Overly Strict Challenge Rules

Started Nov 4, 2010 | Discussions thread
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Stormcastle
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Overly Strict Challenge Rules
Nov 4, 2010

I've noticed lately that there are more challenges that have really strict entry rules, and I feel the need to say something here.

All you manage to do as challenge administrators when you make the rules so precise and forbidding is to exclude DPR members who have truly creative content - but can't enter your series because you've alienated them.

Here's two examples of the type of rules I'm talking about (and from reading them, those who wrote them can take note that I'm looking directly at you):

1. Pictures aspect ratio must be 2:3 or 4:3 or 16:9 or 1:1 - this is the most offensive rule I think because lots of people crop photos for creative context.. which will naturally change the aspect ratio of the pic to something unacceptable.

2. Preferably no post processing otherwise you must explain what you have done in the comment field. - this is another bad one because the majority of us do some tweaking in PP... it's one of the major benefits of the digital photo revolution.

Here's another one that's completely unfair.

3. Reasonably well composed shots only please. - What the hell? Composure is a purely subjective issue and CAN NOT be measured fairly i.e. is completely at the mercy of the challenge admin.

Or how about this one, in a challenge for statues:

4. No human statues. - Ummm... as a human species, we're obsessed with ourselves and create most statues in our image.

Then there's this one - which is understandable to a point, but it's waived around too much.

5. Number of humans = 0. - Yeah... about that. There's 7 billion people on this planet. What are the odds of you being in a place that doesn't have any?

I have two challenge series on the go, and I will never insert rules that exclude people from entering - that will only cater to PROFESSIONAL photographers - since that would bar 90% of DPR's membership from trying to find their moment in the sun.

Yes - I disqualify pics because people refuse to read challenge descriptions, but only so that the pics stay on topic... and not because I have some elitist view of photography.

Personally, I don't care if I can enter these restrictive challenges - in most open challenges I don't score high anyways since I have a particular style that doesn't translate well to traditional DPR voters and have given up looking for gold here (I do much better on Flickr, LOL).

However, I feel bad for those people who are new to photography or new to DPR and feel they have nice photos that they'd like to share with the world in a competitive arena - only to have them shut out and turned away before voting even starts.

Snobbery is unpleasant... no matter the forum or place.

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Knowledge is realizing that the street is one-way, wisdom is looking both directions anyway

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