In early 2017, Kodak launched Kodakit, an on-demand photography service often referred to as “the Uber of Photography.” But only three years later, the company is shutting down the service. Starting from early 2020, Kodak will wind down Kodakit and terminate the photographers’ contracts.
The news is yet to be announced on Kodakit’s website, but users have already received a message to notify them of the platform’s discontinuation.
“We expect the business to wind down by the end of January 2020,” Kodak writes. After 31 January 2020, photographers can expect their contracts to be terminated. However, the company promises that any outstanding payments will be paid, according to PetaPixel.
“After January 2020 please discontinue any activities pursuant to a PSO and promptly deliver all Work Product to Kodakit. We’d also like to remind you of your ongoing obligations under the terms of Agreement and those of the similarly terminated General Terms and Conditions, including those with respect to Confidentiality. Please note that after January 2020 you may no longer represent yourself out as a Kodakit service photographer or use the Kodakit trademarks in connection with your business or photography. If you have any questions or concerns, you may contact firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Apparently, Kodakit didn’t create enough interest to keep the business successful. We created a poll in 2017 when the platform was launched, asking our readers if they thought Kodakit would be successful. Almost 60% predicted failure, and I guess they were right.
The fact that Kodakit stripped photographers of copyright to their own work probably didn’t help to make the service more popular. The platform’s terms required from photographers to give up their copyrights and moral rights. On the other hand, photographers were required to bear all the risk and responsibility.
It looks like Kodakit was not really on photographers’ side, so it’s probably no wonder that the service didn’t succeed. It’s a shame, though, because the idea was really good.