Mark Cuban just got some unsolicited criticism regarding his plan to redesign the Dallas Mavericks' home basketball court.
After launching an online contest Monday inviting Mavs fans to submit a new court design, Dallas Morning News architecture critic Mark Lamster posted an open letter to Cuban asking him to "accept a little advice on the subject of design." In the article, Lamster basically offers Cuban a free art lesson, with some arguably condescending undertones. From the piece:
"[C]rowdsourcing a design seems like a good idea, and one that will promote engagement with Mavs fans. In the short term, it might. But the cost is an inferior design--and it will be inferior--to one that is commissioned from a design professional who can not only create a new floor design, but also reimagine it within the context of the Mavs's entire identity, which is, to be frank, mediocre."
Lamster goes on to say that any crowdsourced design will be inferior to one produced by a professional. Crowdsourcing, he says, "devalues the value of design and designers." And the reward Cuban is offering to the winner of the contest? Totally insufficient.
"Your proposed payment for one of the most visible representations of your franchise is a pair of season tickets," Lamster writes. "That's pathetic."
Though Cuban only asked for designs that incorporate the Mavs's existing logos and colors, Lamster goes so far as recommending that the team completely overhaul its existing branding. "[I]t's time for the stylized horse/basketball coin to go," he writes. "The black-blue color scheme is dull."
Recognizing that Cuban is no design expert, Lamster boiled down his main argument into business terms. "You get what you pay for," he writes.
Lamster's advice for how to give the Mavs a makeover that does the team justice?
"Hire a professional."
To hear from legendary designer Milton Glaser about when to seek professional design help, check out the video below.