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I Can't Take Much More of This


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8 hours ago, Rick Lewis said:

I apologize for this whiny rant but I had to get it off my chest.

 

...no need to apologise   ...many share your pain  

If a shot cost pennies to make it's not so bad - but there is no sense in supplying any kind of image, editorial, fashion, aerial, whatever - if the agency concerned are prepared to sell under perpetual licences for these kind of fees.

GD

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reports of $$$ sales tempts us to think there is still hope, but the trend is definitely towards these pathetic sales. The cost of producing individual photos is not connected to price of license in the stock market and this has always been the case. I fear this is Alamy reacting to levels being set by even bigger American competitors. I take some comfort in the recollection that I made a good living out of stock photography up to maybe, ten years ago, but I can't see getting back to those figures or anything like it.

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My last 4 sales have all been in the $1,45 ballpark. 5 sales this month will net me around £7.

 

In 2013, my average sale was $38 and has steadily dropped each year (apart from a one-year glitch). This year the average is $8.22

 

 

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I have some low dollar sales this month, but a couple of decent ones. So far, 5 for $155. It’ll be interesting to see how this year stacks up with last year by end of December, because I won’t get $155. I’ll get 40% of it. 

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If you think it's bad now, in a few years it will be so much worse. Market forces very much at work.

 

I watched a fascinating short clip a few days ago introducing a new type of AI that can produce photorealistic images based on a sentence you feed it, and believe me the results are mind blowing. If this takes off, and I see no reason why it won't, a lot of "generic" stock will die overnight.

 

Editorial stock and news of a specific nature will take a longer time to die out, but won't be carried out by individuals like us forever. News agencies will be able to just drive near to a scene, release a few drones that will automagically capture the entire scene from various angles, return to the van, and then further AI will whittle down the images into something useful. 10-20 years max for that IMO.

 

It's us that are becoming obsolete.

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4 minutes ago, Cal said:

If you think it's bad now, in a few years it will be so much worse. Market forces very much at work.

 

Unfortunately, the conclusion I'm also reaching. 

 

In addition to the AI you mention, I think the steady improvements in mobile phones will also kill off the market. I'm taking the philosophy to enjoy it while I can.

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37 minutes ago, Cal said:

If you think it's bad now, in a few years it will be so much worse. Market forces very much at work.

 

I watched a fascinating short clip a few days ago introducing a new type of AI that can produce photorealistic images based on a sentence you feed it, and believe me the results are mind blowing. If this takes off, and I see no reason why it won't, a lot of "generic" stock will die overnight.

 

Editorial stock and news of a specific nature will take a longer time to die out, but won't be carried out by individuals like us forever. News agencies will be able to just drive near to a scene, release a few drones that will automagically capture the entire scene from various angles, return to the van, and then further AI will whittle down the images into something useful. 10-20 years max for that IMO.

 

It's us that are becoming obsolete.

 

That has been around for a while. Not with drones though but with 360 and it is being used a lot in car photography. Where the cars are all rendered images from even before any has left the factory.

First time I heard about it was 20 years ago.

 

wim

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If this was just a one off month for gross sales I wouldn't be that concerned.  But I just ran my numbers and I have an equal number of sales to date this year as in 2021, but the gross dollar amount is only 42% of what my gross income was last year!  That's pretty depressing.

 

 

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On 28/06/2022 at 20:13, Rick Lewis said:

If this was just a one off month for gross sales I wouldn't be that concerned.  But I just ran my numbers and I have an equal number of sales to date this year as in 2021, but the gross dollar amount is only 42% of what my gross income was last year!  That's pretty depressing.

 

 

Thats pretty much the same here just coming up on last years volume for the whole year but less than 50% of the revenue. Depressing is not the word that springs to mind.😒

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I hear ya. My first sale of the month won't even buy me a *sip* of coffee. I don't even think it covers the electricity needed to fire the shutter! Not sure if I am exaggerating or not... it was bad.

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Only decent sales now seem to be TV sales and the down side about them is we have to let alamy claim dacs on them because they won't provide details to fill in the form 

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On 28/06/2022 at 13:16, epozar said:

How about one thousand years RM image license?

Start: 27 June 2022
End: 27 June 3022

Obviously in anticipation of the return of the 1000 year Reich! 😞

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've sold $175 and only $7 has cleared this year, won't be packing in the 9-5 anytime soon...agreed its all depressing...

Edited by Jay D
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40c today and I can't take much more of this, either. I don't even have the energy to go and snap some people in the park. It's too damn hot!

On a theme closer to your original intent, I had 10 <$2 Doby, Doby DOOH sales the other day, and as much as I liked the volume the returns just aren't worth working up a sweat for. Perhaps things will get better, perhaps they won't. We are pretty much held fast by the short and curlies for now! 

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On 03/07/2022 at 20:35, KWheal said:

Only decent sales now seem to be TV sales and the down side about them is we have to let alamy claim dacs on them because they won't provide details to fill in the form 

 Can we claim DACS ourselves if the sale is via Alamy if we manage to locate the details ? 

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2 minutes ago, R De Marigny said:

 Can we claim DACS ourselves if the sale is via Alamy if we manage to locate the details ? 

You'd need to opt to do all of your own TV DACS, rather than just any that you know the details. You're either in or out, not selective.

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I don't get it. So Alamy sell at rock bottom prices to increase market share but just like us they are making less money than before when prices were so much better. The only difference is now they take 60% which gives them an increase in profits. To explain a bit further... by half way through the year I've sold roughly twice the amount of images but for half the gross remuneration. This would be the same for Alamy of course but they now take the bigger percentage. They then scrape a bit more by introducing the silver contract. So their extra profits come from the change in commission and less so from the increased market share. Now though they have a disgruntled contributor base which have given up supplying images. It's a slippery slope for Alamy as I see it. I've never been 'in business' so what do I know. Maybe there's another angle I'm not seeing. 

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18 minutes ago, Sultanpepa said:

I don't get it. So Alamy sell at rock bottom prices to increase market share but just like us they are making less money than before when prices were so much better. The only difference is now they take 60% which gives them an increase in profits. To explain a bit further... by half way through the year I've sold roughly twice the amount of images but for half the gross remuneration. This would be the same for Alamy of course but they now take the bigger percentage. They then scrape a bit more by introducing the silver contract. So their extra profits come from the change in commission and less so from the increased market share. Now though they have a disgruntled contributor base which have given up supplying images. It's a slippery slope for Alamy as I see it. I've never been 'in business' so what do I know. Maybe there's another angle I'm not seeing. 

Unfortunately I do believe this could be the case. 

The next year or two will tell....

Phil

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35 minutes ago, Sultanpepa said:

I don't get it. So Alamy sell at rock bottom prices to increase market share but just like us they are making less money than before when prices were so much better. The only difference is now they take 60% which gives them an increase in profits. To explain a bit further... by half way through the year I've sold roughly twice the amount of images but for half the gross remuneration. This would be the same for Alamy of course but they now take the bigger percentage. They then scrape a bit more by introducing the silver contract. So their extra profits come from the change in commission and less so from the increased market share. Now though they have a disgruntled contributor base which have given up supplying images. It's a slippery slope for Alamy as I see it. I've never been 'in business' so what do I know. Maybe there's another angle I'm not seeing. 

 

We have also to consider that Alamy is owned, through PA Media, by some of UK's biggest media companies, I doubt this is a coincidence. By buying Alamy such companies also got access to an almost unlimited source of images at (extremely) discounted rates.
About the disgruntled contributor base, I suspect that many of those contributors would be happy to see their photos featured on a "famous" newspaper even if they won't get a single penny for the "honour".

 

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2 hours ago, R De Marigny said:

 Can we claim DACS ourselves if the sale is via Alamy if we manage to locate the details ? 

 

I think we lost the choice of doing it ourselves a couple of years back. We had to decide at that point. I had already decided to let Alamy do it. I could be wrong so it is worth checking. I don't know where you are. In the US there is an issue of paying UK taxes which we aren't supposed to have to do but it costs too much in time and money to get excused. That issue and the trouble of trying to find all sales has had me happy to let them do it.

 

Paulette

Edited by NYCat
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2 hours ago, riccarbi said:

 

We have also to consider that Alamy is owned, through PA Media, by some of UK's biggest media companies, I doubt this is a coincidence. By buying Alamy such companies also got access to an almost unlimited source of images at (extremely) discounted rates.
About the disgruntled contributor base, I suspect that many of those contributors would be happy to see their photos featured on a "famous" newspaper even if they won't get a single penny for the "honour".

 

Can't disagree with that. ☹️

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