Summit News

Corbis offers bloggers free photos, with ads

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stock photography company Corbis is offering Internet bloggers access to some of its images for their posts for free in exchange for showcasing advertising embedded into the photos.

Corbis and its digital rights partner, PicScout, will allow bloggers to access photos via a Web link from the site, now in a test phase, Corbis Chief Executive Gary Shenk told the Reuters Media Summit in New York on Tuesday.

The photos will either include an ad overlay on part of the image, or embedded advertising that pops up when a Web user runs a cursor over the picture.

“We work with a partner so that those pictures are tracked, and if they’re being used illegally, we can figure that out,” Shenk said. “But as long as they are downloaded through this application, you’re legit and you’re ready to go.”

PicApp also offers bloggers the opportunity to earn ad revenue based on how many times Web users click on the images posted to their blogs, according to the Web site.

Slideshow ( 2 images )

Shenk was promoted to the CEO role in July and charged with turning around privately held Corbis, which has not posted a profit since Microsoft Corp Chairman Bill Gates founded the company in 1989.

The company has since invested in faster-growing ventures beyond its core stock photography business, which faces intense competition from low-cost photo Web sites, or micro-payment sites.

Shenk told the Reuters Summit the company was on the verge of profitability.

Earlier this month, Corbis said it was buying Canada-based Veer, which distributes stock photos as well as graphical elements, such as fonts and illustrations used by designers.

In June, the company launched an online market for user-generated photos at, where images can sell for $1 to $50 each.

Clickhere to see Reuters MediaFile blog