Archive for January, 2017


Contest Rules and Eligibility

Below is an FAQ, plus rules, eligibility, and categories for the 2016 Northwest Excellence in Journalism Contest. Click here to enter. For questions or help, please email the contest committee. We will do our best to reply within 24 hours.

ENTRY FEES & PAYMENT
All entries are $20 each, for both SPJ members and nonmembers. General Excellence entries are $50 each. All payments will be online this year, using a credit card or Paypal account.

ELIGIBILITY
Who is eligible to enter the 2016 SPJ Northwest Excellence in Journalism contest?

Anyone who lives within Region 10 (Alaska, Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana) and has had professional journalistic work published in the region is eligible. For example, if a wire service edits a piece written in Oregon, the piece is eligible for entry into the contest. Send us an email at spjnwcontest@gmail.com if you need more clarity.

I am a student journalist. Can I enter this contest?

Students may only enter work published in professional media. Work published in college publications is not eligible.

ENTRIES

How many entries can an individual submit?

There’s no limit to the number of entries you may submit, just pay close attention to the category description for specific entry requirements. (E.g. When an entry specifies “one photo,” that means one photo should be submitted per entry.)

How many categories can I enter?

There is no limit to the number of categories you may enter. You may submit the same entry in two different categories if it fits the description of each category. You must fill out an entry form for each entry that you provide. One piece/story/item may win in multiple categories in the contest.

Can an editor, publisher or administrative staff member submit entries for multiple entrants?

Yes. They can register as an entrant and then submit work on behalf of others.

What size category do I enter?

First, please note that this year Writing, Photography and Design categories are broken up into three size categories. Audio and Visual categories are broken up into two size categories. Your organization may be a “medium” in writing competitions but a “large” in video. Your organization’s staff size is its number of full-time (or full-time equivalent) news/editorial employees, including reporters, photographers, sports, editors, designers, etc. For instance, an organization with 15 full-time writers, one half-time photographer, and two three-quarter-time copy editors would have 17 staff members. (If you’re unsure, please check with a manager or administrator in the company to avoid any confusion. Entries submitted in the wrong size category will be disqualified.)

Staff counts include digital producers and engineers but do not include people in sales or distribution, interns or non-staff freelancers. Email spjnwcontest@gmail.com with questions.

Can anyone enter the LARGE category?

Yes. Any entry can be submitted into the large category by any organization, but the same entry cannot also be entered into a smaller size category. Any entries incorrectly submitted into a small or medium category will be disqualified.

I am a freelancer. When setting up your contest profile, what do I use for Organization?

Please enter “Freelance” when creating your contest profile. Specify the name of the organization for each specific entry.

I am a freelancer. How do I determine the size category in which to enter my work?

Please reach out to the organization that published your work for their staff size.

I have an entry to submit that is located behind a paywall. Is this OK?

If you have an entry behind a paywall, you MUST provide a viable username and password so that judges can access it. If you are unable to provide viable access to the entry, your entry will be disqualified.

Can I submit photo outtakes from a 2016 photo shoot that were not published?

No. To be eligible for entry, all submitted work must have been published either in print or online within the eligibility year.

I am uploading a published article or column. What file types do you accept?

You can upload *.pdf, *.doc or *.txt files. Our preference is *.pdf so we can see the article as it originally appeared online or in print.

I am uploading photos. What file types do you accept? Are there size or resolution restrictions?

Most photo file types are acceptable, such as .jpg and .png. File sizes are restricted to 20 megabytes. If you need more space, feel free to upload items to a file hosting service like Dropbox or Google Drive and paste the link in your submission.

My video file is too large. It won’t upload.

If your video is not available through your media organization’s website, upload it to a site like Vimeo or YouTube and post the URL with your entry instead.

Are all entries being submitted online this year?

Yes.

In photo categories, how much editing is allowed for a photo to be eligible?

All visuals entries, except Graphics & Illustrations, must adhere to the NPPA Code of Ethics. Excessive editing or manipulation is not allowed in visual categories.

NOTE: Please be accurate with your contest entry information. The entry title, classification, category, contributor name and company name will appear on your award. If you are entering this contest on behalf of someone else, be sure to enter the correct name into the entrant/contributor info.

JUDGING

Do all entries proceed to judging?

Not automatically. We require that each category have at least three entries before proceeding to judging. If we don’t have at least three entries, we will disqualify that category and issue refunds to the entrants.

Who judges our entries and determines the winners?

We secure journalists outside of Region 10 to judge our entries. Judges are responsible for organizing a panel for their assigned categories to complete judging. Entries are sent to them on or near March 1 for judging, with results due back to us on or near April 1.

WINNERS

How will I know if I’ve won?

If you’ve won an award, you will receive an email notification in early May.

What places will be awarded this year?

We will award a trophy to the first place winner and a certificate to the runner up in each category. There will be no ties or honorable mentions. If our judges believe that no entry is worthy of an award in a particular category, none will be given.

When will the winners be announced?

Winners will be announced online sometime between May and June and at the respective annual banquets held by the Western Washington and the Oregon Territory chapters. Both the Western Washington and Oregon Territory Pro Chapters will host awards ceremonies for their area winners. Contact your local chapter president to find out how awards will be handled. If you do not have a local chapter, your awards will be mailed to the address submitted with your entry.

LIST OF CATEGORIES

WRITING, PHOTOGRAPHY & DESIGN
(1st place and runner up winners in SMALL, MEDIUM AND LARGE)

SMALL: For an entrant to be considered “small,” the organization must have 15 or fewer FTE newsroom employees.

MEDIUM: For an entrant to be considered “medium,” the organization must have between 16 and 49 FTE newsroom employees.

LARGE: For an entrant to be considered “large,” the organization must have 50 or more FTE newsroom employees.

(NOTE: Any entry can be submitted into the LARGE category but the same entry cannot also be entered into a smaller size category. Any entries incorrectly submitted into a small or medium category will be disqualified. If you are unsure which size category to enter, email spjnwcontest@gmail.com.)

Arts & Entertainment: One article covering art, music, film, or other entertainment content.

Business Reporting: One article covering company, financial, or consumer reporting.

Column: Excellence in writing, reporting, story and development in a regular column written by the same person over time. Must provide three columns.

Comprehensive Coverage: A series package of one story over time with no more than five URLs.

Crime and Justice Reporting: One article reporting on crime, law enforcement, and the judicial system.

Editorial & Commentary: Three works by one author or editorial board that demonstrate critical commentary or group editorial work.

Health & Science Reporting: One article covering trends, issues, or people associated with the natural or scientific world.

Social Issues Reporting: One article covering education, religion, diversity, or social justice.

Government and Politics Reporting: One article covering public affairs reporting.

Investigative Reporting: In-depth reporting on a single topic, issue, or person that identifies a problem. May include up to three URLs.

Spot News Reporting: One article covering breaking news coverage as events happen.

Short-Form Feature News Reporting: One profile or a non-news article on a person, trend or issue no longer than 1,200 words.

Long-Form Feature News Reporting: One profile or a non-news article on a person, trend or issue longer than 1,200 words.

Sports Feature Story: Any single non-news article that looks at a person, trend, issue, or event related to sports.

Sports Reporting: Any single news article that looks at a person, trend, issue, or event related to sports.

Sports Column: Excellence in writing, reporting, story and development in a regular column written by the same person over time. Must provide three columns.

General Excellence: A complete publication from April 6, 2016 (or the closest to that date) and a date of your choice from the contest year.

Best Photo Portfolio: Five to 10 photos from one photographer that represents a portfolio. One entry per person.

Feature Photography: One candid, unposed photo that reflects a person, trend, issue, or event beyond basic news.

Portrait Photography: One posed photo that captures a human subject.

General News Photography: One photo of a planned news event.

Spot News Photography: One photo of an unplanned breaking news event.

Photo Essay: A collection of six images that explores a common theme or story.

Graphics & Illustrations: Up to three different works by one artist of a graphic or illustration.

Sports Action Photography: One photo of a sports figure, trend, issue, or event in action.

Sports Feature Photography: One photo of a sports figure or issue that is planned.

Page Design: Three print publication page designs in any section or series.

Digital Innovation: Digital design of a single article or project that showcases creativity, innovation and effectively engages readers through design. Submit one desktop and one mobile URL for each entry.

AUDIO & VIDEO (1st place and runner up winners in SMALL AND LARGE)

SMALL: For an entrant to be considered “small,” the organization must have 24 or fewer FTE newsroom employees.

LARGE: For an entrant to be considered “large,” the organization must have 25 or more FTE newsroom employees.

(NOTE: anyone can opt to enter the LARGE category but the same entry cannot also be entered into the small size category.)

Feature Audio Reporting: A single podcast or radio segment reporting on feature news.

General News Audio Reporting: A single podcast or radio segment on general news reporting.

Breaking News Audio Reporting: A single podcast or radio segment covering spot or breaking news.

Investigative Audio Reporting: In-depth reporting on a single topic, issue, or person that identifies a problem. May include up to three podcast or radio segments.

Sports Audio Reporting: A single podcast or radio segment on sports reporting.

Audio News Series: A multi-part podcast or radio series that explores a common theme or story.

Feature Video Reporting: A single video or television segment reporting on feature news.

General News Video Reporting: A single video or television segment on general news reporting.

Breaking Video Reporting: A single video or television segment covering spot or breaking news.

Investigative Video Reporting: In-depth reporting on a single topic, issue, or person that identifies a problem. May include up to three video or television segments.

Sports Video Reporting: A single video or television segment on sports reporting.

Video News Series: A multi-part video or television series that explores a common theme or story.

How to Enter the Contest (A Visual Guide)

The Northwest Excellence in Journalism Contest is now live. We are using BetterBNC, the same platform as last year. If you entered the 2015 contest, use the same credentials you used last year. Simply sign in, select Northwest Excellence in Journalism Contest, and you can begin making entries. Your account is already approved, so no further steps outside of uploading and paying for your entries is needed.

If you are new to the contest this year, you will have to create a new open call account. Once your account is created, you can begin making entries, but your account needs to be manually approved by the contest committee before the entries will be entered into the competition. This will happen within 24 hours of you creating your account, and you will receive an email once this is complete.

Below is a visual guide to creating and open call account for new users.

Step 1: Visit the contest homepage, betternewspapercontest.com/spjnwcontest. Click “Enter the Contest Here.”

 

Step 2: Click “Open Call Contestant Login”

 

 

Step 3: Click “Create Your Open Call Account.”

 

Step 4: Fill out your account information. Agree to the BetterBNC terms. Click “Submit.”

 

Step 5: Once you click submit, you will be taken to a page that asks you to submit an entry. Click “Submit Entry.”

 

Step 6: As a new user, you will not be able to submit an entry until you are approved for the 2016 SPJ Northwest Excellence in Journalism Contest. Click the “My Contests” link.

 

Step 7: Scroll down and click on the 2016 SPJ Northwest Excellence in Journalism Contest. When you do, the system will give you a pop up window notifying you an email will be sent once your account is approved. The pop-up will also tell you that you can now make entries into the contest as you await account approval. Click “OK.”

 

Step 8: Click “Open Call Contestant,” which will provide a drop down menu with several options. Click “manage entries.”

 

Step 9: Submit your entries.

Note: You don’t have to make all of your entries at once. You can come back to the site at any time over the course of the contest until it closes on February 6.

Visit the contest homepage for rules and eligibility or to begin entering. Or you look at our blog post on contest rules and eligibility. If you have further questions, email the contest committee. Please allow 24 hours for a response.

 

Happy New Year!

The New Year means it’s contest time again. The annual Northwest Excellence in Journalism competition will begin on Friday, January 13. The contest will end on Monday, February 6.

The contest committee received tremendous response to its contest survey sent out this summer. We will be implementing several of your suggestions into this year’s contest and hope it is more competitive than ever.

Stay tuned for the contest link, complete with updates to changes, an FAQ, and instructions for entering. We will also post instructions and links to here and the Region 10 Facebook page.

 

Other news:

*The annual SPJ Holiday Scoop was postponed this past December due to weather concerns. It has been rescheduled for this week, January 6, from 6–10pm at Fado Irish Pub in Seattle. Click here for more details and ticket information.

*As part of a yearlong John S. Knight fellowship at Stanford, SPJ NorCal member Katherine Ann Rowlands is seeking input from women in journalism who care about improving representation in leadership positions. Please consider taking this survey.

*The annual Mark of Excellence Awards, which honors the best in student journalism, closes on January 16. If you are a student journalist, please consider entering your work. More info here.

*Region 10 is currently accepting recommendations for programming for the 2017 Regional Conference. What would you like to learn about? What topics are relevant to you as a journalist or journalism supporter? Email Region 10 Director Ethan Chung with your suggestions.

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