Moleskine logo competition
We designers love a Moleskine note book. Have done so for over a decade. It’s safe to say that Moleskine profits greatly from the design community. A harmonious relationship then. No.
I was saddened to read that Moleskine are crowdsourcing a new logo for their official blog Moleskinerie and to feature on their gadgets, t-shirts and Moleskine notebooks. Moleskine are pushing this via designboom who boast the following:
Quote from designboom
On average more than 3500 individuals & institutions from 150 countries participate in designboom’s competitions. Get noticed in this highly competitive international arena.
Let’s break this down. A logo done right will take many solid days to research the company, sketch ideas (possibly in a Moleskine product) before even opening up Illustrator. I’m going to be real conservative here and say 8 hours. Real conservative. 3,500 participating designers who spend 8 hours each equates to over 28,000 hours.
Moleskine will pay the winner €5,000 ($7,000). For this fee Moleskine will receive a staggering amount of artwork to choose from; the equivalent of 3 solid years from a single designer working 24/7. This equates to just €1.40 ($2) per design.
1 designer wins. 3,499 designers lose. Moleskine is the real winner here. If Moleskine redeem themselves by dropping this dreadful spec work competition I will continue to buy their products. Otherwise I’ll boycott. It’s that simple.
On behalf of our team at Moleskine, I would like to explain how we have been reacting to questions surrounding our contest to design a new logo for this blog.
Earlier this month, when we launched the contest – the first of this type of online competition for us – our intent was to celebrate the creativity of designers and support the community that has formed around this blog. We should have foreseen that the structure of the contest would raise questions about crowdsourced design. We didn’t, and we’re sorry. For a brand that regularly celebrates, collaborates and works with designers, this was quite unintentional.
To make matters worse, our first responses to your comments didn’t communicate how we really felt – tremendous support and respect for all of our users.
Based on the feedback, we feel it is only right and fair that we continue the contest while pledging not to use any of the entered work as the logo identity of this blog or for any other commercial purpose. We never intended to condone or support unpaid spec work in any way. We only want to continue to celebrate the hundreds of talented designers who have submitted entries and are exploring ways to showcase their work in a special way.
As part of our brand values, we have always embraced creativity and endeavored to involve artists, writers and designers in interactive exhibitions, events and our activities. We are continuously in conversation with our users and strive to find new ways to connect. However, in our intent to experiment, we sometimes find ourselves in the line of facing criticism.
We comprise a company devoted to designing blank pages and tools for creative professionals. We celebrate the value of design and apologize that we did not clearly appreciate the perspectives around crowdsourced design.
More than anything else, I want to emphasize that we stand for creativity. We care about our customers and want to do better. I hope that you will see our brand’s history of attention to quality, consumer relations, and authenticity and work with us to find better ways to involve our users in celebrating creativity.
Executive Director, Brand Equity
Let’s start by apologizing for being so late with our reply. We have been reading your comments carefully, in order to formulate a course of action that, in our opinion, takes into account the feedback we received, while being fair to those who have entered the contest.
Moleskinerie is a blog that grew out of the enthusiasm and voluntary contributions of a lot of Moleskine fans around the world. Since taking it over, we have tried very hard to respect the original DNA of Moleskinerie and running a contest to create the new logo for the blog seemed like a good idea to involve the community on a project related to a blog of this nature. Also, we wanted to reach a part of the design community we rarely work with.
It has never been our purpose to exploit the rights of any of the authors. Therefore, we made a mistake in accepting standard rules for the contest, including the possibility to retain the rights on entries submitted by all participant. This was inconsistent with our intentions and the result of an oversight on our end. We apologize for this.
We have decided to change the contest rules. In particular, we will modify Article 10 of “the call for entries” to only refer to the winner of the €5.000 cash prize of the contest. We will retain no rights on any other entry. Separately, we will continue to review how we can work with the design community at large, beyond those professionals we already work with on a regular basis.
As far as the Moleskinerie logo contest is concerned, we would like to clarify that since the nature of Moleskinerie has always been participative, made up of passionate contributions and voluntary submissions, we decided to let the community participate again in creating the new logo of the blog.
We decided to collaborate with Designboom to do so, a leading online design magazine, which is well aware of how to run a contest of this kind.
If you had spent some time on the “Competitions” area of Designboom website, you certainly have seen that other Brands are running and previously decided to run similar contests, with the same regulation of our with great participation as well as amazing results.
That said, being a contest, there’s a final price for the winner, but all the submissions are free, as well you are free not to taking part to it.
Thanks to anyone who has decided, and will decide to take part to it.
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