I've been noticing several threads here and some on other design communities in which designers vent their frustration with clients. It's understandable. If you have been in the business any period of time, you are sure to have stories and experiences that are filled with annoyances and grief related to projects and clients.
However, I would like to offer some food for thought. As much as we like to be critical of our clients, (yes, I am guilty too) publicly doing so could jeopardize your reputation or hurt the possibility of gaining additional leads in the big picture of things.
I used to follow a blog called "Clients from Hell" that posted many funny instances of client relationships and many I had experienced first hand. I eventually strayed away from the blog after thinking about the consequences of my relationship from comments and sharing things there.
How so? Consider this: Granted, because of the nature of this community which is geared more for designers than clients seeking designers, it is a very slim chance that what is posted here could be seen by potential clients. Even though it is a slim chance, there is a chance though. A client could follow your presence on the internet trying to get a feel for your work and such and stumble across your posts on this site and any other public internet community.
So, if a potential client notices that you have been poking fun or criticizing other past clients for any number of reasons, it could put a sour taste in their mouth so-to-speak and give them a negative impression of you as a professional. Remember, sometimes you only get one chance to make a first impression.
It is for this reason I have stayed away from those topics for most part because I myself, didn't want to take that chance that I could destroy a possible opportunity to land a project or maybe even a new job. The thing to consider on the internet, once something gets posted anywhere, you should consider it posted forever. Even if this community where to disappear or you were to delete your account, a cached version of posts and the website could live on in searches and other websites steal content or syndicate it.
Not trying to be a buzz kill but, I just wanted to warn everyone that may not have thought of things. While I manage this online fairly well, I often don't do so well in the real world and I am currently working on myself to monitor what I say and do to others in it as well.
I think if the roles were reversed and clients were posting their discussions about designers they have dealt with, it could have the same effect in that we as designers would develop a second hand impression of that client and may want to avoid doing business with them because of another person's impression which might not even be very accurate.
I certainly agree on all of your points. Thanks for this reminder.
Thanks for the reply. No problem. I think we all tend to forget the internet is more public than many of us realize ;)
I totally agree. I just posted in the "Annoying Terms Used by Clients" thread, but I don't really regret it. I tried to preface my post by trying to explain that these sort of posts can be applied to just about any profession. Then tried to make list of light-hearted scenarios that I recall from my past. I know that most people, in one way or another, get frustrated from time to time. It's just a part of "the job".
I can see some of the things people post can leave a bad taste in clients mouths and probably need to think before posting in these kinds of topics.
I think that this topic is a good warning/reminder for people who are looking to vent their frustrations.