The cost of rejection who pays?

The problem with rejected assets is that some artists will not learn from the rejection and still be uploading the same content the next time, they will not do the research and change the content or workflow, and you often see in the forums some artists will just not understand and take it as a personal insult and sometimes leave, while others will take the same view as a soccer coach and play the averages, 100 shots and hope a couple get through.

There is a cost to the business for every image inspected, accepted or rejected, it is ‘Free’ to upload many contributors think, so they keep up the high uploads of so-so images and a few will get accepted, but they are wrong as the cost is being meet by keeping commissions low and using some of the sales revenue from other contributors to pay for the higher rejection rate, simple economics, the higher the rejection rate the higher the cost for each accepted image.

As libraries are starting to reject more images the costs to market are increasing and this will lead to another squeeze on the contributors, if the stocksite want to maintain artists percentages then they need to look at the inspection cost and how they can deal with these and return higher a percentage to the contributors.

Inspection has to be a manual process and the inspectors need to be paid, let’s say an inspector is paid 0.05 (5 cents) to inspect a single asset, an example of 2 accepted from 10 accepted means the cost of getting the two assets accepted is 0.25 cents each, a lot more per accepted asset than the contributor that gets 8 from 10 accepted.

But sometimes the careful artist will get the same commission for a sale, the website will still have the cost of storing the rejected assets for a while to answer any email complaints etc:

There are a few of ways to address this cost, first as some do now ban or limit the artists uploads for a while, second is to reduce the artists share by a small percentage based on rejections or acceptance.

Another fairer system could be if you have an established collection and getting good sales, and an artist is persistently getting high levels of rejections, then charge 0.10 for each failed asset back to the artist this would make them realise there is a cost for rejected assets and maybe do some research on each site as to what is getting accepted, so they can target specific assets to different website, this will help with diversity, and may even lead to a bit more revenue to pay artists.

Restrictions and targets do not work as well as charging back, if an artist uploads 100 assets and 60 get rejected, getting an invoice at the end of the month for $6 will have a bigger impact that setting an acceptance target.

Follow up: How to deal with rejection in seven steps

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