Mass Creator Awards
Honoring The Best Media Creators In Massachusetts
January 28, 2020
Rules & Guidelines
Eligibility & Deadlines
All entrants must be a resident of Massachusetts.
All entries must have had completed production between November 1st 2019 and October 31st 2020.
If an entry was produced as part of a for-profit or for-hire contract, please see notes below on that category.
The entry deadline is midnight on November 30th 2020.
MassAccess Member – $40
Non-Member – $50
Your entry includes two tickets to the event. Additional guests may purchase tickets for $25. Note that this year's awards are 18+ (entrants who are 16 or 17 may attend with a parent).
MassAccess accepts PayPal payments via the website, as well as checks mailed to:
Mass Creator Awards
6 Liberty Square #2143
Boston, MA 02109
Payment is due at the time of submission. Entrants may pay via PayPal at that time or send a check with their total entry fee. Payments must be received by December 15th in order for the entry to be considered. Entrants which need to be invoiced should contact Greg Dolan at firstname.lastname@example.org .
The Mass Creator Awards will only accept URL formats such as YouTube, Vimeo, or any other permalink video hosting web service. Be sure to check your settings and confirm that outside parties will be able to see your video. If judges are unable to see your entry, you may be disqualified.
The judges will view 10 minutes of your entry at any point of the video unless you specify in your notes a specific (and sequential) 10-minute section to watch. All videos that are reviewed must be in the state that they were aired in. No additional editing is allowed, except to cut it down to one 10-minute segment. Compilations may be disqualified by judges.
You may enter your entry in as many categories as you like, with the exception of the for-profit category (see notes below). A separate fee will be charged for each entry. Only one winner from each category will be awarded. Each video is judged on the same level of standard. There are no divisions.
Best Hosting: Showcase your hosting skills! This category will be judged on the hosts professionalism, entertainment level, and ability to ask great questions and develop an interesting dialogue. This category is open to video projects as well as podcasts and audio content.
Civic Engagement: Features of government programs or people working to make a difference in the civic life of our communities.
COVID-19 Programming: This year was turned upside down with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and we want to see how you kept your viewers informed. This category is open to any content related to the pandemic: PSA's, information sessions with local officials, content related to the impact on your community. We want to showcase how you helped!
Documentary: Documentary format programs about events, occurrences, or issues.
For Profit: Video that was produced as part of a paid arrangement (may include sponsorships, ads, features, etc). Entrants will be required to disclose the amount paid for the production, which judges may use as a factor in their overall score. Productions which earned funding cannot be entered into any category except the For-Profit category.
Innovation: Demonstrating unique storytelling techniques, whether it be through the use of video, audio, graphics or editing.
In-Person Event: This category covers all in-person events including concerts, sports, and community events.
Instructional: Providing advice or instruction.
News: Coverage of local issues through reports, interviews, and/or video clips. Newscasts are welcome, but individual stories or features are strongly encouraged.
Podcast: Audio-only program, usually featuring narration or interviews. (While live radio can often be turned into a podcast, entrants should note that some radio programming (morning drive, news and others) won’t fit into the judge’s definition of this category.)
Promotional: A video less than 90 seconds which either serves as a PSA or promotes a longer version of itself.
Remote Event: With the COVID-19 pandemic, many events were forced to go virtual. This category is for any event that was unable to be held in person. We want to see how you recreated the events in your community.
Short Format: Less than 5 minutes long; can be a recap of a longer event or a short-format profile, for example.
Youth: Entry should be specifically for a youth audience or by a producer who is either in high school or college. While producers may be students, it is not a requirement of this category. Note that the awards night is 18+ (16 & 17 year-olds can attend with a parent).
Languages other than English are accepted. A transcript of the video would be appreciated. The judges will judge the entry based on the same standards as any other video.
Entries will be disqualified if:
The submitted video is not viewable: audio is inaudible, video is unstable, judges are unable to access private link, or for any other technical reason. Please double check your entries!
An entry clearly violates a specific requirement of the category in which it is entered.
Any portion of the program was taped after October 31, 2019.
First cablecast of the entry was before November 1, 2018.
No refunds will be made for any entry that is disqualified or if any other error is made by the producers or submitters of any entries. A decision by the judging panel to disqualify an entry is final.
Decisions and Judging
All decisions made by the judging panels and Mass Access are final. Judging Panels are comprised of industry professionals from across the country. Judges receive detailed instructions and guidelines and are encouraged to leave comments for participants. They will be grading on the following criteria:
Audio/Visual Production: How well does this entrant display effective use of cameras and/or microphones?
Graphics / Post Production: How well does this entrant do in enhancing its presentation through editing, graphics, additional sound or special effects?
Storytelling: How well does the entrant convey its message to the audience?
Creativity: Does the entrant display creative methods for delivering its message?
Overall: This is for the judge’s overall impression of the entry.
Mass Access retains the right to use all or part of the entries for promotional purposes on a non-exclusive basis for one year from the Massachusetts Creator Awards Ceremony, which is being held on January 28, 2019. The producer is responsible for obtaining all approvals, clearances, licenses, etc., for materials contained in the entry and must provide such clearance upon request.
The Mass Creator Awards Celebration is held at the Mass Access Annual Meeting.
Winners are responsible for their own travel plans and expenses.
Each award winner receives a beautiful trophy with the name of the producer, title of the program, and the category for which it won. Duplicate trophies may be purchased for a fee.
All winning entries will be listed on the www.MassCreatorAwards.com website as well as the www.MassAccess.org website. Selected entries may be included in materials used by MassAccess to promote community media. If you provide a link to your full winning entry, MassAccess will post it on the winning entries page for the public to view.
I have an awesome video. Can I enter it into more than one category?
Yes. If your entry checks the boxes for multiple categories, you are welcome to submit it multiple times. Just note that for-profit productions are limited to only that category.
So Promotional is 90 seconds and Short Format is 5 minutes? Can I just enter both? Can other categories include videos that are that short?
Promotional is designed to be a landing spot for PSAs or some other short announcement about an event, initiative or organization. Short Format is more for your short features, profiles, recaps or other video which tells a story in that length.
Your Short Format video may indeed fit into another category and can be entered into whichever category (or categories) you think it fits best. Judges are required to watch 10 minutes of an entry. But if an entry is shorter, you won’t necessarily be penalized, unless the judge deems that a longer entry better demonstrated certain techniques based on criteria.
Can you explain more about the Youth category?
Sure! The goal here is to feature young producers or productions which are geared towards a younger audience. This is not the place for sports, nor for your staff-produced segments about the school department (even if kids are a part of it). Ask yourself this: Is this video something that would capture the interest of a person under the age of 18? Or… Was it produced by someone who is either in high school or college?
So you’re telling me a 3-minute news story might be a better fit than a 10-minute newscast that includes that story?
Does that 3-minute story hit all the criteria that the judges are looking for? While we won’t dissuade you from entering an entire newscast, your entry in this category will not necessarily be penalized simply because it’s shorter than others.
I do lots of studio programs. Where do those fit in here? I don’t see a category.
We don’t have a category specifically designed for studio-based programming. However, entrants in the past have found categories that their topic fit into (ie: Civic Engagement, Instruction). It’s up to you as to whether you think the message being delivered in your studio program will stand up to competition that may be shot in the field and/or more heavily edited than a traditional studio program.
Can I give you a compilation of material that fits into a specific topic?
Please don’t. Each entry should stand on its own. Judges may penalize entries which appear to be a compilation of material.
If you have questions, contact Mass Access Board Member Greg Dolan at email@example.com . Please note that Mass Access cannot advise participants which categories they should enter.