Earlier this week MyPublisher sent an email to its registered users announcing the company would be closing on May 8, 2017. Just as soon as the email hit users’ inboxes, I was getting e-mails and Facebook messages expressing disappointment as well as a flurry of questions about what’s next? Messages have continued to come in steadily as the days have passed and I realized if I wrote a post, it would be easier to point folks to this instead of responding to each person individually.
It’s no surprise that this is big news in Photobookland – MyPublisher has been around for 23 years and they’ve built up a loyal following. The last event that worried some MyPublisher customers was Shutterfly’s buyout of MyPublisher about three years ago. Shutterfly kept the company going pretty much business as usual these last few years, but I suppose at some point they made a business decision to discontinue MyPublisher as a separate “sister company” and close it altogether. Some photo book features we’ve come to associate with MyPublisher have been brought over to Shutterfly, but not all. More on that below…
MyPublisher was actually the first photo book company I tried about a decade ago and it’s still one of my favorites today. I’m pretty bummed about the closure. My mom is a die-hard MyPublisher fan and she’s urging me to make her one last photo book of her recent vacation. Here’s a shot of the last one I made for her with MyPublisher for my folks’ vacation Down Under…
Good news is you still have time to start up a new project, finish up current ones or reorder previous books through May 8th, but other deadlines as you can see below are considerably sooner.
Some initial notes and tips about the closure:
- Shutterfly and MyPublisher run on two completely different platforms. Therefore your existing projects will not be moved over to Shutterfly and you will have no access to your old books after May 8.
- Shutterfly books are built using online software versus MyPublisher which utilizes downloaded software, so you’ll have to be connected to the Internet when working on Shutterfly.
- You can still reorder old projects or make new books before May 8.
- MyPublisher states you can get a free digital version of your saved projects if you contact customer service before May 8. Please note, you do not need to call the company. You can log into your account and go to “My Projects”. If you hover over your book image you’ll see an option to “Download”. If you click on it, a PDF of your entire book will download automatically to your computer. This would be the same PDF if you were to call, so no need to call, it’s on the site already.
- This PDF file is for archival purposes only. It is not of sufficient resolution to print but it’s nice to have a digital copy. You can share it with friends or family.
- Note that I was not able to download a digital copy of my books made in 2007. 2009 to present, downloaded just fine. I think a software upgrade may have affected the older books.
The following are some questions that were sent to me as well as a few of my own. I asked my MyPublisher contact to help address some questions, and for some, I added further details that I thought would be helfpul. These are paraphrased for clarity. A lot of these questions deal with the similarities or differences between MyPublisher and Shutterfly as the company is encouraging users to give Shutterfly a try.
Q: Is super gloss paper available at Shutterfly?
A: Shutterfly does have a glossy paper option. The process is different from MyPublisher’s but the overall look is the same. The glossy paper however is not available in either of Shutterfly’s layflat books.
Q: Is the upgraded premium 170# paper available at Shutterfly?
A: No, Shutterfly does not have the deluxe paper option but the standard papers are the same.
Q: Is MyPublisher’s lay flat binding available at Shutterfly?
A: Yes, the hinged lay flat binding from MyPublisher is available at Shutterfly. It’s called “Standard Layflat”. (It’s a $25.00 upgrade for an 8 x 11 size and $15.00 upgrade for an 8 x 8.) Shutterfly also has a seamless lay flat which is called “Deluxe lay flat” which is considerably more. ($50.00 for 8 x 11 and $40 for an 8 x 8). Note that these charges are irrespective of the number of pages you have, it’s a flat fee versus a per page fee.
Here’s a page I found in Shutterfly’s help center with regard to paper types and binding. You can also click on the image or link to go to that page if you find it hard to read below.
Q: Does Shutterfly offer MyPublisher’s 15 x 11.5″ Deluxe size?
A: No, the closest size would be 14 x 11. Also the standard size landscape at Shutterfly is 8 x 11 (versus the unique and slightly larger size of 8.75 x 11.25). Shutterfly additionally offers square books which I know a lot of MyPublisher users were hoping MyPublisher would add to their product line. MyPublisher’s photo book sizes were unique and not offered elsewhere. You’ll be able to find something close in size but not exactly the same.
Q: The Free Extra pages deal is my favorite deal. Is that going to carry over to Shutterfly?
A: I have not personally seen the free extra pages deal over at Shutterfly. Shutterfly usually offers 30 to 50% off hardcover books at various times of the year. I have seen Picaboo and Winkflash offer free extra pages before.
Q: Which company should I use now that MyPublisher is closing?
A: This is a hard one to answer as it depends somewhat on what it is you like about MyPublisher and what you rank as an important consideration (for example the user interface and software might be very important to you. Some folks write me saying they absolutely need to make their photo books with downloaded software and will not consider an online only company.) Since I use my own software and upload finished layouts, software is less of a consideration for me. As for end product, MyPublisher printed books are hard to beat and hard to find an equivalent for elsewhere. What impresses me most about MyPublisher photo books are how tight, neat and solid the construction of the books are, particularly in the binding. It feels like a high quality book. The endsheets and the translucent interior cover page adds a professional touch to the book and gives it a finished appearance. Clarity and color reproduction are also consistently accurate. The heavier premium paper is always an upgrade I am willing to pay for and at only $3.99 it’s a bargain. For me, the heavier than standard paper is a happy medium. It’s thicker than a standard weight paper (typically 100#) but not as heavy feeling as a book printed on photo paper (such as the Deluxe layflat upgrade offered by Shutterfly).
As for price, many folks would wait for the popular free extra pages deal to max out their books at 100 pages for only $35.00. Adding the lay flat upgrade would only bring the book to $60.00 – an excellent price for a 100-page lay flat photo book.
As you probably know I make photo books ALL THE TIME. It’s going to take me some time to think about where I will print the photo books that I used to print at MyPublisher. That said, I use different companies for different projects and subject matter and of course a lot depends on the budget I’m planning to spend. MyPublisher was my go to for vacation photo books, but I wouldn’t use them for photo books I would be allowing my young kids to handle (for that I would use a sturdier paper such as the Deluxe layflat upgrade from Shutterfly or the similar paper offered by AdoramaPix or Photobook America layflat.) I’m definitely going to get to work and do some investigating of my own, try more new companies that are popping up every day, and I’ll be happy to share with you what I find out.
Check out more comparisons between MyPublisher and Shutterfly here.
I heard from so many of you that you’re working hard to finish ongoing projects, or you want to get one last book ordered with your favorite photo book company. So, I asked the folks at MyPublisher if they would help five lucky readers get their projects to the finish line and they graciously agreed to sponsor this last giveaway for Photobookgirl.com readers!
Five (5) winners will each get $100.00 to use towards their photo books, for a prize total of $500.00!
HOW TO ENTER THE MYPUBLISHER FAREWELL GIVEAWAY
You have 5 possible ways to enter, but you must do the REQUIRED ENTRY for the others to count. For EACH entry, you have to COMMENT ON THIS POST below with a separate comment for EACH entry, telling me what type of entry you did.
- IF YOU WON, WHAT WOULD YOU MAKE WITH YOUR PRIZE?
- Subscribe to my newsletter (look for light blue box at top right) AND tell me in the comment below that you subscribed and the name you subscribed under (first name is fine). If you already subscribe to my newsletter, tell me in your comment and give me your name. (Please remember for it to count, you must confirm the subscription. Sorry RSS reader subscriptions don’t count);
- “Like” me on Facebook (if you are already a fan, or become a new fan, tell me your Facebook name in the comment form);
- “Like” MyPublisher on Facebook (if you are already a fan, or become a fan, tell me your Facebook name in the comment form);
- Give your review of any photo book/canvas company you’ve tried on the company’s main reviews page. (Click here to give a canvas print review). Click on the “Read Review” button. You’ll see a place to add your review at the bottom of each company’s page. Let me know which company you commented on by telling me in a comment in this post below. (Limit to two (2) entries using this method. Reviews given prior to the start of this Giveaway don’t count – they must be new ones please!)
Make sure to do the REQUIRED ENTRY!
This giveaway is open to anyone 18 or older. This giveaway is only open to residents of the U.S. or Canada. Void where prohibited. Void in Quebec. Entries must be received by THURSDAY, February 23, 2017, at 11:59pm CT and any entries not in accordance with the rules will be disqualified at our sole discretion and at the discretion of the sponsor. Winning entry will be chosen using Random.org. After compiling the results, I will announce the winner thereafter and will email the winner. The winner will have 24 hours to respond or I will redraw another entry. Canadian winner may be asked to answer a skill question to be eligible, to comply with Canadian laws. Winner will receive a code or voucher which must be redeemed before May 8, 2017. Winner will be responsible for shipping costs. Winner will be solely responsible for any taxes due on the product or prize including but not limited to sales tax, tariffs, duties and fees as well as any income tax obligations if any. Disclosure: MyPublisher is sponsoring the prizes for this giveaway. I am an affiliate of the company. If you click on a link to MyPublisher’s site and make a purchase, I may receive a referral fee from the company. Regardless of affiliation my opinions are always my own.
BONUS! Exclusive Photo Book Girl MyPublisher Coupon Code
FREE photo book for Photobookgirl.com Readers!
If you haven’t made a photo book with MyPublisher, here’s your last chance! Get a free 11.25″ x 8.75″ hardcover photo book with free super gloss printing or deduct $44.99 towards the cost of any hardcover book. Click on the link below to get your special code and more details. Deal Expires: 2/28/2017 at 11:59pm PST.
Looking forward to seeing those entries. Thanks again to MyPublisher for their generous sponsorship of this giveaway and 23 years of helping us preserve our memories!