Tips to Avoid Fake Photo Competitions
Many hobbyists and amateur photo enthusiasts always take careful aim of every shot, believing each shot could bring him or her closer to the dream of taking an award winning photograph. There are times when they see an opportunity and they desire to try and test their skill, and pull out some of their best pictures from their archive to join an online photo contest.
But before you do join any photo contest online, here are some important tips that you need to know before you send in your entry.
- There are many websites that cater to amateur photo competitions. Many are legitimate and many are scams. Take some care before you enter a competition, and take time to investigate and know more information about the contest.
- Read and look for negative comments in their comment section if they have one, or look for articles and comments claiming scams about the website and competition you are interested in joining. Here is an example of how they do the scam. They would ask you to upload your photo to a site then you will receive an email telling you how great is your photo and it is just the right one that they need for a book that they are going publish or it will be a cover on a magazine, and then you’re asked to pay for a copy of the book or magazine. Feeling proud and honoured your photo got chosen to be a piece in a book or magazine, you wouldn’t mind giving a sum of money, maybe 50 dollars, for a copy. Imagine if they asked all the participants for the same, and like you, many didn’t mind sending in payments for copies. In this scheme, they end up as the only winners. Another variation of the scam invites you to a conference or purchase a trophy, both costing you more money. Scammers know amateurs want recognition and know how to lure you in with over the top promises.
- Always read the small print. Most legitimate contests would only ask the winners permission to reprint the photo of winners. Do not surrender your rights to your photos. Find out or ask what they’re going do with the pictures. There are many instances after the competition, the pictures that were sent by participants were used (for profit) all over the place.
- Read the rules and conditions very well. Make sure that previous winners or published photos are not allowed because those have undue advantage over other entries.
- At the same time know more about the organizer and background of the judges. It is probable that you will not recognize any names, so make sure to Google them. And if you don’t see anybody that has any background or credibility in the field of photography, get out of there!
- Go to photography forums to observe, open your eyes, and ask around especially for a list of sites of legitimate photo contests. And also ask about fake photo contests as well.
- If you smell something fishy and not right, just go to the next website that offers online photo contests. Keep going until you are fully convinced that you are going to enter your photographs to a legitimate online photo competition.
Do not be disheartened if you made the mistake of joining a bogus photo contest. Do not let it affect your love for photography. Join another contest. Just learn from your mistakes, have an eye for a great shot and keep on clicking away.