Entry Instructions and Guidelines

Please read these instructions carefully.

For general information and assistance with entering, contact Program Director Sharon Hockin: info@nna-ccj.ca

For information and assistance on rule interpretations and categories, contact Executive Director Paul Woods: exec@nna-ccj.ca


You must register in advance (see “How to register”). Those who have registered in the past may submit entries using the previously issued UserID and Password.

CAUTION: The entry system may time you out if it takes too long for you to complete the entry form. For this reason, we recommend that you make any required formatting adjustments to text entries (such as inserting line breaks) offline before you submit your entry.

To make it easy for judges to read, all text entries should be submitted with a line break between each paragraph. You can do this ahead of time by pasting the text into a word-processing program and adding a paragraph break or line break either manually or by using the find-and-replace function.




  1. Upload your photos (.jpg format) and proofs of publication (.jpg or .pdf) in the appropriate fields, ensuring that your photos meet the required technical specifications (JPG format, not less than 2048 pixels on the longest side and not larger than 3072 pixels. Compress the JPG files so that they are not more than 1.5 megabytes). NOTE: The entry form initially provides only one field for a photo and a proof. Once a picture or proof has been uploaded, another field will appear – this happens to a maximum of 10 fields in each part of the form.
  2. Although there is no asterisk on the Supporting Letter field to indicate that a Supporting Letter is mandatory, entrants in this category MUST upload a document or text file (.doc or .txt) into this field. This file MUST include caption information for all photos submitted as part of the entry, since metadata embedded in the photos may be removed as part of the entry procedure.
  3. When you have added all photos, proofs of publication and the caption document in the Supporting Letter field, click on Submit – then be patient. Ten high-res images can use up a lot of bandwidth – it may take a few minutes to upload the entry. Depending on what Browser you use, you may see an “upload progress report” somewhere on your screen.
  4. Once the entry has been fully uploaded, the entry page in your browser may appear to go blank, without confirmation that the entry was successful. If this happens, don’t panic! If you use the browser’s scroll bar to scroll up, you should see confirmation near the top of the screen.
  5. Uploading should work on any web browser, but if you continue to have difficulty, we recommend using Chrome, which can be downloaded for free from Google.com.
  6. If after taking all of these steps, you cannot find confirmation of success in uploading the entry, contact us (exec@nna-ccj.ca or info@nna-ccj.ca). We will let you know if the entry has been received; if not, we will work with you to sort out whatever issues are preventing you from getting the entry to us.




  1. All entries must be submitted through the online entry system. Information on how to register and enter can be found at nna-ccj.ca/how-to-register/
  1. Date of publication must be provided for all entries.
  1. Proof of print or online publication (PDFs or JPG facsimile) must be provided for all entries in the Photo categories.



  1. An “entrant” is any individual or group of up to five individuals who submit(s) an entry and who is/are identified on the entry ballot. Any entry from more than five individuals will be credited as a “team” entry.



  1. Work cannot be entered in more than one category, with the following exceptions:(a) Work entered in the Local Reporting category may also be entered in another category.
    (b) Work entered in other categories may form part or all of an entry in the Presentation category. Judges in Presentation are judging appearance/design/display of the work, not its content.
    (c) Photographs entered in the News Photo category may be included as part of entries in the Breaking News category, but should not be the primary element of those entries.
  1. If an entry does not comply with the restrictions of the intended category, NNA administrators may, in their sole discretion, request that the entry be amended to bring it into compliance.



  1. Except for entries on hard copy, tablets or other proprietary formats as set out in 15 and 16 below, entrants must use the fields provided in the online entry system to input all elements of an entry.
  2. In most categories, work can be entered through the provision of links to content that was published online. For all such entries, entrants must submit working URL(s). If the work is posted on a subscription site, the entry must be accompanied by information (such as a username and password) that allows NNA administrators and judges access to the work
  3. In cases where there are not enough fields in the entry system to capture all elements of an entry, it is permissible to supply a list of URLs, or to aggregate URLs.
  4. Do not submit duplicate content by providing a URL link to work that has already been pasted into a text field, or vice versa
  5. The following categories permit the use of all journalistic tools, including text, video, audio, photos and social media: (1) Project of the Year, (3) Local Reporting, (6) Editorials, (7) Columns, (8) Explanatory Work, (10) Investigations, (11) International, (12) Breaking News, (13) Beat Reporting, (14) Business, (15) Sports, (16) Arts and Entertainment and (17) Politics. Photos submitted as part of an entry in any of these categories must not be the primary element of the entry.
  6. Because (4) Long Feature and (5) the Short Feature are intended to judge written work, entries in those categories must be submitted only in uniform text format. Links to online content are not permitted.
  7. All stories pasted into a text field must include byline of the author(s) within that field.
  8. Entries in the Editorial Cartooning category and Photo categories must be submitted in JPG format, not less than 2048 pixels on the longest side and not larger than 3072 pixels. Compress the JPG file so that the file size is not more than 1.5 megabytes.
  9. Audio files may be submitted in WAV or MP3 format; keep the file size as small as possible.
  10. Video files must be submitted as URL links.
  11. Photographs entered in any category must not have been digitally altered beyond normal cropping, toning and balancing.
  12. In most categories, work can be entered through the provision of technology that allows judges to assess the work in its intended form. Entrants submitting content in tablet or other proprietary formats may be required to provide devices with entry content pre-loaded, or information that allows judges to access the entry on their own devices. All shipping costs associated with this must be covered by the entrant or entering organization. Entrants must still register the entry online and receive an Entry ID number. Further information on how to submit such entries can be found at nna-ccj.ca/how-to-submit-entries/ or by contacting the Program Director.
  13. In two categories, Project of the Year and Presentation, hard-copy entries, consisting of three tearsheets or comparably sized photocopies, are permitted. Entrants must still register the entry online and receive an Entry ID number. Further information on how to submit hard-copy entries in those two categories can be found at nna-ccj.ca/how-to-submit-entries/ or by contacting the Program Director.


  1. Supporting letters are strongly encouraged for all entries, and are required in certain circumstances as set below. Supporting letters should be used to provide helpful information to judges that may not be apparent from the work itself, including such matters as the circumstances that led to the work, any challenges associated with production of the work, and relative resources available to the entering organization in producing the work.

Supporting letters are required in the following circumstances:

(a) All entries in the Project of the Year category must be accompanied by a supporting letter outlining the circumstances under which the submitted work was done, and any other relevant information.

(b) All entries in the Beat Reporting category must be accompanied by a supporting letter from a supervising editor outlining the reporter’s qualifications and experience in reporting on the beat or specialized coverage area.

(c) All entries involving any outside funding, involvement or support for the work (including but not limited to co-productions, joint reporting endeavours, scholarships, fellowships, bursaries and residencies) as set out under Rule 8 must be accompanied by a supporting letter from a supervising editor outlining:

(i) whether the concept for the entry was initiated by the entrant/news organization;

(ii) whether the entry contains any support, direct or indirect, for the purposes, aims, products or services of the provider of the outside funding/involvement/support;

(iii) whether the provider of the outside funding/involvement/support sought any input or approval of the output of the entrant before publication;

(iv) in the case of entered work for which outside funding was provided to the entrant and/or entering organization, whether the entrant/news organization applied for outside funding in an application which (a) specified the use of the funds; (b) placed conditions on the content of the work to be produced; and/or (c) included peer review of the application.

(d) All entries from individuals whose entered work was done on a freelance basis, rather than as an employee of the organization that published the work, must be accompanied by a letter outlining the individual’s relationship with the organization and his or her frequency of contributing journalism to organizations that publish journalism on a daily basis.

(e) All entries with more than one but fewer than six named individuals, and in which not all of those individuals contributed to all components of the entry, must be accompanied by a supporting letter explaining the role of each individual named on the entry.



  1. Entry fees are set annually by the NNA Board of Governors. For 2017, the fee for each entry is $40 + 13% HST for entries from organizations on the Benefactor List, and $50 + 13% HST for other entrants.
  2. Payment for entries must be made by credit card either online at the time of submission or following submission by contacting the Program Director; or by electronic fund transfer or company cheque on receipt of invoice. Entrants and sponsoring organizations may issue a single payment to cover all entry fees if submitting multiple entries. Entries that have not been paid for will be disqualified.