High-end photo-sharing site 500px announced it is shutting down 500px Marketplace, its stock photo platform, in favor of offering images through Getty Images – exclusive worldwide, except People’s Republic of China (PRC) – and Visual China Group (VCG), exclusive in PRC. 500px was acquired by VCG earlier this year. Also, in May, Getty and 500px entered into the distribution partnership, sending signals more changes were coming.
In the end, the company said Marketplace’s lagging performance in the stock photography market led to the decision:
500px has recognized that Marketplace hasn’t performed as well in the stock photography space as hoped. As a result, we had to choose between investing resources in building on and further promoting 500px Marketplace, or considering a distribution-only model for 500px, a revenue model that has been growing in recent years. With significant brand loyalty, great customer bases, and very positive momentum as they continue to expand their reach within the stock photography industry, both Getty Images and VCG are the obvious choice to represent 500px exclusively, worldwide.
500px also said it not allowing photographers to upload Creative Commons licensed photos.