Friday, July 27, 2012

First-hand proof of why you should avoid crowdsourcing sites for design work.

During my weekly search using Google's reverse image search to find businesses on the web that are plagiarizing my work, I stumbled upon quite a treat that directly confirms what I've been telling people for a long time now. That is that crowdsourcing websites are full to the brim with "designers" that copy and submit existing logos and other design work in order to try and win contests. 

Take a look below at the screen capture I took of a logo that was entered to a contest on 99designs.com. Someone copied the logo I designed in 2003 for PAK Photography, slightly edited the icon and tried to pass it off as their own original work.

Click image to enlarge.
Below is a second example I found two days later on a similar corwdsourcing website, designcontest.com. Yet another "talented designer" plagiarized my work, this time a logo for Uchenna Bath and Body Products, and submitted it as an original design into one of the contests hosted by the website.
Click image to enlarge.

This is first-hand proof that anyone using these crowdsoucing websites better be prepared to fork out some serious cash for legal fees as well as fines in case they get sued for copyright infringement. And don't forget the expense for getting a new logo designed, reprinting marketing materials, business cards, signage and anything else with the infringing logo on it.

Don't expect any help from the crowdsourcing website after the hammer gets dropped on you. At most, they will give you a refund for the amount that you paid out as the prize for the contest. Their hands are squeaky clean from the whole mess because they can claim that designers participating in their contests aren't employees of the company. 

To top it off, I reported both infringing designs to 99designs and designcontest.com. The only action they seem to have taken was to remove the infringing logos. I checked the websites and both designers that plagiarized my work are still listed and competing in contests. Isn't that fantastic?




Thursday, July 26, 2012

Oakland Raiders logo concept.

I've always thought that the Oakland Raiders could benefit from a new logo design. Unfortunately, they seem to be one of the few teams left in the NFL that have not bothered doing so. I can't say that I blame them either since the Raiders logo is pure nostalgia. I'm sure that any attempt at officially redesigning it would lead to nationwide protests and incur the full wrath of the internet .

So, here is my version of the Raiders logo. I kept the shield and the oldschool helmet in the design. The real departure in the design is the face which I replaced with a skull. I also created a secondary logo using the sword which could also be used as a standalone element without the Raiders name.

Oakland Raiders Logo Concepts


Raiders logo evolution.