recent teaming up with the Press Association, would it be possible for regular contributors to the news feed to be provided with information about upcoming news events?
Other agencies do this as a matter of course and as a result those of us contributing to Alamy miss out on a lot of events that are covered by those contributing to rivals. 
I admit I am speaking from a very London-centric viewpoint - Westminster, and visits of foreign heads of state and so on - but such information would be in the interests of all news photographers as well as Alamy's sales and reputation for news coverage.

 

 

To be honest, I am not sure why this would be limited to London.  In fact those of us around the world could provide support in places where PA has no presence, which are still of interest to PA's Shareholder medias.

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23 hours ago, meanderingemu said:

 

 

To be honest, I am not sure why this would be limited to London.  In fact those of us around the world could provide support in places where PA has no presence, which are still of interest to PA's Shareholder medias.

 

Again - we are asking Alamy to give us info, not the PA. (although chatting to the odd PA/Reuters/AP tog often helps more with finding out timings than any info supplied by agencies - sadly that's what we are often reduced to - the cookie crumbs, bottom feeding to get details for events)

 

Alamy Live News and PA are separate entities as far as the news desk is concerned at present (although staff appear to have crossed over, which may be a good thing).  If Alamy started to "support" PA in "places where PA has no presence" only, then that would be the last time myself and other photographers who work their sizeable little bums off for very little money on a daily basis would file there, because, as far as the main news events in the capital are concerned, PA covers all of them, and so do most freelancers, and a gazillion agencies. That is a good thing. It's call press freedom. Most of us have to fork out a monthly fee for our NUJ/other press body memberships and we intend to use that freedom. If anyone was to ask me to not cover where PA covers, that would be the last set filed to that agency. For now, I don't think that is likely to happen, and we regularly still sell images from the main news events in the capital where PA are present. But the low response to this thread confirms that few of the regular/daily news togs actually venture to the Alamy forum, and it is somewhat unfruitful to discuss press/news issue with stock shooters.

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Thank you for your comments, we appreciate and welcome suggestions. We have been working to enhance the level of event information available to us, to help accredit and inform our Live News contributors. PA operate a different model to us; however, we have PA experience within our ALN team which we will be using to drive the Alamy Live News service forward. We are a small but dedicated team who encourage collaboration, so feel free to get in touch with us at news@alamy.com to let us know how we can help you going forward.

 

Thanks,

 

The ALN team

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Back when I was with Alamy Live News, they'd send me info on occasion about events in NYC (a hour by train, so very doable in the pre-Covid days). Right now, I wouldn't be able to take advantage of this, but with the office in Brooklyn when things go back to "normal" and when I know this vertigo is really behind me, I'd be interested in NYC events (and will apply to ALN).  I've missed being in the city - it's been 2 years since I've been there!

 

I think this is a great idea and on behalf of we Americans, hope the Live News team can give people here a head's up about US events, hopefully beyond the NYC area too. Live News has always been responsive, so glad to see they are looking to enhance what they can do. They've helped me get accreditation a few times in the past when I was outside my normal assignment area. 

 

(Ed - per your Norway spruce tree post - wish I could go see the Rockefeller Center tree this year - hoping my daughter & her family can travel to NYC for Christmas 2022 - can't wait to show my grandson the joys of NY at Christmas)

Edited by Marianne
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