The web has brought a flood of changes to how we live our lives and conduct business, crowdsourcing being one of them. We all know crowdsourcing is something that has been fiercely debated online but what is crowdsourcing really? Truth be told, I didn’t much about the topic until I started working at designonclick.
The term “crowdsourcing” was created by combining the terms “crowd” and “outsourcing.” Wikipedia defines crowsourcing as “the act of outsourcing tasks, traditionally performed by an employee or contractor to an undefined, large group of people or community (a crowd, through an open call.” Wikipedia itself even functions through a form of crowdsourcing known as “crowd wisdom.” Wikipedia is competely free, and article contributors aren’t compensated for their time or effort. If it weren’t for crowdsourcing there is no way we would have access to the plethora of knowledge Wikipedia provides us about seemingly everything (over 3.5 million articles in the English language alone.) Simply put, no crowdsourcing would mean no Wikipedia (which is something I don’t want to imagine, Wikipedia got me through high school and is still my go-to place for info!)§§§
Another form of crowdsourcing is crowd funding. Ever heard of IndieGoGo? I hadn’t until I began my research on crowd sourcing. IndieGoGo is a platform that connects artists, singers, film-makers, and basically anyone looking to fund-raise with thousands of donors from all over the world. This article from New Equity Business explains the concept well, and how it empowers film-makers, artists, students, etc.
Crowdsourcing in capacity to designonclick.com is obviously a great choice for businesses. Most sites like ours offer money-back guarantees, an average of over 100 submissions per design competition, and no shortage of creativity. What about designers though? I had the chance to talk to a young graphic designer who got his start through a website similar to designonclick.com. While there was no way for him to sugar-coat the fact that the odds of winning a design contest are usually low for designers, he also pointed out quite a few benefits. He was able to build his portfolio by creating designs for high-profile projects that he would not have had access to without platforms like designonclick.com. After winning a few competitions he received repeat customers, and new customers who had seen and liked his work. I am sure not all designers are so lucky, but in theory sites like ours seem like a win-win for both designers and those looking for logos, business cards, etc.
What do you think of all the different types of crowd sourcing, and how has crowd sourcing impacted your life? I know this is a controversial topic and am especially interested to hear from designers!