Major changes are happening at 500px. The photo-sharing platform is to cease permitting photographers to license their photos under a Creative Commons license, effective July 1. Announcing the news, 500px also shut down its stock photo subsidiary, 500px Marketplace.
Creative Commons licenses have been the subject of many recent debates, with the rise of sites such as Pexels and Unsplash seeing thousands of photographers offering up their images for free usage, in return for “credit.”
In removing 500px Marketplace, the company instead introduced 500px partners — namely Getty and Visual China Group, the latter of whom acquired 500px back in February — stating the partnership as “part of a strategic repositioning of 500px’s network of contributors and the licensable content they submit to 500px.” More about that can be found on the website’s FAQ.
This is but one of a number of changes for the platform this year along. Despite boasting over 13 million users, the company has no plans to move across all pre-existing images from 500px Marketplace. What’s more, users won’t be able to save or even search for them either. Speaking to The Verge, a 500px spokesperson commented: “There may be an opportunity to integrate Creative Commons back into our platform in the future.”
Naturally, the swift change ruffled a few feathers, with some Twitter users baffled at such a drastic U-turn being rolled out seemingly overnight.
Photographers using 500px will have the option to select royalty-free 500px license, meaning images can be licensed through Getty and VCG.