So is this site going to go the way of SXC? You know, little kid pictures/drawings, stuff that looks like a 3 year old just woke up and starting finger painting in ms paint? Or is this site going to be heavily moderated and easily accessible?
Had some major gripes with SXC, enough to where I took down every single one of my hundreds of pictures because in my mind, they were just playing favoritism and not weeding out the redundant low level design/photographers. I am reluctant to put up any of my images at the moment, but wanted to get some feedback on where this site is heading and if anyone learned anything positive/negative about SXC in the process.
Looking forward to sharing on this site and of course using a lot of images on the fly with my hectic design schedule.
Hello. When you say moderated I take that to mean moderated here in the forum, like a censorship. We don't do that here unless absolutely necessary and then you are most likely to hear from me.
We differentiate ourselves from the site you mention and consider this site to be unique. All free stock image sites are going to have a lot of similarities with images ranging from the simplistic to the professional level. Our goal is to become the dominate free stock site on the internet in size, range and for usability of our stock. We will adapt our direction of growth parallel to the demands of the internet and the members of this site in an intelligent and discerning way.
Our reviewers are thoroughly experienced and their discretion is as consistent and intelligent as you are going to find at any site on the internet. They will maintain the balance of genre that you would expect on a stock site.
You need not be so cautious and reluctant here because of the experiences you had at another site. You will find here that you will be heard and your ideas considered.
Ease of access is a positive feature for a website, yet we want the images going to only those who respect the rules of the image license agreement. This site was constructed with the latest security technology built in and is flexible enough to be adapted to the newly updated web innovations and browsers. The site architects monitor what important changes need to be adopted then make those changes.
You also have the support of the community here who will help you to protect your intellectual property. Any individual or site who is discovered hosting images without proper authorization can be reported here in the forums. That will sound an alarm here. The site where the images are hosted will receive a mass mailing from the community and administrators asking that the images be taken down. We have had few incidences but we have had positive results.
I hope this answers your questions and if anyone else has anything to add, please feel free to express your ideas.
If you have more questions you would like answered, I am available through the "Contact us" link in the blue bar.
Thank you for the informative breakdown. I do have a couple more comments/suggestions though in terms of intellectual property rights.
Now I know this will probably come off as harsh, and I do not mean to upset anyone. BUT, I do have to acknowledge my frustrations with property rights in light of the "other site" I would also like to mention I have been a professional photographer since 2004.
I had been on the "other site" since its inception. I saw it grow and meld into what it is now. When they first started putting restrictions on images I became a huge critic. While I do understand people wanting to know how their images are used, it is a double edged sword. You cannot put up "Free stock photography" and use that as your catchline to draw in graphic designers/photographers then slap a restriction on usage or god forbid, I actually gotta take a minute or two to write you a happy little letter stating "Oh please, please let me use your image, of a pony, standing in a field" cuz we all know that pony is making BANK in the stock photography movement. It seemed asinine to me some of the images that had usage restrictions, in fact, it was more of an annoyance then it was useful.
Months of lurking through "the other site" I started to see a trend where EVERYONE and their mom had usage restrictions. So I decided to ban that site and not support it anymore.
So here is where the double edged sword comes in. We are a community, of designers/photographers etc. Everyone wants a piece of the pie. BUT....and this is a huge BUT. We as a collective need to realize that photography is not going to be a paying gig, unless you are the next Ansel Adams creating awesome lab photography on landscapes that no one has yet traveled. It's just not going to happen. So what do we do? We have millions and millions of amateur photographers around the world wanting to share their images on a "stock" site, yet want full credit and listings when it is used? That sounds like one hell of a problem to have on your hands.
Personally I don't give a flying F what happens to my images once I put them on a "Free stock photography" site, because that is my gift back to others who have helped me when I am stressing to find just the right image at deadline. As a graphic designer by trade, and a freelance professional photographer, I see both sides of the coin. However, I will not, and cannot help out a site who will put restrictions on images because Molly whats her name wants FULL credit on my next vehicle wrap, business card, brochure, website etc.
We need to find a happy medium where the photographers feel they are needed and credited, while the designer doesn't have to wait a full day to hear back from a "letter" they had to send to get permission.
My point comes down to this. If you want to be a "pro" that is great, go put your stuff up on Getty, Istock etc. Places you CAN have full control (and the legal to back you up) but putting your amateur photos up on a free site then basically telling people "no, you cannot right click" sounds like an oxymoron to me. Can you dangle the carrot any farther in front of the bounding rabbit?
Sorry for the long post, obviously this is something I have thought long and hard about and I am very passionate about and have had many a discussion on this topic in other graphic design forums.
You are not a charity, and if someone wants to restrict their property, perhaps you can go pay for images.
We have sought to make this site as level a playing field as possible for both the contributor and the end user alike. We want to encourage people to use our images while discouraging those who seek to abuse their use of them.
For the use of the images on this site we have one image usage license agreement that was written to be a 'blanket coverage' for the images on this site. It is quite similar to the license agreement at the other place, but is more specific and well defined.
As you very well know, the problem is writing a license that is short enough so that people read it, yet inclusive enough that it provides adequate coverage.
The additional usage "restrictions" that you mention that everyone was using on the other site is not an option available here. The growing lack of community and administrative support there prompted people to elect to use the option that demanded the user needed to contact the photographer before the image was used. We neither dangle that carrot nor support that oxymoron.
This site is an ideal site to dip your toes in to test the waters of stock photography and graphic design. It's great for the hobbyist to explore new challenges and learn how to overcome them while sharpening their skills.
The professional photographer also has a place where they can broaden their web exposure in a pleasant environment. They can offer valuable and helpful advice to the beginners and intermediate contributors. We need experienced teachers who have knowledge with both photography equipment and image processing skills.
The door is open and we are just leaving the ground floor. I have a feeling you know most of us here already. Why not hop aboard and we'll not take wrong turns like those before us have done in the past.
Before I say anything I must point out that this is my personal opinion, I am not part of the RGB staff in any way or form.
I found it a little difficult to see what you were trying to say at first but think I have the general idea now.
I entirely agree with you on the rights issue; once a graphic/photo is up on site I don’t really mind how it is used and don’t scream for credit, though I get a little narked when someone else puts it up as their own work.
On the other side of the coin, I’m not at all sure about your statement on “little kid pictures/drawings, stuff that looks like a 3 year old just woke up and starting finger painting in ms paint” and “low level design/photographers”. I’m possibly putting myself in the direct firing line here :0) but I’m probably one of the above. I am in no way a pro’ photographer but I do occasionally produce what I would consider a reasonable photo or graphic, which I put up on this site (I may also remove them a few weeks later when I look at them again and groan). If a photo is not up to ‘standard’, it’s rejected, no problem. The point is that I do this for free and as such believe that as long as someone wants it and downloads it both parties are happy. It doesn’t have to be a ‘perfect’ photograph, just something someone else wants to use. As for graphics, beauty is in the beholder and a matter of taste, I don’t judge others.
It does mean that you may have to plough through what you might consider sub standard work to get to what you want; but that, surely, is a small price to pay for a free photo/graphic and it allows us amateurs to give a little back and learn from the pro’s.
I look forward to seeing your gallery if you decide to upload it.
Cris thank you very much for the posts and clarifying the sites goals. I really hope this stock site will take off and become the next sxc. I have already posted a link to this site on a major graphic design forum that I moderate. I will upload some pics when I have some time!
@ Gramps - You are correct, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As a designer I deal with this every single day (trying to convince someone that they cannot have 50+ words on the side of a box truck) people will see things good or bad, no one will ever be perfect when it comes to art. As for my quote, I am fine with weeding through lower quality stuff (hell, a lot of my stock art is pretty low quality) I even shoot on low fi film (analog) and everyone has to start somewhere. What really irks me is when I see say a papyrus piece of paper, with a leaf on it and some fancy border. And then I see about 20-30 different renditions of that same "layout" just slightly changed. I don't see how stuff like that can get "accepted" if the person doing the filtering took 2 seconds to look through the other stuff that person had uploaded. When I type in the keyword "Grunge" I don't want 100+ images of the same design just slightly changed. I am a designer, I could change that stuff in 2 seconds in photoshop. So that is what I mean when I say low quality, its more of a "Oh my god im overwhelmed looking at this same crap just slightly changed" on pages and pages of thumbnails.
Anyways, thanks for the feedback, good and bad. I appreciate you taking the time out of your day to address my concerns. I will upload some pics shortly.
When you can change designs in ps in 2 seconds you are to be envied for that skill. Not everybody is born as a photoshopper... I often found our photos used on the web exactly in the way we upload them here, so I have gained the strong impression that offering some variations is of great help to most of the downloaders, e.g. to stimulate their imagination. Or to put it another way: some users need more stimulation than others.
I prefer it when people who have no money for images use them. They are the people who have no image editing tools and are grateful for slight changes. Given that you are making money from these freely offered images, I find your attitude extremely complaining and ungrateful. It will be interesting to see when you have the time to upload anything.
Ouch! You make Gengis Khan look like a diplomat Dez :0)
I don't think our lad's that bad, just has a few standards that he works by :0)
Half a dozen graphics of the same pic with variations isn't too bad (I've done it myself) and Micheal is right, a lot of people are chuffed to bits with them. When it gets to a large amount of them it can get tedious when you have to plough through them to get to what you want but as I've said, a small price to pay.
Phoenixpixel, You must realize that a some of our users only want a windows wallpaper ,something to make a greetings card/ invite or put in a blog etc. They are not all designers / photographers like yourself, we try to cater for all.
A phrase containing the words " same crap just slightly changed" instead of "same graphic just slightly changed" can make the world of difference to how you comments are recieved. You would never tell your customer his photo's where "Crap", just "Unsuitable" (unless, of course, you don't want them as customers any more). Makes a difference between Constructive comment and Insult.
Here endith the lesson, sensitive 'aint we :0)
@phoenixpixel The problem you mentioned, where you have a lot of similar images, could in theory be partly fixed by sets. For example, we could only show a few images of a set in the search results and have an icon which says it is part of a set with similar images.
We just don't have any sets yet. :-)
I am with Gengis Khan.
There are two solutions for him, the pay sites and to work with his own photos and graphics, sure they are good enough. His arguments only make me to want restrictions levels here.
Yo Gengis Dez Khan ! How are you on bare back horse ridding and furs ? ( have to keep PC and use man made fibres of course). Not sure the pointy hat would look good on you though. :0) .
Pitty I can't change the font size coz that's one big smile above.
@ xymonau - Sorry for my word choices, as I stated in my original post it may sound "harsh". I am blunt, to a fault and I honestly don't care what anyone thinks about that in my real world or my virtual world. Its called individuality and I am completely happy with myself and how I communicate. I am not ungrateful, I am passionate about what I see and believe in my own mind. I am sorry you think I and complaining because I am really not.
@ Gramps - I know it is a small price to pay, I am okay with that, after all, I am getting an image for free right? Which comes back to me, so I put up free images. Karma is fun! And fyi, I actually have told.... many many clients that their designs/photos were utter crap. I speak the truth. If you hired a plumber and he came to your beaten down house and said "Boy, you got some sparkly clean pipes here" even though he knows they are in bad shape, that is a blatant lie given so that the person is not "hurt" by feelings. I am blunt, people pay me good money to do what I do so I am brutally honest with them. Some people just don't "get it" and those are the clients I show the door to and tell them to find someone else to work with. Been doing this for 10 years now and I have a great reputation in town, worked with several fortune 500 companies, ran my own biz etc. Point is, people pay me for my craft, I will not sugar coat the logo design they got from their best friends, uncles nephew who took a photoshop class in high school. :D
@ Lennie - I like that idea... A LOT!
As soon as I get done updating all my meta info I will upload some photos so you guys can tear me a new @sshole and tell me I suck :)
Gengis Dez Khan! Bump!
I think at rgbstock, we tend not to be too critical (unless specifically asked about an image by the uploader) in comments boxes as we like to focus on the positive. (I hope I'm speaking for others here...) The negative aspects tend to reveal themselves quite adequately in a number of ways, e.g. No downloads, or worse - A few Downloads, but no comments!
This site has a real community / supportive feel about it & whilst in its fast-growing infancy I would be reluctant to put people off uploading even if I personally wasn't too keen on some of their images.
I'm sure there are some people who think some of my images are not all that good. I'm glad, though, that I haven't been flamed in comments as it could have put me off wanting to carry on here &, hopefully improve.
As members grow & learn from some wonderful role models here they become much better at self-regulating, but keep uploading. This can only benefit the site.
Welcome aboard Phoenix!
Looking forward to seeing your images...
@16 Well said Dan! I think you've encapsulated the spirit of RGB Stock very well.
@14. Point taken, but, I didn't say you shouldn't tell them. It's how you tell them.
If you have to be blunt at the end of the day, so be it, you've at least tried to be subtle to start with.
I also think Lennies idea is a good one if the developers can pull it off.
!0 years eh, long time, another 25 and you'll catch me up :0)