The reason why I deleted my account at 1x.com
In recent days I have noticed a big step backwards from the popular photo portal 1x.com. The entire portfolios of excellent photographers around the world are now circulating on the internet and their photos are being sold for ridiculous money.
Curation of the photographs
For those who have yet to come in contact with the 1x.com website. The 1x.com photo portal is one of a kind because all the pictures that are shown on the web passed through the curator, because you can find only a selection of the best. Only about 3% of all photos are published after the curation process. In the past, being published at 1x.com meant a great deal to us. Unfortunaely this is not the case for me anymore.
Uploading digital files of your photographs
Website 1x.com benefits from its traffic. The traffic came quite naturally, because you will not find a bad photo there. If you decide to sell photos through 1x.com, you need to upload a full resolution of your photos, suitable for printing. If you want to sell your photos through this website, you must sign the User agreement. Most of us signed these user agreement without reading them, which is a big mistake. Read on.
In the current user agreement you can see for example the following paragraphs:
1.9 “Customer” shall mean an individual or entity buying printed copies or digital image files of Your Photograph(s) made available for sale.
By making photos available for sale on 1x’s website you grant to 1x the right to market and sell and distribute or have distributed printed copies and digital image files of Your Photograph(s). 1x is also granted the right to sublicense the right to market and sell and to distribute or have distributed printed copies of Your Photograph(s) to 1x’s Partner(s), solely chosen by 1x. The license and sublicense(s) are non-exclusive. 1x will not sell printed copies and digital image files of Your Photograph(s) not made available for sale by you. 1x will not sublicense your Photograph(s) not made available for sale by you. 1x will not sell Your Photograph(s) as digital image files in greater resolution than 2,5 megapixels unless you have given written consent in an email.
6.1 Once Your Photograph(s) has been uploaded to 1x’s website and published in the Gallery, it is not possible to delete it unless you end your membership. Your Photograph(s) posted to social network sites will not be deleted even if your account is deleted. If you have special circumstances, like copyright issues or personal issues, contact support and state your reasons for deletion. 1x decides exclusively if Your Photograph(s) will be deleted in such a case. A copy of all Your Photograph(s) sent to the Curators will be saved as a history of your uploads for the curators and are not possible to delete unless you end your membership. Your Photograph(s) not sent to the curators or published in the Gallery can be deleted by you at any time.
7.9 1x has the right to offer digital image files of Your Photograph(s) in different formats and sizes as decided by 1x in it’s sole discretion. 1x will not offer digital image files of Your Photograph(s) in greater resolution than 2,5 megapixels. 1x might offer multiple formats to Customers for a single price when selling digital image files of Your Photograph(s).
7.19 If you wish to stop selling digital downloads or printed copies of any of all of Your Photograph(s) you may deselect them (indicated by a red cross) in your “Select photos to sell”-page in your “Account settings”-page at 1x’s website. If Your Photograph(s) are already being marketed, distributed and sold or offered for sale by 1x’s Partner(s) it may take up to 6 calendar months until 1x’s Partner(s) will cease to market, distribute, sell and offer Your Photograph(s) for sale after you have made your Photograph(s) unavailable for sale. 1x’s Partner(s) still have the right to sell photos
The disadvantages of digital photos at 1x.com
This is the worst situation that could occur to us. Although the user agreements is: 1x.com will not offer digital image files of Your Photograph (s) and greater than 2.5 megapixels resolution. None of us want to sell digital files of our photographs! 2.5 megapixels are still enough for someone to manipulate our photographs. And for what price? A photographer who signs such an agreement has no impact on the price which their photos will be sold at.
If the portal decides to sell your portfolio for $ 5, you can´t control it. I have sold a few photographs to my clients in case they wanted them on their website, but it was far less than 2.5 megapixels. In this case, I am able to dictate the price of my photographs. Do not forget that if your picture is sold through the partner portal of 1x.com, you will only get a fraction of the price.
What´s the price for your best picutres?
I deliberately avoided mentioning the names of the partner portals. It is important to realize that our best photos deserve more. We have invested a lot of time and money into our photography which made us the photographers we are today. Why should we give our photos for free to someone else? If you want to continue to sell your pictures in this way, you must not value your portfolio.
Benefits for direct sale
The greatest advantage when it comes to selling your own work directly to a client is that you have complete control over the terms of agreement of the sale. For example, you choose the price and you have direct communication with your client. In this way you know exactly where your pictures are going. This method helps to build strong relationships between both photographers and clients, which ensures excellent recomendations from your clients.
I finally deleted my account at 1x.com
Untill now the photo portal 1x.com was selling prints for reasonable prices. However, the situation has changed. They are selling all the pictures through 12 partner portals. Personally, I didn´t sign the new User agreement and I canceled the entire 1x.com account right away. Fortunately, I uploaded only 10 photos and they didn´t appeared on their partner portals. I hope they won´t in the future. Whatever you decide, that’s up to you.
Thank you for sharing this, I have spent time, money for equipement and Travel … so someone else can make a dime? Thanks I guess I will delete mine too.
Exactly Brian, I am glad you have the same opinion as mine!
Don’t cry baby, do not cry ……. 500 px pays photographer even better; I was paid 4 cents for one of my licenced pictures. Of course I have delicenced all of them…..
I’m Ralf, founder of 1x.com. Thanks for the feedback about why you deleted your account. It seems that you were concerned about selling photos as digital files in low resolution. There is an option in Photo Directory to control exactly which photos to offer digitally. This means that you can still sell prints of a certain photo but not sell digital image files of it. You can stop selling any photo both as prints and in digital format with a single click in Photo Directory, so you always have complete control. There is no reason to delete your account if you don’t want to sell photos. Our sales of digital image files is extremely limited and the images are only used for background images, which the buyers don’t have the right to print, edit or share.
If you are interested in earning some money on your photography 1x offers one of the biggest print sales networks in the world. It’s true that some prices at some partners stars at a low level, but this is for very small photos (like 15x20cm) on standard photo paper. If you choose a more exclusive material and bigger size the price may very well be 1000 euros or more. Many photographers have earned a lot selling prints at 1x. One of our best selling photographers have earned more than 5000 euros selling a single image. We have a wide range of partners all over the world, some have lower starting prices like you indicated but some only offer very exclusive products. As far as I know there is no other photo site on the internet which offers such a big print sales network as 1x and if your photos are popular you will earn a lot. The photographer always receives 50% of all royalties and you can follow exactly which images have been sold in your account and at any time remove them from sales if you no longer wish to offer them for sale.
Thanks again for your reaction and feedback.
Good light, Ralf
You said ” Our sales of digital image files is extremely limited and images are used for background images, which the buyers don’t have the right to print, edit, share” . How come that my image “Summer” sold for few dollars is now selling on Great Big canvas as a prints of any size ? In order to find out is it 1x who sold the licence ( as Great Big canvas said they pay for licence) no one is responding to my e mails at 1x support.
But for sure my mail is read because I am welcome on my home page 1x with updated agreement that if I do not sign my account will be deleted.
Since I uncheck all sale option right after finding out my images is reselling without my knowledge ( and I do not have option to delete image because it was featured on main page once) why I have to sign agreement where I give you the right to sell and do litteraly what ever you want with my images? I will delete my account by myself but after I solve this case. Or you can do it of course- to delete the trace.
So Ralf be so kind and let someone at least give me some feedback on my questions! All us professional photographer are once amateurs, but whether you want amateurs happy to be featured any where or professionals on 1x You and Your crew need to be professionals.
Thanks Matej, for sharing your information on 1.x. I was recently very much concerned on the way 1.X works. As you said, to me also it meant a lot when my photos were curated and published in the past. Only recently I can’t help but notice that when I opt out from selling that my photo’s are not published any longer. So I gather that commercial motives are now leading; I am also considering to delete my account. At least, I will give this a serious thought. Thank you very uich for sharing your opinion. Best regards, Karin
I think 1x is a great site for professional photographers to show their work. Not sure about selling, and do not care about it. For amateur photographer, like me, it is just a waist of time, effort and money.I paid for membership in hope to get professional advise , comments, well at least some views of my work. What I have got – ZERO! 🙂 If you want to share your work and want it to be seen by people – forget about 1x. Average number views per day is 0.5 – 0.7 if you are lucky. If you want to see great work of professionals then yes, go for it. But, what did I payed my money for? To have my photos stored in the cloud and seen by no one? Sorry, I have better place to keep them. 🙂 Good bye 1x, have a nice day! I am out.
I noticed the same thing… Being educated in photography, for a site to say a digital photographic image is curated and goes through a process, and then to see MANY of the same iconic landscapes, with MANY of these images suffering from technical flaws, lack of compositional elements, uniqueness, etc.. it is rather disappointing considering the cost to join this site. I too opted out to sell my work on 1x. I did a little poking around with published images, and most are all PRO accounts, and most images are for sale. Don’t get me wrong, some images are very strong, and shine with unique quality work as far as a backlit display goes, and the constructive exchange of comments in critique is fun and helpful. The print is the true representation of the end result, and artistry, IMO.
Thank you for the helpful information. Could you be so kind to tell who these 12 partners of the 1x? Thank you in advance.
Thanks for sharing all of the information above, regarding your personal experience with this website.
It seems like now days the trend of taking advantage (not doing business) from people who are trying, really hard and with all the expenses, to make it into the photography “industry” is ever growing. I haven’t heard about 1x at all up to now, I was doing some research – it looked very promising, as it is the case for such websites/platforms.
I’m really glad when people, like you, do not hesitate to share their experience. My latest, financial venture, experience was with productionparadise.com, I spend £500 for one year and some sort of highlights. The highlights turned out to be link to my website and profile only 3 times (each month) in their news letters, so for the rest of the year your link is buried somewhere in the pile. And the outcome from this newsletters was 4 visits and two emails from companies promoting services.
Anyway, I will do the same as you and will be sharing my experience on my personal blog, as if I could of find some feedback then (about productionaradise) I wasn’t going to spend my money for such useless service.
WHOA!! Dude… THANK YOU!!!!
I was THIS close to joining (had my PayPal page open and everything.
SOMETHING just didn’t FEEL right.
Thank you man!!
So what is the best alternatives for 1x.com? Also, what are the 12 partners? Thank you.
Yes i also would like to know what are alternatives for 1x
Absolutely agree with you!!!
They are absolutely not transparent, I found, yes found that I had 3 sales and for each sale I was rewarded for 1 dollar…Amazing, isn’t it? 🙂
After my questions about which size was sold I received such email from Jacob Javelou:
“We can contact the partners to find out which sizes they were sold at. I will ask our licensing team to do it.
Some of our best photographers are also featured to sell through our network of over 100 partners all over the world. You are selected for this extended sales network.”
They have over 100 partners which sell my works with such lack of information. That’s absolute nonsense, which looks more like a scam.
Thank you Matej for this very interesting post. I just deleted my 1x account too for a similar reason:
I recently discovered by a Google search, that one of 1x.com’s “partners”/publishers offered three of my 1x-published images for prices of 500 to 2700 Euros – WITHOUT my knowledge and permission.
Since my images were listed on the bestseller list in the publisher’s online-shop, I have to suppose that those images have also been sold, but I never got any information about sales in my 1x profile. After confronting the publisher and 1x with the facts, they claimed, that they never had sold any of my photos and that they were allowed to offer the images, after I made them available by activating the “For sale” option (!) in my profile settings.
This option is a really dishonest trick: once activated, 1x claims – according to the membership agreement paragraph 7 – the right to sell your images and high-resolution files EVEN HALF A YEAR after the option is deactivated again. BUT: there is no documentation about the option’s activation or deactivation date: neither you get any information in your image settings, nor you get an email information. And of course you won’t get any information at all about where your images are offered. And so you will not be able to re-enact or prove when the period of allowed offering/selling ends or if your images are still offered, even if you don’t want that anymore.
1x offered my images much longer than half a year after I deactivated the “For sale” option and probably would still do if I hadn’t found out by accident. I also discovered some other images from 1x-members in the publisher’s online-shop, which aren’t marked as “For sale” too on 1x.com, which is clearly recognizable by the “Buy”-button, which appears on the 1x photo page if “For sale” is activated.
Interesting detail: the publisher tried to shuffle out of responsibility by telling me that he doesn’t actively fill his own online-shop, since this is done by 1x by an interface, which gives them access to the publisher’s shop content.
All that brings me to the suggestion, that the persons behind 1x.com intentionally violate the membership agreement for their own economic advantage and I’m not willing to support this any longer.
What they offer the photos at is quite cheap. Nor do they specify what they are printing the photo on. As you all know, the substrate upon which the image is printed has a substantial impact on the “feel” of the image. I find it interesting that they not only get 50% of the profits, they only pay you once or twice per year. According to some posts here, they only received $1. While they say you can sell your print on your own, it would be hard to sell it for more than what they claim they are selling them for. Yet it appears they are indeed doing so. I have never heard of anyone getting full rights for your intellectual creative property without paying you something for it, either outright, commission, or royalty. That is total b.s.
As a physician, I am not dependent on my photography for a living. However, I will be damned if I will let someone unfairly profit off of my work.
Why would anybody sign a sales contract with such conditions?
“7.13 The compensation to you for each printed copy or digital download of Your Photograph(s) sold by 1x shall be fifty (50) percent of the net sales price, defined as the price to the customer less printing costs, shipping and handling costs, repro and image adjustment costs, transaction fees, agent fees, discounts, sales tax, custom duties and other taxes, fees and costs.”
This means you get half of the MARGIN 1x claims to get, after removing every costs and fees and taxes they can imagine… Nothing to do with the real PRICE the final customer paid. It’s easy to over-evaluate these costs, for example with a friendly printer or shipper… minimizing your earnings!
“7.15 The compensation to you for each printed copy of Your Photograph(s) sold by 1x’s Partner(s) under this Agreement shall be fifty (50) percent of the net royalty earned by 1x from 1x’s Partner(s), defined as the royalty earned by 1x from 1x’s Partner(s) less transaction fees, discounts, agent fees, sales tax and any other taxes, fees and costs.”
Now it’s even easier! You get half of the ROYALTY earned by 1x, and the Partner keeps for itself all the Margin (difference between the price paid by the customer and the costs of printing, shipping etc…, paid by the partner who now doesn’t need to over-evaluate them in order to keep the money!!!
And if it were not enough to keep anyone away from this kind of contract…:
“7.14 Your compensation […]”
You get the money at the very end of the quarter when the paiement was made by the final customer or the royalty was given by the re-selling partner… But only if you deserve to get paid more than fifty bucks ($ or €), if not you’ll have to wait till you earn fifty…
I bet this will not occur very soon!!!
unfortunately 1x has been a great gallery, today it seems more a shopping center at the service of its creators. They only take advantage of the work of thousands of photographers, share their work around the world and the photographer does not know where something has been sold, or worse, if it is sold and does not charge anything or a ridiculous amount.
The site is more than questionable even in its curatorship, focused on the sale for its owners with little qualified curators in many cases and photographic knowledge more than questionable to afford the luxury of selecting and evaluating the work of magnificent photographers.
Unfortunately the site has taken a fame, today undeserved, large gallery, is what will sustain it, but the operation and little transparency of its owners is more than questionable, could even border on illegality, but I can not assure you why not I have proof of that.
Working with “bribes” such as offering free indefinite menbership for putting the photos on sale or offering an additional € 500 a year says very little in favor of them, their greed has no limits or the site is clearly in decline.
It is a shame for the world of photography, unfortunately many photographers still think that being published in 1x by a more than doubtful team of curators is the best, for me no, it is the worst I have seen and I have found in photography websites , a real scam for a few to live at the expense of others’ work and above, devalue and despise the careers of great photographers selling their works at ridiculous prices, now between 27/49 USD, to make matters worse, they allow themselves the luxury of reocortalos and adapt them to a format of sale easier …. shameful.
I’m not a professional photographer, just an amateur who has his job to live in something else, but I think that accepting this also says very little about the photographer, that letting his work be manipulated for a few cents is having very little dignity and little Affection for the work of oneself … but everyone knows what they want, I do not accept any of this …
Hypocrisy reigns in 1x, in private, the people are very capable of criticizing it, but in public … everyone is silent …
I deleted my account, also … it’s a shame …
1X is a big scam. The curation process is a joke and support is none existent. Save your money and sanity by not joining.
Thank you very much. I think the same. And i’I delete my account very soon. All time when I open the 1x page I see many pictures that’s looking same .It’s become boring and I think why I am still here.
I’ve made the following experience with 1x : Early January i opened a account there as a Pro member and payed 71 Dollar for that for 1 year. It was about my third picture i uploaded when i saw after only 2 hours it was stated already as rejected !
And this after only 40 views at all ! But even the stated rules of 1x says that 60 Members has to curate first and after that it goes to the official Curators. I immediatly made screen shots about that. With that proofs i confronted 1x, i asked them for a adequate explanation either, or immediatly pay me back the money. The answer was just : “Me made a refund”. No explanation, no statement, no excuse ! So at least i got my money back. Its a shame that they dont keep what they promise,
just a deception ! My picture has never even been curated !!
Due to the special Ambience on 1x.com and the excellent photos all over, i decided to open a new account on it. What i can say now, is that i feel many improvement regarding the curation Process. Therefore i have to revise my comment i made above. And i truly hope i did not due an affront to anybody about that. Otherwise i truly ask for apology ! There was a lot of Emotions existing at this time and i regret as i may a bit overreact too. Anyway i would like to looking forward and having many exchanges more with all the other members there !
I had a lot of troubles with 1x.com. The curation process is a big joke and support is a bigger joke ! Save your money by not joining !
Yes 1x.com have double standards and not all.
For exposure of my work its very poor for the non pro.
Advice – non existant
Encouragement – non existant
Exposure – non existant (unless you a very good pro)
Philosophy of only accepting 3% of total uploads is removing any expectation of having your work seen.
I also cannot find anywhere on their site to delete my account.
I cannot wait to terminate my account
It looks that 1x operates similarly to stock photography, such as Adobe and so on. Adobe stock sells my photos for a few cents and that is the reason I am not uploading new photos anymore into Adobe stock. I spent 1000s of dollars in gears, traveling, time, and in some cases risk my own life for a photo to be paid 14 cents. I have been willing to join 1x, but after this forum, I am seriously hesitating to do so. Thanks, guys for your feedback.
Today I finally deleted my account. And I have 56 pictures published there. Feeling free.
My message to them when they asked me Why I deleted my account.
Good morning. After seeing the real photography on photo contests like IPA,lensculture and others I realized that my photography is really nothing (published or not published) and real purpose of your site and curating is just doing some money. Thank you and sorry for spending your and my time. Please delete my account and all photos.
I think 1x.com needs to be appreciated for what it is. I don’t have my best images there for sale but have a couple of older images for sale that are no longer in my portfolio. They sell regularly and provide me with a bit of money to update gear etc. Yes, the deal is lousy on my end but it’s better than old images taking up disk space and serving no purpose. I kind of get a kick out of the thought that one image, in particular, sits on walls all over the globe. As long as you accept what you are getting into I don’t see many negatives.
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Several of my photos can still be found for sale with their partners! They had said that all photos will be removed from being sold within a 3 month to 6 month period after account deletion with 1x. They do not tell you who their partners are, you have no idea where they are being sold and you have to track down where your photos are being sold on the worldwide web yourself! They do not show you which of your photos sold where and for how much. They cannot be trusted if this is the way they wish to proceed! Avoid 1x. I may have to file official complaints in Sweden and in the USA if my photos are still be sold without my consent especially if it will be over 6 months and heading towards 9 months or more. The most worrying is why does it take so long to remove photos from their partners from being sold, all this is very fishy to me, especially since they do NOT tell you where they are being sold! I will write back here in a few months to let you all know if my photos are still being sold with their partners.
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