At Smashing Magazine, we are big proponents of diversity and sharing. We encourage designers and developers worldwide to step up and use Smashing Magazine as a platform to share their opinions, ideas or techniques. Our editorial process is quite evolved, yet we are very open to users’ suggestions. In fact, if an author has something to say, we try to help them collect their thoughts, strengthen their points and sharpen their language.
As it is, Smashing Magazine is in English; we communicate in English in our articles, through our comments, in social channels — everywhere. We have a quite good overview of what’s happening in the Web design scene among creative professionals where English is prevalent. When it comes to non-English Web design communities, we have almost no idea what’s going on there… it’s as if they never existed.
Last year, I was lucky to have attended quite a few conferences across Europe. I wanted to get a better understanding of what’s going on in those countries, how evolved their industry is and, more importantly, what techniques and tools they have developed and use in their work. Among all the small talks and casual discussions I had, I was impressed by the creative energy of designs in Czech Republic, by the pursuit of optimization of Russian projects, by the attention to professionalism in Norway and by the abundant democratic design culture of Swedes. Before I spoke to all those people and had a look at their projects, I had no idea about all the fantastic small projects and techniques they developed.
Web design conferences offer fantastic opportunities for building connections in our community. Also, they are great for exploring innovative techniques and recent developments of our craft. Image credit
In fact, it appeared to me that there is so much going on in these non-English speaking communities, yet many of them are closed and separate, almost inaccessible to the rest of the world. For instance, in Russia there are fantastic design blogs like Habrahabr.ru where creative professionals share their thoughts, techniques and tools, yet because the blog is in Russian, it’s invisible for most creative professionals worldwide. Fortunately, Russian is my native language so I can read and write in Russian, but not everybody is as lucky as I am.
In my discussions with Christian Heilmann who has been traveling around the world much more than I have, the same holds true for many countries in Eastern Europe, Asia and South America, partly because of the language barrier.
We can change that. We invite all professionals from all parts of the world to get in touch with us. If you have been writing in Russian, Czech or any other language, but have a good command of English, we’d be more than happy to learn from your insights and share your expertise, techniques or tools with our worldwide audience. Our proofreaders will be more than happy to brush up your English writing, so it surely isn’t a reason not to write.
We’d Love To Learn From You!
We are always happy to support designers and developers who contribute to our fantastic Web design community and present tools, goodies, templates, articles or anything else for everybody to use and learn from. You could write about:
- case-studies from your work, the decisions made and decisions rejected,
- front-end / back-end techniques you’ve developed or implemented in your projects,
- expert advice for beginners or professionals that you’ve gathered over years of professional work,
- the cultural differences that designers worldwide should be aware of when working on projects targeted at your country,
- open source projects, tools and other resources you’ve released or contributed to.
Of course, we will publish quality material and you will get paid, too. Even if you don’t want to write an article, we will do our best to support you on Twitter, Facebook, or in our email newsletter. And if you don’t feel that Smashing Magazine fits you for one reason or another, feel free to go ahead and contact other publications, we’re perfectly fine with that.
Spread the word!
If you don’t have time to write in English, here is what you can do to help:
- If writing isn’t for you, draw the attention of your colleagues to this post and encourage them to share their insights,
- Translate this article into your native language and publish it in popular design blogs or magazines in your country,
- Bring up the topic during your next meetup, bar-camp or mini-conference.
Let’s Get In Touch!
Please drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell us a bit about yourself, your expertise and the projects you’ve contributed to. Share your techniques and your thoughts! And if you’re organizing a social event, please invite foreign speakers and attendees to join and encourage them to share their expertise as well.
I sincerely believe that we can all benefit from diversity, and we can enrich our toolboxes, workflows and perhaps even our mindset with new viewpoints and insights. We are looking forward to your emails!
© Vitaly Friedman for Smashing Magazine, 2012.