Munjal Shah of Riya, a startup photo sharing service that applies face and text recognition to find images, is among many Web 2.0 companies in search of revenue generation models. He has an interesting way of expressing the revenue share idea, calling it the "revenge of the long tail."
Speaking at When 2.0, Shah said Riya is looking at paying for the incidental value of pictures to drive transactions. "We want to drive revenue from the exhaust of searching your photos, find a way to share back with users. There is a lot of complexity to it, but hidden in back of consumer pictures are valuable opportunities," Shah said. For almost every site or business that collects and stores user-generated content, revenue sharing and rights management are Gordian knots. The long tail should participate in the revenue stream, but the transaction infrastructure that encompasses all parties, from the users to the tax boards, is lacking. Phil Wainewright writes about this missing ingredient in his blog.
Shah also articulated the Riya story in a recent Gillmor Gang podcast.