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Changes to author tiers from December 1st

Discussion in 'Tes Authors' Group' started by tesAuthorTeam, Nov 2, 2018.

  1. blowswind

    blowswind Occasional commenter

    Presumably the "transaction fee" will apply to only one complete basket purchase. Interesting to see how this will be divided between baskets made up of resources from multiple authors....
  2. myersale

    myersale New commenter

    Good point, but then the fee should be abolished completely. How exactly do they justify the transaction fee anyway? The money stays in the TES account and therefore does not require or justify a fee, at least not in my mind. Perhaps I‘m still missing something here...
  3. rainynightmusic

    rainynightmusic New commenter

    I have followed this thread really quite closely over the past week - and contributed my two-penneth worth a few times, too. The bottom-line conclusion that I have reached is this: I'm going to trust in good faith that TES are going to make high quality products more visible, and I will give them 2 months to show me - not tell me - show me that my sales will improve. We have all heard the figure of 68% in terms of how much better TES Sales are this year - well, I am currently 4% down on the academic year despite having twice as many resources available (exactly 50). So, is that because of the problems with low-quality, cheap resources flooding the system that people have spoken about? Perhaps. Will the changes made by TES deal with this? Perhaps. I have an open mind, and it is up to TES to show me.

    Here are my concerns and observations, though:

    1) There is definitely financial motive behind this move. It is not just about quality, and nobody sensible believes it is. 'Quality' is the political veil for justifying the financial change. To support my point, TES have stated clearly that 'Bronze', 'Silver', and 'Gold' is not a badge of quality. Well, if it isn't, what is it? It is a tiering of revenue.

    2) Anyone with a bit of financial knowledge (and I realise not everyone does have that) can work out that VAT is taken off the total value of the sale before the 60/40, 70/30, 80/20 divide is sorted out between Author and TES. Since VAT is 20%, a £10 sale will cost you £2 in VAT, leaving £8 to be split 60/40 (bronze), 70/30 (silver), 80/20 (Gold). So, members who are stuck on bronze will receive 60% of £8, which is £4.80 - or 48% of the £10. TES are therefore earning £3.20 of the £8, which is 32% of the £10. When people realise they only get 48% of their sale as 'new bronze', they might have something to say .... unless (which brings me to my next point)...

    3) Those authors who are more profitable to TES (bronze) may get promoted more than others (Silver and Gold). I'm going to be bronze under the new system (only just, but nonetheless I will be) and I do wonder whether I may have more sales, earning less from each one, but earning more overall. Will it be a poisoned chalice to be Gold? A blessing in disguise to be Bronze? Nobody knows. That's the fallout that is to come Certainly, from a business point of view, it would be fairly unusual to push resources that made you less money. Are the TES suddenly charitable.... ?

    4) With the sudden introduction of an author-led sale that we were neither told of nor asked about, I don't think they are charitable. Let's evaluate that: for the first time, WE take the loss of revenue, not TES; many authors will have blindly whacked a 5% or 10% (or whatever %) discount on all of their resources - including all of their £3 resources. I do hope that many savvy authors like myself were quick enough to realise that all of those £3 resources would fall into the 'transaction fee' zone and you'll be charged 30p for every sale (let's say 10%) as well as losing your whatever % discount. That means, if the average sale discount is 10% and most resources are £3 (to avoid the transaction fee), with this author-led sale WE lose out but TES don't because the 10% we discount, TES get back with the transaction fee, which evens them out, and doubles the discount (and therefore loss of earnings) that we are offering/ making. At best, that's naughty - at worst, it is disrespectful and malicious.

    As I say - I am going to let the dust settle on this and ignore my own cynicism (outlined above) for 2 months. If I continue to lose out, and start to feel I was right in my gut feeling that this is a cash-grab, then I will remind myself as I remind all of my fellow authors now: I (and you) have a choice. Stay or Go? Gradually or Immediately? Those choices are simple. Know the value of your own work. Know the deals that are out there. Look after your own interests first - you may be forced to do so because somebody else did just that.
  4. labellaroma

    labellaroma Occasional commenter

    Hear, hear. Bravo! Well said. I couldn't agree more.
  5. labellaroma

    labellaroma Occasional commenter

    I did not mean to include this in my post above.
    rainynightmusic likes this.
  6. Mrsmumbles

    Mrsmumbles Star commenter

    i've got a bad headache from all this now and need to lie down! I will also give t two months. Thing is, I don't want to spend hours marketing my stuff when I could be making it. But:
    "I will work harder!"(doffs hat to avatar)
    rainynightmusic and penyrheol1 like this.
  7. rainynightmusic

    rainynightmusic New commenter

    I knew what you meant :) You meant the whole thing I typed not just the first paragraph which was purely favourable to TES, right? You share my cynicism and 'keeping options open', right? :)
    MosaiK, labellaroma and Nik_Bernaz like this.
  8. Nik_Bernaz

    Nik_Bernaz New commenter

    My yearly sales
    £ 77.50

    My balance
    £ 34.62

    My net income:
    44.67 %

    This is what bronze means in real terms.
  9. blowswind

    blowswind Occasional commenter

    Two months won't be anywhere near enough time.

    There's little to no chance that by that deadline the previews will work, the cover images will be consistent, the descriptions will display correctly, the basket function will work, schools will be able to place purchase orders, materials in breach of copyright will have been removed, shops will be neatly displayed, products will be relevant on landing pages and it will be easy to find an author's resources by simply clicking on their name.

    These things haven't been achieved in two years!
  10. MosaiK

    MosaiK Occasional commenter

    Let's put the above on our Christmas wish list to @tes ;) and see what happens in the New Year :D. Though I fear @blowswind may be right here.

    As for a point made by @rainynightmusic, I wrote to TES about the current so-called 'author-run' sale and the reply told me that the reason I knew nothing about it, was that I have 'emails' turned off in my personal settings. Well, I did receive the email about the new 'royalty levels'!
    Also, in the past, such sales had been advertised in a banner on our 'overview' page. This time that banner only appeared on Monday 5th, once several of us had asked about this sale, by email and on this thread. Clearly it had been forgotten previously. :oops::confused:o_O

    Come on @tes, we understand you are a bit shaken by how your shake-up of royalties has been received - we are too, but please pull yourself together. After all, we have the right to expect quality from you in return for the quality resources you expect and receive from us - especially as we pay you for those services... :cool:
  11. rainynightmusic

    rainynightmusic New commenter

    I do agree with you and I certainly have my doubts, but the opportunity is all that I will afford the TES. I'm quite loyal to a point but I am no pushover. The TES Author team do a fantastic job and these changes are nothing to do with them - these changes have come from 'on high'. Those decision-makers have just raised my expectations and lowered my patience. I therefore give them 2 months instead of 6. They do it or they don't. No hard feelings, but I am prepared to walk away from a bad deal. I have several resources (but nowhere near all) elsewhere now - last week I had 1 resource somewhere else. And I can tell you that having made a sale earlier on today on another platform and gaining 51% of the sale - that's 3% more than I will be getting on TES next month. That being said, I've had 3 sales today on TES. So, we shall see how it works out. I wish you all the best too.
    a_teachers_idea and Nik_Bernaz like this.
  12. rainynightmusic

    rainynightmusic New commenter

    Indeed. I noticed that the SuperSeptember code was very late in being advertised - mid-September if I recall! On the other hand AwesomeAugust was very well advertised, I thought. Perhaps TES are cutting staff as well and putting more pressure on the TES Author team, who are doing a great job.
    Nik_Bernaz likes this.
  13. rainynightmusic

    rainynightmusic New commenter

    Indeed - exactly what I was saying in my post. Once VAT is taken out, Bronze authors will end up with no more than 48% next month. It's a sad time. It really is. I hope your sales pick up once the rubbish is removed from this site. Views are everything, and yet again tonight, I saw a featured shop - this time for Business Studies - was advertised on the TES front page. I had a look, and there were a stream of 1-star reviews complaining about a serious lack of quality. The author had over 70 resources uploaded. He had been incredibly rude and dismissive to a reviewer, and there was also a link on his page to his personal Instagram account. Serious poor quality that under the current system is getting views that you should be getting Nik. Hopefully, once that rubbish is removed, you will get those views, and you will get sales.
    a_teachers_idea and Nik_Bernaz like this.
  14. Nik_Bernaz

    Nik_Bernaz New commenter

    I don't think so. I fail to see the correlation between rubbish being removed (by whom exactly?) and sales picking up.
    The harm has been done by letting in the rubbish in the first place. Now, your definition of rubbish and mine are probably different, so we can agree that it will be a near-impossible task to remove it.

    And who is going to remove the rubbish anyway?

    Editors? Really? From what I saw in the last month there are not enough of them, and they would have to get into arguments with people who think that their resources are not rubbish. I can't see TES actually paying someone to remove items that *may* sell from their site.

    Authors? They are the ones that put it here in the first place. It costs them nothing to keep it here and hope for a sale.

    The current system works for what it's worth. The new system promises things that, from what I saw, it can't deliver. I believe that a good indicator of what's to come is the recent "Author Sale" - it was a total fiasco for me. I put 25% off ALL my resources, and got zero sales. Yes. 0 sales. I am selling more when there is no sale. It makes no sense.

    Surely, if TES were serious about increasing our sales, they would look into that, instead of milking the cow for all it's worth. What I noticed during the sale is that the mediocre caching system meant that the prices were not updated in real time (going into the sale AND going back to normal price). I also noticed that the stats were not updated in real time either.

    I came to the conclusion that people can't reach me for two reasons: there is too much rubbish lying around and the website engine is simply deficient. At present, there are unfortunately not many alternatives, but like the others here, I will be ready to jump ship when they start to pop up.

    Now don't get me wrong. I don't mind giving a sizeable portion of the price of my resources, but in return, I expect promotions (both TES and Autor led), reliability, support ( I raised the fact that you can access the preview on Android without seeing the crosses over them, nothing has been done about this), and promotions with AdWords or something similar.

    All we are getting at present is hosting and e-commerce, which I can do on my website for much, much cheaper.
  15. treeickle

    treeickle New commenter

    @TES Resource Team

    As soon as my shop earns a withdrawable amount, it'll be withdrawn and the paid for resources deleted. You have a staff body that needs paying, I get that, so this needs to be financially worthwhile for TES, I get that too.

    But, what I don't need is all this flaming drama and to feel like I'm listening to another branch of SMT spinning a party line. I left teaching, I wanted to leave those things behind and focus on tutoring anxious students and making good resources.

    So, good luck to you, and to the small number of authors who will benefit from your changes, but it's not for me.

    Can you please advise if there is a quicker way to delete my shop and/or resources.
    heelis and Nik_Bernaz like this.
  16. rainynightmusic

    rainynightmusic New commenter

    I take your points, Nik, and I am not going to say that I do not share your lack of faith in things getting better, because I do. I'm just going to give it 2 months to see - TES are now on trial, and it's up to them to show me that they are worthy of my resources being hosted on their platform, same for every other author I imagine. As I say, TES have said that they are introducing a quality control team who are actual teachers - but as Treeickle said, that seriously could become a branch of SLT/ SMT conducting observations! That thought had entered my head at the time TES announced it, but I didn't say it. I agree with Treeickle though - it could become like that. However, the sort of resources I saw in a featured shop yesterday: 5 x separate resources for £2, each of which was a photo of one of the dragons from Dragon's Den, accompanied by a single quote by 'said Dragon' and 3 random facts about their lives accompanied by a string of 1-star reviews from teachers writing 'seriously poor quality' 'no activities' 'just paid £3 for 3-slides of a powerpoint with no tasks' - won't be featured on TES front page. There was a similar resource based on Alan Sugar (3 facts and a quote for £2) where he was quoted as saying 'YOUR Fired'. Dear God! That author needs banning - I don't even think he is a teacher, he's a chancer. So, even as a music teacher, I can tell those business resources are utterly rubbish, and that they are still on the site is what TES need to show me will change.

    If I don't see it change in 2 months, if I don't see an improvement in what is featured in TES' 'shop window to buyers', I and my resources will be gone. What I disagree with you on is that there aren't any alternatives - there really are, and whilst every platform has its own issues, they also have their own advantages. I would encourage you to look 'West' to the home of 'Jazz'. I wish you luck my friend.
  17. MosaiK

    MosaiK Occasional commenter

    ... as well as the questionable copyright to those very photographs... :oops:;)
  18. ClassroomChemist

    ClassroomChemist New commenter

    @TES Resource Team as a suggestion to solve the image copyright issue could you have a rule whereby all resources have to have an image credits? And authors have to confirm they have one prior to publishing
    mathsmutt likes this.
  19. mathsmutt

    mathsmutt Star commenter

    I just thought I'd reiterate what I've previously suggested - namely one flat rate for royalties.
    High earners could be entered into a draw for extra remuneration, funded by the extra money collected by TES.
    (This is similar to the Big A - Rainforest)

    I know - the decision has already been taken.

    TES is just another platform - but one that potentially reaches millions of customers.
  20. bbunwise

    bbunwise New commenter

    We new authors did have access to these benefits because we became Gold Authors by adding lots of resources. This may not be morally right. I can't disagree with that.However, I would like to have been informed about the changes to your payment when I signed up. Then I would not have spent such a long time getting to 100 resources only to be told later that this was a waste of time.
    a_teachers_idea and Nik_Bernaz like this.

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