This is in the “why didn’t I think of it” category. There have been film and photo competitions online, but here’s a self-supporting one.
Dr. Andreas Kaufmann, majority shareholder of Leica Camera AG, has acquired a 25.1% stake in the Internet company and website “I-shot-it”. You pay a small fee, and www.i-shot-it.com gives you access to take part in photographic competitions. An independent jury of internationally acclaimed photographers selects the prizewinners. In the open competitions, members of the “I-shot-it” community select the prizewinners by direct online voting.
“I-shot-it” founder Hartmut Hennige said around five million pictures have been uploaded so far. Around one half of these were submitted as competition entries.
Winners of the online photography competitions receive cash prizes –financed by the charges due for uploading image material—and a Leica camera. The current thirteen categories include genres such as wildlife, landscapes, black and white, cars, transport, flowers, street photography, sports, food and more.
The majority of visitors to the “I-shot-it” Web site come from the USA with more than 132,000 visits and 1.85 million page views. Dr. Andreas Kaufmann of ACM in Salzburg, Chairman of the Supervisory Board at Leica Camera AG, estimates high growth rates in the coming months. “There has been a tremendous upswing of interest in photography over the past few years. The wish to be able to present your own photos to a virtually unlimited number of people in competitions is widespread”, says Dr. Kaufmann. “The growing numbers of fans and users shows just how enormous the demand is amongst photographers around the world. We intend to satisfy this demand.”