Unsplash SELLS OUT to Getty Images! What Happens To Contributors & The Library?
Breaking news is: Unsplash has been acquired by Getty Images.
What does this mean for the 2 million images on Unsplash?
What Remains in Unsplash
Unsplash has said, the library will still be free, and that we still own our images.
And the license isn’t changing.
But all I can say is, nothing is changing yet.
Of course, no one is working on the first day and say, right.
We’re gonna start putting paid walls onto the Unsplash library.
No, they will take it bit by bit.
My gut reaction was a little bit of vomit coming into my mouth.
I signed up with the belief that this was an open source platform that promoted free photography.
And to see it now being sold out to Getty Images is sickening.
It really goes against the spirit and ethos of what Unsplash was sold out.
My experience with Getty Images, is that they do not adequately compensate their contributors.
Reactions to the Buy-Out
So, let’s get into the nitty gritty.
“Does the acquisition benefit contributors?
If so, how?
We see the potential to accelerate opportunities for contributors and provide resources for initiatives like Unsplash Hire.” (from Unsplash blog post)
This is corporate speak for we’re going to *beep* you over.
In the Unsplash Slack channel, there has been some feedback.
“Unsplash used the community it built to gain enough equity to cash out to a big capitalistic corporation.
Unsplash wasn’t sold for some higher motive of moving the industry forward.
It was sold to become a profitable business.”
“The decision to become part of Getty is a selfish betrayal to all those who fuel the platform with their creative work.”
So Unsplash, I used to love you, but what have you done?
Food for Thought
I feel like my childhood sweetheart has just sold me out to some smarmy *beep*.
Anyway, if I was trying to propose a valid idea is that you can say that they never explicitly said that they would never sell out.
You can argue that the founders created an incredible valuable resource.
And they should be compensated.
But the founders built this resource on the goodwill of the photographic community.
Their energy and their contribution made it what it was.
They have not been consulted.
And they have no say in what the future of Unsplash will bring.
It is a sad day for another platform used an ethos to gain market share, and then stabbed us at the back.
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