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Sometimes I think I understand Illustrative Editorial, other times I'm baffled.
I have many that are similar to the one below that was accepted, and has sold.
How is the one that was rejected different from it? Rejection reason was "does not meet the Adobe Stock’s Illustrative Editorial Guidelines"
I observe Adobe write "At Adobe Stock, we consider Illustrative Editorial to be content intended to illustrate articles on current events and newsworthy topics focused on conceptual imagery using real brands and products to convey strong ideas. We want photos and illustrations of branded products that help tell a story. Images may include a sign on a building, a soda can, computers, automobiles, or just about any product you see in the world today. Illustrative Editorial content is made available to Adobe Stock customers for editorial use only." I'm not sure either one helps to tell a story, maybe the one on the left was accepted in error. I know some people focus on editorial simply to avoid the hassle of getting releases, but that doesn't seem to be Adobe's idea. Also, it does limit potential sales considerably.
I just checked your account and see that file was approved yesterday and is already online.
Here's some more: Some of these were accepted, some rejected. All are prominent builings or iconic symbols of the Universities they represent.