Huffington posts want you to design their logo. Payment: credit. You can't eat that.

We all know what Huffpo's brilliant business plan is, get people to work for free while you laugh all the way to the bank. Now however, as Huffington Post announced their competition for a new logo, they are getting their asses handed to them in the comments.

As the 2012 election news cycle revs up, we're looking to spruce up the look of our social media channels -- and we'd like your help.
Do you know your way around Photoshop or other design programs? Have a cool idea for a logo that screams 'awesome politics coverage'? Enter it in the HuffPost Politics Icon Competition.
For the next week or so, we'll be accepting your proposed designs for a new HuffPost Politics logo. Once we have a good group together, we'll put them all up for a vote, which will inform the final pick. If yours wins, your icon will be used to represent this channel all over the interwebs -- with credit to you, of course.

The comments range from the simple and the the point, to those taking time to teach Huffpo a bit of ethics in business, to utterly outraged.

This is wrong, Huffington Post. It's wrong to extort writers the way you do and it's wrong to try and do the same thing to designers. Nobody should work for free for anybody but charity. --roboteti

AIGA, the nation’s largest and oldest profession­al associatio­n for design, strongly discourage­s the practice of requesting that design work be produced and submitted on a speculativ­e basis in order to be considered for acceptance on a project. The creative profession­als that read the Post expect more from you.

This practice violates a tacit, long-stand­ing ethical standard in the communicat­ion design profession worldwide for two reasons:

1. To assure the client receives the most appropriat­e and responsive work. Successful design work results from a collaborat­ive process between a client and the designer with the intention of developing a clear sense of the client’s objectives­, competitiv­e situation and needs. Speculativ­e design competitio­ns or processes result in a superficia­l assessment of the project at hand that is not grounded in a client’s business dynamics.

2. Requesting work for free demonstrat­es a lack of respect for the designer and the design process as well as the time of the profession­als who are asked to provide it. This approach, therefore, reflects on the integrity, practices and standards of the Huffington Post and AOL.

There are few profession­s where all possible candidates are asked to do the work first, allowing the buyer to choose which one to compensate for their efforts. (Just consider the response if you were to ask a dozen lawyers to write a brief for you, from which you would then choose which one to pay!)

Bran's earlier comment captures the appropriat­e way to conduct a design competitio­n. -- Ric Grefe

The Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) is extremely disappoint­ed in the Huffington Post's request for designers to submit logo designs on a speculativ­e basis. IDSA believes that designers should be fairly compensate­d for their work, skills and expertise. We also urge all designers to retain ownership of their intellectu­al property until they have been fairly compensate­d for their efforts.

To ask for design work on speculatio­n devalues the talent, skill, expertise and profession­alism of designers. To benefit economical­ly from unpaid work is inimical to profession­al standards.

Do you ask your journalist­s to write for free as well? -- GeorgeMcCain

Spec work is the devil. -- melanie seibert

Even Drew Davies, a.k.a drewoxide on Huffpo joins in the comments.

HuffPost, I respectful­ly request that you reconsider holding this spec work competitio­n. By now, you've seen in the comments plenty of great reasons for you to partner with a single designer / design firm for any and all of your communicat­ions design needs. But for good measure, I'll re-quote the best reason.

From AIGA, the profession­al associatio­n for design: "Requestin­g work for free reflects a lack of understand­ing and respect for the value of effective design as well as the time of the profession­als who are asked to provide it. This approach, therefore, reflects on your personal practices and standards and may be harmful to the profession­al reputation of both you and your business."

Thank you for reconsider­ing.

Drew Davies
AIGA Board of Directors

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Laura M - fashion designer in Paris's picture

As a designer (fashion designer) i am really upset at them. Everything is said in the comments.

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