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Betty LaRue

Influx of new contributor questions

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I don't know what you all think, but it seems a lot of new people are moving to Alamy.

 

As a result, we see them asking the same questions over and over. I've always tried to answer newbie questions to the best of my ability, but lately, because there's so many newbie questions that a simple search of the forums would answer, I find myself deciding "if they won't spend the time searching, why should I devote valuable time answering?" How do you feel about it?

 

Exceptions, of course, to the more unique questions that are not found easily. I still want to help on those, but usually my more savvy friends here are better suited.

 

I think a newbie needs to spend an hour or two every evening just reading threads for a week. Grab a drink of their choice and settle in. There is so much useful information available in these threads. But a few don't want to do that. They'd rather spend 60 seconds asking how tos, whats, and such. Putting the onus on everyone else.

 

This is the best group of photographers I've ever seen. Helpful and giving of themselves. It would be nice if newbies at least tried to help themselves first.

Am I being a curmudgeon for feeling worn slick?

Betty

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As someone new to Alamy since January, I totally agree with you. During the past three months I've spent a lot of my time reading through various threads, as well as following current posts. I've gathered a lot of information in the meantime and am most grateful to those of you who kindly share your knowledge and expertise.

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As someone new to Alamy since January, I totally agree with you. During the past three months I've spent a lot of my time reading through various threads, as well as following current posts. I've gathered a lot of information in the meantime and am most grateful to those of you who kindly share your knowledge and expertise.

More newbies should be like you! :)

Edit typo

Edited by Betty LaRue
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Gee Betty, I was just thinking the same yesterday.  If I see one more thread on discoverability I will scream. 

 

What I have noticed is that so many times people have helped out when someone asks about their keywording, and many take the time to tell them which keywords to lose and which to add, yet if you check the images a month later, none of the advice has been taken.  If you don't want to take the advice, why ask?

 

And learn how to use your camera.  I think Alamy is out recruiting anyone who has an image online, so many people think they can just upload all the family snaps and make a fortune, without knowing the amount of work and knowledge involved to compete in a very competitive saturated market. For this I blame Alamy, not the new contributors. They are just doing what Alamy is advertising them to do.

 

Most get disappointed.  We have seen the threads when people have only been on Alamy for a couple of months and want to know why they don't have a hundred sales yet.  Think it is like micro, but instead of .25 per image they will get $50 per image.

 

Jill

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You're always very patient and thorough with newbie questions, Betty, which are admirable qualities.

 

I don't want to sound too self-righteous because I've asked some pretty dumb questions here myself over the years. However, I do find that a lot of newcomers aren't doing much in the way of homework before submitting. But then, it's an instant-gratification world now, plus today's cameras do wonders in point-and-shoot mode, so the technical entry bar is now very low.

 

That said, navigating Alamy is much more complicated than it used to be, so it's easy to understand why newcomers, even those who do take time to read submission guidelines, etc., have plenty of questions. 

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Am I being a curmudgeon for feeling worn slick?

Betty

 

 

Betty my answer is 'no' you and several others on this forum give willingly of your time and expertise particularly to newbies. I'm afraid I don't put a finger to keyboard to answer a number of the newbie questions:

1) if someone or some people have already answered and I've nothing useful to add

2) the ones that ask the repetitive questions and obviously haven't even tried to search the forum before asking 

3) the ones who don't even read the submission guidelines and then complain when they don't pass QC, particularly when they submit the wrong number of images to start with!  

 

I've also noticed that often the original poster doesn't even respond with a thank you! I know that doesn't apply to all newbies and we've all been new once, scrabbling about at the beginning unaware of how it all works, QC, payment terms etc etc. However, unfortunately it seems to be the way of the world now, just to fire off a question on 'ask the forum" - why should I do the work when I can get someone else to do the work for me, unfortunately there seems to be a generation of people who want the rewards without the effort!! 

 

 

Lynne

Edited by Lynne
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I must admit, 10 years ago I might have asked some dumb questions. But being a newbie, I thought it wise to read the forum first. I was horrible with searches, so seldom found a thread I needed.

Back then, the forum was a different animal. There were members who gladly and maliciously stripped your hide off if they thought a question was dumb.

So....I didn't ask. I don't easily grow my hide back. :D. I just muddled along gleaning what I could. My learning curve was very slow. That's one reason I've tried to be helpful. I was there, once. The forum and the information therein these days contain so many good people and tips that there isn't any reason whatsoever that a new contributor can't find most answers on their own.

 

I'm much more interested in helping when someone says, I've searched and searched the forum about _____but can't find the answer I need, can someone help?"

But if it's about Discoverability, Supertags and other common themes, I know for a fact they've not tried. And I'm tired (like you, Jill) of " I have had 312 images in my port for 6 weeks and I haven't had one sale! What am I doing wrong?"

 

Stop it, already. I didn't make one sale until 8 months had passed. Because I had no clue what I was doing. Not Alamy's fault. My fault.

I was the idiot who jumped in the water without knowing how to swim. But I didn't make my fellow contributors suffer for it.

Ok, I might've ....but I valued my hide. :D

Betty

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I agree.  the answers are all there if they can be bothered to look for them.  They want to join a professional image supplier but take an amateur approach to it.

 

If the forums didn't exist and the questions were all directed to Alamy, I think they would just get a stock answer - like,  'Read the on-line instructions!'

 

Even more amazing are the odd few who are knocking Alamy as soon as they join and are whinging on the forum.

 

I feel that as has already been said, we only respond to those questions that it would not be easy to find the answer for.

 

John

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I don't know if it's a generational thing, Lynne, or just a matter of character. I too feel that others are better at explaining tech matters. I know enough for my own needs, but I don't feel qualified to be an instructor. 

 

This is how I deal with newbie questions in the forum: they must have passed the first QC challenge, or I ignore them. If they have images up, I check to see what they do. If they suck, I ignore them. Some newbies are really good shooters. They are welcome here, as far as I'm concerned: they raise the level of the agency's content. 

 

On a side issue, let me talk about the problems of moving and getting up. I'm well into my senior years now, but long ago I did martial arts. I still do Tai Chi when I can. What I learned from martial arts is the human body is powered by two things: flow of blood and flow of oxygen. If you take a couple of deep breaths before trying a tricky move or lifting something heavy, it will make it so much easier. 

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Am I being a curmudgeon for feeling worn slick?

Betty

 

 

 

Betty my answer is 'no' you and several others on this forum give willingly of your time and expertise particularly to newbies. I'm afraid I don't put a finger to keyboard to answer a number of the newbie questions:

1) if someone or some people have already answered and I've nothing useful to add

2) the ones that ask the repetitive questions and obviously haven't even tried to search the forum before asking 

3) the ones who don't even read the submission guidelines and then complain when they don't pass QC, particularly when they submit the wrong number of images to start with!  

 

I've also noticed that often the original poster doesn't even respond with a thank you! I know that doesn't apply to all newbies and we've all been new once, scrabbling about at the beginning unaware of how it all works, QC, payment terms etc etc. However, unfortunately it seems to be the way of the world now, just to fire off a question on 'ask the forum" - why should I do the work when I can get someone else to do the work for me, unfortunately there seems to be a generation of people who want the rewards without the effort!! 

 

 

Lynne

Well said. And thanks! :) for that first line.
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I don't know what you all think, but it seems a lot of new people are moving to Alamy.

 

As a result, we see them asking the same questions over and over. I've always tried to answer newbie questions to the best of my ability, but lately, because there's so many newbie questions that a simple search of the forums would answer, I find myself deciding "if they won't spend the time searching, why should I devote valuable time answering?" How do you feel about it?

 

Exceptions, of course, to the more unique questions that are not found easily. I still want to help on those, but usually my more savvy friends here are better suited.

 

I think a newbie needs to spend an hour or two every evening just reading threads for a week. Grab a drink of their choice and settle in. There is so much useful information available in these threads. But a few don't want to do that. They'd rather spend 60 seconds asking how tos, whats, and such. Putting the onus on everyone else.

 

This is the best group of photographers I've ever seen. Helpful and giving of themselves. It would be nice if newbies at least tried to help themselves first.

Am I being a curmudgeon for feeling worn slick?

Betty

Recently, I'm afraid to even leave a comment, not to ask a question. I, like all newcomers here, sometimes find it difficult to find the answer and thread of the forum in which you could read the answer to your question.
This is not due to the fact that I'm lazy.
I am always grateful to those who spend their time helping me.
The only thing that does not fit into my head is that in our activity, there is still some kind of discrimination in the country of residence. Do not skryat with this, you do not see this, but me and someone like me, have to face this every day.
Well, it's not so important in principle, I'm already used to it, besides I understand that I can not influence this in any way.
 Most of all I "like" that in reality many people think that new investors upload everything, family archives and all that. On my own example, I can say that this is not always the case. My investments in this work far exceed the return on my labor and investments in equipment and other costs.
From myself I want to thank those who responded to my questions !!!

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I hope I don't burn my fingers for this.. but anyway..

 

I think some of the answers here in this thread are quite harsh. For me it's been very helpful finding "stupid" newbie questions here so I don't need to ask those myself. Sometimes it requires certain amount of courage to ask as we can see, people may not like that. It's not always so easy for everybody to find answers and maybe there can be some laziness too, but it's doesn't mean that a person is lazy or stupid because he/she ask something even if the information can be found if one search hard enough. And you don't need to answer any questions if you feel so. It's your choice...

 

Maybe some kind of sticky FAQ thread could help newbies to find information so no need to answer same questions all day long. 

 

Peace!  :)

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I hope I don't burn my fingers for this.. but anyway..

 

I think some of the answers here in this thread are quite harsh. For me it's been very helpful finding "stupid" newbie questions here so I don't need to ask those myself. Sometimes it requires certain amount of courage to ask as we can see, people may not like that. It's not always so easy for everybody to find answers and maybe there can be some laziness too, but it's doesn't mean that a person is lazy or stupid because he/she ask something even if the information can be found if one search hard enough. And you don't need to answer any questions if you feel so. It's your choice...

 

Maybe some kind of sticky FAQ thread could help newbies to find information so no need to answer same questions all day long. 

 

Peace!  :)

 

You stated it yourself. You fund the other questions, therefore did not need to ask yourself.  No one minds answering questions and helping new contributors.  But when the same question gets asked about 3 or 4 times a week, it is obvious that these people did not bother to search the forum first for the answer. You obviously did.

 

It isn't that the questions are stupid (I started out new as well) just that the answers are already in the forum probably 10 times over.  You will find the photographers here are exceptionally helpful to new people and there is very little nastiness anywhere.  A great bunch overall.

 

I do agree that an FAQ section for the most asked questions would be a very good idea.  I think it has been mentioned in the past, but Alamy didn't go for it.

 

Jill

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I think you guys are right too and maybe for the forum veterans it may be more annoying. I'm just a newbie so what do I know  ^_^

 

Anyway.. that's all I want to say about this issue  :)

 

Good night!

 

Jarmo

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I hope I don't burn my fingers for this.. but anyway..

 

I think some of the answers here in this thread are quite harsh. For me it's been very helpful finding "stupid" newbie questions here so I don't need to ask those myself. Sometimes it requires certain amount of courage to ask as we can see, people may not like that. It's not always so easy for everybody to find answers and maybe there can be some laziness too, but it's doesn't mean that a person is lazy or stupid because he/she ask something even if the information can be found if one search hard enough. And you don't need to answer any questions if you feel so. It's your choice...

 

Maybe some kind of sticky FAQ thread could help newbies to find information so no need to answer same questions all day long. 

 

Peace!  :)

 

 

http://www.alamy.com/contributor/how-to-sell-images/best-place-to-sell-stock-images-photos/

 

Alamy does have a lot of information for contributors, as seen above. 

 

Harsh? Sometimes. But this is not a camera club or Instagram where people 'like' your pics and so you 'like' theirs. 

 

Your images look fine, and you are in Finland? There must be some unique subject matter up there. The only advice I would offer you right now is: don't spam. Keep similars down to no more than three. 

 

Good luck

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I don't know what you all think, but it seems a lot of new people are moving to Alamy.

 

As a result, we see them asking the same questions over and over. I've always tried to answer newbie questions to the best of my ability, but lately, because there's so many newbie questions that a simple search of the forums would answer, I find myself deciding "if they won't spend the time searching, why should I devote valuable time answering?" How do you feel about it?

 

Exceptions, of course, to the more unique questions that are not found easily. I still want to help on those, but usually my more savvy friends here are better suited.

 

I think a newbie needs to spend an hour or two every evening just reading threads for a week. Grab a drink of their choice and settle in. There is so much useful information available in these threads. But a few don't want to do that. They'd rather spend 60 seconds asking how tos, whats, and such. Putting the onus on everyone else.

 

This is the best group of photographers I've ever seen. Helpful and giving of themselves. It would be nice if newbies at least tried to help themselves first.

Am I being a curmudgeon for feeling worn slick?

Betty

I think you're right and not being curmudgeonly at all, although, I don't think it's people asking the same questions is what bothers me. I like others didn't discover the forum for a while & sometimes the threads can be difficult to follow, so I understand people asking questions and sometimes it is easier to ask a question and get a quicker response to a question.

 

But the problem for me is the advertising, blogging, tweeting etc As this seems to be bringing people who have no idea of the very basics of Photography and the constant same question about "my images haven't passed...I'm using a 1 gig Nokia phone...surely that's enough?...it looks crystal clear on my screen", type questions are the ones that bother me. I thought about joining Alamy for a long time, thinking I knew nothing about resolution, sharpness etc before putting my first four photos in, but in comparison, I was a genius compared to some people who are joining now.

 

There is tons of information about photography out there compared to when I started and as you say, most people do answer with incredible patience, so whilst I understand people need to learn and might not know much, I really don't understand how you can not know the basics of Photography, resolution, size etc. but then sign up to what is in effect a professional stock photographic agency and think your images will be good enough for news, books TV etc? its all a bit beyond me.

 

I suppose the S....imo word might have something to do with it too, but Facebook, Twitter, Instagram modern camera phones has made everyone think they are photographers when they are clearly not.

 

I wonder if when they pass their driving test, do they think they can drive the F1 at Monaco and have a chance of winning?

Chris

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I suppose I am the cautious type but I read the forum for months before I made my first submission. I still had an occasional question and I always got my answer from a kind and patient contributor. Inchiquin doesn't remember it, I think, but he was very good at giving me a clear and concise answer. I have become so tired of questions from newcomers about file size and about discoverability that I don't even try to answer and I am very impressed by how patient some forum members are with those questions.

 

Paulette

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I suppose I am the cautious type but I read the forum for months before I made my first submission. I still had an occasional question and I always got my answer from a kind and patient contributor. Inchiquin doesn't remember it, I think, but he was very good at giving me a clear and concise answer. I have become so tired of questions from newcomers about file size and about discoverability that I don't even try to answer and I am very impressed by how patient some forum members are with those questions.

 

Paulette

As I said, this is a great bunch of people!

Chris, I hear you, and agree. Recently people have gone to great lengths to explain why a new person's camera is unsuitable and that's why Alamy rejected their images. Those explanations are sometimes met with hostility and "I can't afford a suitable camera, woe is me!"

I feel for them, but when "stock photography" first came to my notice, I checked out a book about it. I found out what cameras were suitable. I gathered all the information I could gather online. Then I saved. And saved. Then bought a Nikon film camera and a couple of inexpensive lenses, then shot slides, using a little notebook to write down my settings so I could figure out what settings worked best. Then mailed off my CDs to Alamy. I'm trying to remember if I had to mail off the actual slides in the beginning. Kind of rings a bell....

 

Remember those times guy's and gals? You old-timers? Thank heavens I didn't have to do that too long, because it sure was tedious to buy mailers and postage, and wait forever (2 weeks? Longer?) to get results. Plus depending on a business to develop my work instead of doing it myself with my vision of how I want it to look. 8 months later I bought a just out Nikon D70. I sold something to afford that. Reminds me of when I sold my electric guitar and amp to buy my horse. Then had to groom poodles to feed my horse.

 

I understand poverty. I've been there, when the only lunch I got was by picking fallen apples from a neighbor's tree. Even so, this is a professional business. It requires expenditure. If you can't manage the bare needed basics to do a good job, then forgetaboutit.

Betty

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When I started submitting to a photo library and licensing images on my own over 25 years ago, I did a lot of research. It was part of the fun of doing something new. Ron Engh's and other books about stock photography were a big help to me at the time. Fortunately, I had already taken photography courses at a community college years earlier, so I had a bit of technical know-how. It's a different, just plug-in and immediately start playing world nowadays, though.

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Am I being a curmudgeon for feeling worn slick?

 

 

Not at all! You're one of the most generous person in this forum!

 

As a newby myself (I've been in Alamy for more than a year but still consider myself as a newby) I find extremely helpful all the information in the differents posts and threads, and I spend several hours a week just reading and learning. And I'm usuallly surprised of finding the sames questions again and again and the time that many of you takes for answer them. 

 

As you say, we have to do the work for ourselves! It's called researching. And it's key for any new job that one is about to undertake. (but I think that many new comers don't see it as a job)

 

Anyway, I take this opportunity to thank all of you so much for the help and time that you dedicate to other people like me  :)

 

 

(sorry for my english... spanish is my first language so struggling a bit here)

Edited by Karina
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Your English is just fine, Karina. 

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Deleted

Edited by Jamo

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I hope I don't burn my fingers for this.. but anyway..

 

I think some of the answers here in this thread are quite harsh. For me it's been very helpful finding "stupid" newbie questions here so I don't need to ask those myself. Sometimes it requires certain amount of courage to ask as we can see, people may not like that. It's not always so easy for everybody to find answers and maybe there can be some laziness too, but it's doesn't mean that a person is lazy or stupid because he/she ask something even if the information can be found if one search hard enough. And you don't need to answer any questions if you feel so. It's your choice...

 

Maybe some kind of sticky FAQ thread could help newbies to find information so no need to answer same questions all day long. 

 

Peace!  :)

 

 

http://www.alamy.com/contributor/how-to-sell-images/best-place-to-sell-stock-images-photos/

 

Alamy does have a lot of information for contributors, as seen above. 

 

Harsh? Sometimes. But this is not a camera club or Instagram where people 'like' your pics and so you 'like' theirs. 

 

Your images look fine, and you are in Finland? There must be some unique subject matter up there. The only advice I would offer you right now is: don't spam. Keep similars down to no more than three. 

 

Good luck

 

 

Thanks for the advice Ed  :)

 

Jarmo

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Am I being a curmudgeon for feeling worn slick?

 

 

Not at all! You're one of the most generous person in this forum!

 

As a newby myself (I've been in Alamy for more than a year but still consider myself as a newby) I find extremely helpful all the information in the differents posts and threads, and I spend several hours a week just reading and learning. And I'm usuallly surprised of finding the sames questions again and again and the time that many of you takes for answer them. 

 

As you say, we have to do the work for ourselves! It's called researching. And it's key for any new job that one is about to undertake. (but I think that many new comers don't see it as a job)

 

Anyway, I take this opportunity to thank all of you so much for the help and time that you dedicate to other people like me  :)

 

 

(sorry for my english... spanish is my first language so struggling a bit here)

 

 

Thank you for your appreciation. One of the things that has discouraged me from helping is the many times we receive no thanks or any feedback at all about whether our efforts are appreciated.

 

Paulette

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