Prompted by this: TV show wants to use a photograph — what should I charge?

How should we deal with "how much to charge" questions? I don't think we can really provide good answers since so much is subjective/local. Should these types of questions be off-topic?


3 Answers 3


We're not exactly drowning in questions these days, and there was general consensus that business questions are on-topic, including your example then of "a magazine wants to buy a photo, how much should they pay?".

But I agree that it's unlikely that we'll be able to provide a specific right answer to this sort of question. Maybe we can have one "how should I price my photo" commuity wiki question, and refer new questions along those lines to that one.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I like the idea of a central "how to determine pricing" question. There have been a few tangentially-related questions. \$\endgroup\$
    – ahockley
    Commented Mar 15, 2011 at 22:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'd ask it except I don't care. :) \$\endgroup\$
    – mattdm
    Commented Mar 16, 2011 at 0:46
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    \$\begingroup\$ If we do create a "central" question, we'll have to manage the merger carefully. We recently merged two very related questions, as everyone involved thought it was a great idea. After the merger, a couple points bubbled to the surface...namely, votes and answer mergers. It can be done, but I think two things should also be done: 1 - it should be CW, 2 - answers should be carefully merged so they make sense given the new context of the "question". We don't want a bunch of answers that make half-sense if we merger several questions into a single CW. \$\endgroup\$
    – jrista
    Commented Mar 17, 2011 at 1:16

It can be ok, as long as you sufficiently generalize the question -- that is, you answer the broader question of "how does any photographer learn to estimate and set a commercial value on their work?"

Teach a man to fish, etc.

  • \$\begingroup\$ +1 Yes, indeed. This criterion is already present in the "too localized" option in the close dialog: "This question would only be relevant to a small geographic area, a specific moment in time, or an extraordinarily narrow situation that is not generally applicable to the worldwide audience of the internet." That would apply to any specific "how much should they pay [me, for this, today]" question. \$\endgroup\$
    – whuber
    Commented Mar 22, 2011 at 20:48

These questions have a place and even if no direct answer (or even a price range) can be given, it's likely someone can point the person asking in the direction of an answer applicable to his location and customer/usage. Such information can be hard to find, there's no www.pricemyphoto.com website :)


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