iStockphoto Founder Setting Up New Agency

Bruce Livingstone, the founder of iStockphoto which was subsequently acquired by Getty Images is starting up a new agency called Stocksy. Currently the website is in private BETA and only taking submissions. No images are being licensed. The agency pays 50% commission to photographers and 100% on extended licenses. Photographers also become a form of shareholder that will get paid dividend.

This is what they say on their website: ‘Stocksy pays the highest royalty in the industry as well as dividends and patronage performance returns to artists, 50% on regular sales and 100% of extended licenses. By design, Stocksy pays out all profits to artists. In addition to paying dividend and patronage fees to artists on a yearly basis, each member of the co-op owns real equity in the company.’

For now clearly submission and contributor focussed the project is getting a good amount of attention in microstock forums. Not only because Bruce Livingstone is involved but also due to the recent uproar of iStockphoto contributors about a licensing deal to Google and the ‘firing’ on a longstanding, top 5 contributor, Sean Locke, as a result of that uproar.

What do you think? Will this be a threat to iStockphoto and other microstock agencies or is the market too full already?

Marco | Editor

Editor at large and founder of a bunch of stockphoto businesses