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Folks, thanks very much for the mostly constructive comments.  As expected, there are a few insulting comments (Ed), which is precisely why I rarely take the time to post on this Forum. Based on Ed's comment I won't take the time to post sample files online, since he succinctly points out  "Alamy is not a co-op agency. Forum members have nothing to say about which images of yours past or fail QC."  Sincerely, Mark Weidman

 

??? . . . Ed is 100% correct: forum members don't have anything to say about which images pass and which fail--that decision is Alamy's and Alamy's alone . . . but forum members sure can comment on WHY they think images were not passed by Alamy.

 

I've seen folk suddenly back out of providing 100% crops before, and it's difficult to not suspect it's because the contributor has had a good look and realises perhaps QC were right. May not be the case here of course, but using Ed's comments as the "reason" not to do so fuels my suspicion just a tad.

 

dd

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Just a quick reminder to everybody else reading this thread that even though we didn't satisfy the original poster, we are covering some important ground. Let's remember that improving our images in every way we can is a process. And if we are in this market, we have to commit to a tomorrow where we are making better images than we are today.

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Hmmm... is QC 100% consistent? Of course not. It's staffed by fallible humans who only have time to check a sampling of submitted images, not every one. No doubt, dust blobs, etc. get through now and then. However, the inspectors do a remarkable job considering the thousands of images that they have to eyeball every day. Will they admit to making a mistake? Probably not (understandable when you think about it). Best to have an iced latte, figure out what the perceived problem is, correct it if possible and move on even if you don't entirely agree. That's been my experience anyway.

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Just a quick reminder to everybody else reading this thread that even though we didn't satisfy the original poster, we are covering some important ground. Let's remember that improving our images in every way we can is a process. And if we are in this market, we have to commit to a tomorrow where we are making better images than we are today.

 

There's nothing wrong with Mark's photography. His photography is very good. It's his attitude that sucks. He's offended that QC has pointed out by their recent actions that he may not be perfect. In this post he's been trying the gather support and evidence that QC is wrong, and that he is in fact perfect. I've never met anyone who is perfect. Do any of you Alamy contributors consider yourselves perfect? 

 

John, are you saying that the people at QC are not perfect? 

 

I see that I got 5 approval votes on my first comments; that's five more than I was expecting. Brian got 8 and than another 4 (one was mine), which his comments deserve. 

Edited by Ed Rooney
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"John, are you saying that the people at QC are not perfect?"

 

Yes, and I have the proof. B)

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". . . but forum members sure can comment on WHY they think images were not passed by Alamy." DustyD

 

I'm in total agreement with that thought, Dusty.  For a lot of people it is very much worthwhile. And I've asked a multitude of tech questions on this forum and benifited from the answers.

 

But with regard to making a judgement on a spacific image as to if I should or should not submit it to Alamy's QC . . . I want that to be my own decision and responsibility. Photography, well, the kind of photography I did and do now, is not a group activity. I've mostly worked on my own, and I accept that. When the day comes when I'm unable or unwilling to make these judgement calls myself, I'll step down. 

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Just a quick reminder to everybody else reading this thread that even though we didn't satisfy the original poster, we are covering some important ground. Let's remember that improving our images in every way we can is a process. And if we are in this market, we have to commit to a tomorrow where we are making better images than we are today.

 

There's nothing wrong with Mark's photography. His photography is very good. It's his attitude that sucks. He's offended that QC has pointed out by their recent actions that he may not be perfect. In this post he's been trying the gather support and evidence that QC is wrong, and that he is in fact perfect. I've never met anyone who is perfect. Do any of you Alamy contributors consider yourselves perfect? 

 

John:

 

My problem is that I'm always ready to talk QC and file quality and have little interest in talking about this Mark guy. This is a tough game and I've got much more to learn.

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With over 15K images on Alamy, Mark obviously knows what he is doing. I think his concern is legitimate, but he needs to pursue it further with QC. They can often be very helpful. Once I was even provided with 100% crops showing problem areas in an image. There really isn't a lot we can do to help.

Edited by John Mitchell
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Folks, thanks very much for the mostly constructive comments.  As expected, there are a few insulting comments (Ed), which is precisely why I rarely take the time to post on this Forum. Based on Ed's comment I won't take the time to post sample files online, since he succinctly points out  "Alamy is not a co-op agency. Forum members have nothing to say about which images of yours past or fail QC."  Sincerely, Mark Weidman

 

 

Ed means that our opinions cut no ice with QC. You have to meet their standards, not ours. But that's a very different thing from saying that forum opinions are of no value.

I went through a very rough patch recently. I put my head above the parapet, posted my images, flaws were pointed out to me, and invariably I could see the reasoning. I got through my time of troubles.

I don't know what to make of your saying that Alamy won't admit a mistake- why won't you? Just because you haven't made mistakes doesn't mean you can't.

However, I do think that QC has tightened over the years and there are images of mine, sellers included, which I wouldn't dare submit now.

Edited by spacecadet
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Based on my own experience, and my reading of these forums, I do not believe QC to be an ongoing problem.

 

At the end of the day Alamy work hard to market our images and, in view of the current market, I think they do a good job. If they don't like one of my images then, as far as I'm concerned, that's their prerogative. If I think a QC failed image is a winner then I'm still free to go and market it myself elsewhere, I am no worse off. It's a symbiotic arrangement and we have to respect the host. If I could sell images better myself then I wouldn't be here.

 

There are plenty of worse agencies and I currently rate Alamy very highly. Capitalism is a strong force and individuals are largely powerless against it. Agencies are subject to market economics too; they can't simply keep prices high when the market is moving in the opposite direction . The market determines price. In the same way we are free to choose which agencies we contribute to and can vote with our feet of the balance of fairness moves against us.

 

I can understand your frustration but in my opinion at least, I think we are treated well.

 

At a slight tangent, but I found it interesting to hear alamy talking about licences on a youtube interview recently. Apologies if I'm summarising too much, but the message seemed to be that differences between RM and RF are becoming increasingly blurred and less important (to buyers) - raising a flag towards future developments perhaps???!

 

Congratulations on a fantastic portfolio and being a big part of making Alamy a success for us all.

 

James

Edited by JamesC
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I have had two batches of images fail in recent months.  The images were captured with a Canon EOS 1DX and Leica M9-P. In both cases I made (from the original files that Failed QC) beautiful 16x20” prints and sent them in to Alamy for further consideration. In both cases Alamy QC said the images were not up to their standards. I completely disagreed with their assessment, but to no avail.

 

QC rules say the image must be inspected at 100% so that every pixel is visible. This is not necessarily the same requirement as a good quality 16" x 20" print, depending on the number of pixels in the submitted image and the viewing distance of the print. Also bear in mind that the end user may crop and blow up a small part of the submitted image and so may really need all those pixels (even if they aren't all visible on a 16" x 20" print viewed at arms length).

 

Alamy's rule is simple and effective. So long as you can see the individual pixels on your monitor you can make a judgment (although this can be tough on the latest Apple Retina displays with their tiny pixels). There's no need to make a print.

Edited by M.Chapman
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For my particular camera, a 100% view isn't 16x20, it's more like 50x40.

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I will say just one thing. Without checking my past record I believe most of my fails have been from QC checks done on a Monday.

 

Allan

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I will say just one thing. Without checking my past record I believe most of my fails have been from QC checks done on a Monday.

 

Allan

 

You may be right. I think Stevie Wonder used to do the Monday shifts...

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I will say just one thing. Without checking my past record I believe most of my fails have been from QC checks done on a Monday.

 

Allan

 

A slightly different perspective may be "images I (you) submitted on a Friday (or weekend)" ;)

 

dd

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I will say just one thing. Without checking my past record I believe most of my fails have been from QC checks done on a Monday.

 

Allan

 

A slightly different perspective may be "images I (you) submitted on a Friday (or weekend)" ;)

 

dd

 

Ooh I hope that's not true.  I have images submitted on Friday evening awaiting QC.  OTOH it's a public holiday in the UK on Monday, so maybe they won't be looked at till Tuesday  ;)

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Just uploaded a small batch to QC after a month in the sin bin - so hope they are back up to standard.  Having read through most of these posts I do think that the QC team do a great job in reminding us that it's "quality not quantity". Having had a whole page of green submissions it's been blemished big time this year with a couple of refusals - SoLD is definitely reminding me just how much care I need to take.

 

I also wonder whether with newer and better sensors the time has come to move on from the trusty d200 - I just need to justify the expense to the wife! 

 

Martin

www.windmillskies.com

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I also wonder whether with newer and better sensors the time has come to move on from the trusty d200 - I just need to justify the expense to the wife!

 

Martin

www.windmillskies.com

I recently had a look back at some old photos taken with a D80. I wanted to see if there was anything I could reprocess with newer versions of LR. I found that the files really didn't hold up that well especially in relationship to noise and dynamic range. Sensors have come on leaps and bounds since the D200.

 

If you need any help justifying an upgrade...as a working tool that helps make better images it should be easier to repay its cost.  ;)

Edited by Armstrong

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Ooh I hope that's not true.  I have images submitted on Friday evening awaiting QC.  OTOH it's a public holiday in the UK on Monday, so maybe they won't be looked at till Tuesday  ;)

 

 

I wish I had thought of those weird Bank Holidays the Brits keep (this is called a common local holiday :) ). I worried for a day about Allan's bad omen as my normal waiting time had passed, but no worries were necessary.

Edited by Niels Quist

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Ooh I hope that's not true. I have images submitted on Friday evening awaiting QC. OTOH it's a public holiday in the UK on Monday, so maybe they won't be looked at till Tuesday ;)

 

 

I wish I had thought of those weird Bank Holidays the Brits keep (this is called a common local holiday :) ). I worried for a day about Allan's bad omen as my normal waiting time had passed, but no worries were necessary.

Fear not! There are no more until Christmas.

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Fear not! There are no more until Christmas.

 

 

Good to know, thanks... When I think of it we also have at least one not known in other countries...

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I was having failures using my full frame canon and L lenses so i took the forum advice and bought a sony RX100. Havent had any failures even on those I thought had marginal sharpness. It goes with me everywhere on my belt. I'm having way more fun now and hopefully getting saleable shots. Its so easy to shoot and upload. Bye bye full frame. Toooooooooooooo much work and lugging! THANKS for the advice guys!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Edited by Addict

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I was having failures using my full frame canon and L lenses so i took the forum advice and bought a sony RX100. Havent had any failures even on those I thought had marginal sharpness. It goes with me everywhere on my belt. I'm having way more fun now and hopefully getting saleable shots. Its so easy to shoot and upload. Bye bye full frame. Toooooooooooooo much work and lugging! THANKS for the advice guys!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Amazing how free you can feel, and how much fun can come back into photography. I get that with the RX100 and my Fuji kit.

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I wonder if I can ask for a little help. I have been a member here since the "send in a CD" days but have never sent in any pictures as my camera was not up to spec. (a Canon PS G5). I now have a camera that is "on the list" (a Canon 600D) and have been procrastinating about sending in pictures since I was given it 2 years ago.

 

Yesterday I "bit the bullet" and sent in 4 pictures. I must admit I did it fairly quickly as I just wanted to get the ball moving after hanging about for so long.

 

All four pictures failed QC for Soft or Lack of Definition. To me a very subjective criteria.

 

I would like to describe my process below and perhaps some of you would point out where I might be going wrong.

 

The pictures:

  • Were taken with the standard Canon lens using the Auto (flash off) setting.
  • Were taken in good daylight, the shutter, aperture and ISO were all in the normal range.
  • The files (JPG) were uploaded to Flickr for backup and to aid selection.
  • The files were selected on Flickr and downloaded.
  • The files were imported to Aperture 3.6
  • Some of the files were straightened and slightly cropped with a small amount of exposure correction.
  • The files were exported from Aperture and uploaded to Alamy.

The only thing I can think of is that:

  • I should have used the RAW files rather than the JPG. This had been my intention but I quite simply forgot.
  • There may be some export setting in Aperture that I'm not aware of. There was no "quality" setting in the export dialogue box as there is in other programs such as PS.

 

Any help would be appreciated, thank you.

 

Robert

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