Thursday, September 19, 2019

Rain Rain Go Away?

The rains this year in Maharashtra resulted in floods, in short chaos.

I have always maintained that social media is a bullshit place where a small thing is blown out of proportion for no reasons. Take e.g a death of a politician or a film star. Condolences flow in as if the person posting it knew the dead person so well that it affects his/her life. The sincerity in such posts compels most of the other people reading it to follow the same.... why?? because then they feel left out. They feel they probably will be labelled 'insensitive'. The same way condolences or posts on FLOOD related topics were ridiculing nature and rain for being cruel.

Floods in Maharashtra were bad no doubt. They left many homeless and quite many dead. The amount of rainfall was totally unexpected because IMD ( Indian Meteorological Department or rather read as 95% wrong forecast company) had predicted rains below average this year. Instead, the rains this year surpassed records of highest rainfalls for a period as big as 90 years or some media sources claim 'highest ever'. Rains were more than usual no doubt.... we surely not as ever seen in last 10-15 years.

Why was the destruction rate of the floods so high? Were the floods really to blame?? 

I personally don't believe that data we have on rains of a few decades is enough to predict the natural rainfall of this area. This is too small of a timespan to judge that. We have no records of rainfall in terms of measurement apart from a hundred years or more, maybe we have some accounts of floods/famines from history, but that is all. It cannot explain how the rainfall was over last thousands of years since the existence of this landmass.

The water clogging of Mumbai is not just BMC's fault but the fault of everyone living there over the years, add to it the high tides. Mumbai doesn't need much of explanation for man made damage. What people don't understand while blabbering on social media is that no matter which is the ruling party, BMC cannot clean Mumbai's shit so soon. It will take at least a decade or more even if people get conscious enough about planet earth, else it will take longer.

In other parts of Maharashtra people blamed river levels. The fact is that people got used to the canalized structured of the river they got used to over the years, they never imagined a river flowing in its natural capacity. With corrupt government and municipal corporations receding floodlines to accomodate more money in their pockets and more residential zones in a dangerous territory. As intellectuals have always said, humans have encroached nature like leeches or viruses disregarding not just nature but the dangers to their own life. 

In Pune, media makes a news of Bhide Bridge going under water. If rains are normal it is supposed to go underwater, it should go under water every year it is a good sign. The river flowing at an optimum level in monsoon shouldn't be a sign of rarity but rather something that is normal in every monsoon. There shouldn't be news about it unless its needed. The news happened because all the damage mainly happened to illegal settlements and legal settlements which were legalized due to rampant corruption in government offices. 

Extreme weather might be due to human caused global warming or maybe a natural cycle on earth, but whatever it is we need to be prepared for the unexpected as the frequency of natural disasters is increasing. We are fortunate that we yet don't face hurricanes, but we have famine. By the time we are helping farmers c omitting suicide due to famine, we are having farmers doing the same or naturally dying due to the floods in the same year.

PMC not keeping alternate day water supply for keeping their votebanks happy is another misery. We don't know how to make the right use of water and it won't come unless we get limited supply. Even when the dam waters were at their lowest and the rains were to start I used to see a lot of wastage of water in rich people's houses. Their servants daily washed not just their their cars and garden but also the road infront of it with a lot of water. Such people are shameless and the public should learn to shame them without fear because this is going to be a fight for survival for future generations. For car wash only 1 bucket is enough, a lot of car washers use only that much every morning with perfect cleaning.

This can be an another topic about managing resources or even waste but since this was about water I took the liberty to squeeze the above topic in. I feel the rains are perfectly normal in nature's cycle but probably abnormal in our life-cycle but its our own doing. 

Let me know your thoughts on this.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Aladdin (2019) Review - Will Smith adds the Groove.... Disney loses the Symphony!

Aladdin (2019)


The trailer of this movie had raised up a lot of expectations and I was damn excited, after all I am fan of disney and the LIVE ACTION ones too for the experience you get in 3D/4D. Not to say my favorite actor WILL SMITH stars in this as Genie. 

I was quite skeptical about how Will Smith do the Genie especially since Robin Williams had made the Genie immortal in the original cartoon. He was the perfect, nothing could get better and it didn't, but Will Smith hasn't done a bad job except that the accent is gone and Genie is well... FRESH PRINCE of Bel Air. The Hip-Hop has in a way screwed up the movie music though they are good as hiphop in general cartoon songs. I will get more into details about this throughout the review.

The movie starts with Will Smith telling the story of Aladdin to his kids who are awed with a big merchant ship passing their small boat. The film moves on the Agrabad the city of mystery. Again, Will Smith is singing good and not to mention he always rapped... but he is singing for the first time. There is not problem with him as a singer but then the feel is lost. The original ARABIAN NIGHTS with an Arabic accent is gone! its an American accent with lyrics changed probably to make them more sober and probably less realistic than the original ones. 

We are introduced to the Diamond in the Rough a.k.a Aladdin played by Mena Massoud and he has done an excellent job. He almost looks like the original Aladdin. Jasmine played by Naomi Scott does her job well and so do Marwan Kenzari, Navid Negahban, Nasim Pedrad and others. Jafar somewhat could have been more evil looking than shown in the movie. 

The plot is a bit changed in the end of how Jasmine seduces Jaffar to give Aladdin some time to get around, instead in here Aladdin does some emotional blackmailing and Ego flattering to make Jaffar wish for himself to become a genie. The Genie maintains his inability of not being able to make anyone fall in love with anyone. The plot gets a bit boring in the third quarter when you start to wonder whether you are watching a Disney movie or some Bollywood Musical. Unnecessary songs pop up when they are not needed and probably might make you stretch or yawn to be honest. 

The music is so differently arranged to suit Will Smith probably, that it doesn't feel royal or symphonic like in the original version. Honestly speaking for a Disney movie it feels cheap. Thankfully the songs are not as distorted from original ones as they are done in THE JUNGLE BOOK. The only change mostly is a little bit of lyrics and the hip-hop flavor which thankfully doesn't seem so intimidating since Will Smith is on the screen.

I didn't understand why the face of the Genie somewhat seems like a cheap animation in many scenes. It could have been as natural as it gets but did Disney try to save some money? The movie would have been more successful if it was shorter than it was. Jasmine's song of inspiration after she is taken away by the soldiers was absolutely unnecessarily. The audience is waiting for an action when suddenly a tear-jerking yet inspirational number pops up.

Overall the movie is must watch for all kids and Disney fans. It will be a treat to watch the movie in 4D3X because no undoubtedly it gives a better experience. The magic carpet ride might take you back into your teenage days making you imagine riding it with your teenage love. This makes it a reason for any couples madly in love to go and watch it, ONLY in 4D3X

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

How to secure Yourself Online

In here I am explaining some steps to secure your accounts and devices to avoid them getting hacked. I will first start with common factors then move on specifically to mobile devices and then Desktops/laptops
ACCOUNT SECURITY :
1. Always secure your accounts with difficult passwords which are atleast 10 characters long. Make sure to include a UPPERCASE letter, a SPECIAL SYMBOL ( e.g. #@^#@&) and a number in it.
 2. Use TFA ( Two STEP VERIFICATION) for all accounts wherever possible. You will require an OTP every time you sign in with your password as 2nd layer of protection.
 3. Use BIOMETRICS along with regular password. Many bank apps and also some other apps provide BIOMETRIC password to login. Its the safest as of now.
 4. Login Prompts. Company like google provide login prompts on your mobile when you try accessing your accounts from other device. The login wont be allowed till you give permission to login from your mobile.
 5. Back officials or even officials from corporates never ask PIN, password, credit card number or CVV of your card. Never share these details with anyone. Its also a good IDEA to call your bank helpline and activate OTP or 3D secure PIN (Extra) for your card online transactions.
 6. Last but not the least which is common sense. Do not share your password with anyone at all. This is something taken lightly but often done by many.
 7. DEVICE HISTORY : Almost all online websites like FACEBOOK, GOOGLE provide a way to have a DEVICE HISTORY of the devices logged in your account. You can check the same and remove the device that you dont recognize. Public Figures might have their managers logged in to their accounts, please confirm their device before you remove it.
 8. LEGACY CONTACTS : Digital property has become as important as material property. Leading websites now offer legacy contacts which can help you get access to your account when you cannot access it after a hack or similar situation. Legacy contacts also get to access your accounts after your death if mentioned.
 9. TERMINATION OF ACCOUNT : You can also set the account to be deleted if you don't use it for a certain amount of time. This can be set if you don't want anyone to access your account after death. You can also set the same way to memorialize account after your death or allow your managers or estate executors to continue with your public page after your death. Its entirely controllable.
MOBILE DEVICES SECURITY :
1. Unfortunate but true, your OS (Operating System) of the mobile phone regardless of ANDROID/APPLE need to be the latest. Latest OS means latest phone. But even then going 2 years old phone is fine. Right now Android OREO and Android PIE have the greatest security layer. Your old android phones before that are going to be risky. Apple's iphones on the other hand have always been talking about the privacy and security they offer which is very much true. But Apple's compatibility with other devices and its high price doesn't nowadays make it worth it. Apple has lost its design or innovative factor after Steve Jobs died but people who don't even use 2% of what an iphone offers buy that phone at that prices to make a STATUS statement. I suggest stay on android if you are not already on apple.
 2. Android phones generally come with their own security scanners and phones like Samsung have their KNOX technology to secure your apps and content that you dont want others to see. Its a good idea to make a good use of this technology available.
 3. Privacywise put a white or opaque take on the selfie camera for privacy reasons. Many FREE apps which include leading games and services ( especially government services) have access to your camera and they actually record it. If you don't believe me search google news about owner of Facebook - Mark Zuckerburg who masks his selfie camera with the tape to. I don't need to add, he does that despite being the owner of the biggest privacy infringing company. Who will know better than him?
 4. Dont use free apps which are not made by software leaders like Google, Microsoft, etc. Even simple games take up a lot of permissions to use your phone details like contacts, sms and other things. Imagine why would it require to access your camera when its a simple game. Unfortunate but true, after MY JIO app or SHAREIT, the most dangerous apps might be the ones made by a government. You will realize this with the sheer number of permissions it asks to access when you install them. You might install and use these apps with a patriotic feel, but I suggest that you can use your patriotism elsewhere.
 5. Company matters. Not all mobile companies are safe. When you are paying very less for very high specs you are 100% compensating your privacy and security. Go only for established brands. Totally avoid some brands which are priced cheap with great technical specs. 
 6. Most of the new devices will come with IRIS SCAN, FINGERPRINT, PATTERN and PIN. If your mobile is not used just by you and you leave it in spaces where others can access it, its better to have multiple security layers. You can use all or any of the above.
 7. All mobiles come with FIND MY MOBILE option irrespective of the make. APPLE will provide APPLE services for this and ANDROID phones will provide GOOGLE Service for this as well as your OEM (MAnufacturer like Samsung) will provide their own. Its a good idea to set this up. You will be able to locate your mobile from anywhere when its charged. When your mobile is lost or stolen you can initiate permanent lock or mobile deletion from a remote device to protect your data.
PC/LAPTOP :
Though almost all points mentioned above cover this area there are a few tweaks needed for PC or Laptops.
1. Install authentic Operating System preferably Windows 10. Any windows version before that will be weak in security. Though Microsoft claims good support for Windows 8, my own and many peoples experience says its highly unstable.
 2. Saying the above point note that its not easy to upgrade an old PC to Windows 10. Windows 10 won't support half of the old devices or their drivers. That creates more problem. When you are thinking of Windows 10 upgradation, think of upgrading to a new machine itself.
 3. Windows 10 does come with an inbuilt firewall and malware scanner, but there is no harm in installing one more antivirus though it will disable the windows inbuilt software. Always remember FREE softwares wont do the job that paid softwares do, so try to analyse how much important is your data in terms of how much money you want to spend protecting it. 
 4. Cloud is the next big thing and happening thing. There is a limited free cloud and there is paid cloud. Paid cloud doesn't mean just more STORAGE it also means better security and encryption for your data. You could skip that luxurious lunch at some fine dining 3-4 times a year and invest that money in securing and uploading your important data. Its totally worth it. 
 5. Just like in case of mobile devices, avoid installing free apps. FREE means its going to screw up your device security and your privacy as well. It will also inject your systems with adware which can be risky big time. Avoid buying or using even free apps/programs just because they have a high rating. Legacy of a company matters more than their ratings because ratings are manipulated.
Hope I have solved a lot of queries asked to me time and again. If I have missed something feel free to contact me for more information, I will surely reply you and add it up in this article as well.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Gore Madam.... Some Memories

It was very sad to hear the demise of Gore madam today. Most of my school life I shared a love-hate relation with her as student. We couldn't bear each other neither could do without each other.... after school I was probably more in touch with her than any other teacher and as I matured, our relation got out of hate totally.

Some Memories....

I first encountered Gore madam when I was in 10th since she was my class teacher. I don't even remember the subject she taught since I was never interested in studies and more interested in my notorious activities. I was the black sheep in her class. My class comprised of students who had selected SANSKRIT as their extra language and everyone except me were the 'scholar' kinds. My principal was always shocked because my IQ was 2nd highest in my standard (combining all divisions) but my marks never showed it.

Nevertheless, the first period used to start with me sneaking in chocolates and biscuits which I found delight eating during the periods and not in the reccess. Being short, I was made sit on 1st or 2nd bench and then I was obviously caught, not red-handed though. Unfortunately my habit spread around and the other 'scholar' kinds started indulging in same activities. To put a hold on it Gore madam made me sit in girls. This simply gave me new vigour to create new trouble in class, apparently the first pair of girls I was made to sit with were really totally into studies and complained that they couldn't concentrate because of me. Eventually I was shifted to backbencher girls who were of my kind. Though they were good in studies, they used to enjoy my pranks. Eventually I was shifted again to the front bench with guys.

After a month or 2 I used to make an alibi to go to the toilet ( now we use the word washroom), and didn't return for long time. This was infact a boon for many teachers because without me in the class it used to be serious stuff and all studies. But Gore madam no matter how many times she punished me used to miss my presence and felt it was important for me to be in the class. She explained that to me. Though I took it lightly I started staying back in her classes. I was probably the only student who managed to bunk classes in school because teachers were happy in my absence. That doesn't mean I bunked all classes though.

It was time for the class trip and it was planned at Matheran. I was least interested to go because I thought I wouldn't be able to live up with all the discipline. She tried to convince me a lot to join but I kept denying. She finally called my mom to school and explained to her why I should come since its the last school trip for our class. She promised me that she wont be hard on me. She kept her promise. Matheran trip was my first overnight school trip and the only one. I enjoyed it a lot. I still remember her telling us a normal romantic story at night which sounded like 'porn' to many of us (basically because we didn't know what real porn was) but that was all. She didn't scold me at all. Infact at a time I said I am gonna stay back playing video games at a point. She said I know you are smart enough to return to hotel but its night so I shouldn't take the risk. Yet I did and so did some of my friends, it was hell lot of adventure to return back to our hotel in the dark. That was also the time she understood my passion for Michael Jackson and music and never made fun of it. When I performed in gathering(known as annual day now) , I used to wear shades and eat a chewing gum. While other teachers passed foul comments about me when I was passing by, she took me on side and nicely said "Its looking like a cow chewing stuff, doesn't look good on stage. I don't think Michael Jackson does that". That was the end, I didn't eat gum in my next performance.

After the trip the school timing decreased to allow us to study more at home or attend test-series as they called it. I don't think I attended school much in the latter half.

Gore madam stayed in the area I stayed... Sahakarnagar.... thats till date. I started to see her during morning walks. Initially I tried to avoid her because there is that stupid teenage anger for no reason against some teachers. Ofcourse we had been bad to each other but we were good too. As years passed by it simmered down. Infact she got her thumb cut in a mixer once.. at that time my teenage hatred had made the evil me feel happy about that. Ofcourse I knew it was a mistake to feel like that very soon. My guilt conscience has been quite strong since childhood, so I cannot be intentionally bad or mean to anyone.

I used to greet Gore madam with a smile during her morning walks many time. Once I happened to talk to her when she explained to me that her scolding was a part of her duty and my naughtyness was totally entertaining and normal. She said that it added to the excitement in a dull mundane class but then she was not supposed to provoke it. She said she knew I am a nice person and knew that my pranks always were harmless, I was just trying to be adventurous.

After this ice broke, I used to talk to her often. My sister was a topper in school but madam failed to recognize her one day. When my sister mentioned that she is my sister, madam immediately recollected. My sister got irritated about that fact. When I told this to madam she said, "Toppers come and go and so do Mawalis. You were one of the kind. Your discussion was one of the top entertaining and debating issues in staff room. The reason being your naughtyness, underperformance in studies but at the same time high IQ and good person. No teacher in school can forget you. That suddenly made me feel better about school overall, something that I had avoided all the time because I felt teachers only hated me.

I remember after my son was born he used to wake up crying and keep crying at wee hours as all children do. He must have been 1 at that time and it was 5 in the morning. For 1 hour I was driving him around since he used to be quite only in car, I met madam at 5.45 and told her what I was doing. She was so happy to see my son, she said he is my replica. When I told her about his tantrums she said, "He is your son and this is the start. Wait till he gets naughty like you, you will understand what you have made your parents and teachers go through". She then laughed it off and said everything will be fine.

Madam's walks decreased with her leg problem and probably heart trouble too. I met her once to tell her that I wished to invite the teachers that I felt respect for for dinner, but said now I have started drinking and all so we have to plan a dinner without booze as a respect to teachers. She said, "Don't be silly. This doesn't suit you and shouldnt suit anyone. You are grownups and free to do anything that you want. Keep a dinner with booze, even teachers who drink will drink, I dont drink though." That was the last time I talked with her for long time.

I didn't see Gore madam for a lot of time but I had planned the dinner in this January and was already discussing it with my friends. Some work and my health issues delayed the plan, but now its way to late to have a dinner for teachers with her presence. Another lesson she left for me that I can't take time for granted, as the old saying goes ... Kal kare so aaj kar!

Kal ho na ho!

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Tata Docomo Broadband - The worst thing you can get

Tata Docomo Broadband Review

After 10 years with BSNL I had decided to look for other broadband ISP. BSNL never had problems about customers service or the broadband speed. Their problem was in their phone network which is not well set. Whenever it rained the connection went down till the rains sobered down a bit. Not to mention their lines getting cut usually due to corporation work. So I went for Tata Docomo as suggested by some.

Tata seemed to give a bit costly plan of 1740 for 2 MBPS unlimited data. Considering the recommendations I decided to go for it. I was ok if I was getting a stable connection. To my horror , this is one of the worst connections I have had in my life.

I have an average downtime of 5 days in a month, which has gone upto average downtime of 2 days a week many times. The technicians of this company are good but they are overloaded with the number of calls they attend and the area they cover. Tata needs a team with more people to handle these issues. The SMPS of their connectivity boxes at places get busted with little lightnings n' stuff. The last time 150 SMPS in Pune we gone bonkers. The battery backup they provide for these are also like 10 mins.. and they keep saying that they will upgrade soon.

There is no clear communication in between the technician on the floor and the customer service. Both tend to give different reasons. And here comes the best.....

When you lodge a complain for a refund in the amount for the downtime, though customer seervice during the downtime acknowledges the total amount of hours the connection was down, the customer service that deals with the refunds give a different picture. There is no co-relation to their claims. Its not due to the inability or less knowledge of their team but simply because this company is not organised well.Considering the downtime they have given, till date they have given me only one refund of 4 days around a year ago which would be like 1% of total downtime till now.

This company sucks. Don't go for it. You can prefer something like BSNL and keep a JIO phone handy as a backup. Unfortunately my area isn't feasible for any service providers 4G so I dont have this option, but then I am taking BSNL as backup.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

AN OPEN LETTER TO BANK OF INDIA




I or probably many have chosen BANK OF INDIA over other nationalized banks because we thought it is better than others but the experiences I mentioned below are horrible. Also so many queries which remain answered. I would like to have an honest reply from you. When honourable prime minister Narendra Modiji is pushing our country in the new era with demonetization your bank seems to be making it as difficult to go about it as much as he makes it easy.

Please note that I have nothing against any employee against any branches of BOI. They try their best. There is a lot of load. Less staff and more people.. cramped up bank space.
Here are a few experiences  :

1.       My passbook finishes so I ask for a new passbook. The concerned person gives me a troubled look. She gives me a passbook but then tells that she cannot make entries as printer is not working. By that time I go and withdraw some money after a long queue. Another lady is sitting in the same place. I ask her if she can print my passbook. She promptly prints. Seems like the printer started to work magically.
2.       I have MINOR joint account with my son who is 4 year old. I request for an ATM card. Strangely no ATM card for minors in this demonetized world. I am informed that there is a BINGO card which they will give me. Am supposed to fill in a  form and submit it with my identity proof as well as my son’s birth certificate and a photo. Its all accepted by the employee and then in afternoon I receive a call saying they cannot issue the bingo card. I ask why?? I am told to come and meet madam again the next day. I go there and am told that they don’t issue bingo cards to children below 8 year old. Now here are some questions about this
a.       How do you expect to withdraw money or do transactions in this demonetized world without an ATM/DEBIT card? Even if its in minor’s name it is a joint account with an adult.
b.      Why aren’t you employees well informed about things. If bank rule says no card below 8 years I could have been told that. Instead your people made me scatter for documents and waste my time in all the procedure over nothing
3.       Since your branches are always overcrowded with denial for ATM/Debit card I asked for internet banking of the minor. About this your employees were in a debate. Some said its given, some said it is not. Manager missing as always or there is a huge queue at his cabin. I am told to come back next day, and the next, and the next and it goes on till after a month I am told that they have no clear idea. They say internet banking for my joint account with child should appear after I login into my my own account in STAR CONNECT . I have been into softwares. I am baffled. I ask how will it come automatically if I never applied for internet banking of this account. The Your employee asks me to try. They see some screens on your portal and say everything is clear from here. Finally I threaten to complain. So I am told to go to your regional office and enquire there.
a.       Internet banking is an essential. I need it to transfer money to my child’s PPF account as well. Apart from that there might be some transactions I need to do online to save time instead of coming to any crowded bank.. not essentially BOI. Whats so difficult in providing internet banking to the parent who has joint account with a minor?
b.      Again your employees are not well informed. They are more confused than the customers. They wasted my time.
c.       Your branch which holds my account took like a month to finally tell me that I should enquire at regional office. Do you really think that your regional office where I know no one will entertain me so soon and will be confused any less. I have to go far from my home/working place to solve these simple problems?

4.       I wanted to open a current account for my company which is private limited.  There is again a confusion since usually they are used to only current accounts for proprietary and partnership accounts. I was told to meet the manager who told me things needed. All documents except renewed shopact (expired 5 days back) needed. I told him the urgency and requested him to open account since I am an old customer. He said he could not. I can understand him being very disciplined. He said that he will surely open account in a day when I get shopact. I told him it will take a week for renewal as the corporation website is down. He said I just need to come back. I went there to know he is on a 15 days leave. Finally I found someone I knew at the bank who helped me. The account finally opened yesterday.

We have opened your with some faith as your bank is nationalized. Also feel that we shouldn’t be giving business to international banks. With the kind of services you provide no one would want to do business with your bank. The 80% of the middle class customers like me you have are because of trust.
In this new era of demonetization you are not supporting our PM nor the citizens with silly rules and confused employees. Please improve your standards if you want to retain customers. Let your employees know exactly what they have to tell your clients. And last but not the least please solve my query about internet banking for my son’s account.

Friday, September 23, 2016

10 Years of Stock Photography

It seems like yesterday but its been 10 years since I got my first digital camera Canon Powershot A320. A 3.2 mexapixel camera that opened the world of stock photography for me. I was a hobbyist and was happy with my Nikon SLR till I understood the potential of digital photography and the market it had.

I was very confused initially whether to go for RF (Royalty Free) or RM (Rights Managed) . Since I had won quite many awards as a hobbyists in different photography magazines, online contests and newspapers I already had an open offer from GETTY through their Indian agent. I probably might have been a fool of not to accept that one might think... but considering that photography wasn't my main source of income in those days, it was a wise choice. Especially knowing that the pictures I was clicking were not from an SLR. Royalty free even if was very clear about the quality and technical aspects while approving a photo wasn't very strict on the equipment one used.

My first agency was Dreamstime and its still the best RF agency I would recommend to anyone. I receieved a lot of training in there and the customer support or rather the contributor help team was simply wonderful. None of their team members were ever impatient or rude about the silliest questions I had for them. My understanding of the stock photography market and also the quality of photos simply enhanced due to all these guys. So I would personally like to thank Serban, Carmen, Sid, Ioana and all others that I might have missed mentioning. Dreamstime laid it like a tutorial for me which made it easy for me to get to other agencies like shutterstock, istockphoto and fotolia. I saw the rise and fall of Corbis's RF site which was then named VEER.

Settling down after 10 years I agree that the RF market has got down when it comes to average revenue but the sales are yet going good. There are millions of contributions in a month with new photographers coming in. With some slide down in quality due to allowing of images taken from mobiles the database has become weird. Its surely not a good time for new contributors to join in and its also not a good time for old contributors who are not adding new stock or renovating.I have seen that not just holiday seasons but even stock markets rise and fall directly affect the sales in RF. I dont know the exact reason or relation for such a huge effect but yeah its been happening.

My experience tells me that almost all topics and categories in here are saturated there is always a room for more because buyers need new models, new locations or simply a new feel to things. So every contributor should try to brainstorm and think of all possibilities in attracting buyers. White Background studio shots according to me always have been over-hyped, you should be having some of them in your portfolio but see that you dont overindulge. Do images with models always sell more??? NO. Over the years I had been advised the other way round but my experience says something else. If you click poor people and they are willingly signing a model release just because they are happy to be clicked, make sure you pay them some money. They are already a lot poor than we are and we are going to earn from their photos. Its always wise to share that income. Though we can never be sure of the sales one can always decide a fixed amount per model release signed. It will help their family.

 Last but the most important point. Avoid clicking your family members or friends for your concepts. They might not mind initially for their photo being used somewhere but the trouble happens when it gets used in a wrong context and you can't do anything about it. Try to find models who want to get into modeling or acting and will be open to such situations. Remember that eventually relations are way more important than money, so don't risk them. I risked unknowingly but make a point that you or your friends don't do it knowingly after knowing my experience.