It has become ever more difficult to put a number on size of the stock photography industry. None of the major companies release their numbers anymore and the number that has been floating around for years of $2 billion is clearly outdated, especially after the recession and huge changes in the way photography is bought and sold. From the numerous forum entries across the web it also becomes clear that photographers have seen their revenues decline drastically. Unfortunately all this information is anecdotal and personal.
Stockphotography expert Jim Pickerell, founder of the newsletter Selling Stock is making an effort to get more insight in earnings in the industry and has launched a photographer income survey. For every picture maker and seller that reads Fast Media Magazine this is a great opportunity to help quantify the developments in the market. This is what Jim Pickerell writes on his new website Photolicensingoptions:
Jim Pickerell is launching a new photographer income survey in an effort to determine general income trends for photographers in the last couple of years. We encourage photographers, worldwide, who have had any earnings whatsoever in the last two years from licensing rights to their images to answer this brief questionnaire. Please answer regardless of whether the income comes from stock-photo licensing or assignment work. One question will enable us to distinguish between the income from stock and from other sources.