I have great respect for my colleague Jim Pickerell. So much so that almost about a decade ago, I hired him as an expert witness. Yet, I'm going to have to disagree with his example of a microstock success - Erik Reis: Microstock Success Story, over on Black Star Rising.
I responded, in parts:
- "microstock photographer Erik Reis is happy with his results." You cannot equate this individual's being "happy" with their results, as someone who's an example of a success story. Just as people can be successful and not happy, so to, can people - especially hobbyists - be happy and not successful.
- Jim then writes about Reis, that he "acknowledges that only about 10 percent are good sellers." Ok, so, out of 1,338, only 133 are good sellers. That's not so good for a year's work. Even worse for two year's work. My advise to Reis - don't quit your day job.
- Then Jim goes on to reveal "As is the case with the majority of the more than 70,000 microstock photographers, he has chosen to put the same images on many different sites."...Every stock agency (including Getty and Corbis) specifically preclude you by contract from placing the same images with them, because it's been proven to be bad for the agencies, and, as noted by clients - it's been proven to upset clients when they find the same images in searches at many different places.
- The one shining point is the insight that iStockPhoto is not a satisfactory revenue producer, and that other smaller sites are better for them.
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