Originally Posted by UdubBadger
you are 100% correct but also from the start, these contests weren't intended on being a "whos archives have the best photos in them" contest. a lot of these themes are meant to make people go out and shoot them in the time frame allowed, to learn something new and practice becoming a better photographer. It would be one thing to have a mix of both old and new but it really feels like the majority (not all but most) photos in a contest are ones that were shot BEFORE the contest was announced. A lot of times if people don't have a photo that fits, we don't see them enter the contest at all.
This might be a car forum but this is the photo section and we have PLENTY of people with enough skill, time and willingness to run a legit contest.
That being said, I see your point and maybe the few of us who want to see things get better around here are just being a little to ambitious in what to expect from the masses.
The old system might have "worked" but I don't think it was the best it could be because we still had a lot of shady stupid general forum-esque like behavior going on (you all know what I'm talking about). The goal of modifying it was to eliminate that and let the people who want to take these seriously enter and have a 100% reliable voting method on the quality images that deserve recognition.
Trust me I'm in way trying to make these contests "exclusive" or anything. I just want to see the people who take them seriously get a chance to shine and the others who don't really give a shit know that they can't do it that way anymore. Thats why I went for the judges thing. I think we all see a lot of genius in each others photos (well maybe most of us), its a shame when a good photo loses a contest to one that had votes from total randoms or a photo of something purely sensationalized to attract voters who couldn't even tell you what an aperture was. That is what I want to get rid of. If there are other means to do so, lets figure that out.
I admire the sentiment and agree mostly - I'm aware that the way things are going currently could be seen as a bit "cliquey". This is what I personally wish to avoid. Anyone should be able to enter and their photo should be voted on. If a photo wins that you disagree with - that's the way it is - the forum voted. If it stops the regulars from posting I'd be surprised but if it happens and there are no entries for the contests then so be it. I don't think this will happen.
Why do you think that the contests could be better? How could you improve them? If the voting is still left visible - it should be fairly easy to spot any random voters.
Re searching the archives to fit - I always do that. I don't see anything wrong with it. I took the photo,why discount it just because the forum contest theme appeared after I took it?. I still learn from other entries, I'm still inspired by other entries. I still take photos. I still enter and I still vote.