Cincinnati, United States

Crowded House!

Today’s design marketplace offers a tremendous number of sites for the novice or professional designer to make money from global crowdsourcing projects. The traditional design community is up in arms over designers being exploited by these crowdsourcers.

They are gnashing their teeth over the meager design fees awarded to those who participate in these design melees where many designs enter, one is chosen,and the one gets paid. Truthfully, the fees are beyond cheap!

I’ve browsed a number of these sites and what impressed me is the number
of professional designers who participate. I’ve read bios, interviews and newsletters on theses sites.Most are pros! It seems they like slumming on these sites.

Is it the competition, or is it the creative drive which I believe good designers have in abundance, which induces them to do “spec” work? One designer I read about has a regular design position in a design studio. In his interview he says when he can’t sleep he enters his ideas for posted projects on what shall remain a nameless “crowdsourcing” site. They asked him why he bids on so many projects? His answer: he can be most creative on these projects
because he has nothing to lose!

In a “real world” project scenario, there are many variables that have nothing to do with the visual solutions he creates for clients. I’m sure many “day job” designers will agree with that summation. He says it’s good practice which ads to his skills on the real job.

I recently read about Adobe crowdsourcing a logo project on a regional basis.
The vitrol from professional designers outraged by this infidelity, is justified.The mere cost of Adobe products demands quid pro quo from Adobe to be loyal to designers whose very livelihoods, depend
on their products.

I think Google gets it right.They allow their engineers to devote 20% of their time at work on projects of their own.Innovative ideas develop from this “creative” approach to management. It seems, for creative designers,
winning the project and the pay aren’t important, the creativity is!

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