Social forum based online, maybe with an APP for smartphones too.
Project provider & manager shape a framework and initiates the first competition, the whole format should be made and formulated very loosely with lots of flexibility, to allow for participants/volunteers to contribute ideas on how each of the monthly challenges are performed, and allow changes over the years to allow for new technology to become used, or even invented. Each event can have its own theme or set of rules.
As soon as it is possible; hand over the complete "ownership" of the competition to the photographers/volunteers. Because all the potential to crowdsource most of details for the competition lies in activating users/content providers:
- "clues" or "keywords"; ask photographers to email words before each event starts. Write or print all those words on small pieces of paper, and when the participants stand on the starting line, randomly draw and read some of those words, or let participants pick their 2-5 "personal" "keywords" out of a hat, and each one should then go out in the city and photograph based on those words. keywords could be nouns, or abstract, or "emotional" words, actual GPS-coordinates or typical local items found only in few places in Singapore area, to make it all more into a "scavenger hunt", see some more info on : /open/vibrant-cities/concepting/local-lore-treasure-hunt/
- The competitions could be open for a week (from the starting time), or strictly limited to a 12 hour or 24 hour time period. With precise starting time, with a communal starting line, in a public place, that can create huge community spirit and enthusiasm among the participants and passing people, similarly like the real marathons or sprint events can cause. (for week-long competitions, you could send out updates or changes in the keywords or rules on email or text-messaging or twitter, for added levels and some unexpected suspense)
- Theme rules: photographers must use only public collective transport or bicycles or skateboards during the "race". (Bring the pets for a walk?)
- Competition should be open to all age groups, and to all types of cameras, to get more diverse pictures. (or once in a while you could limit to one type of camera, such as smartphones?)
- Individual challenges and team games, you could try to randomly put strangers together in pairs or in trios. Also possible to let friends and coworkers form a team beforehand.
- quirky idea: take one left arm of one participant, and tape it together with a right arm of another (random) participant, and make them share one camera only!!!
- try out fun stuff that could arouse spontaneous interaction between participants, and discussions whenever they see another photographer around in the area. Perhaps design a "Secret" salute that participants can use towards other people with cameras?
- After the ended time period, voting takes place online. (on existing picture forums online, instagram, flickr, panoramio? or start one especially for this challenge?)
- (don't print any of the photos, have all the voting, award ceremony online or using computer projector on a movie screen or white wall)
- You could make all participants release their submitted pictures as open source, film editors could use, create different films out of them, similar to what Pedro wrote about: /open/connected/inspiration/urbanized-documentary-film-about-the-design-of-cities/
Revenue models to raise some money for local environmental and charity groups;
It needs to be free to participate, but you could have a fee on submitting photos in the voting: 1$/photo for the first 3-4 photos? or something like that, and then raising the "fee/cost" for additional photos, 2-5$/photo for additional photos, and maybe raise even more after that. you could also partner with local company that prints on t-shirts, merchandise, so participants can buy items with their photo printed on them.
Perhaps you could have the voting at a fee? 10 cents per vote? or ask for voluntary donations to charities at the voting web page?
for more ideas, please discuss in the comment section below, and read more about Photo Marathon!
and take a look at www.photomarathon.com
Most photo competitions have rigid rules set up by a jury, but I know of not one that lets the participants formulate how the game is "played" or judged. Perhaps it turns out that none wants to be the winner, and to just participate in order to display all the photos from all participants…?