Struck off by aggressive stance from CSD regime

Designers thinking about joining the Chartered Society of Designers might want to reflect on how that organisation is treating people who wish to let their membership lapse.

Most years I’ve received a bill for membership renewal and have been persuaded to renew when I get a friendly reminder of what a worthy organisation the CSD is.

This year the reminder was a pompous and aggressive threat to ‘strike off’ members who didn’t pay. This did indeed help me make a decision: I wrote to resign.

I didn’t receive a reply, but then I was sent an even more aggressive letter ‘striking me off’ (as if designers, like surgeons, can’t practice without being a member), and placing me on a ‘bad debt register’.

All of this simply sounded rather comical until I got to the bit in the letter about passing names on to debt collectors.

I joined the CSD some years ago, much in the way I might join any o

rganisation that I think is a good thing and worth supporting – the creative industry’s equivalent of the Ramblers’ Association. It seems the CSD is rather less cuddly than it appears.

For others who wish to leave, don’t think that you can simply let your membership lapse as you would a magazine subscription. I have now checked the small print on the CSD’s website, which can be found at www.csd.org.uk.

There I found some ‘byelaws’ of the Society for Industrial Artists and Designers, which was the CSD’s former name.

This is how you can leave: you have to write a letter of resignation to the CSD by the end of September. A day late, and they release the hounds.

Rob Waller

Principal

Information Design Unit

Enterprise IG

Newport Pagnell MK16 8AB

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