The Design Community is the new Fox News.
and why you should focus on your own stuff
The grating pundits on Fox News are always hasty to react, judge, shoot down, mock, “correct”, and whine loudly and incessantly about anything and everything. Sound familiar?
The gold iPhone has to be one of the worst things I’ve seen Apple create… in a long time. —via Twitter
I have an idea… Don’t buy it. Or go design, engineer and manufacture a better phone. Just stop whining on the Interwebs — it doesn’t change anything.
I’m constantly amazed (and disappointed) at how the design community has become a group of self-serving, know-it-all, egomaniacs with an opinion on every refresh, redesign and product launch.
I guess I shouldn’t be surprised — I’ve seen it coming. I’ve been doing design for over 16 years (my career launched the same year Google.com was registered — 1997). We’ve been building up to this, letting it happen — encouraging it. We’re all to blame.
I’m not pretending I’m immune. I’ve found myself in communal bash sessions thinking how I could have done better, or how I would never have chosen that palette or that typeface.
But, it doesn’t matter what I’d do differently—it’s not my project.
Whether it’s the London Olympics branding, iOS icons, the new Yahoo! logo, or the iPhone 5 (S and/or C) — the design community is exceptionally quick to shoot it all down. Within minutes you’ll find countless reactionary negative tweets, blog posts picking apart every minute detail, and dribbblers with too much time on their hands posting their versions of how it should have been — and it happens every time.
Just like Fox News, we don’t care about context or history. We’re just loud, obnoxious and self-promotional. Zero critical thought. Very little rational dialogue.
Here’s the thing. Unless you work at Apple, Yahoo! Google, or their respective design agencies, you don’t have access to the big picture. The market, context, history, vision, brand, goals, team, audience, roadmaps, strategy, company, brand guides, technology, timelines, etc. These are the parameters that their team(s) had to work within. You simply aren’t privy to this information — which is an integral and critical part of every design project.
Let’s be critical thinkers and innovative producers of our own stuff, our own projects and our own ideas. Put our skills to work in a positive way—on our own ideas and let everyone else focus on theirs.
Make your own thing(s) awesome.