Photo Contest WARNING

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by neea, Dec 16, 2006.

  1. neea

    neea TPF Noob!

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    Hello everyone,

    I'm putting this here because those who are just starting out in photography are more likely to enter contests to get their name out there.

    I made this mistake... as did millions of others.

    There are two contests that I've come across and turned out to be major scams. These companies ask you to PURCHASE a book with your photo in it.
    (you should be GETTING paid for your pictures. Not paying someone else to publish them)
    www.pictures.com / International Library of Photography and
    www.photolaureates.org.

    There is also a number of forums out there regarding these types of 'contests'.
    Betterphoto.com has two HERE
    and HERE.
    With messages dating as far back as 2002.

    The reason for my message here is for anyone interested in entering contests be very careful. Read the fine print and ask around before making a final decision. Do your research.

    I was lucky enough to smell something fishy before purchasing a book for $60+. When I started to look into it I quickly realized I was not alone.
    Once you get into this vicious cycle it seems to never end.
    I've ended up sending registered letters to one company demanding they remove my picture from their website.

    So be careful!!!
    And thanx for listening to my little rant:er:
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I just about fell for one of those about 4 years ago. They keep sending you letters...telling you that you are a filnalist...and that they will put your photo into their book.

    In reality, they put just about everyone's photo into the book...all of them tiny, thumbnail type images...then they try to sell you the book for $60-$100.

    Stay away.
     
  3. cal_gundert05

    cal_gundert05 TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, scams like that are pretty popular.

    In high school I kept getting letters from an honor roll agency, asking for my bio info because it would be put into a book--very prestigious and all. But they couldn't care less about your academic achievements, they just wanted parents and family to buy the book and the special mugs and mouse pads and pens, etc.

    That was pretty irrelevant...:confused:
     
  4. ironsidephoto

    ironsidephoto TPF Noob!

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    i almost fell for the same thing (the ones on the sites you mentioned, actually). i knew something was wrong when i got at least one email a week saying it's my last chance to buy this book and all of that.
    lame.
    i'm glad this was posted, though, so i know i wasn't alone :)
     
  5. britonk

    britonk TPF Noob!

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    I've never heard of this - thanks for the heads up! Sounds like a right pain - like those stupid Readers Digest competitions.
     
  6. Mad_Gnome

    Mad_Gnome TPF Noob!

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    The worst victims are the ones who pay the exorbitant registration fees and get suckered into travel and lodging to go to their conference, where they may be awarded a "Special Silver Award Bowl" for their achievements, which is probably worth about $100, realistically. (Including the price to engrave it.) I almost fell for the scam, but things started sounding very fishy when they kept listing off more "benefits" that all cost more money.

    S C A M
     
  7. neea

    neea TPF Noob!

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    And for those who do end up buying the book usually wait up to a year or more to get it. I guess the pictures only end up in the book if you buy it. I was worried it'd be put in no matter what and scared that I agreed to some fine print (which I never used to read but do now when it's regarding my pictures).
    The books are never sold in stores and the reason it takes so long to get a book is because they have to wait and wait for enough people to buy them before publishing it.
    I set up a Myspace to create awareness about this type of scam but it never took off like planned:confused:

    I'm sure glad that majority of people that have dealt with these people were smart enough to know something wasnt right.
     
  8. sigmuh

    sigmuh TPF Noob!

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    Very nice to know. I'll stick with free, online contests.

    But you're right. If you're getting credit for something, you shouldn't have to pay for it yourself.
     
  9. oldnavy170

    oldnavy170 TPF Noob!

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    I have to admit that I did get one of my photos in the book. I actually bought the book because I was so excited but then I got the book and it had a tiny photo in it. I still like the book but I know that it was a con to get my money, oh well that was about 6 years ago!!!!
     
  10. LOL, and now you understand the business model behind the whole notion of a Who is Who book. I remember in the 1970s kids would say "Oh, his dad is in Who's Who" but the only one who had the book was the family who's father was in it. My dad finally wised me up and said it's a scam.
     
  11. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The business "yellow pages" scam works the same way. Companies are listed for free. They want you to buy the book.
     
  12. darich

    darich No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I was contacted by one of these sites after submitting an image in a contest. Miraculously i reached the semi final. Although it's a decent photo it has never even won in my local club that i used to attend!!
    When they said my image was going to be in the book i was suspicious straight away since i had only sent them a lo res version - something like 800 x 600 pixels for web use.

    i received emails and post telling me the book was a great deal and i should buy it now for a reduced price. Needless to say i didn't adn I'm glad i didn't.

    Pure scam.
     

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