DACS stitch up?

It seems that nothing can be left alone which works to support stock photographers! We endure falling fees, every more ‘generous’ terms given to buyers, and quite often the sort of dismissive ‘take or leave it’ attitude from agencies that makes it perfectly clear who is in charge.

Until now the annual DACS payments was almost a harking back to a golden age where Rights Managed photography was valued and respected. And more mundanely the annual lump sum payment just before Christmas has become something of a lifeline in the insecure world of freelance employment. It was obviously too good to last.

I don’t blame the people at DACs, who as far as I know have done their best to protect the interests of creatives, but they have been squeezed by the Copyright Licensing Agency. Anyway, the long and short of it is that the times are changing and fast.

So, starting off in early 2017 DACS claimants need to produce ISBN details of where their images have been used. To start with this will form a separate 10% of the pot, and the remaining 90% will  be distributed as in the past, this 10% will gradually rise to 40% by 2020 and beyond. The rather serious problem here is that photographers do not get told the details of where their images are used! How can we know the ISBN numbers?

It appears that the consequence will sadly be all too familiar – a smaller piece of pie for the creators and yet more for the middlemen.

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