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‘Boycott Fotolia’ Campaign: over 500K images to be pulled today – we have the agency reaction

UPDATED: 2 May – ↓ new stats graphic
BoycottFotoliaNewGraphiconPAN BoycottfotoliaOnPAN
UPDATED: 2 May – ↑ new stats graphic Left is today – Right is 1 May

A campaign called Boycott Fotolia is appealing for contributors to the microstock photo agency Fotolia to pull their images today -1 May- in a mass protest against the agency’s Dollar Photo Club site.

They say: ‘Welcome to Boycottfotolia.org site! We are collecting signatures against actions of Fotolia.com and the dollarphotoclub.com management. Colleagues, fellow microstockers, don’t stand on the sidelines. Only by acting together can we change the situation!’

‘What is going on?’
‘As many people already know Fotolia owners launched the DPC (dollarphotoclub). project, a site where clients can buy images based on the “image on demand” principle and pay only 1$ per image. Contributors get only a subscription commission rate from this sale. The minimum payment to buy this “subscription” is ONLY 10$ for 10 images, which may not seem bad. Some people even may think about “new buyers” and “more money”. Unfortunately it is not good. This project is dangerous for contributors and for the whole stock industry.

Why is it bad for contributors and for the whole stock industry?
DPC clients will buy the highest resolution files (XXL) and editable vectors (not raster copy) based on a Royalty-free license with Extended feature – unlimited quantity of copies. And it is FOR ONLY 1$. Imagine the effects of this dumping! What will happen? It will be mass “image on-demand” buyer outflow from other microstock agencies to DPC. Who would pay 10$ if he can pay only 1$ for a license better than the standard one? It is easy to understand how much you can lose. Take your income and subtract demands from all stocks and replace them by Fotolia subscriptions royalty. Based on approximate estimations the typical stocker may lose a third part of his revenue. What do you think about it? It should get you thinking. As a result contributors will not suffer alone but buyers will join them. Image quality will decline because of authors’ earnings declining. Experienced authors who create high quality content will move to freelance to work with client directly. People who are ready to work for nothing will stay on the stocks. Of course they can’t be professionals. It will not happen at once. May be it will take one or two years. But it is unavoidable if we don’t stop this.
…Read the full campaign details here

As we are not a major fan of printing agency/contributor spats at PhotoArchiveNews.com, we thought it was only fair to see if Fotolia wanted to comment on this situation, this is what we had from our contact at the agency last night:
FotoliaONPAN dollarphotoclubOnPAN
Hello Will,

Thanks for your email and letting me know in advance about your post.

First of all, I would like to clarify our intention here. Our aim has always been to democritize this market and it’s now to take microstock to the next level: going after the millions of companies around the world who don’t purchase yet any license for the images they use, especially in new markets.

We estimate to millions of downloads a day what could be the market tomorrow. We truly believe converting non or small users into large users of imagery is possible and will enormously grow the market for the benefit of all.

Since lots of false information have been circulated recently, I we would like to lay out the simple facts we have been officially sharing with our contributors.

The offer

• Dollar Photo Club is a subscription model. Clients register and pay with their credit card, subscribing for a monthly or yearly rolling contract. Renewal rate so far has been close to 90% meaning people use it as a real subscription

• Prices are $10 for the monthly and $99 for the yearly memberships for 10 and 99 images, automatically renewable.

Payouts

• Dollar Photo Club payouts are the same than any subscription at Fotolia and basically depend on the rank of the photographers. Payouts range from 25 cents to 40 cents, which is well in line with the market

• Dollar Photo Club sales count towards for their ranking at Fotolia, on the same level as other Fotolia subscriptions

• At Dollar Photo Club, contrary to standard subscriptions, unused downloads never expire. That is a very different model than standard subscriptions, where agencies get all the money from unused downloads. As a result, DollarPhotoClub is a subscription model where a higher percentage of money spent goes to the photographer.

Licensing

• Photos at Dollar Photo Club are sold under a standard commercial license, with a recent update limiting the print-runs to just 500k, inline with the market. Full license terms can be seen here: https://us.dollarphotoclub.com/Info/RoyaltyFreeLicense

• All Dollar Photo Club licenses are mono-seat and do not grant any extended rights

• Extended license (to come): we are working on adding an extended license shortly with a high-level of payout, in line again with the market

Opting in or out

• At any moment photograpgers can opt in or out by adjusting their contributors preferences in their Fotolia member area

Please feel free to ask us for any additional information and please read carefully our terms and the information available on our website before any misunderstanding.

Fotolia.