Wired.com is running the following contest:
Each month, we’ll propose a scenario and present some ideas and concepts. Then it’s up you: Sketch out your vision and upload your ideas (below). We’ll use the best suggestions as inspiration for a future Found page, giving kudos to contributors, and we’ll add our favorite submission to this story.
Emphasis is mine.
I know creative contests are a touchy subject to begin with, but this really seems like a cheap way for Wired to get some free visual content and offer up virtually nothing in return. At the very least, they could offer a free subscription to anybody that submits content.
I think there are many situations where free work is perfectly acceptable. I loved working with Help Portrait and didn’t expect a thing in return. I know designers that have helped new church plants with some logo work and web design. Another example would be when a creative volunteers to do something for free (I know I have) in order to be able to build up their portfolio.
But I think there is too much of this going on. Promises of “exposure” or “credit” are becoming a far too common way for consumers to avoid having to pay for content.
Do you agree? Should creatives do any free work outside charitable endeavors?