Why is the Sony ImageStation® service closing?
Sony Electronics has decided to close ImageStation, its photo sharing service, in order to focus on the company's core businesses, products, and services.
In the early days of digital photography Sony realized the need to provide an online photo service to support their digital camera customers. In the years since, many capable online photo services have become available and our customers now have a broad range of options for storing, sharing, printing and creating photo gifts.
When is the Sony ImageStation service closing?
Please keep the following very important dates in mind when planning what to do with your images:
- Tuesday, September 4, 2007 - Monday, November 12, 2007: Full ImageStation site functionality remains in place. You will be able to utilize normal account features and order all available products.
Monday, November 12, 2007 at midnight PST: You will no longer be able to purchase prints or gifts and many site functions will be disabled.
What you can still do:
- Access your account and your images.
- Initiate a transfer of your photos to Shutterfly
- Order a CD or DVD archive
- Use the Downloader application
Note: You will not be able to join, upload new images, order prints or gifts, share your albums or edit your projects.
Monday, January 14, 2008 at midnight PST: The store will be closed in its entirety. Archive discs will no longer be available.
You will still be able to:
- Access your account and images
- Initiate a transfer to Shutterfly
- Use the Downloader application
- Friday, February 1, 2008 at midnight PST: The ImageStation servers will be powered down. All remaining images and member's personal data will be erased from the servers. No copies will be kept.
Other dates/intervals to keep in mind:
- 30 days after you transfer your photos to Shutterfly we will automatically delete your account and all personal information from the ImageStation servers.
- If you contact us and request that your account will be closed your account will be flagged for deletion and all data will be inaccessible within 72 hours.
What do I do now?
We have provided several options for you to choose from:
- Transfer your photos to the Shutterfly™ service. (Includes automatic account closure)
- Download your images to your own computer.
- Purchase a CD or DVD archive of your images.
- Request that your account be closed. (More information regarding this option is below)
We recommend you do number 1 and/or 2 and 3. If you choose not to transfer your photos to Shutterfly you should download your images and/or order an Archive disc.
You will find detailed explanations of how each of these options work here:
- Transfer your photos to the Shutterfly service. (Includes automatic account closure)
- Download your images to your own computer.
- Purchase a CD or DVD archive of your images.
- Request that your account be closed.
Can I take advantage of more than one of the above options?
Yes, in fact we recommend that you order a CD/DVD archive and/or download you images to your own computer and then transfer you photos to Shutterfly. Creating an archive is a good way to get copies of any videos or gifs you have since these cannot be transferred to Shutterfly. If you choose not to transfer your photos to Shutterfly you should download your images to your computer and/or order an archive disc. When you have completed the download and/or received your archive disc in the mail then initiate an account closure if you like. This way you can be certain your information is removed from our servers in a timely fashion. Keep in mind once you transfer your photos to Shutterfly you no longer have the option to download your images or create an archive disc.
What happens to my saved projects?
Unfortunately your saved projects cannot be transferred to Shutterfly. However we are leaving the site fully operational until November 12, 2007 to allow you plenty of time to finish projects and order them before we close the store. Remember, general product availability ends on November 12, 2007 so you won't be able to order anything (except an archive disc) after that date. Once you transfer your photos to Shutterfly your ImageStation account will automatically be closed and you will no longer have access to your saved projects.
I purchased a premium membership. What happens to it?
We will offer refunds to all members who purchased one of our Silver, Gold or Platinum memberships with an expiration date of November 13, 2007 or later. We will post directions on how to apply for this refund in the first week of November 2007.
Will my Premium membership coupons still be valid?
All coupons will be valid until their stated expiration date or until November 12, 2007 whichever is soonest. We will be providing compensation for coupons that expire after November 12, 2007. Details on how to apply for this compensation will be made available the first week in November 2007.
I have coupons in my account. What happens to them?
Your coupons will be valid until their stated expiration date or November 12, 2007 whichever is soonest. We urge you to use your coupons as soon as possible because you will not be able to redeem them for ImageStation products after November 12, 2007. We will put a compensation program in place for unused coupons remaining in accounts after November 13, 2007. Details of this program will be available the first week in November 2007.
How do I transfer my photos to Shutterfly?
It's easy. Sign in to your account and go to the announcement page. (There is a link at the top of every ImageStation page.) Scroll down to the first option: "Transfer your photos to Shutterfly" and follow the prompts. Details.
How long will it take to transfer my photos to Shutterfly?
This depends on how many people are using the system at the same time. Your transfer request will be placed in queue and acted upon in the order in which it was received. However if there are many requests it may take up to 10 days to transfer your account.
Can I access my account while my photos are being transferred to Shutterfly?
No. Your ImageStation account will be locked from the point you instruct us to perform the transfer.
Can I access my account after I transfer to Shutterfly is complete?
Your account will be locked from the point you instruct us to perform the transfer to Shutterfly. If you need to get access to your account after the transfer is complete please be sure to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org within 30 days of transfer completion. No access is possible while the transfer is in process or after we automatically delete your information from our servers.
How will I know when my photos have been transferred?
We will email you. The email will tell you what was transferred. If we weren't able to transfer an image for some reason we will tell you what we couldn't transfer and why. This email will also contain a Shutterfly promotional code redeemable at Shutterfly.com for a 20 page picture book.
What can I do if I have issues with transferring my photos or my transfer fails?
Contact us at email@example.com.
Will my premium membership status be transferred to Shutterfly?
No. If your premium ImageStation membership expires after 11/12/07 we will be offering a refund based on purchase price. Details on this program will be available the first week in November 2007.
What happens to all my personal information when my photos are transferred?
Once your transfer is complete your ImageStation account will be marked for deletion. All your personal information and images will be erased from the servers 30 days after your transfer is complete.
What will happen to my images and personal information after ImageStation shuts down?
All images and member data remaining on our servers on February 1,2008 will be erased.
What are the storage and upload policies at Shutterfly?
Please read the Shutterfly terms and conditions here.
What if I don't want to transfer my photos to Shutterfly?
We suggest you use the downloader and move all of your images to your own computer. You may also purchase a CD or DVD archive and have all your images, videos and album structure mailed to you on disc. Once you have downloaded your images or received the archive disc you can, of course, upload them to the photo sharing site of your choice.
Can I download all my photos at once?
Yes. Please read about the multi image downloader here.
How much will an archive CD or DVD of my photos cost?
The CD archive is priced at .49 per disc. The DVD archive is priced at .99 per disc. Applicable taxes and shipping charges are additional.
How do I decide whether to purchase an archive CD or an archive DVD?
The CD archive can hold up to 580 megabytes of information. The DVD will hold up to 3.5 gigabytes of information. The progress bars will let you know how much storage you will need before you place the order. Please keep in mind that the DVD archive disc will only work in PC based DVD disc players. They will not work in the DVD player you have hooked up to your television.
Why should I initiate an account closure?
For your own peace of mind. Your information will be safe if left on ImageStation and will be permanently deleted in due course. However you may feel more comfortable knowing it has been removed at your direction. Please take this step carefully! Account closure is irreversible. Once we delete your data we cannot get it back.
What's my best option?
First, relax. Here's what we recommend for the most thorough treatment of your images (order is important!):
- Use the Downloader to transfer all your images to your hard drive.
- Order a CD or DVD archive of your account.
- Transfer your photos to Shutterfly. (After which your ImageStation account will be closed automatically and your personal information deleted.)
- Initiate an account closure. (Only if you decide not to transfer your photos to Shutterfly)
I transferred my photos before I realized that some of my images would not be transferred. What do I do now?
Please contact as at firstname.lastname@example.org within 30 days of the transfer. We can help you get back into your account so you can download your images and/or order an archive disc. Please be sure to contact us ASAP as your information and images will be deleted from our servers 30 days after the transfer has been completed.
I transferred my account before I realized my unused ImageStation coupons would not be transferred. Can I still use the coupons?
ImageStation coupons cannot be used after you instruct us to transfer your account to Shutterfly. However we will offer a compensation program for coupons that expire after November 12, 2007. Details on this program will be available the first week in November 2007. We urge you to use your coupons before transferring your account to make sure you get the product you want.
I have transferred my account to Shutterfly. How long before my data is removed?
Once you instruct us to transfer your photos to Shutterfly, your ImageStation account will be flagged for automatic deletion. We will keep your information and images on our servers for 30 days past the transfer completion date. If you need access your account within that 30 day period you should contact us at email@example.com and we will assist you. However, once your account has been deleted it cannot be retrieved.
I have initiated an account closure. How long before my data is removed?
If you contact us and request that your account will be closed your images and personal information will be flagged for deletion and inaccessible within 72 hours.
I can't log into my new Shutterfly account. What do I do?
Please contact Shutterfly customer service. We don't have access to your account at Shutterfly but the customer service team at Shutterfly is ready to help.
I already have an account on Shutterfly. Can I transfer my ImageStation photos to that account?
Yes. During the transfer process you will have an opportunity to sign in and transfer your photos to an existing Shutterfly account.
Will all of my images be transferred to Shutterfly?
Not necessarily. Some image formats which were accepted on ImageStation are not accepted on Shutterfly. These include video clips, cmyk jpegs, gifs, progressive scan jpegs and images with corrupt headers. These images may not successfully transfer to Shutterfly. We recommend you download all of your ImageStation images to your hard drive and/or order an archive disc before you transfer to Shutterfly. Both of these options will give you access to all of your images and video clips. Also it will give you access to the original sized images which will not be available on Shutterfly.