#NationalParksUSNZ Photo Competition

NPS Photo contest

UPDATE: The Contest is now CLOSED. Thanks for all your stunning #NationalParksUSNZ entries, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service.

Find out who the winner is right here.


On October 4, 2016, the Embassy will launch a photo competition, #NationalParksUSNZ, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the U.S. National Park Service. The winning entry’s prize includes a $400 gift card to REI (a well known outdoor gear supplier which ships to New Zealand).

Contestants (see Eligibility Criteria below) will be asked to submit photos of U.S. National Parks they have visited— in the United States —to celebrate our common love for the outdoors.

The competition aims to highlight the central roles national parks play in our communities, and the importance of recreation and natural, historic, and cultural conservation.

Photos can be submitted via TwitterFacebook* or Instagram using the #NationalParksUSNZ hashtag. Please view the Official Photo Contest Rules below, before submitting your entries.

(*for Facebook entries, post to the U.S. Embassy Facebook page).

Official Photo Contest Rules:

Contest Sponsors

#NationalParksUSNZ is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Embassy Wellington, (the “Contest Sponsors”).

Description of Contest Objectives

The United States Embassy is celebrating the 2016 National Parks centennial by working closely with the United States National Parks Service and New Zealand’s Department of Conservation to spread the word about the amazing places they manage. There are so many inspirational stories associated with both our nations’ parks. They are beautiful natural resources and we need to protect them, and our diverse cultural heritage.  Our national parks are important for the health of our communities and our planet.

National Parks engage communities through recreation, conservation, historic, and cultural preservation and they highlight values we share with the people of New Zealand.


Events from this contest may be announced and promoted on various social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram but contest entry and administration will take place by contestants posting submissions on their own pages using our unique hashtag #NationalParksUSNZ on Twitter and Instagram, or posting to the U.S. Embassy Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/newzealand.usembassy) with the contest hashtag. Contest winners may also be announced on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, however, these social media sites are neither partners nor sponsors of the contest.

Contestants are reminded that by participating in the contest and uploading content to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, they are bound by Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram’s Terms of Service and any agreement with Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram contained therein.

How to Enter

Entrants can submit photos by posting photos on either Twitter, Instagram or Facebook* with the contest hashtag #NationalParksUSNZ.

Once a photograph is submitted, it is considered a final submission and may not be modified, edited, or replaced.  Individual contestants may submit no more than one photo.

Participation in this contest is deemed as acceptance of these Official Contest Rules.

A submission must be an original digital photograph, taken by the contestant.

The contest commences at 4th October 2016 NZ Time..  Entries may be submitted between 4th October 2016, and Noon on 20 October 2016. Winners will be announced on 8 November 2016.

The top ten photos will be featured on U.S. Embassy Wellington’s Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Flickr accounts. Participation in this contest is deemed as an acceptance that original photographs taken by the contestant can be featured on the U.S. Embassy’s platforms for an indefinite time period.

*If you are using Facebook,  please post to the U.S. Embassy Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/newzealand.usembassy) with the contest hashtag.


Content Requirements

  1. Submissions must not contain obscenity, explicit sexual material, nudity, profanity, graphic violence, calls or incitement to violence, commercial solicitation or commercial promotion. Submissions must conform to local law and must not contain content or images that could be considered abusive, inflammatory, denigrating, or disrespectful to any of the Contest Sponsors, or to any groups, individuals or institutions.  Submissions must adhere both in appearance and in fact to the norms of civil discourse.  In other words, the content of all submissions must be suitable for a global, public audience.
  2. Submissions must be original content created by the contestant and must not contain any elements that are protected by someone else’s copyright or otherwise subject to third party intellectual property or proprietary rights, including privacy and publicity rights (except as expressly permitted below in (d)). Contest Sponsors recognize no allowance for “fair use” of copyrighted material, nor do Contest Sponsors recognize allowance for use of licensed materials created or owned by a third party.
  3. Contest Sponsors reserve the right to disqualify, at their sole and absolute discretion, any submission that does not adhere to these criteria and to the intent and substance of these Official Contest Rules.
  4. In the event of any question or difference of views regarding compliance with, interpretation, or application of these content requirements or other provisions of these Official Contest Rules, Contest Sponsors reserve the exclusive right to resolve such questions or differences of views in their sole discretion.
  5. By submitting a photograph to the contest, the contestant affirms that he or she has obtained written consent from all individuals whose image or likeness appears in the photograph (or from the individuals’ parent/legal guardian if any such individuals are considered a minor in their country of residence), and that he or she has obtained the necessary rights, licenses, consents, and permissions to use all material such as music, images, text and other content in the submission.  The contestant further affirms that he or she is prepared to provide reliable documentation of any and all such consents, licenses, etc., upon request.  Failure to obtain such rights, license consents, and permissions may result in the disqualification of the photo submission at the Contest Sponsors’ sole and absolute discretion.

Technical Format Requirements

  1. Photo submissions must be in jpg or png format. Submissions should not have any visible watermarks, signatures, or personally identifiable information. If your photo is a winning entry, you must send it to us in high resolution format (300dpi) at the organzier’s request.
  2. Retouching of Photos:  The submitted photograph cannot be significantly retouched: nothing in the photograph (people, animals, scenery, objects, etc.) may be altered, removed, augmented or rearranged.  Cropping is permitted, as is modest darkening or lightening of parts of the image.


  1. Contestants must be at least 18 years old on the date of entry into the contest. Contestants must be residents of New Zealand and may not be U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents of the U.S.
  2. The individual submitting the entry will be considered the contestant and will be the only individual eligible to compete for the prize.  Organizations are not eligible to compete for the prize, either as an entity, or through representation by an individual.  In order to be eligible for the prize, the contestant must provide complete and accurate information.
  3. The following individuals are not eligible to participate in the contest:  Employees, interns, directors, and officers of the Contest Sponsors, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram or the U.S. Government; or any employees, interns, directors, or officers of any agencies, companies or entities involved in the administration, advertising, judging, creation, development, execution, and/or fulfillment of this contest, and the immediate family members (defined as spouse, recognized partner, parent, child, sibling, and spouse or “step” of each) and those living in the same household of each such individual.
  4. Once a submission has been accepted for entry into the contest, the contestant’s name (or User ID, if the contestant wishes to remain anonymous) and country may be publicly identified at the sole discretion of the contestant.

Selection of Winners

  1. All photos are subject to screening by Contest Sponsors to ensure compliance with these Official Contest Rules.  Any photos out of compliance will not be posted on the Embassy’s platforms.   Contest Sponsors reserve the right in their sole and absolute discretion to verify in the final analysis whether a potential finalist or potential winning photo submission has fully complied with these Official Contest Rules before posting to the contest site, awarding prize, recognizing a winner, etc.
  2. Judges: The contest will comprise of a prominent NZ photographer, and representatives from the Department of Conservation., and the U.S. Embassy in New Zealand.
  3. Judging Criteria: Judges will choose the Contest winners from among all eligible entries based on the following criteria: visual appeal, appropriateness, creativity, ability of image to portray the fun, exciting and interesting things people see and do when they experience National Parks, and the importance of protecting the National Parks as an environmental priority. Submitted photos do not have to be recent, and images from the past are acceptable.
  4. Winners:  Each winner and/or finalist will be required to sign and return to Contest Sponsors a statement of eligibility and liability/publicity release, and provide a short bio (where applicable), and a brief statement about the submission; otherwise the winner and/or finalist will be ineligible for any prize.
  5. Winner(s) will be contacted via the social media platform on which they posted the photo and will be asked to provide additional contact details such as e-mail and phone number to arrange for receipt of prize.  The inability of Contest Sponsors to contact a potential winner may result in disqualification and/or selection of an alternate winner from among all remaining eligible submissions.


  1. A $400 gift card to REI (well known outdoor gear supplier which ships to New Zealand).
  2. Winning photographs may be displayed on U.S. Embassy Wellington’s website, social media platforms and/or in the Embassy itself. They may also be in diplomatic offices in New Zealand and the United States, and published in Air New Zealand’s In Flight Magazine.
  3. Winners have to confirm the acceptance of the prize in an email reply within three calendar days.  If the acceptance is not confirmed by the required date, the Contest Sponsors reserve the right to select an alternate winner.  Each winner must provide a valid physical mailing address where a prize, if any, is to be shipped.  Contest Sponsors are not responsible for any problems related to the shipping of any prize, including, but not limited to, theft, delay, damage, or destruction/accidental loss by the shipping carrier.
  4. Any unused portion of the prize is not transferable, convertible, or exchangeable and cannot be taken as cash.  All taxes on or in connection with any prize, and the reporting consequences thereof, are the sole and exclusive responsibility of the winner.

Liability and Rights

  1. Contest Sponsors do not endorse any submissions or messages expressed therein, and Contest Sponsors expressly disclaim any and all liability in connection with the submitted photos including disputes between collaborators related to a submission.
  2. The contest and its sponsors do not permit copyright infringing activities or infringement of any other intellectual property rights, and Contest Sponsors reserve the right to remove and disqualify any submission they deem to be in violation of another party’s copyright or other intellectual property rights.
  3. Contestants retain sole ownership of their original work.  The submission remains the intellectual property of the contestant, and the Contest Sponsors and U.S. Government make no claim of copyright as to the work of any individual who enters the contest.   Contestant specifically agrees to give the Contest Sponsors permission to use all content submitted for purposes of judging the contest.  Contestants will be required to grant Contest Sponsors, with proper attribution through whatever means they deem appropriate, a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, sub-licensable and transferable license to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivative works of, and/or display the submission in any media formats and through any media channels in perpetuity in connection with the activities and operations of the contest.
  4. Contestant assumes sole responsibility for the contest submission and the material contained in it, and for any consequences of submitting or posting it.
  5. Contest Sponsors reserve the right at any time to verify the validity of entries and of contestants and to disqualify any contestant or entry deemed not in compliance with these Official Contest Rules.  Contest Sponsors also reserve the right to request further documentation, at their sole and absolute discretion, to verify eligibility and compliance with these Official Contest Rules.
  6. If a prize or any portion thereof is unavailable, Contest Sponsors, in their sole discretion, reserve the right to substitute the prize with another prize of equal or greater value and/or specification.
  7. Contest Sponsors reserve the right, at any time and in their sole discretion, to disqualify and/or deem ineligible any individual who they reasonably believe (i) has violated the Official Contest Rules; (ii) has violated the terms of use of platform, or (iii) is acting in a bad faith, or in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, or with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other person.
  8. Contest Sponsors reserve the right to modify, suspend, terminate or cancel the contest at their discretion for any reason.
  9. Contestant agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Contest Sponsors, their parent, subsidiary and affiliated companies, officers, directors, employees, interns, and agents, from and against any and all claims, damages, obligations, losses, liabilities, costs or debts, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney’s fees) arising from (i) violation of these Official ContestRules; (ii) violation of any third party right, including without limitation any copyright, trademark, intellectual property, privacy, publicity, or other proprietary right in connection with the contest; or (iii) any claim that a contest submission caused any harm, including financial, to any third party.  These indemnification and hold harmless obligations will survive indefinitely beyond the conclusion of the contest.
  10. The conduct, judging, and awarding of prizes will be carried out in full compliance with applicable S. law and host country law.  In the event of a conflict between U.S. law and host country law, U.S. law shall apply.
  11. Contest Sponsors and the U.S. Government will take reasonable measures to protect privacy data, personally identifiable information, and other sensitive data of contestants.  Contact information provided by contestants may be stored by U.S. Embassy Wellington and may be used to contact contestants for other purposes in the future.  This information may be shared with the co-sponsor of the contest and/or made available to third parties to the extent permitted by law.
  12. Contest Sponsors assume no liability or responsibility for any loss or harm resulting from any user’s participation in or attempt to participate in the contest or ability or inability to upload, download, or otherwise access any information in connection with participating in the contest as well as the prize winner’s use of the prize.  Contest Sponsors assume no responsibility or liability for technical problems, or technical malfunctions arising in connection with the operation of the contest, including: hardware or software errors; faulty computer, telephone, cable, satellite, network, electronic, wireless or Internet connectivity, or other online communication problems; errors or limitations of any Internet service providers, servers, hosts or providers; garbled, jumbled or faulty data transmissions; failure of any email transmissions to be sent or received; lost, late, delayed or intercepted email transmissions; inaccessibility of the contest site in whole or in part for any reason; traffic congestion on the Internet or the contest site; unauthorized human or non-human intervention in the operation of the contest, including without limitation, unauthorized tampering, hacking, theft, virus, bugs, worms; or destruction of any aspect of the contest, or loss, miscount, misdirection, inaccessibility or unavailability of an email account used in connection with the contest.
  13. Use of contest’s unique hashtag is at user’s own risk.  Contest Sponsors are not responsible for any personal injury, property damage, or losses of any kind which may be sustained to computer equipment resulting from participation in the contest, use of the contest site or the downloading of information from the contest site.  By participating in the contest, the contestant releases Contest Sponsors from any and all claims arising from or relating to such contestant’s participation in the contest, whether directly or indirectly.