I personally live in the DC area and have friends and family who work for the Federal Government. And I design logos, make fabulous websites, and create great interfaces. It breaks my heart that I can't get more work locally from the biggest employer in the area, the Fed. And I am a minority small business person. So I must protest this the abuse of crowd sourcing as much as possible.
Crowd sourced design is evil so please sign this petition to Stop the US Department of Interior from Crowdsourcing a Logo.
Why is crowd sourced design evil? It undermines design professionals by enabling non-professionals, untrained ameratuers, and foreigners overseas to TAKE WORK FROM Professional Designers. Of course a designer overseas will be less expensive than a designer anywhere in the US. Overseas designers do not pay taxes here in the US. Normally it's illegal to employ foreign workers without the right documentation from the government, but because this work is conducted on the internet it's OK?! How is this different than sending manufacturing jobs overseas? Crowd sourcing undermines design education, if all design work is expected to be done cheaply and conveniently then it is illogical for individuals to invest in design education if they are competing with groups of people who can skip education, who don't pay for it.
Finally, the people who pay the real price for organizations who short-cut on design, are the END USERS of that organization. In this instance, the people who suffer from bad design are the US Taxpayers. The federal government, of all the organizations here in the US, should employ American Designers.