Stock House Thursday: Media Bakery
This week I will check out how Media Bakery handles keywords.
These aren’t really “reviews,” in that they will have no thumbs up or down at the end. This is not intended to be a recommendation or otherwise about any of the stock houses I will analyze. Most of the elements I’m looking at don’t necessarily have an objective right or wrong answer. The only thing that really matters is that the photographer know the correct way to keyword for the individual stock house.
If you haven’t read my introductory post for this series, on the various ways stock houses differ in their keyword standards, you probably should read 10 Ways that Stock Houses can be different in their Keywording Standards first.
I hope to provide an in depth look at how stock houses deal with keywords, and how their search engine works in order to give their contributors a complete set of requirements so that they can keyword their images get maximum exposure at the site.
For those of you with some gumption, you should read the complete introduction and methods behind these analyses: Image Keywording for Stock Houses: The Methodology.
The Results For Media Bakery:
- Result: Media Bakery returned the same results for almost all keywords, but was unsuccessful on a few uncommon words, such as conundrum & conundrums, cloche & cloches, and chef hat & chefs hat.
- Prognosis: You do not need to include the plural form of any any common keywords, but you would probably do well to include the plural form of any uncommon keywords.
- Result: Media Bakery returned different results all synonyms we tested, with one notable exception: child & kid returned the same results. Hopefully this is a sign that they are working on integrating synonyms into their search engine.
- Prognosis: You do need to include all appropriate synonyms for your keywords.
- Result: Media Bakery returned different results for most of our of keyword searches, two exceptions were gray & gray and airplane & aeroplane.
- Prognosis: In spite of a few exceptions, you do need to include all appropriate variant spellings for your keywords.
- Result: Media Bakery returned the same results for each set of keyword searches for regular verbs, but missed on most irregular verbs. There is inconsistency here, which I am hoping means they are working on this problem of stemming verbs, or it could be that they tried and have given up… Time will tell, and I will check again in 6 months.
- Prognosis: You do not need to include all forms of any verbs, though you need to include any irregular verb forms, such as ran, sat, or fallen.
Other Forms of the Word:
- Result: Media Bakery returned inconsistent results for every non-verb form of each word. They did an reasonably good job of stemming all non-verb forms, though I did get different results for a few.
- Prognosis: While they have most forms of words, you should still probably include all non-verb forms of any keyword, though skipping this will not hurt you too much.
Words in a Keyword Phrase:
- Result: Media Bakery are unable to find individual words that were within keyword phrase.
- Prognosis: You do need to include the individual words as keywords along with the keyword phrases, such as “American bald eagle, bald eagle, eagle” or “wooden chair, wooden, chair”.
- Result: Mixed results: Media Bakery appears to recognize most words as acceptable keywords, with a few exceptions; and, or & not are reserved words to perform Boolean searched, and articles such as the, a & an are ignored
- Prognosis: You do need to include all prepositions in your keyword phrases, other than the few words mentioned above.
- Result: Media Bakery recognizes all periods in searches.
- Prognosis: You do need to include periods in any of your keywords.
- Result: Media Bakery definitely deletes hyphens in search.
- Prognosis: You do not need to include the hyphenated versions of any of your keywords.
- Result: Media Bakery definitely recognizes apostrophes in searches.
- Prognosis: You do need to include both versions of your keywords, such as bakers dozen & baker’s dozen.
- Result: Media Bakery ignores capitalization when searching.
- Prognosis: No need to worry about capitalization.
- Result: Media Bakery returned different results for keywords and their common abbreviations.
- Prognosis: You do need to include all common abbreviations for your keywords.
- Result: Media Bakery returned the same results for all my individual letter searches, except for “a” due to it being an article.
- Prognosis: If appropriate, you do need to include individual letters as keywords.
- Result: Media Bakery does recognize numerals in searches, but only 1 and 2-digit numbers, 3-digit numbers and higher appear to connect to specific image id numbers, so are useless as search terms.
- Prognosis: If appropriate, you do need to include numerals as keywords, but only if they are 1 or 2-digit numbers (0-99). You also can use, for example, the keyword phrases numeral 9 and number 24.
Alphabetization of Keywords:
- Prognosis: Media Bakery puts all your keywords into alphabetical order.
- Result: There was no indication that images were returned based on the number of keywords. When viewing the keywords for images, some are bold, indicating importance, but considering there is no method during upload to indicate which keywords are more important, I suspect the bolding is simply an indication of common keywords, not importance to the specifice image viewed.
- Prognosis: No appearance of weighting based on number of keywords, or keyword order.
Number of Keywords Allowed:
- Unclear, but I did see some images with over 50 keywords, and the number of keywords clearly made no difference in the rankings, so I wouldn’t worry about limiting the number of keywords.
- Media Bakery only has a couple faceted searches; type, orientation, and environment.
- Prognosis: Nonetheless, it is very important that you do need to keyword all words found that are in the common faceted searches, such as; horizontal format, vertical, black and white image, vector, color illustration.
Unfortunately, Media Bakery doesn’t offer its contributors much in the way of keywording advice. This is all they mention in their contributor’s guide:
“Please provide us with a good description of the image. Include relevant details: the subject, location and any interesting or valuable information, such as the camera used, scanner, or any special circumstances about the image.
Keywords are the most important information you can provide to help users find your images. While people often know the specific subject they are looking for, concept keywords may help to inspire the end-user to choose your images to represent the idea. Keywords are closely reviewed in the inspection process; inappropriate words will be removed.”
As with most stock houses, not a heck of a lot of advice.
Previous Stock House analyses:
- How to Keyword Your Images Successfully for AP Images
- Search and Keywording at BigStockPhoto
- Effective Image Keywording for CanStockPhoto
- How to Keyword Your Images and Video for Pond5
- Masterfile: How They Search for Keywords
- Best Practices for Keywording Your Images at PhotoShelter
- NationGeographicStock: Keywords and Search for Stock Photographers
- The Search Engine at Fotolia and How to Keyword for It
- Image keywording and Image Search at Dreamstime.com
- How AgeFotoStock Handles Keywords
- Image Keywording for Alamy.com
- Image Keywording for 123rf.com
- How Shutterstock.com Handles Keywords