Free Work

Free work or Spec (speculative) work can be defined as, "Providing design services to develop creative concept work for free (or for a nominal fee) as part of a new business pitch."


Guidelines on the menu in the left sidebar or on the images below:



Spec work and crowdsourcing are universally condemned by design organizations around the world, including RGD, Icograda, Graphic Artists Guild and AIGA, as being an unethical business practice that is harmful to designers and clients alike.


The RGD Code of Ethics prohibit members from taking part in open competitions on speculation.


Download RGD's Policy Statement on Spec Work

RGD provides a policy statement detailing the harmful effects of demands for spec work and providing advice on the professional methods for selecting graphic design services.

Report Spec Work

The RGD Ethics Committee and Spec Lobby Committee work to issue formal grievances to those who issue RFPs with spec components, host crowdsourcing competitions and more. Professional designers are encouraged to contact us when asked to engage in spec work. Depending on the situation and request, RGD will either write to and advise the offending parties directly, or provide complainants with a copy of the policy on letterhead.

For information on RGD's pasts anti-spec successes, and other advocacy efforts, click here.

To inform us of a case of spec work or for further information please contact:

Hilary Ashworth, Executive Director