Yes, it does seem backwards. But the RF stock was in the past much lower quality, while the RM stock was from high quality shoots, and thus part of the difference. That line has blurred somewhat over the years, but still holds true for high quality staged professionally styled shoots, vs images that are shot on a lower budget basis.
But the main reason why RM is much higher is the value to the client. Nike isn't going to buy a RF image and use it for a national advertising campaign. They don't want the embarrassment that others have gone through (Dell, the everywhere girl, etc) where the same image appeared in competitors advertising. By paying much more for the exclusive use of an image they can avoid that whole situation. And when they are looking at a budget of a few million for the ad campaign, the extra money over RF, or even better hiring a photographer and shooting it exactly as they want it, is insignificant.
RF works best for smaller non-national companies that can't afford a lot for images, or for images that are more common, easy to shoot, or low cost for the photographer. Also, some photographers will shoot for RM to start, then over time after exploiting that market move the images to RF. The RF photographers hope to recoup their costs in volume sales.
RM works for companies that need to control where the images will be seen, or want less common or higher value images. I.e., they want a 1970's styled look, multiple models in a lifestyle scenario, etc. This would be a high cost shoot for the photogarpher, and they would not be likely to sumbit it to a RF stock agency since they would need the RM fees to recoup their costs. So the RM agencies tend to have more along these lines, and thus also a higher production value.
ChrisGill wrote in post #8111459
Scenario is you could sell an image as a RF image for £10 (or less!!) then see that image appear in a top magazine, billboard etc used by a high profile client. That image could have been sold on by an RF purchaser of your image for £00,s leaving you feel a tad sick
Typically, the agreement the purchaser agrees to states that RF images can not be sold or licensed to a third party, and that it is only for that purchasers use. So the scenario above wouldn't happen.
photoguy6405 wrote in post #8112716
I knew they could use it as often as they wanted for as long as they wanted, but I was not aware they could also resell it as if it were theirs.
One place I read said that copyright is usually not included with RF, but if they can resell it themselves, what's the practical purpose of retaining the copyright (other than to keep selling it yourself)?
They can't resell it in all the agreements I've read (Alamy, Getty, iStock, Corbis, etc)