Friday, May 29, 2009

The Musings Of A Photographer

The disgruntled upgrade path of a photographer---- Honestly Sony, wtf are you doing?!?!?! I don't know what exactly I am going to do now, but I think my plan is this; to go with what is now an "older Alpha", probably a200, a300, a350, and just wait and see. The newly released Alpha's have me more than disappointed, honestly. They lack features, features which I use in my everyday photography, and are clearly aimed at what I can only describe at Soccer Mom's. In fact, someone on the dpreview Sony dslr forum made the comment "The girlfriend dslr has officially landed!", while someone else said "Wife Camera 101 debuts!" (Seriously who the hell thought of a PINK lcd screen on the camera? WTF!?!?!?) You can watch the youtube review of 2 of the 3 new dslr's here I like how the Sony rep states "The a200's successor", ya, sure, lol It is dummied down for geeze sakes!

So here I sit, debating about all this, and wondering what exactly Sony is doing. I am going to have to sell my current dslr and a couple lenses (now ya all know WHY I bought 3 lenses from Ritz) to buy my new body eventually, which will happen in a few months. Sure, an a900 would be nice, is it realistic? No. Especially NOW considering all this and the fact that my money would be better spent in other real life issues. So I have come to a conclusion. I may just buy a cheap used a200 for now, and play the wait and see game, for a few. I am honestly very disappointed in these new cameras Sony has come out with, these are very beginner cameras, more so than any other out there and make a d40 look like a pro level camera.

If I don't like what I see, well, my only hope then is that Fuji releases the s6 Pro. Otherwise, I may just hop into a s5 Pro. Other than that, Pentax I have always liked, a lot, and Bestbuy has the Nikon d200 on closeout for $599.

How bad is bad? Look at this post on dpreview:

"Sony entry level DSLR's - redefining the term Upgrade

A100 had MLU, DOF preview, AEL button and SSS switch
A200 only had the AEL button and SSS switch
A230 has none."

The A200 was 70 gram lighter than the A100 and most people who handled both agree that build quality seemed to be worse with the A200. The A230 is 150 gram lighter, so I wouldn't be surprised if it feels like a cheap toy. To make matters worse, its framerate is now lower too (2.5fps vs. 3.0fps in the A100 and A200).

Does anyone want to guess what will go next? For the A260 I bet Sony is considering to drop PASM and RAW. After all, who need those?

I hate this crap. Minolta, where art thou? Please come back and save us, we dearly miss you more than we can say.....

Hey Photo Forums? Guess what? It's 2009! Wake up!--- You know what I can't stand, and is a serious pet peeve of mine? Photography Forum sites that only allow 700px-800px photographs on the longest side is what I can't stand. It is 2009, wake up! This usually equates to people posting photos from their flickr site that are like 400px in size. Seriously. How the hell is anyone supposed to see ANYTHING at a resolution of 400px? It's 2009, 24" monitors are the norm this day and age. If you didn't know, your ass better call somebody! I didn't join 4 forums because of this rule, the 2 exceptions is and which only allows 700px on the longest, because, well, the info one gains there is next to invaluable.

Shutterstock CEO--CSR Skills Much? FAIL!--- Seriously, want to see how NOT to talk to your contributor base? This is ridicules and shows not only complete lack of respect but arrogance as well.

A little history first---The IRS is for some reason withholding taxes of international contributors on Shutterstock, even though they are not citizens and pay NO US tax. They have a right to be pissed, I would be too. There has been a massive outcry and well, there should be, as well. (Last I heard, wasn't America essentially founded on the catchphrase "No taxation without representation"? So do they get to vote in our elections then?) Check this out on the Shutterstock forums

Here is the post on how the CEO of Shutterstock responded to the community (not the way to address your clients mind you IMO. BAD customer service defined!)

Witholding Tax Issue - Calm down.


1) This is a US government regulation. What would you like us to do about it? Go to jail? Go out of business? We are sorry - but we can’t just move the company out of the US or creating another company somewhere else to pay you. That is called tax evasion. These are laws. We can’t change the laws. We have 60 employees in NYC - they aren’t going anywhere.

2) If you follow the rules you won’t be double taxed. Your country has rules that we follow every day also. You may need to do a bit of work here, but we will help you out with them. You will have a chance to get your ITIN before we start following regulations and witholding.

3) If you don’t want to deal with this, then leave. We are happy to remove all your images for you. If I continue to read threads on the forum that you will be taking your images elsewhere, I will delete them myself and close your account. I’ve done it a few times already- I am not kidding about this.

4) Online petition claiming we are taxing you? Why would we be taxing you? Again, this is the US government. We are just following the law.

5) Want to change your avatar to something obnoxious? Again, I will personally delete your profile, images, etc. You are just creating more work for us.

6) If you think other microstock companies are except from paying tax, think again. It’s a matter of time before they start following the law also.

7) Why don’t US citizens have to deal with this? Because we already have their W9 forms. Don’t worry - they dealt with it also.

8) Welcome to doing business internationally. We will all make money together - but we have to follow the rules.

9) We will answer every single question you have - but you have to give us time to get to them.

Jon Oringer
Shutterstock Images LLC

Captured this past Sunday at Mount Evans Wilderness here in Colorado, Bristlecone Pines are the oldest living on the planet, it is amazing to think that some of these trees are literally thousands of years old, imagine the stories that they could tell if they could speak! To see more of my images, click the photo which will take you to the gallery on my website with the photos from my trip!Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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