Scoopshot Pro to become the Uber of Photography?


Sometime back, I wrote about a crowdsource photography platform which allowed you to take photos from your mobile device and sell them as microstock images. 

My own experience on the platform didn't go well. First, there were so called 10 dollar assignments where the best photo will get bought from Scoopshot themselves, it turns out that the photos that were purchased were the worst ones imaginable and somehow I felt cheated to have participated. 

With that, the Finnish owned crowdsourced mircostock platform started to falter and with funding already running into millions, it looked like they were going down the gutter. 

Then they announced ScoopShot Pro, a Uber like business model where photographers could get hired based on their shooting experience and location. Your portfolio will have only NINE images. For any digital photographer, this should be easy peasy. In any given day, a digital photographer can shoot a whole stream of photos with only the best chosen for the portfolio. Or for that matter, a photo that could be composited to look like a single frame image. 

Scoopshot Pro is not a Professional Network for Pros

Apparently anyone can join, and the best part of it is there is no requirement to own expensive equipment. You get hired based on a selection of images found on your online portfolio and the lowest price per hour or per assignment. 

The incentive for photographers is to get hired on the spot based on location requirements and genre of photography. So if you do weddings, chances are they won't be asking you to shoot a car or wildlife image. 

Scoopshot says that the assignments will be prepaid in advance by the customers. Which sort of means the prices are not set by you but rather by Scoopshot themselves. This sounds particularly distressing to photographers who are thinking that they can be paid as good as their counterparts in developed countries. What you need to worry about is minimum wage. How low are you willing to accept in terms of fees for an assignment brief. That's because if there is a match up for two similar photographers from one location, I assume that both of you will be notified. Who takes the job depends on who is faster on the trigger and hit the accept button. 

Billing is handled by Scoopshot themselves and you don't have to lift a finger. Once you submit your assignment pictures, the customer has to approve them. This will mean that you will have to pay the model in advance of your salary or fees if one is used. 

You are also required to undertake the whole assignment without any advance payment of expenses as well. Which means money upfront by the photographer to pay his way and the cost of it all is factored into the assignment cost so you cannot claim any further expense. 

Scoopshot also mentioned that experience is what counts and you are required to list them to prospective customers. That's kind of difficult if you don't specialise in a genre that will help you get the job done. 

For example, advertising photographers would have far more experience shooting commercial photos as compared to wedding or street photographers will gain the upper hand for commercial request. 

But street photographers would be better off provided editorial photography than commercial photographers....and so on. 

Hiring photographers seems to be at the customer's request if they pay an annual fee. Please note the pricing package listed above as it clearly states that they have unlimited mobile task which they can request for as assignments from photographers around the world. 

All a sudden, this Uber Photographer platform starts to get fishy. 

Customers don't want mobile photos....they want high quality DSLR photos and if you are paying to get mobile tasked assignments, I think you as a potential customer will have grounds to believe that you might not be getting the best deal for your money. 

So until this rolls out and proves to be true. We can only guess how far and wide this platform will be in enticing professionals to their fold. 

After all, Uber is not about quality but price. If you can undercut the market minimum, that makes for a good business model.