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Is there any problem in submitting the same photo both to macrostock agencies (Alamy, etc.) and microstock (Fotolia, iStock, etc.), assuming I have a non-exclusive agreement in all of them?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 5 down vote accepted

The obvious difference would be on the value of sales. If you've an exclusive or very high quality image, then you probably want to exploit its value, and sell for a higher price through a specialised agency.

Conversely, if your image lacks exclusivity, (for example, two people in business suits shaking hands), then there would be a lot of competition on microstock already, so the client may not even look further than this.

In real terms, this would mean that you'd be cutting your own margins by posting to the microstock; Instead you may get a better return by targeting your images on a per-image basis.

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After further investigation:

  1. The main issue could be if photos are submitted to a macrostock agency with a Rights Managed license, which is incompatible with microstock's Royalty Free
  2. Even if a photo is submitted with RF license to microstock and macrostock you may find a clause in your contract that doesn't allow you to have it available elsewhere with a lower price, some agencies have it some don't.
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There is no problem at all, there is a difference in minimum image size allowance and quality. Macro Stock agencies seem to be more picky.

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