Awesome photography, fun contests and many challenges created by other photographers.
I bought the membership to get unlimited uploads and access to videos to improve my photography, and I have to say I did get a lot more than only these two benefits. Received discounts for other products, I unlocked more contests and get more points which I'm still not sure how to use or redeem but will find out. Before buying the membership I had a question and reached out to support and within 1 day, they replied and resolved my inquiry. Overall, super happy, no complains and do recommend it!
Review by Davebutdan8 months ago
I have not used this site for years, and saw a new charge for $59.00 on my credit card last august. After repeated attempts to reach them I was told basically sorry about your luck, and make sure not to renew again.?? I told that operator and four more I wanted my account deleted, so low and behold today another $59.00 charge for another renewal. uggh. Now there is no phone to contact, I have sent emails regarding this, and called in a dispute to my CC.
Review by Taonha9 months ago
I have been a member of this photography website for several years now. The apparent purpose of the site is to facilitate photography contests wherein prizes can be won by photographers who take the most appealing image relevant to the subject matter as determined by a "voting process" (Viewbug asks site members, especially those who take part in the contest, to vote at their leisure, so it's a biased process to begin with). Viewbug caps the number of times a photographer can enter a contest and bars entries to certain contests entirely unless you agree to pay them a monthly membership fee, which I have done. However, all site members (whether they're already paying for a membership or not) are constantly bombarded with email after email "advertising" their membership, and there is no way to opt out of receiving these emails except to completely opt out of all emails. This website has options for opting into or out of contest-related emails, "special offers", photo stats, likes, comments, "community updates", etc - there are a total of FIFTEEN types of updates you can choose to receive or not receive including one called "personal invitations" (I'll get to that in a minute), and I have opted out of every single list EXCEPT the one about contest updates for contests I've entered (not new ones, it specifies that). But, I still receive emails about membership (which I already pay for) over and over again. I've even reported this problem to them and warned them that I would be reporting it to officials if it didn't stop, and they answered me by telling me their system is literally set up to send membership offers to everyone regardless of what emails they're subscribed to. The worst part is, these offers are frequently disguised in very misleading ways. Regularly, an email will have a subject line similar to "Attention! Your photograph has been handpicked for this contest" and a link inside the email supposedly meant to facilitate my approval of the contest actually just leads to the contest page. No photograph of mine has been "selected" and there's nothing special about the exchange, it was a trick to get me to look at a contest I had no interest in entering. Furthermore, they frequently advertise flat-out lies about sales. There was recently a Labor Day sale advertised as a $600 value which actually came out to $198 at the absolute most - I literally did the math and checked, and when I addressed this with them it was just ignored, I got no response at all. This website is malicious, it's a platform to trap photographers and creative individuals by luring them in with "prizes" I'm positive nobody actually receives (the only documentation I've ever seen of supposed winners is on Viewbug's own site, nobody has ever posted elsewhere about winning anything), and then tricks them into paying money for a service that isn't real, and then constantly reminds them that they have to pay by advertising fake sales even to people who are already paying them with no opportunity to stop the advertising. It's a huge attempt to coerce people into paying for nothing. In fact, all the prizes they supposedly offer? They're supposedly "partnering" with the companies that provide them, but I've never seen a trace of evidence from any of those companies even mentioning Viewbug, which, if the point is cross-promotion, you'd think there would be at least a Tweet or something right? Nothing. Viewbug is a fraudulent service and a spam advertiser.
Review by Kayomi Driesch9 months ago
Time to show some VB facts here!
You know that contest you got Top 10, 20, 30 or whatever? Good sad news for you: most of these results are completely random, unchecked and most of them even mathematically impossible. I will post here two examples, but I have many others saved in case I need:
Recently we have the "Sensual & Sexy" finalists announced, and 100% of them are incredibly wonderful photos, pretty sure any of them would be great winners.
I don´t know about you, but the contest theme suggests that many entries may have been marked with the Adult Filter content, which is perfectly natural on this case.On the other hand, any fair contest based on online voting gives a balanced exposure for most of the entries on the voting screens, even with a voting link available for us to ask for some votes for friends and contacts, right?
NOPE! Take a look:
JUN 27, 2019 | 05:34PM PDT
VB Customer Care replied:
Thank you for your participation in the ViewBug community.
We are truly sorry for the inconvenience. While unfortunately, we are unable to provide you with the total number of votes that each photo received, we have reviewed the entries and we see that 4 of them are marked with the Adult Content filter. As you can imagine, many of our members have the option to see these photos active and therefore could not view these entries. Additionally, photos with said filter are not displayed in our apps, which now play a big role in our community.
We see that your entry with the highest ranking was in fact the photo that does not have the Adult Content filter.
Please remeber that the rankings are based on votes received by members and that these will only count towards the People's Choice Winner.
Please let us know if you have additional questions or concerns.
Thank you and have a great day,
Your friends at ViewBug
I asked VB for the exact total number of votes on my entries, as their positions were terribly bad. It was already a bad surprise that they don´t have a record of how many votes you got, but even worst: 4 of my 5 photos were not even saw by voters, due to the Adult Filter. I even marked some off-topic photos that got higher (unfocused selfies on a restaurant drinking some coffee, "extremely sensual") and well, I had to get OK with the fact that my opinion and pointing this issue were not even considered to review some policies for this specific contest. Even with this vague reply about the votes numbers and the ridiculous idea to open this kind of contest limiting the exposure of Adult Filter, now comes the real bad part, what really mattters. CONTINUING:
When I open my results on APP, I get a message like this one:
Yout photo ended ahead of 358!
Same photo, on desktop: ahead of 59!
What Viewbug says about it:
VB Customer Care replied:
Thank you for your patience.
Our technical team has now identified the origin of this issue and will now begin working to resolve it. The update with the correction will be implemented as soon as it's ready.
Please let us know if you have additional questions or concerns.
Thank you and have a great day,
Your friends at ViewBug
Almost a week later, finalists announced WITH VB AWARE THAT THERE WERE FAILURES ON VOTING SYSTEM/RESULTS and this bug persists! :) I can´t consider it a serious contest if the finalists were chosen with the judges/company knowing that there were errors on the votes counting.
But, but, but, BUT, worst part: since MAY/2018 i´ve been proving and they AGREED that there were some major failures on many other contests. Examples:
On February, I got two pics on the same position. It was the 8TH time I was proving them that there were errors on the voting system and counting:
FEB 08, 2019 | 12:13PM PST
VB Customer Care replied:
Thank you for your reply.
We have forwarded your email to our technical department for review. We will contact you via email as soon as we receive a response.
Thank you for your patience and have an excellent day.
What happened this time (8th time btw...)...? Two photos, same number of votes and SAME POSITION? LOL?!
So, as I promised to VB: as they are unable to fix their own system for over a year now, and as they keep on delivering false results (more than once I got 5 pics in a row, like 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5th place! LOL!), I think it´s time to spread the word that even if you are an user with paid subscription, you can´t count and trust on their team and system.
First time I exposed their errors, btw, they decided to solve my 3months problem in 5 minutes: I won a Contest in February and they gave themselves 5 weeks to send the prize or the value in Paypal. The only excuse I got after these 5 weeks waiting was that "an error ocurred on Paypal" and they were solving it. The errors was basically that my account as many others here in S.America can receive certain amounts only as Service Payment, what can be solved with a single click or even a phone call to Paypal FROM VB (as they were the ones facing the error on the screen, not me!). A few posts on their facebook, instagram and more and BOOM suddenly it was fixed! :D
Let´s see how they will perform now on their own forum as I pasted there at least two contests with a lot of unmatching results and I have at least 5 more here waiting for another "We have forwarded your email to our technical department for review. We will contact you via email as soon as we receive a response" that never solves a thing! :D
Looks like here in Sitejabber they don´t even care to reply, so...don´t lose your time registering there or buying a Pro plan :]
Review by RBrannig9 months ago
So I'm a pro+ and first I thought that the site was fun, and enjoyed participating in contests and challenges... Then I started noticing how most of the contests where just full of pictures that did not fit the contest description, and how you could have fantastic pictures, spot on at the description be lower than someones shaky phonepics that barely fit in the description.. So maybe the winner was handpicked but everything else is just random.
I tried to make my own challenge, and thought that that would be nice boost for getting noticed... well the issue is, you can't find the non-sponsored challenges anywhere! So even after marketing it on the forum (I'll get back to that soon) I just had 10 pictures submitted. So, even though I'm paying a silly high amount of money for "exposure and extras" I get nothing for it.. Except for a "logo" that pretty much was my name in a circle... That's quite a expensive logo..
Then the forum, starting off, the forum was full of ideas, help and shoutouts about new challenges, and it was fun. Then the tones started changing, more and more negative comments about viewbug, and how people aren't getting what they've paid for, how customer service is non-existent and how unorganized the site has become. VB responded to these with shutting down the forum without notice, so now you have no possibility to actually connect with everyone else. So now we don't have the forum to connect, the challenges are impossible to get upped, contests winners/placements are randomized but mostly I feel discouraged by having the feeling that they made enough money to just let the site die.. Even here you can see that they still tried to answer peoples comments, but not anymore.. I recommend that if you are searcing for a photography contest site, go somewhere else, this site is taking its last breaths.
Review by Credendo9 months ago
So, I receive a message that I have a new follower. I haven't been to the dang ViewBug site in months, or maybe years. I decide to go take a peek and see what's what.
Well, I can't login under my email address account, so I login via Facebook. That brings me to an account with ZERO of my photos. I realize I must have two accounts and try the "lost password?" link. That link takes to some ViewBug wall page.
OK, so I figure maybe it's just me. I'm tired. I'll just send a detailed message to tech support explaining all the things I've tried, all the links I noticed that were broken, and what happened when I clicked on those broken links. As a programmer, I write very detailed bug reports. I know how important details are when reporting an issue.
Twenty minutes later I have completed my email to support, click the "Send" button and......nothing. The link to send to tech support isn't working.
So, there's that.
Review by MarketingGurus10 months ago
I bought the PRO+ membership and returned it within two weeks as I wasn't using it. They have mentioned on their website that they would return it within 30 days but when I ask for a refund the reply saying my deal isn't included in refund as it has links with some third party which wasn't even mentioned initially.
Review by Kathy Dancy Buhler11 months ago
I have been on this site for several years now, thinking I will give it a chance! Well, I've wasted too much time already! If you choose to stay here for free and never upgrade to any of the paid memberships ( there is a very aggressive sales pitch for you to upgrade), you will get no exposure at all! I'm no fool! I have some pretty decent photos, and hardly anyone looked at them! I'm told that there are a large number of photographers on this site, yet when I enter any of the challenges or competitions in order to gain exposure, I noticed that in the end a very small number of people had a chance to view my photos (50 the most if I'm lucky )! I realized that half the time, my photos are not even shown!!! Another thing that bothers me are the winning photos! I have seen some amazing inspiring photos on this site, and yet, half the time the winning photos are a joke! I'm through! Time to move on. Out with the old, in with the new!
Review by Vonkeshia Robianni1 year ago
IF you're just starting in photography its a great way to get to see what other's do and and then compare your work with others and get tips from them. IF you don't win contests no big deal, you can still show your work to the world.
Review by Cappella1 year ago
I have had a free account on Viewbug for a few years, now. I have no intention of ever "upgrading," as I know the site is all about making money, not about promoting my photos. My objectives in using Viewbug are probably very different from most of its users. I regard it as a free onliine portfolio of my best photos, and to that end, being limited to posting only 10 images per week has helped me to post only my best work by forcing me to be more selective about what I post. I use my Viewbug address on the cards I hand out to people I meet and, thus, it serves the function of an online portfolio on which anyone can see my work. I'm fairly certain that most of the views I get are coming from real people I either know personally, who know me, or from real people I have met, and most are not photographers, but that's fine because an audience of nothing but photographers will have a very different viewpoint than an audience composed of people from all walks of life. Anyway, as long as my cards are out there somewhere, I know that people are being exposed to my work and it is the exposure of my work to as broad an audience as possible that I am interested in, whether I ever hear from them or not. A "comment" like "Nice shot" or just a string of emojies is meaningless to me, but hearing genuine praise from people I have talked to face-to-face and can discuss my work with is far more edifying. As for Viewbug's focus upon contests, I couldn't care less. I know the lure of winning awards and so on is how they steer you toward buying a subscription and continuing to pay for it every year. I now have approaching 2,000 images on the site and I get spam from them daily aimed at getting me to subscribe. They have even resorted to giving me an additional 10 images for the week, as a bribe, an enticement to pay for a subscription. So, sure, I'll upload 10 more images, but I'm still not buying anything because there is nothing they are selling that is of any interest to me. I'm sure that, at some point, I'll reach some limit (I haven't heard of any, yet, though) on the maximum number of images I can have on my page, and if I do, that's fine. As long as it continues to be maintained, I'll continue sending traffic to my portfolio via my cards, email links, etc.
Review by ChiliMak Ferraresi1 year ago
Nothing. Not a single win, not a single mention, nothing. I've even suggested regional competitions, so that you wouldn't necessarily always feel that it you against the entire world, but the competitions the way they are now? C'mon. I'm not going to base my exposure on how much money I spend on the site. It's a waste of time. and o yes, of money.
Review by Keyani1 year ago
I'm a photographer and thats are my full time job. I have my audiance here in country. But here at ViewBug is nothing happening simmular about it in this scammy, full of promotion ads $#*!. I quit.
Review by AncientBread1 year ago
I have been using the website for 3 years, it's funny but of really no much use to improve with photography. I decided to not renew the premium membership and unticked automatic renewal box on my account. I didn't realize it had to be deactivated also from Paypal (why?) so today I got an unwanted payment. I'm trying since hours to talk about the issue to get my money (which I badly need!) back, I have a Case open but have no idea if and when someone will answer. It's ridiculous they have nothing like a real time chat for urgent matters at least.
Review by Barakissa1 year ago
Watch your credit card charges. I upgraded my ViewBug subscription in late November to "Pro+" for $79. On January 1 an unauthorized charge from ViewBug for $79 showed up on another card that I had used once a year or two ago.
I contacted their Customer Support. They claimed they did not make the charge and consequently would NOT reverse the charges. I had to file a dispute with my CC company.
I have since deleted ALL my pictures, website and profile on ViewBug. I do no tolerate unethical companies and ViewBug is one!!
Review by Queenof Vandebyl1 year ago
I upgraded to PRO and registered my own domain with the included handy website option, while I see the payments and number of invoices in my profile settings (but no chance to download invoices from the website), assistance said they do not release invoices and say that they sent me billing e-mails which I never got. As a pro I need some receipt I can use for my accountancy and I won't renew PRO if they don't sort this out!
Review by Busablue Imao1 year ago
I don't post to any of the sites for photographers to win anything I post for fun because I know no matter how good my photos are I will not sell any of them on Viewbug nor will I win anything for my work.
Review by Venanz1 year ago
I'm on viewbug and upgraded to start selling I was doing monthly repayments when I got 3 messages to say they where preparing to upgrade my account in other words they where going to take the money for the year without my permission so l cancel
Review by Evun Hytche1 year ago
After being a Premium Member for a few years, I think i can share a little bit of my experience with this site.
Things i like about ViewBug:
Plenty of good photographers and good photographs, makes it really hard to even think about winning a contest, so I've given up on that haha. I had a photo chosen as a finalist twice, that made me happy!
the design of the site is al-right, it displays the photos in a good way and disables right clicking, which is good to discourage thieves!
I've got quite a few awards from the ViewBug team, which i think is really awesome. One of my photos was featured as the cover of the site for a day. I'm not sure if they still do this, but i thought it was really nice and definitely encouraged me to keep shooting, back in 2013 :) So thanks for that ViewBug!
The whole contest thing, what ViewBug is really about, is amazing and it makes Viewbug a very unique site! It's really easy to join contests, there's no confusing stuff or anything involved, and you maintain the rights to your work. This is 100% why i joined ViewBug in the first place, to enter contests!
It's hard to know how well your photo placed, as many people have said. Yeah that's true, but it all comes down to a Jury so if they think your photo is good enough to be the winner, it will be. So i don't really care much about how well my photos did, as long as i have a chance to win.
Things that i do NOT like about Viewbug:
You can report a picture a thousand times for being inappropriate, nothing happens.
you can report it for being stolen, nothing happens.
I've seen many profiles with stolen photos, photos that have almost won contests, I've reported them and nothing happened. this is definitely the thing that worries me the most. One time i even contacted the real photographer to let him know that his photo was stolen, he said he contacted ViewBug about it, but it's still online and gathering likes and peer awards.
Memberships are too expensive, especially if having a Premium, Pro or Lite membership makes no difference to you. If you are sure you have what it takes to win a contest, then pay for the PRO membership and enter as many contests as you can.
View count is depressing. If you post a photo and don't add it to any contest or photo challenge, that photo will get maybe 2 or 3 views in a month.
Right now i have 4745 followers. Posted a photo a few weeks ago, and it has 34 views. and yeah it's a really good photo. This isn't the site to get views, so i wouldn't bother joining if that's all you're interested in. Join 500px or Instagram for that.
Bot members. Yes there are plenty of bot members! These are members who award everything and like everything! It's super annoying, I've got a few of them following me and whatever it is i post, they like and award. even if the photo is completely white or black, they will like and award. They are real accounts with real photos, but they probably use bots or whatever, to like and award everything they see automatically. So they end up with thousands of followers, even if their photos are bad.
Stuff i do not care about:
Points and being a curator ( you can be a curator in 1 day if you really apply yourself by liking and awarding everything you see ). By being a Curator, you welcome other people to the site, comment on their photos, like and award, ask them to join contests and photo challenges and whatnot. I've never done that. Sorry! :)
I'd give 3.5 / 5 stars.
Conclusion on a very long post:
If you're interested in joining photo contests and growing as a photographer, JOIN!
If you're interested in views, comments, awards, whatever, but don't really want to push yourself to have a chance at winning contests, then don't bother joining.
Review by Xyn1 year ago
I ask because I was probably stupid enough to "upgrade" to a Pro membership, and those guys refuse to send me an invoice. Every normal business should be able to send invoices but they wont...
Review by Sgaitan Roznowska1 year ago
This site is so easy to use.iam just a beginner and this site is the easiest to use and very fun and it's a great community to join as a photographer at ant level
Review by SeanL1 year ago
Not the best of the photo competition sites, but not the worst either. Nice that it has competitions with prizes, but far too many clickbait emails and persistent notifications trying to get you to upgrade ($) to see your stats, enter off-limits competitions and gain other pointless social media-type benefits (ie, ones where you do the work and pay for the privilege). It has a ridiculous 'curator' system that encourages you to send pre-formed messages to complete strangers in order to get them to be more active. The UI is a bit bonkers, and makes it hard or impossible to see precisely how well you are doing or have done in challenges, how many votes you got, etc. Makes one wonder if there is deliberate obfuscation going on for some hidden purpose. Maybe the levels of user activity aren't as great as they like to imply.
Having been on this and other photo contest sites for several years, I think the biggest problem is that its peer image voting system (showing four photos of different sizes on a screen you have to scroll FCOL) simply doesn't work. Far too often the peer voted 'winner' in a challenge just isn't that good. This isn't sour grapes - it is an objective opinion that the site throws up poor images as winners far more often than other sites. This, again, suggests that the volume of voting isn't high enough for the magic 'algorithm' to work.
Review by Teplofizik Fumberger1 year ago
The main reason it is impossible to get an answer, I had a problem with two of my contests, I searched for answers and found none. I sent in requests for help, all I got was the automated answers which didn't help my situation. Also if I pay for something I would like to be able to download my photos if I should loose them. I can find no way to download them and find no answer on the automated answers. I am sure this question has been asked. I have enjoyed my time there but it seems there are much fewer photos being uploaded, most contests are the same pictures. Also there needs to be a way of deleting photos that I want to remove as having over 1,000 photos is hard to find something. So, you have to go to edit and delete and then start over again, very slow especially if you internet isn't working well.
Review by Pgamble2 years ago
Thanks Viewbug for your response.
Could you please give me some more feedback on the following.
As a paid member i can use more peer awards than a none paying member such as "magnificent capture". Could you advise what these are used for? They seam pointless as they do not effect any voting or gain you anything in regards to challenges of contests. If these are just to give a complement then why is it an upgrade when i could just say it in a comment on the photo as both have no effect on anything?
I am almost daily getting messages from other competitors saying "congratulations on becoming a curator". these as stated in my review we know are generated by viewbug and not written by anyone, this is solely so someone gains a badge for communicating. Its no better than dating sites using fake profiles of good looking people to send messages to new members to get them to pay. I have had a few real comments for others and find this really rewarding only to be diluted by the amount of fake ones.
As for being able to see how my photos are doing in a contest. First i could have 5 in each contest and would have to go into each photo one at a time to get any information, what i get is, Your doing great. Your photo is in the top 30% most voted!
Your photo placed ahead of 27,649 submissions. witch really means i am somewhere around 11,849 th place if i bother doing the math. I don't see how may people have had the chance to vote or how many have voted for my photo. How could anyone see this as a transparent way of running any competition? and please remember this is not a free site like many others as to enter a lot of competitions you need to pay a fee.
If you could give more transparent information and site guideline it would help others make a more informed choice. Information as to what peer awards are for, the face that messages can be sent from viewbug with the click of a button from a curator not knowing what they will be sending or even having looked at your work. How and when dose a photo qualify for your hall of fame so it gets way more exposure than any other photographs on the site?
I feel all the above are reasonable to expect from a product i have paid for and should already be available to a paying or not paying member as to allow an informed choice. one that if i had to make again would currently be a none paying if at all member
Review by Bafford2 years ago
A friend signed me up for Viewbug and all I get is spam...all BS like 'you've been chosen!' and 'your views are going up!'....when I've got nothing on the website.
I've unsubscribed and STILL get email spam from them. Very unprofessional.
Review by Evona Shindev2 years ago
I want to know a few things about this site. I joined anf got selected ro join adobe stock photos.
I can't find ANY legal stuff as to what my percent of sales would be for my work.
This bothers me.
I checked adobe's stock website and it's 33% of the sale that I make that way.
If i go through viewbug I simply can't find any info on what I'll make for my work. Of course i can't reach a human to answer my questions.
Another thing, the adobe istock link Viewbug sent me had the words "viewbug sponsored".
What does that mean? It makes this offer sound like I'm being suckered into a vanity publishing thing. Did viewbug pay to send users this link?
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Welcome to ViewBug, a creative community with the world's best photo contests. Approved by millions of photographers, the best brands and awesome judges. Join over 100 photo contests per year and browse a huge selection of quality photos.