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  • Challenge Rules - Expert Editing

    Expert Editing


    Expert Editing places minimal restrictions on your post-processing. A full range of editing tools are allowed for touch-up and enhancement as well as for image modification. Please remember, however, that this is a photography contest. You are encouraged to keep your entries photographic in nature, and voters are encouraged to rate entries accordingly.

    All disqualifications are determined by majority vote of the Site Council. If you have any questions, you should err on the side of caution or contact the Site Council before submitting your entry. Entries that violate the letter or spirit of these rules will be disqualified.

    Any of these rules may be overridden by the "Extra Rules" section of the Challenge Details.


    Your submission must be:

    • taken with a digital camera that records EXIF data.
    • a JPEG (.jpg) file.
    • no larger than 700 KB (716,800 bytes) (300 KB for challenges prior to October 22nd, 2014).
    • at least 160 pixels, and no more than 1200 pixels on each side (no more than 800 pixels for challenges prior to October 22nd, 2014).
    • composed only from photographs taken after the challenge is announced and before the deadline, based on the Current Server Time (US Eastern Standard/Daylight Time) displayed at the bottom of every page on this site.
    • taken and post-processed by you. Someone else may press the shutter button if you set up the shot and the camera settings. No one else may post-process your entry for you. Exceptions must be approved by the Site Council in advance.

    You should:

    • keep your entry photographic in nature. Though violating this guideline is not grounds for disqualification, voters are encouraged to rate entries accordingly.

    You must:

    • comply with the DPChallenge Terms of Use.
    • ensure that your camera date and time are correctly set to your home time zone before shooting any images used to produce your entry. If the date recorded in any original image file is not within the specified challenge dates, your entry will be disqualified - NO exceptions! If your photo was taken in a different location than indicated in your profile, please note the location in the submission form so that we can adjust accordingly.
    • retain your original, unedited file(s) (exactly as recorded by your camera), and provide it/them to the Site Council along with a list of your editing steps within 48 hours of any validation request. This notice with instructions will be sent to your listed email address, and will also appear on the left side of your DPChallenge home page when you are logged in. Files that have been saved or altered with any editing or transfer software are NOT originals. DNG files are not considered originals unless recorded in that format by the camera.

    You may:

    • use any feature of your camera while photographing your entry.
    • combine multiple photographs to produce your entry. All additional photographs must be taken by you after the challenge is announced with a digital camera that records EXIF data.
    • use images that do not meet the source or date requirements as textures in your entry if they function specifically as textures and not to circumvent other rules.
    • apply a full range of editing tools to all or part of your entry.
    • use layers, layer masks, and alternative layer modes.
    • add a border to your entry.
    • use RAW conversion software.
    • request removal of your own entry during the voting period IF none of your last 25 entries were disqualified or removed, and no rules were violated.
    • You may include existing artwork in your entry, but photo-realistic artwork such as printed photos, monitor images or realistic illustrations must either be clearly presented as artwork or used only as a minor supporting element. Using photo-realistic artwork to simulate physical objects or backgrounds that provide the primary impact of an entry will be grounds for disqualification.
    • add text to your entry or its border during editing, but watermarks, copyright statements, and other text that serves to identify the photographer are forbidden.

    You may not:

    • hold more than one DPChallenge account, ask anyone to vote on your behalf, or link to your entry's voting page.
    • submit more than one entry per challenge.
    • use the same original image in more than one challenge.
    • add graphics or clip art images to your entry or its border during editing.
    • submit a photograph depicting male or female genitalia, or acts of sex deemed inappropriate by a majority of the Site Council.


    An entry will be disqualified when a majority of the Site Council finds that any of the rules above were not followed.

    In order to discourage repeated disqualifications and abuse of the disqualification system, the following penalties will apply for repeat disqualifications:

    • 1st DQ in last 25 submissions: No penalty
    • 2nd DQ in last 25 submissions: 1 week suspension of submission privileges
    • 3rd DQ in last 25 submissions: 2 week suspension of submission privileges
    • 4th DQ in last 25 submissions: 4 week suspension of submission privileges and 3 months of required "pre-submission" of proof file.

    The above penalties will be assessed only after review by the Site Council. In exceptional circumstances, the Site Council may elect not to apply a penalty. If a user is found to have intentionally violated the Challenge Rules, the above penalties will be in addition to any assessed for the violation itself.

    Last Updated: Oct. 21st 2014

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