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ASA Q&A +++

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This user has the power to wield the BanHammer, a weapon forged in the fires of hell for that get-off-my-planet quality you can't get anywhere else. You betta reckonize.Forum Moderator
Posted Tue Aug 30, 2011 4:31PM
We’ve pulled together a summary of the questions being asked in the forums. We’ll continue to update this throughout the next couple days. If you have a question that isn’t answered here, please email and we’ll do our best to get you an answer.

qWhy can’t I upload before accepting the new ASA?
a Under the former ASA (and the new one) as soon as the new ASA was posted in the upload process, and you upload a file, you will have agreed to it. Unfortunately there is no way around that. Rather than surprise you with the ‘you have agreed’, we wanted to make sure that you knew what you were signing.
Even if you agree to the new ASA, you can always decide at a later date to terminate your relationship with us on 30 days notice.

qIs iStock switching to once-a-month payments?
aNo. This section is the same under the new ASA and the former ASA with respect to payments on the 15th of the month. We only added the possibility of delayed payments from Distribution Partners, which is really the norm in the industry. Apart from that, nothing is changing regarding payments.

qIf I terminate my account here, do I get the money owed to me or do I have to wait until I break $100.00 before I can leave?
aYou can close your account at any time, and monies owing will be paid out in full.

qCan you please explain how my files will be mirrored or moved as an Exclusive or Non-Exclusive Contributor?
aNon Exclusive: iStock can move or mirror your non-exclusive content – photo, video, illustration or flash– on other Getty Images/ Master Delegate sites.

Right now, as has been said here and in the article, the only plans are to mirror non-exclusive photos and illustrations at and If iStock decides to move or mirror your content in another collection on another site at anytime, we will let you know.

1. You will only be in the Partner Program if you opt-in – This is the same as always. We can never move or mirror your content downstream without your opting in.

2. Unless there is some other indication in the upload process or on the iStock site (as is currently the case with Vetta and Agency), iStock can move or mirror your exclusive content – photo, video, illustration, flash – to a similar or higher priced collection.

3. What does ‘Unless there is some other indication in the upload process or on the iStock site’ mean? You know how we have an opt-in for Vetta and Agency? That is ‘ some other indication on the site’. The default is that we can move content upstream but we can also impose some ‘rules’ on iStock that require you to opt-in.

Right now, the ONLY exclusive files that will be moved or mirrored are the Exclusive Video files, which will be mirrored on Vetta and Agency will continue to be collections that you need to opt-in to.

There are no plans to move any content to punchstock or Jupiter Images. Those sites were given as an example of what a ‘similar or higher price tier Collection’ might be.
There are no other plans to move exclusive content. If those plans ever change, we will always give you notice of the move/mirroring of content.

qWhen will the migration of non-exclusive files start to the Partner Program?
aEarly this fall we are planning a large migration of the non-exclusive photo files to the Partner sites. We expect that the migration may take until the end of 2011.

qiStock will remain fully responsible for any compliant enforcement issues with files you have mirrored elsewhere?
aThe iStock and Getty Images legal teams work together on enforcement issues and will continue to do so. There will be no change in enforcement action taken on your behalf as a result of these ASA changes.

qCan non-exclusive content also be mirrored upstream to certain higher-end distribution channels?
aYes, it could, although at this time, we don’t have any plans to move non-exclusive content into higher-end distribution channels.

qSo iStock is no longer our agent? Why was this changed to “distributor”?
aIn the current structure, iStock issues a license of your content (a sublicense if you will) to a customer. The agreement is between iStock and the customer. There is no legal relationship between the contributor and the customer.

In an agency structure, the agent generally enters in to the agreement on behalf of the principal. That is the license agreement would be between the contributor and the customer. iStock would only be the ‘agent’ of the contributor and not a party to that agreement in its own right.

iStock contributors and iStock customers do not have a legal relationship.
The word ‘distributor’ better reflects the realities of the relationship between the contributor, iStock and the customer.

There is no plan or intent to change our obligations to you (except as shown in the redline). The obligations to you, as they always have been, are set out in the Agreement. If there is some specific obligation that you are concerned about that you believe to be changing, please let us know.

qI do not see anything in Appendix A, the Rate Schedule about what royalties we’ll be paid for Partner sites other than Thinkstock and
a The rate schedule has not changed. There are currently no other partners besides Thinkstock and and, of course, Getty Images. If your content is moved or mirrored to any other site, the applicable royalty rates will be listed on the Rate Schedule 30 days prior to files being mirrored/moved.

qSo, all non exclusive files will be automatically mirrored on partner sites, but what happens to those files if, and when, I want to become exclusive? And will I be able to become exclusive or will I have to remove all files less than 18 months old ?
a If you decide to become exclusive, your files that are less than 18 months old will automatically be removed from the Partner Program. If you decide to not to remain in the Partner Program, all of your files will be removed from the Partner sites within 30 days.

qSo now you are going to move all the files to the Partner Program when you can't even move the ones I requested to be move a year ago?
a We are taking this extremely seriously and expect a radical improvement in that regard. As was alluded to the contributors at the London iStockalypse, we are currently working on a content ingestion, inspection and administration initiative. The first stage in that initiative is the creation of a new connector that will be much more effective than the old connector.

qHow will I know where my content is being licensed and what I am being paid?
aThe ‘My Uploads’ page, as it does now, will list all of your files and indicate what program (PP or GI) they are currently licensed under. The rate schedule will tell you your effective royalty rate and your actual royalties will be listed on your stats page on a monthly basis.

qIf I’m non-exclusive and I deactivate certain files from my portfolio, will that be enough to keep them from being added to the Partner Program?
a Yes. As of September 29th the new ASA takes effect. So you will have 30 days from today to remove whatever content you would like. If you decide to deactivate your content after September 29th, it will take up to 30 days to remove your content from the Partner sites, in accordance with the new ASA.

qWill the opt in for the Partner Program (for exclusives) be on a per file basis, or is it all in or out (for files older than 18 months)?
a It will continue to be on a per file basis, as it is now.

qIs Photo+ content also going to be mirrored on the Partner Program sites? If yes, will the content be sold at a higher price point?
a Once the new ASA is effective (Sept 29), all non-exclusive photos and illustrations will be mirrored at Thinkstock and, including Photo+. It will be priced the same at the other content on and thinkstock.

qWill more content be flowing into iStock from the Getty family? Will we see content from outside contributors and partner sites included in the "regular" (Non-Agency/Vetta/Editorial) collection at iStock photo?
a We are working extremely closely to make sure that a fair equilibrium is reached between the content provided from GI & iStockphoto contributors alike.

q Getty pays 20% commissions to contributors. Does that mean that for sales at Getty Images sites, contributors will be getting only 20% (even if they are entitled to the higher royalty rate)?
a All of the royalty rates for the various sites are listed on the rate schedule. There is a tab for Partner Program and GI sales that sets out the applicable royalties for those sites/collections.If/when content is mirrored or moved and a new royalty rate applies, the rate schedule will be updated with 30 days notice.

q I have just reread the Privacy Policy, and from what I can tell, it all relates to contributors' personal information. I don't see anywhere that it deals specifically with model release information. Can you clarify how information on model releases will be treated? Will it be transferred to distributor channels, and if so, will it be available publicly or to people who license the files? Needless to say, that would be a serious issue.
a Personal information of models is not governed by the privacy policy. Model release information, as always, is treated as set out in the model release. It is only used directly in relation to the licensing of content (defend claims, protect rights or notify trade unions). The legal teams at iStock and Getty Images work together on these kinds of claims and take the protection of that information (and yours!) very seriously.

qHow do I say no to the new ASA?
a Contact to close your account.

qWill my content sold through the Partner Program earn me Redeemed Credits? Why not?
a Redeemed credits is the method used on iStock to determine your royalty rate. Other sites have set royalty rates and don't use a tiered royalty rate system like iStock, therefore you won't be entitled to receive redeemed credits for files downloaded through Partner sites.
iStock Video

qCan you give us more information on how the exclusive videos will work on Getty? Will they be at a higher price point and will our royalty % be the same as it is for photos over there? Also what is the time frame for them to be transferred over to Getty?
a Exclusive videos on Getty Images will be priced at a premium than on iStock. The royalty will remain the very same as at this moment for all videos on Getty Images, which is 25%. We are expecting the mirroring of assets to be completed by the end of this very year.

(Edited on 2011-08-31 22:30:35 by pink_cotton_candy)
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