Creativity should be paid for
If you're any kind of creative, you know the problem only too well: your profession is often seen as a hobby and as a result, the financial remuneration is underrated. A vexation in common for all those who work with ideas and design skills, who are often considered repayable with some so-called “visibility” at most. This time the issue of the immorality of creative and intellectual work being requested and almost always offered free of charge has gone viral. Zak Mroueh, founder of the Canadian company Zulu Alpha Kilo, has created and directed a video entitled Say no to spec to re-launch the #SayNoToSpec campaign being carried out on the social channels and Medium.com.
The success of the #SayNoToSpec Campaign
Mroueh says everything began from personal experience and that of colleagues. “About five years ago, as a company,” he explains, “we began to refuse potential clients who had no intention of paying for our ideas, as if we were just a small startup. Some got angry, some said we were mad, but some were also curious about our way of working.” Now Zulu Alpha Kilo is growing exponentially and has really got its own back with the video in question, which immediately went viral with over a million and a half views in its first week online. In the film it comes across clearly that asking a framer or a restaurant owner to get paid only with thanks and fine words is seen as completely crazy and the question that haunts the video is why ideas should not be paid for equally well.
“What I'd like,” Mroueh concludes, “is for customers and agencies to set aside this obsolete way of operating, which is an evil for everyone, not just creatives. For example, some years ago I was really disheartened on discovering that one of our projects had been taken by a customer and used worldwide without any kind of recognition or compensation for the agency.” A story that's sadly familiar to many.