16 Jun 2009 German Telecom Enters Microstock with Polylooks
Update 2009-09-15: Polylooks have now launched in English.
The dice are rolling. There’s a new player in the microstock game. Polylooks is the name of the first German microstock agency powered by Deutsche Telekom AG (German Telecom) launched on June 3rd 2009. The agency is working with another German picture agency, Zoonar who have provided over 125.000 images to launch Polylooks.
Polylooks combines three areas:
- Mediastore – this is the main area where images can be sold and bought
- Community – photographers can present and rate images, there will be photo contests and a forum is in the making. This area is still in the beta-phase.
- Magazine – this is basically the already existing “Augenblicke” magazine from T-Online, the online section of Deutsche Telekom. It’s an editorial area where photos and related stories will be presented.
The most important facts for image buyers:
- Prices range from 1 credit for the smallest (about 226 x 340 pixels) to 15 credits for the biggest resolution (about 3300 x 4961 pixels). A credit costs 1 Euro at this time. The standard licence is Royalty Free. There is a merchandising licence available for 50 credits. When buying more than 25 credits at a time you will get a discount.
- There are different subscription choices available from one to 12 months and 10 to 120 credits per month.
- Payment is done by credit card, large-volume-buyers can pay by invoice too. Payment via PayPal will be implemented soon.
- The search function offers to search by keywords, categories, emotions, alignment, size and date.
- The image collection focuses on nature, travel, wellness and business, but there will be concentrated efforts to add German and European motives.
The most important facts for suppliers:
- Images need to have at least 6 MP (about 2000 x 3000 Pixel) to get accepted.
- Other technical upload requirements: only JPG, RGB-colorspace (preferably AdobeRGB), 8 Bit color depth, no or only little compression (10-12 in Photoshop), max. file size 50 MB.
- 20 images per day can be uploaded.
- An image must contain at least 10 keywords.
- Keywords can be entered in German or English.
- Polylooks advises not to just keyword the basic word forms but the conjugations as well (for example: “play”: plays, played, playing).
- Illustrations should be compatible with EPS and Adobe Illustrator, an additional JPG (6 MP, max. file size 50 MB) should be supplied.
- The royalty share for the suppliers is 35%, or 50% for exclusive content. Subscription downloads will be credited accordingly.
- The payout limit is 25 Euros.
It is a rough time for new microstock agencies, but German Telecom has a solid financial basis and a ready-to-operate marketing department. It also has a strong hold in the mobile communication sector (T-Mobile) and is one of the biggest suppliers of broadband internet (T-Online). This provides easy connection to potential image buyers, e.g. wallpapers on cell phones or pictures for blogs and websites of T-Online customers.
German Telecom has no history in the stock photography market, but the deal with Zoonar makes up for it. Zoonar has been around since 2006 and the owner is a long-time stock photographer.
We will see how Polylooks develops in this tough microstock times and how the big players will react.