Wow, I stepped out for coffee and while I was gone, I seem to have missed some corporate drama. Lucky me.
What’s a “Fotomoto”?
Fotomoto is something very different. It is a print order management service that makes photo-ordering possible on websites that that don’t have their own proprietary print-fulfillment arrangements. Photographers can pick the websites that they like best for their design and other qualities, and get print ordering as an add-on from Fotomoto.
So what happened?
Well, as is so often the case, the folks who actually know aren’t saying much. But this is how it appears to me: In early 2013, Fotomoto was acquired by a photo-hosting site for pros called Livebooks. Some (all?) of the old staff at Fotomoto, um, ceased to work for Fotomoto any more. Then really ugly stuff happened. Orders weren’t being fulfilled. Fotomoto’s site actually went down for a while. Support requests went unanswered. In short, a service that had been doing a really great job and built a great reputation — viz., Fotomoto — suddenly started doing a terrible job. Seems pretty clear it had something to do with the Livebooks acquisition.
But the story has a happy ending. Bay Photo, which had been fulfilling prints for Fotomoto for a good while, purchased Fotomoto — presumably from Livebooks — in late July 2013. As of the start of August 2013, Fotomoto is once again up and running. Some of Fotomoto’s key staff (like awesome customer support guy Derek) are back at work.
And it all matters to me because I’ve just revived my account at Fotomoto. Let the printing begin — or in my case, begin again!
EDITORIAL NOTE: Livebooks prefers to write its name “liveBooks”. Cute. I can just barely stand to write “iPhone” and “iPad” but those terms are ubiquitous now and we’re stuck with them. If you write “Iphone” or “I-Phone” people will suspect you just got back from five years in a Tibetan monastery. On the other hand, “liveBooks” to me looks like a mistake. It is not, but I do not feel compelled to conform to their silly branding stylesheet.