Posts Tagged ‘shutterstock’

Shutterstock On The Red Carpet Captures the Hottest Events in 2009

Wednesday, November 18th, 2009

It has been an exciting year for Shutterstock, the world’s largest subscription-based stock photo agency, thanks to the rapid growth of its innovative editorial photo program: Shutterstock On The Red Carpet.

In 2009, Shutterstock On The Red Carpet covered many notable events worldwide, including Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Madonna’s Sticky & Sweet Tour, The Black Crowes Tour, the Major League Soccer Semifinal match between Chivas USA and the Los Angeles Galaxy, and the Tribeca Film Festival. This year, Shutterstock photographers also captured public appearances by President Barack Obama, former President Bill Clinton and Senator John McCain.

Shutterstock is the only online stock image agency to offer this unique service, which assists its global network of photographers in securing press passes to the hottest events in the world of news, sports, and entertainment. Thanks to the tremendous success of the program, the amount of photographers and event organizers who participate continues to rapidly expand. In fact, since Shutterstock On The Red Carpet launched, the number of covered events has grown from two in 2007 to 127 so far in 2009. Based on the number of exciting events in the pipeline, Shutterstock projects covering a total of 175 events this year.

The program, which is open to Shutterstock’s submitter base of more than 200,000 talented photographers, has produced high quality editorial photos that set Shutterstock apart in the highly competitive online stock photo marketplace.

“Given that Shutterstock On The Red Carpet is the only program of its kind, it’s a key differentiator for buyers who seek premium stock photos of newsworthy events at a great value,” said Jon Oringer, founder and CEO of Shutterstock.

To learn more about Shutterstock On The Red Carpet, Shutterstock photographers can contact a representative at

Shutterstock Announces Acquisition of BigStockPhoto

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

“BigStockPhoto is a leader in the stock photo industry, and an excellent fit for Shutterstock as we expand into the credit-based market,” said Jon Oringer, founder and CEO of Shutterstock.  “This addition will enable Shutterstock to better satisfy the diverse payment preferences of stock photo buyers worldwide.”

According to the deal, BigStockPhoto will remain a separate entity, and Shutterstock plans to grow the company’s global presence by investing heavily in marketing, infrastructure and user experience.

BigStockPhoto was founded in 2004 to provide an alternative to high-priced stock photography, and to create a marketplace for photographers to sell their work. In addition to its diverse library of 3.7 Million royalty-free photos and vectors, the agency has created a vibrant community of image buyers and submitters from around the world.

Shutterstock Launches Shuttertweet: A New Way for Submitters to Showcase their Stock Images and Footage on Twitter

Wednesday, August 19th, 2009

Shuttertweet instantly sends out tweets when new images and footage have been added to submitters’ portfolios


Shutterstock announced on August 19 the launch of Shuttertweet, a new tool for Twitter that empowers stock image and stock footage submitters by instantly sending out messages (or “tweets”) announcing when new images and footage clips have been added to their Shutterstock portfolios.

Shuttertweet also enables submitters to monetize their use of Twitter.  Submitters earn a referral commission from anyone who makes a purchase after clicking on the link to their Shutterstock gallery in one of their Shuttertweet messages.

In addition, Shuttertweet sends an update regarding submitters’ download counts on a daily basis to share the success of their portfolios with people that follow them on Twitter.

“Shuttertweet is truly a win-win for our submitters because it both automatically showcases their work and allows them to make money via our affiliate marketing program using Twitter,” said Jon Oringer, founder and CEO of Shutterstock.

To sign up, submitters login to the submit site and click the option under “Make Money” or visit: to enable Shutterstock to send tweets on their behalf. Submitters can deactivate Shuttertweet at any time.

“Shuttertweet is a great way to advertise my work,” said Jake Hellbach (Shutterstock submitter name: JHDT Stock Images LLC), a successful Shutterstock photographer and videographer based in Sugarland, Texas.  “I used to post links to my images and footage clips manually on Twitter when I had the time, but with this tool, I know my name is getting out to stock photo and stock footage buyers each day, so I can get back to shooting.”

An update about Shutterstock and the tax issue

Tuesday, June 9th, 2009

Shutterstock has still not issued an update about the tax issue I wrote about in the previous post. But I wrote to them and asked if it was okay to use an EIN number (Employeee Identification Number) instead of an ITIN number when we fill in form W-8BEN. I received the answer that it is okay to use an EIN (and also a SSN) instead of an ITIN when you fill in the form. So this is good news for those of us with our own companies since it’s much easier to get an EIN than an ITIN.

As I wrote in the previous post this is what you do to get an EIN number:
1. Start by looking trough form SS-4. It might be a good idea to print it out and fill it in so that you are really prepared,
2. Call the IRS in the USA, telephone number +1-215-516-6999. You will then have to answer some questions that you have answered on form SS-4.
3. At the end of the call you receive your EIN number. It is also sent home to you through regular mail. You then use this number when you fill in form W-8BEN.

I haven’t made the call to get the number myself yet but I will do it some time soon.

Hysteria on Shutterstock!

Monday, June 1st, 2009

The last couple of days there have been hysteria on Shutterstock. This is because Shutterstock sent out an e-mail on May 27, telling all non-US submitters that they have to apply for an ITIN number (Individual Taxpayer Identification Number) at the American IRS and fill in a W-8BEN form. If we don’t do that, we have to pay 30% tax on our income – to the USA. Then we have to pay more taxes in our own country! But if we apply for this ITIN number and fill in the W-8BEN form we don’t have to pay any tax at all to the USA – if we are lucky. It all depends on which country you live in. I’m lucky to live in Sweden which has an income tax treaty with the US and I don’t have to pay any tax at all. But some countries have to pay between 5-30% even if they have a tax treaty.

On Saturday Shutterstock sent out an update regarding this issue. First of all they will only withhold tax on the images that gets bought by American buyers. So if only people outside the US buys your pictures you don’t have to pay any tax at all (regardless of if you have applied for an ITIN number or not). But it’s most likely a big portion of the buyers that are American but no one knows how many.

Secondly Shutterstock announced in their update that we can’t apply for an ITIN number yet because IRS needs a signed letter from Shutterstock that needs to be sent in with the application.

So right now we don’t have to do anything at all until Shutterstock gives us more information.

I’m hoping that there will be an easier way out of this for those of us that have our own companies. If you run a company you can apply for an EIN (Employeee Identification Number) instead of an ITIN. Then all you have to do is call the IRS at phone number +1-215-516-6999, and answer some simple questions. Just to be on the safe side you should read through the form SS-4 so that you know which questions you have to answer. But several people that have already made the call have said that they only had to give them their name and address but it doesn’t hurt to be prepared anyway! You get your EIN number at the end of the telephone call and it also gets mailed to you. You should then be able to use this EIN number instead of an ITIN number when you fill in the W-8BEN form.

But for now I will not do anything until Shutterstock gives us more information. Hopefully we will know more later this week…

If you want to discuss this issue in your own language there are several threads in the Shutterstock forum that are specific for different countries. You’ll find a list of all the country threads here!

Shutterstock’s Image Library Hits 6 Million – a Major Milestone for the World’s Largest Subscription-Based Stock Photo Agency

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009

Shutterstock’s library of premium stock images continues its explosive growth while maintaining the highest quality standards in the online stock photo marketplace

Last week, Shutterstock, the world’s largest subscription-based online stock photo agency, just reached another milestone as it added the 6 millionth image to its rapidly growing library of premium royalty-free stock images. In less than four months, Shutterstock has added over one million images, reinforcing its status as the fastest growing site for high quality, royalty-free images.

“We continue to experience tremendous growth in both the size of our library and in the volume of images that our subscribers download,” said Jon Oringer, founder and CEO of Shutterstock. “Thanks to more than 144,000 submitters who contribute to our library, our customers can depend on us for a steady source of fresh, high quality content.”

Shutterstock’s broad, diverse selection of stock images, user-friendly website, and sophisticated search engine enables subscribers to quickly and easily find the perfect images for their creative needs.

While Shutterstock continues to accept an average of 70,000 images per week, the company remains committed to accepting only the highest quality stock photos, illustrations, and vectors from its global base of talented submitters. In fact, fewer than 40 percent of the images Shutterstock receives are approved for the online library.

“We take great pride in our reputation as one of the most selective agencies,” said Adam Riggs, president and chief financial officer of Shutterstock. “To reach this milestone so rapidly while maintaining our stringent acceptance standards is a testament to the creativity and passion of our photographers and illustrators.”

Riggs is referring to submitters like Sadik Demiroz of Istanbul, Turkey, who submitted the 6 millionth royalty-free image. Demiroz shot his artful composition using a technique called “selective focus” to highlight a field of daisies on the English seaside, while leaving the background out of focus.

“I’m thrilled that my photo is the 6 millionth image,” said Demiroz. “Given Shutterstock’s reputation for selectivity, this recognition is a true honor.”

Demiroz is a professional photographer with an MFA degree in photography from Savannah College of Art and Design. He has won more than 200 national and international awards and opened seven solo exhibitions.

This is Shutterstocks 6 millionth image, shot by Sadik Demiroz…

To hear that Shutterstock accepts fewer than 40 percent of the images they receive makes me a little bit proud that most of my images get accepted. I still think that Shutterstock is the best microstock agency to belong to for two reasons. The first reason is that I earn the most here even if the difference isn’t as big now as it was when I begun. The second reason is that you are encouraged to continue to send in new images. I want to send in new pictures every week so that I continue to get downloads. If it hadn’t been for Shutterstock I don’t think my portfolio would have grown as quickly as it has now.

Shutterstock’s Library Hits 5 Million Images – the Fastest Growing Collection in the Online Stock Photo Industry

Friday, November 7th, 2008

World’s largest subscription-based online photo agency continues to thrive, adding over 70,000 high quality images per week

On November 3, 2008 – Shutterstock®, the world’s largest subscription-based online stock photo agency announced the landmark addition of its 5 millionth image to the company’s extensive collection of premium stock photos. Thanks to its popular subscription-based model, speedy review process, and consistent stream of quality submissions, Shutterstock continues to hit new industry growth milestones while maintaining high standards of image quality.

“Since January, we have added over 2 million new royalty-free images to our library, and our weekly library growth rate has recently reached more than 70,000 new images per week,” said Jon Oringer, founder and CEO of Shutterstock. “We are extremely proud to reach the 5 million image mark, especially while maintaining our stringent standards for accepting new images. We are certainly grateful to our global base of more than 120,000 talented submitters who provide our subscribers with a steady pipeline of great creative content.”

Shutterstock’s diverse library provides a wealth of fresh creative and editorial content, rivaling traditional stock photography agencies, yet at far lower prices.This has allowed the company to flourish despite the current worldwide economic downturn.

“As media companies and creative firms look for ways to save money, more and more decision makers are choosing Shutterstock to provide high quality stock images at significant savings,” said Adam Riggs, president of Shutterstock. “Since launching Shutterstock, we have remained committed to providing the best content at affordable prices. That’s why we’re confident that we will continue to meet the demands of today’s marketplace.”

The 5 millionth image is this one by Shutterstock contributor Catalin Plesa…

The 5 millionth image on Shutterstock

Shutterstock announces a raise!

Wednesday, May 14th, 2008

Yesterday Shutterstock announced that contributors will get a raise. If you have earned under $500 you still only receive $0.25 per downloaded image but if you have earned over $500 you get $0.33 per download. That is an increase with 3 cents from before. In addition to that those who have earned between $3000 and $10 000 will now receive $0.36 per download and those who have earned over $10 000 get $0.38 per download. The earnings for Extended Licence sales have increased with $8 from $20 to $28 per EL sale. That is a nice raise!

It’s a bit sad that those of us that haven’t yet earned $500 didn’t get a raise but when we eventually reach $500 it will be nice. Personally I have to earn almost $200 more before I reach $500.

Good news from Shutterstock!

Thursday, April 17th, 2008

Last night (in Swedish time) Shutterstock announced that they now offer monthly subscriptions to their Footage library! Earlier you had to pay for each film clip you wanted to download but that has now changed. As of yesterday you can buy a monthly subscription and download a certain number of clips during the subscription period. The person selling the clip will earn $13.25 for every high definition footage clip downloaded in a footage subscription and $8 for every non-high definition download.

I think this is fantastic! It will be very interesting to see if this will make the footage downloads more popular. It will also be interesting to see if it pays to send in new footage constantly as it does with pictures. If you stop sending in new pictures your earnings will drop (at least in my experience). Will it be the same for footage?

Personally I only have one single clip for sale (and one that is waiting for review). But this makes me want to start producing more film clips. I think this is very good news!

Have Shutterstock reviewers gone crazy? Mass rejections for everyone!

Friday, March 21st, 2008

It seems like something has happened at Shutterstock the last couple of days. Many contributors are reporting rejections of whole batches of images for strange reasons. Most seem to be rejected due to limited commercial value and some because they are too similar (when there are no similar images). Yesterday the speculations where wild in the forum about what could have caused this. Some thought it was a software bug and some thought it may have been a new reviewer not doing their job properly. Finally a staff member told us that it wasn’t a software bug but a problem with the reviewer. Some time later they left this message:

“Unfortunately, some recent rejections were not reviewed properly. However, I am not stating that all rejections were, but some are very apparent and, again, these will be addressed individually with each submitter, as possible.”

I must admit that I had prefered it to be a software bug and not a bad reviewer. I think it’s easier to fix the software than the reviewer. I haven’t sent any pictures to Shutterstock this last week because I have worked with other stuff and now I’m glad that I haven’t. I think I will wait a couple of more days before I start submitting to them again. But it seems like they are reviewing all the images that has been rejected once again.

Shutterstock staff also said:

“Now, in regards to recent rejections & to allay any concerns with reviews: All reviewers are being reviewed for both quality approvals and rejections on a daily basis. When a situation like this occurs, I will do my best to address everyone’s concerns right away and will move to correct the situation immediately. I have done so today.”

It would be interesting to know the whole story. What happened “behind the scenes”?