This morning I woke up to find an e-mail from one of my clients asking for me to give permission to him to entire images of mine into a building contest. Most of the time I agree with the condition if they win and are published, they will pay we a publishing fee. So I started my research and looked over what he had sent me. He attached two forms, and from reading, it appeared I needed to sign one and he the other. The form I needed to sign was an image release form which in doing so would require me to give the contest holders the right to use my image not only for the purposes of the contest but also for their marketing purposes, no matter what they are, for a period of 10 years. This was the "better" of the two.
The paper he was to sign required him to transfer his copyright for all materials, whether they be plans or documents, to the contest holder, because "it is the policy of (Contest holder) to safeguard all author-contricuted works by copyrighting them in the name of (Contest holder)." I of course explained what this meant to him and his business and he would never be able to use his work again for his promotion or sell a license to others. Not to mention they are requiring us to remain liable for any lawsuit brought by the land owner. His not considering the contest anymore.
But that is beside the point. It just seems all contests these day are just gimmicks designed to steal either licensing or copyrights from the owners.
I am sorry to say, but they are not gimmicks.
Far from it, they are the custom in that sector, and the industrial design sector, so far.
If you go to the very frontpage of that site, you will see there is a proud "no entry fee" announcement.
Unfortunately, this contest is very benign regarding copyright issues.
Usually, regarding building and construction, contests are PAID. Meaining you have to pay in order to be able to participate in that very contest. On top of that, were it a design contest, usually it takes more than 600 work hours to fulfill if the office is extremely efficient.
Make your own maths, but that is the very reality of that sector.
And that very reality is coming over to other sectore: competitions and bidding are going to take quite a big part of every other bussiness.