Design Needs To Adapt To Digital Disruption Too (@Damien_Creatif’s Master Thesis)

Damien Henry presenting his work at the "Prix du Mémoire Digital" in Paris, France

Damien Henry presenting his work at the “Prix du Mémoire Digital” in Paris, France

My activity leads me to speak to a lot of Masters or PhD students who explore the crowd economy. Actually, at eYeka we receive so many interview requests that I am now sending standard replies with links to the most common answers (Why do brands crowdsource? Why do consumers participate? etc, for which a lot is available online and in academic literature). But some research projects stand out as really original and interesting. After sharing a good Masters thesis of a student of mine who worked on women’s pro sports, this post is a Q&A with a French designer, Damien Henry, who completed his thesis (not under my supervision).

Entitled “Crowdsourcing: Can Graphic Design Become Uberized?“, his already award-winning thesis is a rare piece of research that explores the pros & cons of crowdsourcing from a designers’ point of view. While I do not endorse all his findings or POVs, I believe it his work is worth being shared beyond the French-speaking world. So I’m translating a slightly edited English transcript of our conversation (images and links have been added by myself). Continue reading →

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Just Off The Press: Our #CSReport2015 Trend Report

eYeka April Wallpaper

I am happy to share the “The State of Crowdsourcing in 2015” trend report (“How the world’s biggest brands and companies are opening up to consumer creativity“) with you, which we wrote in collaborative spirit with François Pétavy (CEO of eYeka) and Joël Céré (Insights & Innovation Solutions Director at eYeka). For the first time since the beginning of the crowdsourcing phenomenon, besides a sporadic blog post in late 2013, this report takes a (big) step back to look at the evolution of crowdsourcing since the mid-2000s, providing important insights about how it is used for marketing and innovation across the globe. Continue reading →

What The European Commission’s Reports Say About The Future Of Crowdsourcing

business innovation observatory crowdsourcing

The European Commission has asked PwC to write a series of reports and case studies about innovative businesses and business models, which you can find on Business Innovation Observatory. Two of these reports (Crowdsourced Manufacturing and Customer Incentives and Involvement) – based on research conducted by PwC’s consultants and interviews with CEOs and founders of innovative companies like Shapeways, Quirky or eYeka – talk about the trend of crowdsourcing, outline this trend’s drivers and obstacles, and formulate policy recommendations pertaining its development. Both prove to be very insightful when it comes to the future of crowdsourcing. Continue reading →

Does Crowdsourcing Deliver On Its Promise (For Creatives)?

Video Contest Website Landing Pages

Recently, in a thread of email exchanges with a successful video contest participant who won numerous contests for many prestigious brands, I was struck by this person’s response to my “how are things going?” question. That person replied: “Unfortunately while I wish I had gotten some ‘real’ work all these contests haven’t had any effect on my professional career and I’m still struggling to get work!

This bugged me, because professional advancement and career opportunities are a big part of the promises of crowdsourcing. My experience and research confirms that many crowd members participate with this in mind (some call it hope labor), so I wanted to know more. “I’m a little bugged by [the fact that he was still looking after all these wins, does it mean that crowdsourcing doesn’t deliver on its promise?” I asked. Here’s the response from the filmmaker, and a call for discussion.

Continue reading →

Are Some Countries Less Receptive To The Idea Of Crowdsourcing? A Look At Japan

Crowdsourcing Japan

Click on the image to read my post on Medium

Technology is global, companies and individuals are globally connected, and crowdsourcing is a global phenomenon. Anecdotal evidence shows that Europe and the U.S. are well-populated with crowdsourcing participants (see also here), but that still doesn’t say much about potential differences in acceptance of crowdsourcing across the globe (that could be an entire thesis!). I wanted to focus on one country: Japan. Is there something about the idea of crowdsourcing that could repell Japanese people?

As a nation, Japan scores high in cultural tightness and uncertainty avoidance, two cultural constructs that may lower willingness to embrace change and to take risks… But let’s not get into these academic cultural indices, let’s be pragmatic. I did a little bit of desk research to find out more, and shared my thoughts on Medium..

Read my post here

Should Creative Crowdsourcing Participants Get Working Contracts And Salaries?

For one year, there have been two important legal events that could shape the future of the crowdsourcing landscape. First, on October 26th 2012, one-time Crowdflower worker Christopher Otey filed a lawsuit (PDF) against Crowdflower alleging that the platform violated the U.S. Fair Labor Standards Act. Second, on October 22nd 2013, a group of Yelp reviewers filed a class-action lawsuit (PDF) against the business review site, claiming that they are unpaid writers who are vital to the company’s existence. These two lawsuits are claiming Labor law applications to micro-task crowdsourcing activities.

Could this happen in creative crowdsourcing?

Up to this day, neither of these lawsuits -which have very similar claims- have been closed, which shrouds the entire crowdsourcing industry in a big question mark. In this post, I briefly describe these cases, clarify the legal situation in the U.S. and in France, and tell whether creative crowdsourcing participants should get working contracts with platforms and sponsors – or not. Continue reading →

To End 2013, Some Stats From The Crowdsourcing Timeline

Click to access timeline

Click to access timeline

It’s been a little more than a year that I started curating crowdsourcing initiatives by the World’s Best Global Brands on this timeline. As I write this, there are now 479 examples of crowdsourcing listed, with information about the initiatiors, objectives and results of each initiative – at least I try to keep it updated to the best I can! I’m extremely humbled that some of the brightest minds in business and academia (@lindegaard, @jtwinsor, @bogers, @klakhani, @masscustom)  also appreciate this timeline. As we are ending 2013 these days, and starting 2014, let me just share some facts based on this timeline’s data. Just scroll down and let the visualizations speak by themselves. Continue reading →