29 Jul 2008 photos.com a Step Closer
With a recent announcement, Jupiter Images’ is a step closer to making StockXpert the first microstock agency to sell their images non-exclusively through a traditional stock photography channel, photos.com.
The announcement provided pricing and commission details along with notice that the opt-out facility for subscription, partner and extended license sales would be removed on July 30.
Sales for larger sized images (XL & XXL) will sell via pay-per-download for $49.95 – $299.95 with contributors receiving a 30% commission. Sales for smaller images (S, M, L) will sell via subscription only and earn contributors the same 30 cent subscription commission they receive at StockXpert. StockXpert’s community guru Steve Kapsinow is cautiously optimistic about the opportunity for contributors to substantially increase their earnings after the plan takes effect.
Photos.com is supported by the Jupiter Images sales and customer service teams which help customers find the perfect image. These customers accept higher prices in exchange for the time saving service, which distinguishes them from the typical microstock buyer.
The removal of the opt-out facility has understandably upset some StockXpert contributors who are opposed to subscriptions, partner sales or extended licenses. This is accentuated by the photos.com license conditions which permit usage equivalent to the StockXpert Extended License – specifically unlimited print runs and printing images on products for resale (Section E-III).
An all-too-familiar controversy has ensued with many contributors again threatening to remove their portfolios unless concessions are made. Contributors are also upset about the absence of the well-received consultation that preceded StockXpert’s introduction of subscription sales and short notice about the change.
While for contributors the license controversy is currently overshadowing the promise of greater earnings, they’re both overshadowing the significance of the plan. Jupiter Images will soon be selling the same images at different price points distinguished not by size, quality or major differences in usage, but by the level of service the buyer receives. StockXpert contributors are gaining access to a different segment of the buyer market without having to do anything, something their competitors most likely won’t be able to offer.
Update: Steve has announced a conference call to discuss the issue with contributors on Thursday July 31. If you’d like to participate, sitemail Steve (skapsinow) via the StockXpert website.
Correction: The first paragraph states that StockXpert will be the first microstock agency to offer their portfolio through traditional channels, but Dreamstime are already offering their portfolio through BrightQube and ImageClick Korea.