Covid Street Contributors FAQ

Covid Street Contributor’s FAQ

We know there are a lot of scams out there, so firstly:

  • There is no cost to you.
  • You retain the rights in your photo.
  • You will be fully credited.

OK, now a bit more detail…

What are you trying to create?

We’re attempting to put together a 192-page photography book for the commercial trade, so we can give revenue to covid charities. It will be hard-backed, printed on high-quality paper, and 210 x 245mm.

We want this book to stand as a testament to the events you and photographers like you have captured around the world.

We also want the book to help photo fans discover your work, so (unlike a lot of photo books) we’re adding your Instagram handle as well as your name in the captions.

After all, sadly, photographers, like many creatives, have been significantly affected by the lockdown and often not well compensated.

The names will be included in a thorough section at the back of the book with a web address (which will be a live link in ebook editions) if you choose too. With your permission, we’ll also use your images, credited, to promote the book which can help get a wide circulation for them.

Pages will look a little like this:

What do you need from me?

We need two things. The photograph(s) you would like us to include in the book, and the legal permission to use it. It is also really important to us that you share a bit of the story behind the photo (so we can add it to the caption). Especially useful are: Where is the photo taken? What is it of?

To make it easy for you to send this to us, we created a form you can use to submit the images.

What if the upload form doesn’t work?

You do need to be a little patient, especially if you’re sending large files. When you click ‘Submit’ give the computer a minute or two. If you still have trouble, get in touch with us via the Instagram chat.

Why can’t you just take the picture from Instagram and put it in the book?

Whatever camera you use, the photo it takes will be of much better quality. Instagram reduces the quality so it’s only just good enough to be viewed on a tiny screen. They do this partly to save space, and partly to prevent people taking the pictures and printing them without permission.

If you take pictures on your phone, the original stored in your camera album will be much better quality. If you’re an experienced professional or enthusiast, you’ll know what we’re talking about.

When you print an image at a larger size in a book, quality issues that aren’t apparent on screen become very, very obvious, and no respectable publisher can use a low-resolution image. If we tried to send pictures of the quality we can get from instagram, the printers would reject the book.

What is the timeline for the book?

Well, let’s be fair, we’ve changed this a couple of times, but now there seems to be perfect event on the publishing calendar that rather firms up our timeline: The London Book Fair 2021

LBF, as those in the trade know the event, is always an important part of the industry calendar, but this year it’s especially exciting as it’s the first IRL (in real life) event for some time.

The goal is to have a completed set of files by that show, which means we need to have made our final editorial decisions mid May, ideally a little before.

The London Book Fair is on 29th June.

Pre-order customers will receive early copies via eBook, and a special first edition with a jacket which will not be available in bookstores, as well as an invite to our launch event.

Why do you say ‘covid charities’ rather than mention a specific one?

We are hoping to sell the book in multiple countries. That means working with different publishing companies to distribute the book in those countries.

To reach the maximum number of sales, we need to allow each company to be able to select the most relevant charity in the market they distribute to.

We intend to donate a proportion of the proceeds to the international MSF Covid Fund, to the mental health charity Mind which is helping people recover from extended periods of isolation, and to charities helping photographers and creative who have fallen through the gaps of government financial aid.

We would, however, be happy to suggest a charity for your country – just get in touch with us.

Will my photo definitely be included in the book?

Obviously we can’t say definitely – what if you sent us something offensive? – but we are trying to ensure that all of our contributors are included. We will also include a special shout out to people who have pre-ordered as this makes a huge difference to what is, at this point, many hours of volunteer work.

Why didn’t you ask for the High Res before?

We’re working as volunteers and at the start we just wanted to get things rolling. It’s a lot easier to use the chat within Instagram to communicate quickly and we wanted to get going. We definitely wish we had asked for high res sooner though! ?

Can I only submit high-res if the image has been used for the @covidstret instagram feed?

Of course not. We have started preparing our presentation material (part of the long road to publication) using these images, but we’ll review any image. 

In many cases you might have submitted an image already via our hashtag and it might still be in the queue for the Instagram feed, but we’ll review every image submitted via the form.

What is the submission deadline?

Why wait? Seriously, the sooner the better. But May 2021.

Is there any payment for the images?

From the word go, the goal has been to make money for covid charities – especially those supporting creatives suffering from the economic backlash – and we’re doing this work, and absorbing significant costs, as volunteers. We understand that photographers want to earn money, which is why we’ve created the Affiliate mechanism above, but we’re not able to make direct payments.

Contributors will be credited with name and Instagram handle in their image captions in the printed book, and links to their preferred web address, boosting discoverability. If you don’t feel able to contribute, we entirely understand.