In an open letter to the photographic community, five of Stock Artist Alliance's former directors state that "the last few years have seen dramatic and wrenching changes in the stock photography industry. Photographers' and agencies' traditional business models are under tremendous competitive pressures."
As a result, they say, the resources essential to sustain the SAA have dried up, forcing the organisation to shut down from next month.
"SAA was founded to advocate for stock photographers' rights and interests and for eight years functioned as an independent trade association." In 2009, it joined the Alliance of Visual Artists "to take advantage of the group association management benefits", which meant a major shift in the company management. At the time, the SAA witnessed "dramatic downturn in stock licensing revenue for most photographers and a steady decline in SAA membership."
The former leaders say the SAA has been in conversation with AVA for the past six months, raising questions on the future of stock photography and opportunities for organisations like the SAA. The two organisations discussed the "role for a dedicated association for stock photographers when image licensing continues to decline as a major business model", "how can SAA represent the diversifying business interests of our members when stock is a smaller and smaller component of their overall photography business?" and "should SAA try to expand our membership base to address other business models [...] or is it best to look to fellow established organizations that are better positioned to support our members?"
The SAA identified the "multiple overlapping photographic trade associations" as a key problem, and therefore concluded that "the best choice is for photographers to consolidate their affiliations in support of larger, established organisations, which are in a better position to address a broader range of image licensing issues."
As a result, the SAA members will have the possibility to transfer their memberships to the Professional Photographers of America or the American Society of Media Photographers.
Most Popular Articles
Updating your subscription status
We have a vacancy for a Key Account Manager working on The British Journal of Photography
Magnet Harlequin, one of the UK's leading Creative Production Agencies is seeking a new Head of Photography.
We have opportunities for two experienced photographic, audio or video technicians.