Call for EntriesThe 21st Annual Videomaker/Canon Short Video Contest

It’s time once again for the Videomaker/Canon Short Video Contest. You’ve got the video, we’ve got the prizes – go ahead … take the chance. Whether you operate in standard definition or have taken the HD plunge, we can’t wait to see your entry. Don’t wait around, though – to qualify for the contest, your entry must be received in our office by Friday, October 31, 2008, at 5PM Pacific Time.


The Videomaker / Canon Short Video Contest is open to all videographers unaffiliated with Videomaker / Canon or any of the contest’s sponsors.

Equipment list

All entries must include an equipment list showing the original list price for each component used in the production. Equipment used must total no more than $20,000. The cost of the equipment used will be taken into consideration in judging.


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Copyright releases

Written proof of copyright must be included for all materials (audio and video) used in each submitted production. Written proof is defined as a document signed by the copyright holder giving the videographer, by name, explicit permission to use the specific material. In the case of royalty-free content, the videographer must list the name of the library and track or name of media clip used.


The body of all entries must be five minutes or less in length. Commercials and PSAs must be a broadcast-ready length of :30 or :60.


Entries in standard definition must be submitted as Windows Media, QuickTime, MPEG-2, MPEG-4 or DV25 (e.g., DV AVI/QuickTime DV) burned to CD or DVD or a DVD-Video disc or a Mini DV videocassette. Entries in high definition must be submitted as an MPEG-2 transport stream (.m2t or .mpg file extension), MPEG-4, QuickTime HD or WMVHD formats burned to CD or DVD. We cannot accept HDV tapes, Blu-ray Discs or HD DVDs. You may submit the same entry in multiple formats if desired (e.g., burning a disc as DVD-Video and including your final rendered DV AVI file in the DVD-ROM area of the disc). Note: we strongly recommend sending HD entries with an SD version for a backup in case we have problems importing the HD version into our system.

Separation of entries

Please, no more than one entry per disc or tape. However, you may enter as many videos as you like. If possible, please send multiple entries in the same envelope. However, if you want to submit the same video into multiple contest categories, you need to send only one copy of the video.

Labeling of discs

Please do not apply stick-on paper labels to your discs. (You will be judged by the content of your video. Judges will not see the presentation of your packaging.) Label your disc with a suitable marker for optical media or with a printer that can print on the surface of the disc.

Entry form

Fill out the entry form completely. Photocopies of the entry form are accepted. If you are sending more than one entry, fill out a separate entry form for each. If you want to enter the same video into multiple categories, fill out only one entry form and simply check off all of the categories in which you want to enter your video.


The entry fee is $10 per video. One category per video is included with your entry fee. A $10 fee is required for each additional category. For example, if you produced a music video while you were enrolled as a student in a video production class, you could check either “music video” OR “student video” and your entry fee would be $10; if you check both boxes, your entry fee would be $20.


Send check or money order only, please. All payments must be made in US funds. Wire transfers are not accepted. You may pay for multiple entries with a single check. Make payable to Videomaker .


We recommend the use of bubble mailers or cardboard disc mailers, as opposed to cellulose-filled packs or unpadded mailing envelopes. While we prefer to receive CDs and DVDs in slim jewel boxes, other cases are acceptable. If you use a disc envelope instead of a jewel box or a keep case, be sure to send your disc with cardboard reinforcement.


Videos must be received on or before Friday, October 31, 2008, by 5PM Pacific Time. Videos received after this time will be disqualified. Postmark dates are NOT considered for qualification. We strongly recommend shipping with a service that uses tracking numbers.


All physical media will become property of Videomaker . All contestants consent to Videomaker ‘s use of entries for promotional and/or editorial purposes. You retain all other intellectual property rights.


Winners will be announced in the May 2009 issue of Videomaker . Winners’ names, addresses, phone numbers and e-mail addresses will be provided to the contest prize sponsors.

Taxes and duties

Winners are responsible for any state, federal or other taxes or duties resulting from the receipt of prizes. Without exception, the full values of winnings will be declared on customs forms, if prizes are to be shipped outside the United States of America.

Videomaker takes no responsibility for any loss or damage to disc or tapes occurring during the contest. Never send your master.

Videomaker will not return entries that have been accepted for consideration in the 21st Annual Videomaker/Canon Short Video Contest.

Prize List

To view the complete Prize List, CLICK HERE.

Side Bar: Judging Criteria

Production quality
Shot composition, camera work, lighting and shot variety

Post-production quality
Editing, pacing, continuity, titles, transitions and flow

Quality of script, storyline and talent

Color, lighting, focus, etc.

Clarity, quality, consistency of audio levels and lack of noise

Side Bar: Entry Checklist

Be sure to include:

  • One disc or tape per submission
  • Your completed entry form
  • Your equipment list
  • All copyright releases
  • Your $10 (US funds) entry fee per video (and, optionally, $10 per additional category – see rules for more details)

Check Out Past Winners!

See the past winners of Videomaker’s Short Video Contest.

The Videomaker Editors are dedicated to bringing you the information you need to produce and share better video.