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AIGA Membership

Can someone please give me three good reasons why I should renew my AIGA Membership?
My first year of $295 – really only good for email spam for events that are completely irrelevant to web design and you have to pay more money to attend the event that the email spam was promoting – AIGA membership has seemed quite useless. At least once as week, I become beyond irritated by either the AIGA mothership or AIGA Los Angeles for sending yet *another* email for the same event that they have already emailed me about four times in the last month.
I have a hard time defending a $295 fee to join a professional organization that is so web clueless. The mothership in New York recently sent me a very designed professional packet on why I should renew, of which I looked at and thought, “Oh, that is where the membership fee is going to… High end printing. Huh.”
Where is the web related events? Where are the free events for folks who have already spent their $295 for the year? Where are the just plain networking get togethers?
I am not interested in driving up to LA to see some ultra special human speak on (fill in black here) design and pay $25-40 for the privilege on top of my $295 yearly fee. I would spend $5-10 for a happy hour cocktail party to meet other SoCal designers of all stripes, but those types of events are never organized.
Web professionals who are also AIGA members who don’t live in NYC or SF, please tell me why you are a member or remain one after the first rip off year?
If you can’t give me a good reason, should we maybe form a professional organization for web based designers?

One Response to “AIGA Membership”

  1. beth

    There really is no good reason. The AIGA basically ignores the web, except for Flash implementations by print designers. And in the experiences I’ve had with local chapters, they really have no interest in learning, and don’t think very highly of UX design or see it’s legitimacy.
    It was for this reason a group of designers in my area got together and started the Cleveland Web Standards Association, where we can focus on design and development for the web, and bring speakers which fit for us. I love our group, but I still regret AIGA’s neglect of the web because I feel a lot of people who trend towards development could learn a lot from print designers.