Cookie Cutter Design - iStockphoto wants your logos for $5
29th September, 2009 by Lesley High
Oh dear! Its a pretty sorry day when designers are asked to design logos for $5. iStockphoto make this sound like the greatest opportunity not to be missed. I’ve seen this type of thing advertised on Facebook before, but never thought a company who I thought was fairly reputable would ever go down this path. Is this not biting the hand that feeds you?
For those who have missed the story, here is what istock is proposing:
“Become a logo designer for istock photo ... We’re excited to announce a whole new product coming to the iStock collection in just a few months: logo designs. Our clients will be able to download a unique logo to brand their business or organization right here at iStock from designers like you.
As a designer, you’ve probably created hundreds of different logos over the course of your career and we’re offering you an outlet to start selling new logos to the world’s largest community of creative buyers.
If you create one of the first 10,000 approved logo designs for iStockphoto by January 1, 2010, we’ll pay you $5 per approved logo and another $5 if we reach 10,000 approved logos by that date. So fire up Illustrator to create some amazing logos or dust off all those much-loved logos that never made it past the third round with a client”.
David Airey of the blog LOGODESIGNLOVE had this to say about the plan:
“I’ve learned a lot during my years as a designer. One of those things is that a logo in isolation is like lipstick on a pig. It needs to be treated as part of an overall brand identity strategy, not picked off a shelf. This is no different from the “make your own logo” websites out there, or the logo contest spec work sites that harbour an equal amount of “design” nastiness”.
Niki Brown of Design O’Blog, doesn’t think the issue is very cut and dried:
“Logos are a particularly difficult aspect of graphic design because they require you to summarize a company with a symbol and text. Logos involve a lot of back and forth with the client. A cookie cutter solution seems totally inappropriate!!! But then I remembered that I purchased a stock photo from iStockphoto.com this morning… and thought… hmmm hypocrisy?”
Reactions from the design community have been mixed. Some designers on the istock blog forum acknowledge that there will still be clients who value a proper design service just as there will always be people who don’t see anything wrong with buying a stock logo cheaply. Other designers believe istock are exploiting and devaluing the designers who made istock so successful in the first place, as one blogger says:
“This only helps to push the design industry in a race to the bottom”.
So what are your thoughts about this? Do you think this istock scheme will be popular with designers or clients? Is this just a natural extension of what istock already do? Are you outraged, or are you wondering what the fuss is about? Do you think this poses a serious threat to the design industry or not? Are we right to be angry anout this? Are we being short changed? Or, will it be a relief for design studios who will no longer have to deal with the el-cheapo clients?
Please leave a comment and let me know what you think!
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