Take the Pledge

Screen Shot 2013 06 12 at 5.22.02 PM Take the Pledge

Some of you may recognize this three finger pledge from your Girl Scout days when you were asked to recite the Girl Scout Law:

I will do my best to be
honest and fair,
friendly and helpful,
considerate and caring,
courageous and strong, and
responsible for what I say and do,
and to
respect myself and others,
respect authority,
use resources wisely,
make the world a better place, and
be a sister to every Girl Scout.

The three fingers stand for 1) honoring God, 2) helping others, and 3) obeying Scout Law. Graphic designer and author David Berman feels graphic designers should take a pledge of their own—one that focuses on the second principle,helping others. Berman recently released a new edition of his book, “Do Good Design. Along with its release, he has asked graphic designers to take the pledge and:

1. Be true to their profession
2. Be true to themselves
3. Use 10% of their professional time to create a better place

During a live interview at the recent “Voices That Matter” conference, Berman said his mission is to first talk to designers about how much influence the work they do has on our world. He uses the environmental crisis as an example and its connection to over-consumption, speaking about the role that advertising and graphic design have in promoting a consumer culture. Berman believes once graphic designers realize how much power they have in influencing people, they will understand how they can use some of this power to make the world a better place. In doing the math, Berman feels there’s a potential for 8 million hours of time from designers that can be devoted to doing good. He has already has received over 112,540 hours in pledges.

Berman’s position is one that is that has been debated widely. What is the role of a graphic designer and what is good design? Is it to simply create beautiful and effective things, or is it, as Berman and many others feel, to do good with?

What do you think, are you willing to take the pledge?

Sources:
http://www.davidberman.com/social/dogood/
http://www.girlscouts.org/program/basics/promise_law/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scout_sign_and_salute
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QtnazQE7RPA

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