for Posting your Images?]
March 2, 2006 By Dave Kristula
Lots of people like to take photographs ... ImageGravy is the first [host] I know of that promises a share of revenue for allowing them to host your image.
I got an e-mail today about ImageGravy.com which is a relatively new site that allows you to post images in your own gallery, link to your gallery, and then get a share in the site revenue (yes: money) when people view your images.
To me, this is an interesting concept that brings back many memories. A few of you know, but many don't know, that my web site started in 1996 because I needed a way to pay for a used car, car insurance, and gas. I really didn't want to get a paper route. (I was fourteen-years-old at the time.) Well, I was always on the lookout for an opportunity, and my friend e-mailed me about a new company called "The Commonwealth Network" which said if we posted "web" banners on the top of our web pages, we'd get paid based on the number of unique impressions (a unique impression is a single person who visits a page, seeing the ad at the top).
It took me about three months of hard work before I earned my first check of around $60. But I saw all the possibility that was just ahead of me. The Commonwealth Network was the first publicized network that allowed regular webmasters (the small guys) to put graphical advertisements on their sites. They had some issues making money, which led them to revise their terms rapidly, and eventually I moved on to new ad networks.
So you say, how is this connected to ImageGravy? It's not directly, but it's in the same spirit. Lots of people like to take photographs, whether it's of themselves, their friends, or just random other things, and lots of people like to create images with their computers, or scan artwork they created. There are lots of sites that will host images for free, but ImageGravy is the first one I know of that promises a share of revenue for allowing them to host your image. So it's a neat concept.
Another part of what I'm seeing here is that there is a built-in referral element, which is necessary for sites to grow (MySpace.com grew on the referral element--you wanted more friends in your "Friends" section, so you sent e-mail invitations to people who weren't signed up yet). ImageGravy says they'll work the same way, giving you a 10% share from people you refer. So even if you don't have a knack for taking photos, you can still benefit from the site by referring your friends.
The site reminds me a little bit of both AllAdvantage (the company that was paying people to view advertisements on their computer screens while they surfed the web) and Epinions (the company that paid people to write reviews of products). I think an important difference to note here is both -those- companies promised exacts, which are never possible in the business world. ImageGravy is taking the more sane approach of "we'll share the pot of revenue with you" instead of promising an exact amount of money when the pot revenue could obviously vary from month-to-month.
If you'd like to sign up through my referral, you can click here, and I'm sure you'll find the site interesting just as I have. It'll certaining be interesting to see where it goes over the next few months.
Dave Kristula is the editor of SLASH Magazine. He's always on the lookout for ways for regular people to make some cash on the net. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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