Google's Matt Cutts latest video answers a quick question, "does using stock photos on your pages have a negative effect on rankings?" The answer is currently no.
The images you use on a page have no ranking impact, either positive or negative, on that web page ranking well or not. At least directly.
Matt doesn't get into the possibility of nicer, more unique, images having more of an appeal to readers, bloggers and reporters. Which then can encourage more shares and links to the story. But looking at stock images as a ranking factor is currently something not done.
Matt Cutts said they will look into maybe looking at using the unique value of an image as being part of the ranking algorithm or a signal in the ranking algorithm. But I am not sure if he meant that. :)
Anyway, stock images, like the one I used here, should have no impact on this story not ranking.
Forum discussion at Google+.
Image credit to BigStockPhoto for stock image