First, let me apologize for getting carried away and over-reacting yesterday. I was rightfully rebuked for complaining about high school students seeking critique for amateurish logos. As pointed out, I could have just ignored the threads. Rather than respond to the threads or ignore the threads, I should have done what I’m doing now, voice my concerns on a separate thread.
I’ve had more time to think of it now. In hindsight, it wasn’t that I felt like the high school students were a waste of my time as much as I felt that they were a waste of everyone’s time. But it’s not my place to tell other people on the forum how they should use their time, and I can only speak for myself. I felt like it was wrong on multiple levels:
I felt that it was sucking the energy out of the forum. The amount of repetitive explaining it takes to advise a person on how to improve a graphic design increases exponentially the younger and less experienced the person gets. I just panicked worrying about what this forum might become. I still think there’s a risk of decline, but not as much as I think there was yesterday.
I felt that it was cheapening the profession to even assign logo design to high school kids. When I hear professional graphic designers complaining about competing with high school kids in a race to the bottom, I attribute it to oversimplification of what professional graphic designers do by high school teachers and parents. They should be teaching anyone interested in graphic design that there is more to it than knowing how to use the software. HotButton said it better in one of the responses. I’d be interested to hear answers to HotButton’s questions.
I felt that it was also bad for the students. I feel that there is mutual benefit in advising college students to improve the profession. It reinforces what they are learning in college, while helping the profession by sending better graphic designers into it. But I don’t feel that it’s helping either the profession or the high school student to just teach them whatever skills they might think is fun to make a career out of at the time. This field is over-saturated with people who don’t take it seriously enough, making it difficult to find the ones who are serious. There is a big disconnect between academia and the business world, and a bigger disconnect at the high school level. Our whole economy would probably do better if high school were more about helping students discover their rare and unique potential than putting them in competition with each other in a long line of dying professions that seem fun.
As mentioned, maybe this could be resolved simply by having a separate sub-forum for high school students apart from college students. That way anyone with the patience to help high school students will have an easier time finding them, while those with less patience will have an easier time avoiding them. I’m not against helping high school students. But I think they need a different kind of help than college students for their own sake, the sake of the profession, and the sake of the forum.