The revised KPA News Contest: Updates, new categories are in the works; a glimpse to the future

The Associated Press is sponsoring a Freedom of Information Award in the KPA contest so KPA is honoring the ‘Father of Kentucky’s Open Meetings/Records’ by naming it for Jon Fleischaker

There are some new categories on the horizon for the Excellence in Kentucky Newspapers 2019 contest and some tweaks in existing rules and categories.

The new categories:

The Jon Fleischaker Freedom of Information Award, sponsored by The Associated Press.

Journalists of the Year — Weekly Division, Daily Division, Student Publications Division.

Best Editorial Writer. Best Columnist. Best Sports Columnist. Best Headline Writer

Best Video — Weekly Division, Daily Division, Student Publications Division.

The Journalists of the Year in the three divisions will be selected similarly to how KPA names its General Excellence winners. Each person winning an individual award will be given five points for a first place, three points for a second place and one point for a third. The individual receiving the most points will be named Journalist of the Year for that respective division. In the event of a tie in points, the one winning the most first places will be declared the Journalist of the Year.

Those encompass most of the big changes the News Editorial Division is making in the 2019 Excellence in Kentucky Newspapers News Contest.

Around the first of August, newspapers will be receiving the link to the contest materials and then will have an October 18 deadline to have everything submitted for judging. The judging will be done by the Maine Press Association and results will be announced Friday, January 25, 2020, as we close out the 2020 KPA Winter Convention.

Also on tap, individuals will be able to submit up to three entries in most categories — except those mentioned above with “Best” in the category name — but newspapers can have an unlimited number of entries in any categories.

The division is also eliminating the Best Lifestyle Page/Section due to a lack of entries in the last few contests. It’s also combining two categories on special sections into one  — Best Special Section/Edition/Sports Special Section — and combining Best Use of Social Media and Creative Use of Multi Media into one — Best Use of Social and Multi Media. That makes room for a new category — Best Video.

The description for that new category (Category 14) is:

Entries should demonstrate work that incorporates distinguished journalistic storytelling and information via video format. Submissions may consist of Web-based interactive graphics and displays, videos, photo galleries and audio slideshows, or any combination of all of these elements. Creativity, visual/design, use of news links, impact on the community and timeliness (is it current?) will be among factors considered by the judges. Entries may be comprised of screen shot(s) of the entire package as ONE pdf or create one URL that incorporates all aspects of multimedia coverage.

The contest covers all issues published between October 1, 2018, and September 30, 2019.

A LOOK AHEAD — We prepare you now for the 2020 KPA Contest. The division is working toward all entries being submitted as URLs. That doesn’t mean these will be from the URL of your website because of paywall issues. But instead of preparing pdfs of your pages and submitting those, you will package each individual entry as a URL and submit that for the judges. More on that process in the future but for now, be prepared. It’ll make it easier on you and your staff and easier on the judges.

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