We can’t tell you what the benefit might be for you specifically, but we’ve learned from talking to some of the other photographers that they submit photos for a few different reasons. These generally include:
Giving back. A lot of the photographers want to give back to a community that’s given a lot to them. For example, your computer, the internet, your smartphone, most websites, wouldn’t exist (entirely or, at least, in their current form) it weren’t for the open-source movement.
Visibility. Another reason photographers submit a few of their photos is that they have a large number of photos that just sit on their personal hard-drives or on Flickr. They’d rather share them and have them seen by a large community, than gather dust.
Exposure. Sharing photos on Unsplash can give significant exposure for a freelance business or personal work. We’ve heard a lot of stories of people hiring freelance photographers through Unsplash (something we’d like to make easier at some point in the future).
We do not actively encourage professional photographers to join and upload all of their photos. We’re designers, developers and photographers ourselves, and we know that giving everything away isn’t a sustainable way to make a living from your profession.
Here are a few articles written by contributors within our community that might give you further insight: