In My Opinion, Be Careful with Photo Contests To listen to the entire FroKnowsPhoto RAWtalk Episode #46 please click above.

This is an excerpt from RAWtalk 46 where I discuss a Photo Contest that is “legitimate” but does something that I find to be a little interesting. They try and sell you a book with your photo in it if you have been selected for the finalist group. That group though is 1400 photographers out of 10,000.

I take a straight up honest look at this topic since two Fro readers asked me my thoughts on it because they entered.

Again this is all my opinion, the photo contest and business they are running is legitimate. There are winners and they do nothing wrong or against the law. I am simply giving my opinion of the entire process.

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Eternity G.D. Moreau says:

This sounds like those poem books. I was “technically” published (so they say) many times as a teenager… but I never bought any of the books, so… they could have been lying.

abdulphotos says:

they “do do” ha!

Joe Blow says:

Jared dances around what he really wants to say. This is a 100% f’in scam.

gymhockey2587 says:

You said the words, “IN MY OPINION,” 15 times in that clip.
You also said the words “MY OPINION” 2 times for a grand total of
What do I win?

A Version Of Events says:

I was just about to post this. It was Its a definite no-no. You are basically giving away your picture for free and then sell you back your photo with minimal advertising what you actually should be paid for.

They already have a great consumer base bacuse you entering in a photo contest means you are aspiring to be a photographer so you probably would like to be in a book and show it off to your friends. Now they give you that oppurtunity to do so. That’s the clincher!!!

George Gardiner says:

What MIC did you use for this?

SakariNy says:

You have been chosen as top 14% of youtube comments. Or 1-4th place, or 100 honorable mentions. Can’t tell wich one.

kenolson collin says:

@gymhockey2587 you won a kiss from me. A Hershey chocolate kiss

harnessbells says:

I agree sir and I feel that often I have perceived the same within music. These can feel pimp-esque to me. You can pay to have a credential. I have even just decided that, Jared: if you pay me $100, I will rate you are one of the top 25 youtube channels in the world. But this is limited-time offer.

Gibson Weasel says:

I’ve seen some contest winners and just thought ‘how the hell did that win’!!!!

Trent Sizemore says:

My photo was a top 8% of 16,000 entries for the last Photo Forum magazine college and high school contest. I didn’t buy the book though…

Daniel Prozeller says:

What gives them the right to publish your image?

A Version Of Events says:

Thanks Jared!!! Run away from any such contest. If price is right made you by a ticket just to get into the studio, that wouldnt even fly! think about it!

Paulo Parreira says:

In Portugal, me and some colleges noticed that some companies create photo contests when they need new images for advertising or other purposes, one of the rules makes the photographer give away the legal rights of the images to the company and the prizes are damn cheap, such like, 1st prize – staying in a resort for the weekend (+-100€), 2nd prize – like a dinner for two in a fancy restaurant (+-50€) and 3rd prize – a 4gb flash drive (+-10€).
Thats the way for not paying a pro for the job 🙂

dbauernf says:

This is simple.
It’s a scam.
They get pictures, make a book, and will probably sell the book to most people “selected”. The book has no value. It’s BS.

Jeff Cutler says:

Seems as if you’re all worked up about too much. They want the form postmarked by a date and they claim they’ll let you know by the day BEFORE that date. So wait until you hear if you got in the top 104 and then walk to the post office and get your envelope postmarked. Have you never paid taxes? Post office postmark date is all that matters. Also, we know you’re not a lawyer and this is all your opinion. But even if you said ‘in my opinion’ 40,000 more times, you could still slander someone if your comments painted them in a bad light/defamed them. Would have been a better video if it was 80% shorter, but I feel the same way about most of your stuff. It’s good core info but could be shared in 1/4 the time. Oh, Todd is often funny. And Stephen (Steven?) rocks. Thanks for making these videos.

c0pyimitati0n says:

I had this EXACT same thing happen to me when i was a child, except if was a poem of mine that was selected to be in a book that i had to pay some $50 for. However i did post a pic for the POTM contest (vibrant colors) on flikr and an editor from a local monthly magazine and wanted to use one of my firework images. I am pretty excited about that.

jack black says:

Jared knows smooshe

Keith Barrett says:

Caveat Emptor

mike burns says:

” In my opinion ” ( I don’t wanna get sued) There is a copyright law that allows you to use names and footage for commentary or critique.

Jon Photo says:

*Hmm, just an idea here:* If your photo is in the top 14% then you get a notice saying they’re publishing a book of the top 14% and they hope you’ll buy it. But if your photo is in the top 13% then the notice says they’ll publish a book of photos in the top 13%. The same for the top 12%, and so on. Anytime you’ll pay for them to “publish” the book they’ll do so. At $55 you’re covering their costs anyway, so why should they care? And don’t forget the money from advertisers! *You are both the producer of free content and the customer!* What a clever business idea! 🙂

Angelina C. says:

Thanks for sharing this info Jared, its super useful to be aware of such practices. Sounds like a money making contest more than anything else. I wonder if there are any mentions of how many copies of the photo-book will be issued and where they will be distributed…? If I won a photo contest to gain more visibility as a photographer I would for sure like to know where the book can be purchased!

NighteeeY says:

~10000 x $5 for contest entering, 1400 x $55 for each book + a roughly $100k for their advertising – looks like a good ripoff to me 😉

Surigen 12 says:

I participated to that contest (2017 edition I think), received that same letter and got a honorable mention. Did not buy the book though. I’ve always been contrary to having to pay that amount of money to buy a book which is being sold based on my and other work. It doesn’t make sense.

George Queiroz says:

Jared, I will participate of a photo contest at my work. According to the rules, I have to apply the original photos. It won’t be allowed to use any software to modify the original files. So, which tips would you give in order to take great pictures? PS: no more than 100 people will participate. In addition, they won’t make money using our photos. My camera is the Canon T3i, and I use the 18-135mm kit lens.

Jared Polin says:

It is a rode broadcaster.

DEVUNK88 says:

they essentially you used a photo contest to get photos good enough to print a photo book, without paying for the images

Steve Malczewski says:

Did he say..

Chris OB says:

Not legit, they keep promising your photo will appear but you have to pre buy the book first, and at the last hurdle your photo gets cut. There selling books thats it.

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