RGD writes to Mayor and key officials to explain the negatives of spec work both to the design community and clients. News Talk 610 CKTB and Niagara This Week reported on the Association's position.
When the City of Welland launched a call for artists to design the City of Welland's next logo, RGD's Ethics Committee took immediate action, sending letters to Welland's Mayor, City Manager, Communications Clerk and email address associated with the contest.
Responses from the Mayor, Communications Clerk and City Manager argue this is an attempt at public engagement and that a professional designer may be retained to clean up the selected submission. Julian Brown RGD, RGD's VP of Ethics, likens this explanation to crowdsourcing legal advice and then saying, oh don’t worry, we might hire a lawyer to type the letter. In addition, the requirement that a submission be "an Adobe compatible editable vector graphic, and must be packaged to include all fonts" does not speak to the process being a way to generate ideas from the general public.
On April 21, the Association's Past President Lionel Gadoury RGD was interviewed by Tim Denis on the News Talk 610 CKTB morning show. Lionel explained RGD's perspective and the issues with spec work. Listen to a podcast version of the 8-minute interview:
On April 20, local media outlet Niagara This Week published a front page story on the issue, entitled "Public logo contest draws criticism from design pros". The story features thoughts from Niagara College Professor Greg Smith RGD and an excerpt from the Association's letter to the Mayor.
Photo credit: @jamestakeo [Twitter]
RGD will continue to communicate with City officials and we will keep Members and the community updated on any developments.
If you have any thoughts or questions on this, please email RGD's Executive Director, Hilary Ashworth, at .