It’s Not Dribbble’s Fault

Why you should reject the idea that Dribbble is ruining design.


The Dribblisation of Design

I’d venture to say that many of the (popular) designs on Dribbble aren’t real world designs for actual clients or products. Some think this is bad for the design community. Paul Adams writes:

This is why redesigns of other people’s work is pure folly e.g. the new Yahoo logo, iOS7, changes to Facebook, the New New Twitter, the American Airlines rebrand. People have no context for the decision making process involved in these projects, no knowledge of the requirements, constraints, organisational politics. (Excerpt taken from “The Dribblisation of design”)

Yet, I think this is the beauty of posting made-up designs. You don’t have to worry about organizational politics, or know all the requirements. You just get to let your imagination take the concept and run with it. I battle politics and requirements throughout the day. Sometimes I just want to design for fun, and dribbble is a good outlet for that.

I like to draw parallels between Dribbble and the Harlem Globetrotters. They do fun, crazy, unconventional, entertaining shots. They also don’t ask for advice after shooting half court shots.

Furthermore, no one in the crowd ever say “OMG why are they shooting backwards, between the legs?!? They’ll never do that in a real game…” But If you can shoot a half court shot backwards between your legs, you probably have a fairly decent jump shot.

The Community

Dribbble will probably never be a source to get high quality feedback. Your co-workers should fill that void. They know the project specs, constraints, and decisions that went into the original design concept. Until Dribbblers start providing these details don’t expect anything more than blind praise, or the occasional “contrast criticism.” For now let’s enjoy Dribbble for what it is- a community where we can push our design skills and try new things.



Freelance UI/UX Designer. Creator of

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