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I think there are stock agencies and then there is scam websites that are trying to benefit either from their customers, or from their contributors, or both. Not going to name any by name, but how this works is to have a website where they are trying to drive as much traffic as possible. Then the website owner earns from the ads.

Typical scams:
- They make it look like a decent business for a contributors and "clients" with some "professional" looking wordpress theme etc. 
- Often most of the stuff is already from some public domain collections, so it looks like a big site. They can even rip the users from other sites. For example I know that in one website there is my "profile" with my thumbnail and content, even when I never registered there.  
- The clients are driven to click malicious links, for example with ads that are designed to look like download buttons. 
- Trying to make them create an account and now they can sell their emails to some shady ad agencies. 
- Giving the owners of the assets very limited tools to remove or manage content and giving only very little or nothing from their sales. 
- Bundling the downloads with some viruses or other weird stuff, for example "to have your image, you need to install this downloader program".
- Making it look too good to be true. "everything here is free, but it makes us all rich" -kind of stuff. 
 
Try to stay out all of that. 

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On 7/29/2021 at 5:39 AM, Marko Subotin said:

Can this have a negative effect on Shutterstock as an agency and us as  contributors? For example, can contributing the same images to Freepik hurt our sales here since they are cheaper, but yeah, I've heard a lot of negative things about them.
Thanks.

I agree with Alexandre. I have photos on a couple of other sites as well  - the ports aren’t identical as there are some photos accepted here that weren’t at other places (as well as stuff rejected here that’s rejected at othes) - with a fair amount of overlap. I’ve had photos that have sold here and on other sites.

I suspect that people looking for photos will stick with one microstock site for most of their needs, even if they have accounts on other sites. the TL;DR is that having your photos up on other sites increases the number of folks who could find/buy your photos, even taking into account the fact there’s likely some overlap in customers.

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On 7/29/2021 at 11:39 AM, Marko Subotin said:

Can this have a negative effect on Shutterstock as an agency and us as  contributors? For example, can contributing the same images to Freepik hurt our sales here since they are cheaper, but yeah, I've heard a lot of negative things about them.
Thanks.

Don't limit yourself to just one agency and especially at this time when the golden times are gone and we usually only get a penny for our work. In the past, it was advantageous because most agencies offered adequate compensation for exclusivity and sales for higher amounts were more frequent. Unfortunately, those days are a thing of the past. Sometimes someone wins the "lottery" and gets bigger sale, but it doesn't really balance exclusivity to one agency.

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39 minutes ago, Crowing Hen said:

I suspect potential customers look at my other images, then do a reverse image search and find it here for cheaper.  

 

Do customers really buy photos cheaper here than elsewhere? I was under the impression that SS lowered the royalties for contributors but kept the media prices for customers largely the same. Though I don't know if sale prices here are generally cheaper than the competition. 

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On 7/30/2021 at 7:38 PM, Patrick Cooper said:

Do customers really buy photos cheaper here than elsewhere? I was under the impression that SS lowered the royalties for contributors but kept the media prices for customers largely the same. Though I don't know if sale prices here are generally cheaper than the competition. 

I imagine they find the photos on Alamy and then reverse image search to buy them here on SS.  The ones that sell best on SS are on both platforms.  The ones that sell on Alamy are exclusive to that venue. 

That's one of the reasons why I'm thinking of not uploading here anymore.  

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4 hours ago, Crowing Hen said:

I imagine they find the photos on Alamy and then reverse image search to buy them here on SS.  The ones that sell best on SS are on both platforms.  The ones that sell on Alamy are exclusive to that venue. 

That's one of the reasons why I'm thinking of not uploading here anymore.  

If they have account on one site, they probably keep using that. For most of the offices that buy images, some 1$ - 5 $ for one image means nothing. They are anyways going to bill that from their own client for they are selecting the images. 

So if we estimate that the website costs for example 2000 $ for their client to be designed, that additional 5$ doesn't mean much. That's why I think we should recommend everyone who buys images to start using for example pond5, which allows artists themselves select the price for their works. 

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I submit to as many agencies as I can don't want to put "all my eggs in one basket".  Personally, for what it's worth, I wonder what if one agency went bust or drastically reduced earnings?  If I only uploaded to SS my earnings this month would be around 1/4 of what I earned.

I don't submit to free agencies as you're just feeding the business model and getting nothing in return - I don't understand why people do it, maybe I'm missing something.

 

 

 

 

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$5 doesn't mean much, except when it adds up. Something like a seed catalogue where they are buying 20+ images per page, times 100+ pages.  

I'm not good at math, but I feel that is enough savings to be worth the labour of a reverse image search to see if it's going to be cheaper at a microstock site.  

All I can say for certain is that my images on both sites, sell best of my SS images and don't sell on Alamy.  

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On 8/2/2021 at 6:55 AM, Crowing Hen said:

I imagine they find the photos on Alamy and then reverse image search to buy them here on SS. 

Naturally, prices would be higher on Alamy as that's a more higher end agency (what some people call midstock.) I was referring to the competition amongst the microstock agencies. I doubt there would be as much of a price difference between SS, IS, DT etc. Though I could be wrong. 

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