It’s time for a revolution, SxSW style

, Monday, August 20th, 2012

Ok, so you’re a web designer (C’mon, just play along) and you have ideas. Like, lots of them. About “Look and Feel”. About color and typography. About visual narrative.

Or about how to make a website work better, not just look better.

As creatives, our impact is traditionally defined by non-visual criteria: Goals, audiences, client preferences, corporate directives, cost, profit. So while we understand and respect our value in context of the bigger picture, what if we want to step up and contribute more than pixels?

Over the course of a web development lifecycle, designers should be able find, cultivate or create opportunities to command a larger role in the process, but many of us don’t. Why?

Is our design thinking “too expensive”? Is our ability to be honest up the chain constrained by fear of consequence? Do people just not take us seriously? Or is there no room for us within the silos, egos & turf wars of BusinessAsUsual?

If we truly want to claim our voice as the creative catalyst within the larger web development process, it’s not sufficient anymore to stop our foot and whine that we want a seat at the grown ups table. We’ve got to be smart, have a vision and then fight for it.

It’s time for a revolution.

One where we feel an ethical responsibility to think big and work hard to overcome bad decision-making. Where “good enough” is a cop out and sacred cows are ripe for tipping. Where failure is different than not succeeding. Oh, and we need to do it all without being marginalized or getting fired.

Are you in or are you out?

Vote for (and comment on) my SxSW session, and let’s DO this.

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