If you’ve been reading the fine print of the plethora of photo contests that have arisen lately, you’ve undoubtedly noticed that Somalia isn’t the only place experiencing modern day piracy. No, the rights grabs sunk deep in the fine print of most photo contest rules these days make the Somali pirates look like pikers and the bonus babies at AIG look like paragons of conscience. I’m amazed at what some contests ask for, just for entering (never mind winning), and also stunned that some of these contests are sponsored by allegedly photo-friendly organizations and publications (who really do know better, but don’t seem to care). I’ve got a whole column on the subject in an upcoming issue of Outdoor Photographer.
So it was with the usual world weary trepidation that I went to the website of Weibetech, makers of excellent harddrives that I use for backup, when they sent me a marketing email announcing a photo contest. I was expecting the usual “you grant us the rights to your life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness, as well as the copyright to this picture…” jargon, and instead read this:
Terms and conditions
By submitting a photo you agree that the photo is yours, that you own all copyrights, and that this is your original work. You also understand that it will be published on the internet as your work, and under your copyright. WiebeTech will not claim ownership of any submission or use it in a non-contest related way. WiebeTech desires to publish your entry on the web at a reasonable resolution for screen display in relation to the contest. You agree that submissions will be reviewed before being accepted for the contest. If the photo is offensive, artificially enhanced, a studio image, animation/artwork, or of poor image quality, it may be disqualified. You may enter this contest a maximum of five (5) times.
Wow, now that’s a contest with fair terms and some nice prizes (the grand prize is one of their cool raid arrays). I’m almost speechless, except to say, “good on ya, Weibetech.” Here’s a company that depends on photographers for some of its business and then turns around and offers a fair contest to reward us. Just shows you that the words “corporate” and “greed” may not necessarily be joined at the hip! For info on the contest, go here.
This Post Has 5 Comments
Geoffrey Gilbert19 Mar 2009
Love your site and especially those pictures from French Polynesia. You do more traveling for your photography than I will do in ten lifetimes. However, if any of your readers would like to see what life looks like on the central coast of California, they can check out my blog at
http://www.SunriseSantaCruz.com/blog. As both of us were grammar school attendees of School #4 in Fort Lee, New Jersey back before there was history, it just goes to show what an education on Anderson Avenue can do for your view of the world. Keep up the inspiring and tremendous work.
bobkrist20 Mar 2009
Geoff: Great to hear from you again. We’re a long way from School 4. Love your pix and that you can go to the beach and shoot sunsets….Jersey shore is a sunrise place!
DaveT20 Mar 2009
I was given the advice, that one of the ways to get established and known in the photographic world is to enter contests. But as you so rightly have said many of the competitions come with very high costs to the photographer in terms of relinquishing rights. Sort of makes it a catch 22.
So, it’s great to see a competition where fair play is the name of the game.
By the way – love your blog and great tips. Thanks for sharing.
Jerry Lombardo20 Mar 2009
I gave up 3 years ago on photo contests…Too many restrictions! Glad to see that you found an acceptable contest. Maybe I will try again!
Jim4 Apr 2009
I often have felt that a lot of photography contest winners were decided long before the contests were announced. Just an old man’s opinion.