Toxic, Exploitative, and Predatory – Unsplash Continues Their Race to the Bottom

Integrity. Do you remember when that meant something within the photography industry? It seems like a lifetime ago. We live in a world of consumption powered by greed and exploitation. We are in the midst of an all-out sprint to the bottom with our beloved industry at stake under the guise of community. Unsplash is at the helm of this ship and continues to devalue photography. The Unsplash Awards just finished their fifth installment and the company continued their exploitative quest for license grabs in exchange for exposure. Oh, and they promise to get your work seen by major brands, which is true. But, we have yet to see that pay off.

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Unsplash Trolls the Photo Community with Its Ironic Mail Out

We’re on Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsStitcherPocket Casts, and Spotify! You can also listen to it right here on The Phoblographer.

I recently received a promotional email from Unsplash. Like the rest of The Phoblographer team, I don’t support anything the company does. Its model is built on the foundations of a photographer’s desperation to be seen. The head honchos make money from it and give nothing back to the folks who likely made them a fair few bucks over the years. So, when this email came through, I had to laugh at the irony– I’m sure you will too.

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Unsplash 2020 Awards Continue to Make a Mockery of Photography

The Unsplash 2020 Awards add Polaroid and Ikea to the list of companies who do not value the work of photographers.

If you’re unfamiliar with Unsplash, don’t worry. You’re going to get a crash course in why this virus of a company is hated by photographers worldwide. You see, Unsplash is a community-driven stock photography website that preys on photographers who don’t know better. Unsplash disguises competitions as a way to get creators to upload images and give up all ownership rights. Companies like Nike, Ikea, Polaroid, Peak Design Squarespace, and others use those images royalty-free in their ad campaigns. We’ve reported about Unsplash in the past, and we’ll continue to lead the charge against them. If you couldn’t tell, we’re totally against the Unsplash 2020 Awards. Let’s discuss why Unsplash and the companies supporting them are nothing but cancer to photography and photographers.

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Unsplash Now Working with Brands in a Puzzling Advertising Model

Unsplash takes on a business model that claims to provide paid opportunities for contributors while supporting its operations.

For those who ever wondered how Unsplash has been making money (since they have been giving away your photos for free), the company now shares theie answer: a new advertising model that, they say, was in the works since the platform started. Called Unsplash for Brands, it involves exactly what it says on the label, wherein brands play a significant part on the platform in a bid to make “Advertising that is beautiful and valuable.” This move, they say, will not only keep the company afloat, but also offer paid opportunities for contributors who want to take part in this project.

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These Media Companies Condone Unsplash Blindsiding Photographers

Once again, it’s time to call out a rights grab when we see one.

We at the Phoblographer have already spent a lot of our energy talking about how and why Unsplash is profoundly detrimental to our industry. While they are not the only company to engage in rights grabs, or run the only contest guilty of blatant copyright obtainment, they are undeniably one of the worst, most unapologetic perpetrators. If you’re not presently aware of the danger they pose to photographers and working professionals for any reason, here are the main takeaways to know. Continue reading…

How Using Unsplash Got This Photographer Into Legal Trouble

We’ve been warning photographers about losing rights to their work when they upload photos on Unsplash. Now, a photographer and business owner tells us about the legal issue he could be facing after using one such photo from the platform. 

If you’ve been considering posting stuff on Unsplash to get traction for your work, we’ve been very vocal about what you stand to lose. This time, we want to share what it’s like when you’re on the other side of the fence, and the legal problem you could find yourself grappling with when you source a photo from Unsplash for use on your blog or website. Simon Palmer, a photographer, cameraman, and business owner, recently shared with us an unsavory experience that unfolded after using a photo from Unsplash for a blog. His marketing team has been instructed to use only copyright-cleared images for this purpose, so they thought it wouldn’t be an issue. However, sometime later, they were contacted by international copyright enforcer Copytrack with a copyright infringement notice, requesting a license fee. He double-checked the image on their blog and was sure they downloaded the photo from Unsplash and credited the photographer as was indicated on the site.

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Opinion: Unsplash’s Latest News Is a Mockery to Photographers

unsplash

Over 1,000,000 images have been shared on Unsplash now; that makes our heads and hearts hurt.

We have spoken in some depth about Unsplash and how they are unraveling the threads of photography as we know it. It seems as though the threads are being pulled apart faster and faster. The company just announced that over a million images have been shared with them by photographers and creators who may not understand exactly what they are doing to themselves or the industry as a whole. Heavy sigh Continue reading…

New Photographers: Please Stop Supporting Unsplash, Support Behance

You don’t need to keep giving your rights up photographers; you can still have self-respect.

The motivation for this piece comes not only from the message that I’ve been actively preaching about Unsplash and the companies supporting them, but also because I’ve noticed that a ton of new photographers who enjoy showcasing their work on Reddit just don’t know any better. And so it is my genuine hope that everyone shares this message with every other photographer that they know. This isn’t at all a sponsored post for Behance–we’re pretty strict about our editorial policies and transparency in a journalism world where so many aren’t. I don’t want to call this a public service announcement, but instead I want to call this my beckoning to photographers to stop giving up their work and their creativity for free.

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Dropbox Partners With Unsplash in Deal That Rips off Photographers

Image rights

Apparently Dropbox thinks Unsplash and their toxic views in regards to image rights are cool.

Just when we thought things couldn’t possibly get much worse for photographers who unknowingly give up their image rights to services like Unsplash, things take another turn for the worse. The real bad part here is that Dropbox, one of the largest cloud based services around, has now got in on the act. A service called Dropbox Paper which allows teams to collaborate in online projects will now have access to over 850,000 images that have been quite honestly snatched from talented photographers around the globe; and they won’t get a single penny for their work. Sigh.  Continue reading…

How to Grow as a Photographer on Instagram (And Off It)

Fact: you can grow as a photographer by collaborating with folks and networking with people on Instagram. But there’s a huge difference between growth on social media and actually growing as a photographer. In fact, they’re very far from one another. If you’re making money as a photographer on Instagram, it’s because you were hired to do a gig. But let’s explore more of that in this post.

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We’re Hiring in the US and Worldwide. Come Work for The Phoblographer!

Hey folks,

The Phoblographer had a bunch of significant changes last year. For example, we made an excellent app! And we’re looking ahead to the future to continue our evolution. With that said, we’re continuing our progressive approach to the photo world. Women, for example, make up half our staff. We’re POC-led. Lots of our team are internationally based, and we’re still growing. To that end, Women, POCs, the LGBTQ+ community, and anyone else is very encouraged to apply. You’ll find on our media kit that Gen Z and Millennials make up most of our readership. Want a steady gig? Take a look. Want an internship? Take a look!

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Need a Gig? We’ve Got a Sweet One for You!

Hey folks,

The Phoblographer had a bunch of significant changes last year and we’re still hiring! We made an excellent app! And we’re looking ahead to the future to continue our evolution. With that said, we’re continuing our progressive approach to the photo world. Women, for example, make up half our staff. We’re POC-led. Lots of our team are internationally based, and we’re still growing. To that end, Women, POCs, the LGBTQ+ community, and anyone else are very encouraged to apply. You’ll find on our media kit that Gen Z and Millennials make up most of our readership. Want a steady gig? Take a look. Want an internship? Take a look!

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Come Work for The Phoblographer!

Hey folks,

We’re still accepting applications! The Phoblographer had a bunch of significant changes last year. For example, we made an excellent app! And we’re looking ahead to the future to continue our evolution. With that said, we’re continuing our progressive approach to the photo world. Women, for example, make up half our staff. We’re POC-led. Lots of our team are internationally based, and we’re still growing. To that end, Women, POCs, the LGBTQ+ community, and anyone else is very encouraged to apply. You’ll find on our media kit that Gen Z and Millennials make up most of our readership. Want a steady gig? Take a look. Want an internship? Take a look!

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Like to Research? We’ve Got a Gig You’ll Love!

Hey folks,

Think you’ve got what it takes to be our Science Editor? The Phoblographer had a bunch of significant changes last year. For example, we made an excellent app! And we’re looking ahead to the future to continue our evolution. With that said, we’re continuing our progressive approach to the photo world. Women, for example, make up half our staff. We’re POC-led. Lots of our team are internationally based, and we’re still growing. To that end, Women, POCs, the LGBTQ+ community, and anyone else is very encouraged to apply. You’ll find on our media kit that Gen Z and Millennials make up most of our readership. Want a steady gig? Take a look. Want an internship? Take a look!

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The Phoblographer is Expanding its Art Team, Come Work for Us!

Hey folks,

Did you know that we’re hiring folks to expand our Arts team? The Phoblographer had a bunch of significant changes last year. For example, we made an excellent app! And we’re looking ahead to the future to continue our evolution. With that said, we’re continuing our progressive approach to the photo world. Women, for example, make up half our staff. We’re POC-led. Lots of our team are internationally based, and we’re still growing. To that end, Women, POCs, the LGBTQ+ community, and anyone else is very encouraged to apply. You’ll find on our media kit that Gen Z and Millennials make up most of our readership. Want a steady gig? Take a look. Want an internship? Take a look!

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Like Writing About Tech in the Photo World? Come Work for Us!

Hey folks,

Thanks so much for the applications so far! We’re accepting others! The Phoblographer had a bunch of significant changes last year. For example, we made an excellent app! And we’re looking ahead to the future to continue our evolution. With that said, we’re continuing our progressive approach to the photo world. Women, for example, make up half our staff. We’re POC-led, lots of our team are internationally based, and we’re still growing. To that end, Women, POCs, the LGBTQ+ community, and anyone else is very encouraged to apply. You’ll find on our media kit that Gen Z and Millennials make up most of our readership. Want a steady gig? Take a look. Want an internship? Take a look!

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Come Work for a Team That Champions Diversity in the Photo Industry

Hey folks,

Did you know that we’re hiring? The Phoblographer underwent a bunch of significant changes last year. For example, we made an excellent app! And we’re looking ahead to the future to continue our evolution. With that said, we’re continuing our progressive approach to the photo world. Women, for example, make up half our staff. We’re POC-led. Lots of our team are internationally based, and we’re still growing. To that end, Women, POCs, the LGBTQ+ community, and anyone else is very encouraged to apply. You’ll find on our media kit that Gen Z and Millennials make up most of our readership. Want a steady gig? Take a look. Want an internship? Take a look!

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The Phoblographer is Hiring. Come Work for Us!

Hey folks,

The Phoblographer had a bunch of significant changes last year. For example, we made an excellent app! And we’re looking ahead to the future to continue our evolution. With that said, we’re continuing our progressive approach to the photo world. Women, for example, make up half our staff. We’re POC-led. Lots of our team are internationally based, and we’re still growing. To that end, Women, POCs, the LGBTQ+ community, and anyone else is very encouraged to apply. You’ll find on our media kit that Gen Z and Millennials make up most of our readership. Want a steady gig? Take a look. Want an internship? Take a look!

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Why is Modern Polaroid Film Nowhere as Good as the Old Stuff?

This blog post is inspired by a thread that happened on Reddit. I personally responded to it as I’m a Mod for R/Polaroid. But I realize that there is a ton of misinformation and folks who don’t know what’s going on. Modern Polaroid Film isn’t what it used to be. Further, there are great reasons for that. And in this blog post, we’re going to explain everything to you.

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7 Terrible Reasons to Not Pay for a Professional Photographer

If you’ve ever done photography as a side-gig or as a profession, then you’ve probably heard the excuses why you shouldn’t pay for a photographer All of these reasons have always been terrible. Back in 2010, not too long after I founded this website, I rounded up a few reasons. Then in 2014, I shared more reasons. The year is now 2022 and as much as things change, a lot of them stay the same. Here are some terrible reasons to not pay for a professional photographer.

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