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Raincutter says

Lately, I saw some posts from authors here who either do not know about spec work or how it affects us, and why do many of us condemn it. I came upon a nice post explaining about it on Noupe.com and thought that may be some of you who keep asking the question why is it bad, might get an answer.

Here’s the link to the article Live Together or Die Alone : Spec Work vs the Community

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tiam says

Thats actually a very interesting article. I have ben doing a lot of spec job (not anymore). But most of the time I didn’t even get payed for my effort.

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pezflash says

I’ve never been agree with spec works, since i started many years ago.
But what about how STOCK works has damaged this industry?

This is a tricky question. As i’m both an author of stock products and an independent freelance designer, i’ve the “double morality”, but is astonishing how clients have got used to stock prices for anything related with web, both design and development.

Just to add some controversy. But i’m agree with that article statements.

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tiam says
pezflash said
I’ve never been agree with spec works, since i started many years ago.
But what about how STOCK works has damaged this industry?

This is a tricky question. As i’m both an author of stock products and an independent freelance designer, i’ve the “double morality”, but is astonishing how clients have got used to stock prices for anything related with web, both design and development.

Just to add some controversy. But i’m agree with that article statements.

You’re right about that! Its a bit of a double nature since I think that the stock business is a good opportunity for creators of all kind.

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KingDog Staff says

I’ve honestly never viewed Spec and Stock to be anywhere near similar. Where I stand firm on No Spec! is with dodgy clients who are trying to take advantage of new freelancers. Creating stock and selling it as a potential for passive income just makes good business sense.

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CodingJack says
KingDog said
I’ve honestly never viewed Spec and Stock to be anywhere near similar. Where I stand firm on No Spec! is with dodgy clients who are trying to take advantage of new freelancers. Creating stock and selling it as a potential for passive income just makes good business sense.

I agree. Some things don’t need the wheel reinvented for every project, and this is where stock and other web resources are very helpful. For example, when I used to build small business websites, I probably would have had to charge double to build everything from scratch, but using stock assets allowed me to offer prices that were affordable to the client and still well worth my time. Stock author wins, client wins, I win.

But unlike stock, not everyone wins with spec work. I think the creative process is sometimes not respected or completely understood, so it’s easy to be against spec work when you’ve encountered this sort of attitude before.

http://antispec.com/
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Giallo says

I completely agree with KingDog, and many thanks to RC for rising this argument.

Personally I think “Contests design communities” are a big crap, and a delusion for anyy designer. Contests design communities should exist only for fun/educational such as worth1000 or pxleyes.com

Spec sucks

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pezflash says
KingDog said
I’ve honestly never viewed Spec and Stock to be anywhere near similar. Where I stand firm on No Spec! is with dodgy clients who are trying to take advantage of new freelancers. Creating stock and selling it as a potential for passive income just makes good business sense.

Never said they were similar. I just said that from my freelance point of view, i would hate stock market (if i were not in it also! ;) ) as right now people/clients are getting use to some kind of “price philosophy” that makes them think a whole website made from scratch exclusively for them can cost under $100. The trend, new rules, we have to adapt to them, of course. If a client say to me they want a site with really low cost, i’ll come here to buy a template, but don’t ask me if this is a golden moment for web design… :(

About Spec work. I work a lot for ad agencies here in Spain. Sometimes they call you to work for free for kind of contest project for really big clients. If they win the contest, you will earn some money. If not, you will waste many working hours. And sometimes i’ve the feeling they don’t realise that is you who is taking the risk. Pretty stupid. We all have to say no to this kind of proposals, but of course if you have nothing else, at least is a business opportunity.

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GravityDept says

You should join the Anti-Spec campaign: http://antispec.com/

Let’s also define Spec Work fully (Speculative Work) meaning work with an assumed risk of producing zero return.

In other words, 10 designers work for 10 hours each. The client receives 100 hours of design work, but only picks one and pays for 10 hours. The other 90 hours of work receives no payment.

A few people have mentioned the advertising industry, which dug its own grave by making spec work a standard practice. It’s the responsibility of the designer / developer to value their time and ability to work for compensation rather than a chance of compensation.

Specup work devalues the design industry. Don’t do it. Turn down spec projects and inform them why it’s wrong. They may turn around and respect you enough to hire you for a fair value.

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GravityDept says
xstortionist said
wait, so you do spec work with 10 other designers and only one gets paid? That’s what I call bullshit. I do spec work, but I will get payed for it.

Let me clarify.

I don’t do spec work (and nobody else should either). That is the definition of spec work and an example. If you are getting paid, then you are not doing spec work. You are doing work.

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