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PhotoShelter To Close Oct. 10
By Mike Pasini, The Imaging Resource
(Thursday, September 11, 2008 - 16:30 EDT)

The Personal Archive will continue to provide a place for photographers to license their images.

"We have typically used the blog to inspire and congratulate. Today is atypical," wrote PhotoShelter CEO Allen Murabayashi in today's blog entry announcing thestock photography site will close on Oct. 10. "We knew that sales would be challenging, but we honestly underestimated the complexity of sales," he noted.

Murabayashi cited four "key learnings" the company discovered. Those included the dominance of the stock photography market by Getty, the immediacy of research requests, buyers' desire for convenience over diversity and the complexity of licensing an image.

He confirmed that the Personal Archive will continue to give "individual photographers the tools to market and license their images themselves."

The text of the company's official follows:

The PhotoShelter Collection Is Closing
Official Statement --September 11, 2008

Today, we regret to announce our plans to close The PhotoShelter Collection, our stock photography marketplace, effective October 10, 2008.

Going forward, PhotoShelter will focus our energy and resources on enhancing the PhotoShelter Personal Archive our original product that today provides thousands of photographers worldwide with bulletproof backup storage and robust ecommerce capabilities for managing image sales online. We will continue our commitment to developing new ways to use technology to advance the art and business of photography.

Just one year ago, we started the PhotoShelter Collection with a mission to change the image marketplace for good. Our objective was to provide an unprecedented selection of fresh, diverse, and authentic imagery culled from a global community of thousands of photographers, while bucking industry standards by treating our contributing artists fairly. Rather quickly, we built a unique position in the industry, fueled by integrity and a true passion for photography.

The PhotoShelter Collection became a haven where photographers could find a better deal based on our 70/30 revenue split, and access to professional insights directly from world class image buyers. Buyers welcomed the Collection as a much needed alternative -- whether they liked the access to content never before seen, or simply because they appreciated our approach to better treatment for photographers.

Our unique approach, however, was insufficient to change buyer behavior on a grand scale and generate revenues quickly enough to satisfy our goals for this product line. Hence, our decision is to close the Collection.

We want to express our deepest gratitude to our contributors and buyers -- for your participation and support of our company, our community, and our mission. It has been an honor and a pleasure to work with you.

As for the future of PhotoShelter, our team will refocus heavily on supporting our original product, the PhotoShelter Personal Archive. We'll continue adding new features that help individual photographers use our technology to market and sell images directly to their own clients. We'll also be hard at work developing new innovations that make best use of our industry knowledge and world class technology team. Our financial position remains solid and we look forward to working with the photography community for years to come.

More details can be found in a personal statement on CEO Allen Murabayashi's blog "A Picture's Worth"
and FAQs posted at photoshelter.com.

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