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Does this bother others as much as it bothers me?! This guy has, in part, ruduced the global value of stock photography while he becomes a billionaire at our expense.

 

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-06-28/shutterstock-creates-first-silicon-alley-billionaire.html

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Sadly, Michael, this is just another example of the global effect of new technology. As an analogy, full-time photographers are like commercial anglers fishing with poles, lines and hooks to target high-quality, specific species, while Shutterstock is like a seiner who uses a big net to scoop up everything in the sea. The consumer makes the ultimate choice...and when almost everything looks pretty good on an iPhone screen, the consumer doesn't care when it's "free," and is no longer willing to pay for images placed in paper publications.

 

Dave

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I can't begrudge the man for thinking of a way to make the 1000s of images he was taking himself each session pay off. My main gripe is why I didn't think of it myself (well I know why...laziness and lack of motivation ;) ).

 

Heck, I got into stock photography after meeting you (thanks)...and have actually made some money. I have also seen the industry change so quickly in just a couple of years that I am already cutting back on my photography as my ROI (of time, mainly) has dropped precipitously.

 

Now, I'd like to read about Michael Ventura's big venture some time! Go for it!

 

Dave

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If he owns about half, and has made 1 billion, that means the other half is worth about 1 billion also. So a total of around 2 billion.

 

That fact, when read with this saddens me

 

Unlike Getty and Corbis, Shutterstock doesn’t own its content. The site’s contributors -- photographers, illustrators and artists who so far have been paid more than $150 million, according to the company -- retain ownership of their copyrights.

 

 

The contributors are not getting anywhere near a fair share in my opinion, one of the reasons I dont contribute to sites like that.

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Yes, it bother's me. But the fact is that  anyone who becomes a billionaire does so at other people's expense. This is especially true in the kind of economic system that we have, where middlemen get rich on the backs of producers. Come to think of it, didn't Marx -- Karl, not Groucho -- have something to say about this state of affairs back in the 19th century?

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What he's worth has little to do with the imbalance between the contributors' share and the profits - it is only connected with the value of equity in the company, and that is often unrelated to real performance, and can be linked to expectations or to two or more competing investors (in some cases, to thousands of private investors pushing the offer price up). It only becomes real money when the owner/director sells up, and the shares go to someone else or some fund. Like Facebook, they could drop like a stone so he got $1bn and then those who paid out find they've only got $0.5bn.

 

I have one investment currently worth about 1/10th of its quite reasonable price when bought. Kick myself that I didn't sell off when it was worth double the purchase... the skill which entrepreneurs need to have, selling out at the peak value.

 

However, it would be very good and honest for such a corporation to issue either shares every year to contributing photographers in proportion to their earnings, or to pay a dividend to the photographers the same way they do to investors. Either would increase my loyalty and input, and if the owner happened to do well, so would the photographers.

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What he's worth has little to do with the imbalance between the contributors' share and the profits - it is only connected with the value of equity in the company, and that is often unrelated to real performance, and can be linked to expectations or to two or more competing investors (in some cases, to thousands of private investors pushing the offer price up). It only becomes real money when the owner/director sells up, and the shares go to someone else or some fund. Like Facebook, they could drop like a stone so he got $1bn and then those who paid out find they've only got $0.5bn.

 

 

However, it would be very good and honest for such a corporation to issue either shares every year to contributing photographers in proportion to their earnings, or to pay a dividend to the photographers the same way they do to investors. Either would increase my loyalty and input, and if the owner happened to do well, so would the photographers.

Well said as usual, David. And what a novel suggestion to issue shares to the contributors...is Alamy listening?

 

Dave

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Well said as usual, David. And what a novel suggestion to issue shares to the contributors...is Alamy listening?

 

Dave

 

:):D:lol: :lol: :lol:   A few song titles come to mind:

 

  • That'll Be the Day
  • When I'm Dead and Gone
  • Money, Money, Money
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Guys, I would love to give way my work for hundreds of dollars per sale, but it seems Shutterstock makes me 3 times more then Alamy. In the same period, I made 400 dollar on Alamy (400) and 2500 dollar on Shutterstock (800). It seems the return per image is 1 dollar on Alamy and 3 dollars on Shutterstock. 

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I wouldn't begrudge this guy's success one bit! He started as a stock photographer just like every one of us. Check out his story:

 

http://www.inc.com/christine-lagorio/bootstrappers-bible-shutterstock-founder-success-story.html

 

He just had some good business savvy, and after several failures, finally landed on a winner, and with all his own money at risk. As David pointed out, his sudden wealth is in the value of his company (ie stock value). He just had a lot of gumption, a lot of drive and took a lot of risk to make it work. I think it's folly (though understandable) to assume his success is to our detriment. Rather imho, resentment itself is detrimental; better to keep busy and make things work. Now, if I had only bought the Shutterstock (SSTK) IPO instead of camera equipment :)

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Guys, I would love to give way my work for hundreds of dollars per sale, but it seems Shutterstock makes me 3 times more then Alamy. In the same period, I made 400 dollar on Alamy (400) and 2500 dollar on Shutterstock (800). It seems the return per image is 1 dollar on Alamy and 3 dollars on Shutterstock. 

 

I have different experience - Alamy makes me a bit more than Shutter in the same period.

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What he's worth has little to do with the imbalance between the contributors' share and the profits - it is only connected with the value of equity in the company, and that is often unrelated to real performance, and can be linked to expectations or to two or more competing investors (in some cases, to thousands of private investors pushing the offer price up). It only becomes real money when the owner/director sells up, and the shares go to someone else or some fund. Like Facebook, they could drop like a stone so he got $1bn and then those who paid out find they've only got $0.5bn.

 

 

However, it would be very good and honest for such a corporation to issue either shares every year to contributing photographers in proportion to their earnings, or to pay a dividend to the photographers the same way they do to investors. Either would increase my loyalty and input, and if the owner happened to do well, so would the photographers.

Well said as usual, David. And what a novel suggestion to issue shares to the contributors...is Alamy listening?

 

Dave

 

There is a new stock agency that started recently that does just that if I recall, had a few beers, so cant recall exact details but you can see more here

 

 

http://www.stocksy.com/service/about

 

 

Not tried it, so dont know if any good.

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