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Our World Underwater 2010

Rules & Guidelines

General Rules

  1. The Our World Underwater competition is open to entrants of all skill levels.
  2. and staff are allowed to enter, however, photo contest staff and judges are not allowed to enter the contest.
  3. Each individual can only win one prize or prize package. Entrants with multiple winning entries will be given priority in prizes by value.
  4. Winners will be announced and exhibited at the 2010 Our World Underwater show in Chicago, Feb 19-21 2010.
  5. We are adopting the Conservation Rules established by EPIC®. Marine life should never be stressed or endangered for the sake of a photo. Conservation rules will apply to all entries, and decisions will be final. 

    Entries suspected of exhibiting the following behavior will be disqualified: 
    • Divers visibly damaging the environment (e.g. gear dragging or kicking up sand).
    • Animals with signs of stress (e.g. puffed puffers, inking octopus).
    • Animals moved to an unnatural environment or risky location.
    • Animals being fed (especially with artificial food from divers).
    • Marine life being touched (e.g. coral polyps, seahorse tails).
    • Divers exhibiting poor buoyancy control
    • Category descriptions are available at the home page of each photo competition.
    • Additional Rules for Image Entries 
  6. All submitted images must have been taken by the entrant.
  7. Images that have won or placed in photo contests with winning entries announced before December 1st, 2009, may not be submitted. A winning image is defined as follows: 
    • any image that has placed 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in any contest that has resulted in prizes worth $100 USD or more.
    • any image that has placed 1st, 2nd or 3rd in a major photography contest (to be determined subjectively by judges).
    • any image that has placed 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in any photo of the year-type contest. Photos of the day, week, or month are fine, as long as they have not resulted in prizes worth $100 USD or more. 
  8. Photographers retain all copyrights to their images.,, and retain the right to publish the contest entries in print or online to congratulate or feature the winners and their respective images, and to promote future events.  Winning images will be included in a press release for third party websites and publications in the context of congratulating and/or featuring the winners and winning images, and to promote future competitions. Strict guidelines requiring photo credit and specific one-time press release usage are issued along with the press release.
  9. All images need to have been taken underwater.
  10. Entries may have been taken from any camera, film (as scanned slides) or digital. 

Additional Rules for Video Entries 

  1. All videos must be limited to 5 minutes long, not including titles or credits where underwater footage is not used. Absolute length including titles and credits may not exceed 5 minutes 30 seconds.
  2. A minimum of 50% of the footage must have been taken underwater.
  3. Videos should not show deliberate harassment of the marine creatures unless this harassment is the ecological point of the video.
  4. Please ensure that you have all rights to any media that is used in your video(s) (music, visual footage, personal, copyright, or any other legal rights.
  5. Multiple videographers and editors are allowed, but only the submitter will be awarded the prize. In addition, see #4.
Photo Submission Guidelines

  1. Entries must be saved in jpeg format and should be sized to be between 2000 and 6000 pixels in the longest dimension. Please limit your images to a maximum file size of 5,000KB (5MB). Images will be viewed on a large monitor and should be in the AdobeRGB 1998 or sRGB color space.
  2. An image can be uploaded into multiple competitions, but only assigned to one category per competition. Any individual image can only place in one competition, and in the instance that it places in more than one competition simultaneously, the instance with the highest rank will prevail.
  3. The preferred method of entry is electronically, however, if this method is not possible due to your lack of a proper internet connection, you will be able to print out a mailing label to physically submit images on CD

Video Submission Process

  1. All video submissions will be registered for and paid for online, but the actual submission will be mailed in physically.
  2. After you register and pay for your submissions, please print the submission form provided and include it in the shipment with your DVD(s).

Video Submission Guidelines

  1. Films must be no longer than five minutes in duration, and at least 50% of the footage must be shot underwater. There are NO EXCEPTIONS to this rule, and entries over 5 minutes long will be disqualified.
  2. All videos must be submitted as a NTSC or PAL video DVD that is playable in a standard DVD player.
  3. You may place more than one video on a DVD, but please include a DVD menu if you do.
  4. Write your name, email address, and phone number on submitted DVDs.
  5. Although all submissions must be DVD video, the format of the source video does not really matter; however, if your video wins, we will ask for it in the highest possible quality for public presentation (if your original video was shot in HD, we would like to present it in HD).
  6. DVDs will not be returned after the competition. The competition\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'s organizers are not responsible for lost or damaged mail.
Entry Fees
  1. The entry fee for each image and video submitted is US$10. 
  2. You may enter as many images as you\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'d like as long as they conform to the guidelines above.

Special thanks to Steve Douglas for his help with video guidelines.