03 Dec 19
I don’t know about all of you, but I am totally glad that another Black Friday is in the rear view. What possesses otherwise simi sane people to act so insanely. But it is over. Now on to business.
A short time ago I said on another page that I would blog again, which is a rare event. Not a big event, just rare. What I am actually doing is hopefully doing is answering some of the questions I have been getting over the last few months. Mostly like, is STM gone forever, why, what will replace it,?
First, most likely STM will never again open in it’s original form. The reasons are abundant. First, Pirates. Or, more accurately, thieves. You see, a pirate actually, though a bad person, does work. These slimmy jerks just steal. They do it anonymously, so we, as much as we want, can’t beat them with a baseball bat. Some, though not all, are from other countries. But all are slim. And the result is the same. First, most of the models can, and want, to work with some anonymity. If it is found that they model, kids at school harass them without mercy. Some, thinking it is illegal, report them. And now all hell breaks loose as the parents and model have to set through interviews with the cops and or protective services. We know there is no crime but if there is a complaint, procedures must be followed. All the while, the models are getting harassed. All because they wanted to model. And usually that model will never appear before a camera again. But the thieves blame the model. Yep. They are too dumb to understand that they will be stuck looking at the same photos from the early days of web models for decades because no new models want to go through that. And we get the same crap, like “The photographers pay the models pennies and they make thousands”. First, anyone who runs a business knows better. I personally paid my models better than even the average nude model makes in a session. Beyond that, model pay is only a fraction of the expense. Travel and lodging for me, the model and a parent, billing, outfits, and other helpers such as makeup artist are a few of the additional expenses that add up fast and big. And I haven’t even started with equipment such as cameras, lenses, computers, and supporting gear. I have also heard that is is “Free speach”. BS. If you take the photos, it is your speech. If someone else takes them, it is not your speech. Second, it is widely known except to idiots that reproducing a copyrighted image is not free speech, it is theft. And you can’t share a digital image without reproducing it. Any business has to make a profit. To some that seems like a dirty word, profit. But it is how we make a living. Creating something someone else wants to buy, therefore making money to make more stuff people want to buy. And why is it so bad for the creators of the content to make mo0ney but the theft sites, which make more than we ever did, it is ok? Anyway, I’ll come down off my soap box now and get on with it. Point is, the biggest issue with creating and operating a site is thieves.
I do however still enjoy working with models. As aggravating as many are, as unreliable as many are, I enjoy watching them grow as models. Some have gone on to make a career of it. Some have told me later that they wished they had done more before being tied down with a family and career. Many want to see the photos they made years ago. And that feels good to know that they look back at those times as good times. Now, let’s not kid ourselves. Being tied to making sets of photos in the same themes makes it difficult to be creative. And if I really tried to be creative, most members would be bored. But it does give me a chance to do other stuff outside the sets that most of you would not be interested in but gives me a chance to spread my wings a bit.
So, if STM will likely not come back, then what? I do have some ideas, all of which cost money. Remember, earlier I was talking about how expensive running a site can be? It is. And it’s a lot of work. I have thought about maybe doing a video site. In the past most sites like STM relied mostly on photos supplemented with the occasional video. Maybe the other way around. I do believe exclusively using models 13 to 17 will never work again. Because of the issues I mentioned with thieves, they have become rare as hens teeth. They may be included, but not exclusively. But again, the money issue. Canon refuses to give me the equipment, as does Apple and Adobe will not let me use their software free. So I have to find money. And lots of it. And if I build another site, it will be creative and different. The format of posting posting photos and videos in a members area so people can view them has been done since the dawn of the web. I would have to make it unique in some way.
I do on occasion talk with other webmasters just to exchange ideas and talk about old times. Hopefully with all that I and they can make something happen. If I do, hopefully others will do something similar. Some webmasters thought that competition hurt their bottom line and did whatever they could to eliminate it. Smart webmasters know better. This is not the first or only business I have managed or owned. I know for a fact that competition creates interest which in turn creates more business, as in members. It does not hurt for sure.
Over the next few week I will continue to bounce ideas around in my otherwise empty head, and maybe even listen to ideas from others. In any event, I will let you know first if anything will happen. I promise. My fingers are getting callused now from all this typing since I rarely do much of it and so I will go. Thanks for supporting us with your purchases. The funds will go to future projects what ever they are. And oh, if I post new stuff from new models, give them a chance. I can’t post new stuff if nobody buys it. It is good stuff too. It’s just that they were not a part of the old site, which is where the nostalgia lies. And I hope all of you will have a great holiday season, A Merry Christmas and, If I don’t speak to you again, Happy New Year!!
01 July 19
Hey everyone. Hope your week is doing great so far. I wanted to drop a blog today to let everyone know what has been going on since it has been a bit confusing.
First, as most of you know, I had planned to close STM as of June 30th. But a few issues came up and so I will leave it open until the 4th.
So what happened? My credit gateway planned a major security upgrade which we knew was coming for some time. And I was ready for it. I thought. For some reason it didn’t work out. On the evening of the 27th, our cc system went bonkers. For the store, it would process your charge but send you a DECLINED message. Also those who purchased sets did not get their download links. That was fixed as of this morning and all seems to be back to normal. Or at least what passes as normal for us. But the one that upset the apple cart was the issues with STM. Several of you wanted to join to get a last glance at the latest sets before closing. When you tried to join your card was declined. That was fixed this afternoon.
So, here’s the fix. All for a single line of code. Southernteenmodels.com will accept new members for 3 more days, I will remove the JOIN option on the evening of the 4th of July. As for the store, I think I fixed all the issues and got links to everyone, but in the chaos if I missed you just drop me an email. I don’t want anyone to go away angry. I’ll check it out and get you your links so you can get your downloads. But as of now, we are back up and running, accepting memberships, updating the store and selling downloads. And hopefully coming up with my next scheme. Sorry for the inconvenience, but in my world this is the way it goes.
31 May 19
Hello everyone! Thanks for dropping by. I actually have something to say for a change. And it’s one of those good news/bad news things.
First, lets start with what some would say is the bad news. I have decided that it’s time to stop beating a dead horse and close Southern Teen Models. The reasons are many. I am tired of fighting those who like to steal my content. It cost a lot of money to create content just to have some lowlife slime steal it and sell it on one of those slime sites. And I feel it is not fair to the models who have trusted me to see jerks repost my photos. STM is yet another casualty of the pirate sites. But that is not the only reason. Spending money to schedule shoots, just to have the models change their minds after all the money is spent. And honestly, I’m getting older and really don’t enjoy it anymore. So, with all this in mind, I have decided to close STM at the end of June. I do have a few more updates to post, and this will give me time to do that. At the end of June I will remove the JOIN button, and that will be it. The store will remain open for the foreseeable future and I will continue to add sets to the store as long as I have sets to add.
For me, I hope, if I can get a good group of talented people together, to do a few short films. It’s something I have wanted to do for a long time. I will also work with 18+ models I can trust to create some other unrelated projects, such as books and photo essays.
There is a possibility that I may create a solo site for a single model in the next few weeks. That is, if we can do something creative. And if I can put it together before the end of June. A lot of ifs, so we’ll see. Meanwhile, those who wish may either join STM for the new ISAR sets or purchase expanded individual sets here at the store. She started a couple of years ago at age 14. She is now 16, and much more comfortable.
STM had a great run that lasted about 9 years. Pretty good for a site that was originally expected to last about a year. But the last phase has not been something I am proud of. It’s kind of sad that it goes out like this, but models are hard to find and like I said, I am not having fun any more. But thanks all for the good years. Hopefully someone, maybe some of you, can create a site and carry this forward. If so, let me know and I will be a member.