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Video Subscriptions - a new way to earn even less money?


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20 hours ago, Whiteaster said:

Either you are wrong or I don't understand it correctly:

https://www.shutterstock.com/pricing/video

Just a bit of their terminology and what can be called anything anyone wants. SS calls it a subscription, but the monthly limit is 10 videos,. Which means it's an image pack. But since buyers have to "subscribe" for a year, then it's a subscription? The part I was looking at, is it's not one of those unlimited things or massive subs, but 10 pack or 20 pack, for a flat rate.

I'm not defending the pricing or anything of that.

It's an annual contract image pack subscription.

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@Anna Shutterstock, @Alex Shutterstock @Kate Shutterstock, we are production studio that produces high quality advertisement content. We shooting about 600 footages in a month with the professional eq

That means nothing.  I've had many sales for only $2.00 starting last summer.  Did I quit SS? Did I run around saying the sky is falling?  No, I took the $2.00 sales and averaged them with the $400 sa

Just received this SS email which im sure is "yet another amazing earning opportunity". Subscriptions for video.  So they can seel them even cheaper. If they go for 20 clips a month that wor

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1 hour ago, Studio 2 said:

I would be feeling very aggrieved if I'd invested money + time uploading lots, say, in the last few months.

FYI, last week I crunched my numbers and did some calculations of what clips are selling (not easy to do with the scant info SS provides) and I figure that I've made over $15,500 from clips that I upload in the last 13 months.  I do not feel aggrieved.  And those clips will continue earning money for years to come.  Despite this new pricing structure and other virus-related crap that is cutting into sales and making it harder to submit new material, I have complete confidence that I will continue to earn a nice steady income for years to come.  They sky is not falling and I continue to submit new footage.  Now is the perfect time to double-down and submit even more while most other work has been cancelled.  There will always be people who sit on the sidelines.  People told me 8 years ago I couldn't make any money in stock, and now I'm about to cross $150K in earnings.  People told me 13 months ago when I released my 5 hour "How to Make Money Selling Stock" video that the glory days were over and ti was too late, but I've made $15.K already from footage I submitted after that video was released.   Some people will sit on the sidelines forever and get nowhere.

BTW, I don't like this new subscription model any better than anyone else, but with that said, if I had my way the price of single 4K downloads would be slashed to $99.  The outrageously high price of 4K clips, with no justification for such high prices, is costing me thousands of dollars per year.  My income would immediately rise if SS would realize there is no excuse anymore to charge such a high premium for 4K.  Bring the prices down.

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1 hour ago, HodagMedia said:

Just a bit of their terminology and what can be called anything anyone wants. SS calls it a subscription, but the monthly limit is 10 videos,. Which means it's an image pack. But since buyers have to "subscribe" for a year, then it's a subscription? The part I was looking at, is it's not one of those unlimited things or massive subs, but 10 pack or 20 pack, for a flat rate.

I'm not defending the pricing or anything of that.

It's an annual contract image pack subscription.

This is something to think about, I think some people are jumping the gun here and over reacting to something that we don't know much about how it's really going to affect sales.

11 minutes ago, Doug Jensen said:

FYI, last week I crunched my numbers and did some calculations of what clips are selling (not easy to do with the scant info SS provides) and I figure that I've made over $15,500 from clips that I upload in the last 13 months.  I do not feel aggrieved.  And those clips will continue earning money for years to come.  Despite this new pricing structure and other virus-related crap that is cutting into sales and making it harder to submit new material, I have complete confidence that I will continue to earn a nice steady income for years to come.  They sky is not falling and I continue to submit new footage.  Now is the perfect time to double-down and submit even more while most other work has been cancelled.  There will always be people who sit on the sidelines.  People told me 8 years ago I couldn't make any money in stock, and now I'm about to cross $150K in earnings.  People told me 13 months ago when I released my 5 hour "How to Make Money Selling Stock" video that the glory days were over and ti was too late, but I've made $15.K already from footage I submitted after that video was released.   Some people will sit on the sidelines forever and get nowhere.

BTW, I don't like this new subscription model any better than anyone else, but with that said, if I had my way the price of single 4K downloads would be slashed to $99.  The outrageously high price of 4K clips, with no justification for such high prices, is costing me thousands of dollars per year.  My income would immediately rise if SS would realize there is no excuse anymore to charge such a high premium for 4K.  Bring the prices down.

Wasn't it "on my way to 40k total earnings" a year ago? Anyway you're right about 4k, especially when there is low quality 4k. I think 139 would be a sensible slashing for now, but 99 seems pretty reasonable to me. When I started shooting 1 and half year ago, I thought woah people will pay so much for 4k?? I always thought it was a bit overpriced, especially given the investment required now.

Anyway how many clips did you submit in those 13 months?

 

EDIT: currently having 4 clips submitted for over a week, almost scared to add anything lol.

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2 hours ago, rasomaso said:

Wasn't it "on my way to 40k total earnings" a year ago? Anyway you're right about 4k, especially when there is low quality 4k. I think 139 would be a sensible slashing for now, but 99 seems pretty reasonable to me. When I started shooting 1 and half year ago, I thought woah people will pay so much for 4k?? I always thought it was a bit overpriced, especially given the investment required now.

Anyway how many clips did you submit in those 13 months?

No, I was on my way to $30K last year (which, by the way was a goal I surpassed by more than a thousand dollars). And I have stated that I'm on my way to $35K this year, which is still not out of the question. Despite the virus I am already at $10,399 for this year.   Will I actually make $35K this year just at SS? Probably not even though I'm still on track to do so.  But my failure to hit that goal will be due to worldwide events that are beyond the control of anyone and not due to my own laziness, ineptitude, or Shuttestock's new pricing structure or idiot reviewers.     I will tell you this -- I will be more profitable in 2020 than any airline in the whole world.  And that is 100% true.

I submitted about 2200 new clips between March - July last year and then I didn't have time for stock again until the end of the year when I started uploading again.  That is where the bulk of that $15.5K income I mentioned earlier came from.

Now I have about twice as many clips in my portfolio as I did at the beginning of 2019.  But has my income doubled ?  No.  But I never expected it to, for two reasons:  First, a very large percentage of my clips are wildlife that will never sell -- wildlife does not sell as well as other subject matter.  Who needs wildlife footage? Almost nobody.  But I shoot wildlife for fun so why not submit it.  The sales from wildlife do make it worth my time to submit but it brings my average clip earnings down by a huge margin.  In fact, if I got rid of all my wildlife footage in my portfolio the size of my portfolio would probably be cut in half. But earnings would probably only drop by 10%-20%.  

Second, I tend to shoot a lot of the same subject matter over and over again because I'm just shooting for fun without much regard for what other subject matter might sell better. So, a portfolio that has twice as many clips of the same subject matter I already have in my portfolio is never going to produce twice as many sales.  If I really wanted to earn more money I'd go out and shoot a wider variety of subjects.  But that is not why I shoot stock.

The bottom line is that we all have our own unique approaches to this business and our own metrics for measuring what sells, what doesn't, how much time we have invested, how profitable stock is, etc.  And we all can't just plug our numbers into a one-size-fits all formula to figure out what we are making from our investment.  But for a hobby that I put barely any effort into, I feel like I'm doing very well and I don't think the glory days are over.  Not my a longshot.  If someone cares to disagree and say the sky is falling and they are glad they didn't put any effort into video, that is their right, but I know I'll be making great income for years to come from seeds I already planted and seeds that I continue to plant more and more of.

 

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@Doug Jensen Very impressive stats! Thanks for giving details of your experience here, definitely gives me hope.  I've still got a small portfolio here and not many videos, but I'm encouraged by recent sales from a wildlife clip of mine that has made some decent sales for me 😎 Now is a great time to go through your video and stills libraries and upload some new stuff!

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29 minutes ago, Amlan Mathur said:

Hi everyone, started off a petition at change.org requesting an opt out from the video subscribtion program or a roll back to a more sensible price range. 

http://chng.it/L9fjJbvh

Please sign it off and drop in a mail to care@shutterstock.com asking for the same. 

 

Interesting idea to influence the business policy of a company oriented towards economic success through a "vote". 
So that we do not misunderstand each other:
I, too, disagree with the SS course, no question. However, I think voting on it is pretty stupid. 
It is actually quite simple:
If you have good content which is worth more than what SS is willing to pay, you must not post this content to SS. Then the problem is solved, there is no need for a vote. 
The buyers will then make the voting, with their buying decisions. Either they get the leftovers, which are cheap at SS, or they buy expensive better content.  Then SS will find out whether their decision was right or wrong. 
Actually quite simple and much more effective than a vote. However, in contrast to the vote, with a certain own risk. 

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

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2 hours ago, MODpix said:

I've still got a small portfolio here and not many videos, but I'm encouraged by recent sales from a wildlife clip of mine that has made some decent sales for me 😎 Now is a great time to go through your video and stills libraries and upload some new stuff!

For continuing to submit stills, yes. Ya may as well. With regards to submitting videos, I don't really see there's much point anymore. From here on in, we may be getting commissions as low as $3 - $5 per clip the majority of the time. Not exactly a great incentive.

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8 hours ago, Patrick Cooper said:

For continuing to submit stills, yes. Ya may as well. With regards to submitting videos, I don't really see there's much point anymore. From here on in, we may be getting commissions as low as $3 - $5 per clip the majority of the time. Not exactly a great incentive.

But isn't $3 - $5 per clip still many times higher than what you already get for stills?  It should not require any more time or effort to process and submit video as it does stills, so why don't you just quit doing stock altogether and move on if the commissions are not sufficient for you?

BTW, it remains to be seen how far the average commission for video will go so it is premature to talk about doom and gloom.  My average commission is still well over $30 and I invite you to ask me 6 months from now to see how/if that has changed.  Only time will tell.   Also, I will trade lower commissions per sale for more sales. Whichever puts more money in my PayPal account is what matters.   1 sale for $10,000 vs 10,001 sales for $1 is more money.

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8 hours ago, Patrick Cooper said:

From here on in, we may be getting commissions as low as $3 - $5 per clip the majority of the time. Not exactly a great incentive.

I wouldn't mind so much if SS could guarantee a base level of volume sales that would make up for the cut in commissions, but they can't do that and I don't see people buying video clips just because they're cheap.  Most people buy media to meet an immediate need.  That was the case before the price cut and will be the case going forward.  There really is no advantage in this that redounds to the contributor, IMHO.

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Just now, Doug Jensen said:

Also, I will trade lower commissions per sale for more sales. Whichever puts more money in my PayPal account is what matters.   1 sale for $10,000 or 10,001 sales for $1 is more money.

Though isn't the reason why you refuse to do stock photos is due to the pitifully low commissions? Your example of $1 per clip sounds pretty low to me. 

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1 hour ago, Patrick Cooper said:

Though isn't the reason why you refuse to do stock photos is due to the pitifully low commissions? Your example of $1 per clip sounds pretty low to me. 

Absolutely true.  Photos would be a complete waste of my time and I will stop submitting videos too if commissions for videos ever get that low.  But you are a hypocrite if you are willing to accept pennies for photo downloads right now --- but balk at the very idea that some day down the road you might only earn $3 - $5 per clip.  YOU'RE ALREADY EARNING LESS THAN THAT FOR PHOTOS. What's the difference?  I think you should stop submitting both photos and videos immediately if that is what you think the future holds for you.

The $1 / clip was just a round number to illustrate that earnings are a combination of commissions and number of downloads . $1.00 was not a wish or prediction.  I will try to spell it out better for you next time.

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On 4/18/2020 at 1:50 AM, Doug Jensen said:

But you are a hypocrite if you are willing to accept pennies for photo downloads right now --- but balk at the very idea that some day down the road you might only earn $3 - $5 per clip.  YOU'RE ALREADY EARNING LESS THAN THAT FOR PHOTOS. What's the difference? 

I'm certainly not alone here. There are literally thousands of contributors that accept being payed lower amounts for photographs. Though I consider videos to be a different beast. A different animal. Some may consider videos to be a higher value item. The larger file sizes and increased storage demands certainly suggests that. On average, my videos sell for about $15 - $22. And I accept that as the norm. $3 - $5 commissions for individual clips is not the norm and not what I agreed to when I first started submitting videos here. And by the way, there's no guarantee that lower prices will lead to more video sales. 

On 4/18/2020 at 1:50 AM, Doug Jensen said:

I think you should stop submitting both photos and videos immediately if that is what you think the future holds for you.

I'm sure you're aware that there are other stock agencies that offer video commissions significantly higher than $3 - $5 (usually double figures.) I also sell my videos on one of those. Shutterstock isn't the only shop in town.

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16 hours ago, Phil Lowe said:

I wouldn't mind so much if SS could guarantee a base level of volume sales that would make up for the cut in commissions

Yea if for example, we are going to be paid $10 per clip and there's going to be a lot more regular footage sales, I wouldn't mind so much. But perhaps that might be unrealistic. 

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They'd have run the models and concluded they're business will benefit from this overall.  Its not something done on a whim.

This is identical to IS/Getty devaluing the photo market, ultimately contributors dont matter,there are too many in any case.  They'd have modelled this and seen a net benefit.

 

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3 hours ago, David Moreno Hernandez said:

"Shutterstock developed the subscription plan to meet the growing demand from our small business customers who need greater volumes of high quality video content for their marketing and advertising materials and campaigns" 

Of couuuurseeeeeee. 

Small business all over the world is currently shut down.  Many won't reopen.  How can this move be justified now when hardly anyone is working???

It defies logic.

When do we see monthly payout minimums drop to $20, because that's what they did after they screwed us over by doubling the audience size a standard license could reach: reduced from $70 to $35.

SS isn't just racing to the bottom.  It's augering into it at mach 2.

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3 hours ago, David Moreno Hernandez said:

"Shutterstock developed the subscription plan to meet the growing demand from our small business customers who need greater volumes of high quality video content for their marketing and advertising materials and campaigns" 

Of couuuurseeeeeee. 

Yeah, and one more thing: that would be perfectly fine if SS were giving away their own work.  They are not.  They are playing fast and loose with OUR work!!!  I fully expect to see large media houses pulling their work from this impending dumpster fire, as they should.  I'm thinking seriously about pulling all of my video.  I certainly won't be shooting it for this place anymore.

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Maybe someone should tell the upper management that the premium office space that they're paying for in the Empire State Building is costing them more than they're going to recover from these new pricing gimmicks.  

As far as opt-out plans go, it's not going to happen.  The only opt-out option any of us has is opting out of a continued business relationship with SS, as far as video goes, altogether.  

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55 minutes ago, Phil Lowe said:

How can this move be justified now when hardly anyone is working???

Probably because this was already planned for when the new CEO took over. They didn't just come up with this last week or last month, might be a year already in the planning in SS's long-term planning. The fact that the world got turned upside-down by the virus did nothing to influence changing their plan.

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20 minutes ago, MJD Graphics said:

Probably because this was already planned for when the new CEO took over. They didn't just come up with this last week or last month, might be a year already in the planning in SS's long-term planning. The fact that the world got turned upside-down by the virus did nothing to influence changing their plan.

I agree that they've probably been planning this for months, but the timing of its implementation simply defies logic.  Lowering prices to induce people to buy when they're not even working right now isn't much of an inducement, and it cuts margins across the board with no apparent short-term benefit.  At the very least they could've waited until seeing how the global market would emerge after the current crisis was over and take whatever steps they deemed necessary then.  But doing it now reeks of desperation and was certainly not well-conceived. 

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13 minutes ago, Phil Lowe said:

I agree that they've probably been planning this for months, but the timing of its implementation simply defies logic.  Lowering prices to induce people to buy when they're not even working right now isn't much of an inducement, and it cuts margins across the board with no apparent short-term benefit.  At the very least they could've waited until seeing how the global market would emerge after the current crisis was over and take whatever steps they deemed necessary then.  But doing it now reeks of desperation and was certainly not well-conceived. 

I think they see the situation at the moment as a short-term inconvenience ( can't think of a better word at the moment, sorry ) but are still looking at the long-term plan. I think they just went ahead with the plan no-matter what because once the world gets back to 'normal' it's business as usual and this plan will eventually succeed for their business but not for the contributors. As you stated in a previous post 'they are playing with our work' but that's the business model of all these type of internet businesses. As it costs them nothing to create content they will always be making money. Even if every single contributor now stopped uploading today they probably could survive for some years before eventually going under.

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