We are in tough times when anybody can start their own stock video agency, collect contributors and sell visual works to potential buyers. There are many agencies just not worth mentioning, some even vanished with our earned money (remember Revostock?) and some are stealing almost every penny you should receive (like iStockphoto). Then there are fair agencies that pay 50% share of income (such as Pond5) and you can have your own pricing tier. But it would be best, if agencies such as Shutterstock would also give 50% to contributors and have few pricing tier options.
Production of stock video footage takes time and finances. Not to mention a lot of time to get them online and selling. Contributors have to invest time in learning new ways of shooting, buying new equipment to stay in touch of industry. Paying taxes, rents, bills and food is a part of expenses too. If iStockPhoto doesn’t understand this part, it doesn’t mean everybody else have to push contributor income the lowest they can. We can’t say that SS doesn’t do their job great, but they could always do it better. In these years there are many things we noticed they could improve.
If Shutterstock gets 70 % of stock video income, it should;
- play a better role in marketing, which helps contributors get sales
- be more open to information where clips where used for contributors help promoting own footage
- improve search results
- punish exploiters of search engine bugs
- be more active on e-mail
- be more strict on spamming duplicates
- give contributors options of uploading unedited footage next to edited
- give contributors option of choosing pricing tiers
- help contributors improve diversity of uploaded footage
- fight the illegal use of bought footage and give at least third of acquired funds to contributors
Did we forget to add anything? It’s worrisome that they don’t do nothing with search engine exploiters, spammers and not taking care of bigger contributors (e-mail replies take forever).