Earlier this year, in response to your requests to have extra time to submit entries as a result of the pandemic, we extended our contest to June 1. As that date approaches, submissions are down considerably in comparison with a year ago, yet we can tell that many submissions are in progress. Recognizing that these uncertain and difficult times have upended everything in our lives – and that folks might need a few extra days to finish up submissions – we are going to extend our deadline again until midnight Monday, June 15, 2020. Many thanks to the dedicated, hard-working journalists throughout our state who continue to work every day to keep us informed and safe. Your work has never been better. And many thanks to all of you who have submitted entries or are still in the process of submitting. This contest is about honoring you, our Ohio journalists, and we can’t wait to celebrate the wonderful work you did in 2019. Below is some general submission information in case you need it again.
View the “Rules” and “Help” tabs in the header of the contest home page for complete directions and explanations to help you submit entries if you have not already done so. If you have submitted to our contest in the past, you may use your same login information.
Please take note of the following when submitting entries:
If you submit an entry that requires a password-protected URL to be accessed, there is a specific field for you to submit the user name/password information for judges.
There is a field asking whose name(s) should appear on any award, as well as the name of the media outlet, should your entry receive an award. Thank you for paying close attention to this field and entering the information correctly. This will help avoid any errors when awards are created.
Please be sure to submit your entry in the correct category. Large print categories are reserved for publications with circulation of 60,000 and higher; small print categories are reserved for publications with circulation of less than 60,000.
Our annual statewide contest is presented collaboratively by the Cincinnati, Columbus and Cleveland Pro Chapters of The Society of Professional Journalists and honors print, broadcast, digital, trade, freelance and college journalists in Ohio for their best work during 2019. Our contest is the only Ohio competition that honors journalists who fulfill the SPJ mission: defense of the First Amendment, support of literacy, resistance to censorship, advocacy for openness of public records and meetings, media self-criticism and community service. Our contest also recognizes the best college newspaper in the state.
ELIGIBILITY: Journalists who work for newspaper, magazine, radio, television, trade, digital and college media in Ohio and adjacent states that have significant reach into Ohio are eligible to enter the contest. Freelance journalists, who are Ohio residents, are eligible, regardless of where their work is published, broadcast or webcast. We recently added numerous freelance categories in response to the growing number of freelance journalists. Click here for Freelance categories. Newsletter and blog submissions also are welcome. Entrants need not be members of the Society of Professional Journalists. Submitted work must have been published or broadcast in 2019. All websites and links for digital submissions must remain active throughout 2020.
FEES: A $30 entry fee must accompany each submission, except college entries. College students pay a $10 entry fee for writing of news, feature, sports and opinion. College newspapers may enter the best college newspaper category for free. There is a $5 discount per entry for work by SPJ members. You may submit any given article in as many relevant categories as you wish. Not an SPJ member? Join here and save. Join here and save.
SPREAD THE WORD: Please forward this message to anyone you think would like to participate in Ohio’s Best Journalism contest! OpenWater makes it easy to share the contest site with your colleagues and friends. Look for the social media icons (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.) on the left side of the contest site landing page.
We’re always trying to increase submissions to our contest and add newcomers to our database for contest information and updates. So if you want add the contact information of your colleagues and friends, who want to be added to our elist, or if they want to add themselves, here is the link.
Thank you so much for your ongoing support of our contest. Proceeds are used to support student journalism scholarship programs at the Cincinnati, Cleveland and Columbus pro SPJ chapters, as well as to help us provide programming for students and professional journalists throughout the state.