Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Why are Microstock Contributors Always Angry?

Microstock contributors have always been angry, but we have got our reasons why.

  1. Agencies have been treating us badly. They cut royalty whenever they feel like it. We have almost never got a raise, but pay-cut is on the corner every so often. Is not fair.
  2. Agencies randomly reject our submissions. So much effort and so much hope - yet they reject it nonsensically. Is unreasonable.
  3. So many copy-cats out there. They copy with the thickest face ever. They copy it blindly. They copy the titles and keywords too. They have got no shame. Is crazy.
  4. So many new agencies appear throughout the years. We have helped. We have submitted. We have hope. But we have got no downloads. Is a total waste of time. 
  5. So many spammers in our world. Icon warriors, marijuana-guy, yogurt-man, and bla bla bla. Check these spammers out at MicrostockGroup.com. Why do agencies even treat them with love? Why why why?
  6. We work so hard. We work like crazy. We don't get to sleep. Why is our works not getting a sale? Is demoralizing. 
  7. Agencies love to play around with their partners and somehow, we get an unfair cut. We are so helpless. 
  8. Agencies have been treating us like commodities. We have very little faith in them and in ourselves now. 
  9. So many people use our works without paying. So many of them never buy the right license. So many of them got away. Just so many.
  10. So many mother fuckers took our images and post them for free. Is demonic. 
  11. There are so many hate, jealousy, sarcasm, bullies, and, copy-cats among us. Many don't feel like posting anymore.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Finally some Good News in these Gloomy Days of Microstock Industry

Extremely heavy competition among contributors, sales drop despite heavy uploading, tricky stock agencies manipulating our royalties, and the devaluation of our stock vectors and photos have been among all the bad news we have had in the past 2 years. We are demoralized by all these and got very fed up. Every other time when a stock agency wrote to us, we will be expecting for another cut. Not this time, though :)

First, ever since Adobe has taken over Fotolia, good news have been limping over and over again for contributors. Adobe raised our royalty ranking to one level higher for everyone - a very generous move. This is a big increase to our overall earning. Apart from that, Adobe has "cut ties" with the ludicrous DPC (DollarPhotoClub). I have also been witnessing an increase of Extended License and total number of sales at Fotolia too. I really hope this trend can continue for a longer period of time. 

Secondly today, IStock-Getty is giving us a raise to our subscription royalties rate. Although, I really don't like the idea  of "mini-subscriptions", but a raise, is nevertheless, still a raise. Furthermore, a credit sales download at iStock only yield us about $1.60. Given that iStock is now "forcing" buyers to commit to 10 or 25 downloads a month which yield $1.00 per mini subscription download, it may actually result in a higher total revenue at the end of the day.



Saturday, July 18, 2015

How to select Open Path and Unfilled Path in Adobe Illustrator CC

We used to have a plug-in to select open path at http://rj-graffix.com/software/plugins.html#SelectMenu. But it is no longer working in Adobe Illustrator CC because the plug-in is not updated to accommodate the latest version of Adobe Illustrator.

However, I have found another alternative for this purpose. You can use the Javascript (this is not a plug-in) from http://www.aridocean.com/illustrator-extended-select-script to select open path and unfilled path in Adobe Illustrator CC. The good thing about using this script is that it will not get outdated :)

Simply download the script and paste it into your Adobe Illustrator CC folder Presets/en_US/Scripts. Restart your Illustrator and you will be able to use it under Files > Scripts > ExtendedSelect

Many thanks to Arid Ocean Maps for this wonderful scripts.


Monday, January 26, 2015

6 Reasons Why Microstock Earning Will be Down in 2015

Microstock sales has been on a declining trend since the middle of 2014. It looks like this dreadful trend will continue to 2015 and more. Below are 5 reasons why this downtrend will continue.

1. The strengthening of US dollar against Euro and other currencies may seems to be positive thing at first. But in reality, buyers are taking a major hit. European, being the biggest buyers of microstock is having a tough time as Euro has hit 11 year low vs the USD. This means, buyers will be buying less stock images because it is much more expensive now. So far, my number of sales has gone down by about 30%.

2. More and more well establish stock factories are producing amazing number of qualities images everyday. To be honest, I am not sure if they could actually cover up the expenses to produce these images given the golden era is over, but this intense competition is not a good thing for lone ranger like us.

3. Another bad news would be iStock HQ is being moved from Canada to USA now. This means, we will have to pay 30% tax to US government if the purchase is being made from USA. Moving forward, I predict my earning will be at least 10% less from iStock now.

4. Stock agencies are getting more and more sneaky by manipulating numbers and playing with their system to benefit themselves more than us, the contributors. Cutting royalties, and introducing confusing sales packages and partners site are some examples of such manipulations.

5. Microstock is now being treated as commodities. The prices are getting hammered due to stock agencies pricing war. Nobody win in this situation, except the buyers. 

6. Smaller agencies such as CanStockPhoto, Crestock, GraphicLeftovers, and GraphicRiver are starting to feel the pressure with lack of regular sales. Inactivity is the scariest thing for Internet business. Check out all the 0 sales for new vectors at GraphicRiver http://graphicriver.net/category/vectors?page=1. It is very demoralizing to see such sight. With the weakening of smaller agencies, bigger agencies will soon take even more control. This is not a good thing.

As a conclusion, I predict 2015 will be a pretty bad year for us. There will be a lot of contributors giving up this year. It may no longer be worthy to be a stock vector artist now. In 2009, you can make $100/month. In 2015, you can only make $10/month with the same images.


Thursday, January 1, 2015

2015 Resolutions

1. Believe in God a little more.
2. Be generous.
3. Be nice.
4. Be calm.
5. Be moderate.
6. Be creative.
7. ... and have more sex.

Yes, as simple as that :)