2018 Contests

2018 Print Quality Competition


Newspapers may be moving, at various paces, towards a digital-first future, but that emphatically does not mean their commitment to quality print reproduction has weakened in any way.

Southern Lithoplate Inc. understands and encourages progress in print advancement with its sponsorship of the annual Print Quality Competition.

The Contest

All Inland member newspapers are eligible to participate in this contest administered by Inland Press Association. The contest has two divisions: Color Division, and Black and White Division. A newspaper may enter one or both divisions.

Black and White: Entrants in the Black and White Division will be sent a black-and-white proof and a CD/DVD containing a digital photo. The object of the contest is to reproduce the best match on newsprint to the black and white proof sent with the kit.

Color: Entrants in the Color Division will be sent a color proof and a CD/DVD containing a digital photo. The object is the same as in the Black and White division: to reproduce the best match on newsprint to the color proof sent with the kit.

Download the black-and-white photo here.

Download the color digital photo here.

Circulation Categories

Entries will be divided into four circulation categories for each division:

  • Under 10,000
  • 10,000 to 49,999
  • 50,000 or more

Entry fees

$80 for either the Black and White or Color categories, and $140 for both.

Reproduction requirements

All entries in either contest must appear on conventional newsprint in any regular published edition of the newspaper. The picture must appear as part of the normal press run. The photo may be resized but must have a 4 1/2 inch minimum width. There is no maximum width. The back of the page on which it appears must be printed as part of the regular edition.

Entrants are encouraged to use the photographic image in ways best suited to their editorial and business content. No mention of Inland is required. Photos must not have typed overlays. Black-and-white entries must be produced by traditional black-and-white processes, not run as color to yield a black-and-white result.

Competition is limited to newspapers printed on standard grades of newsprint. Specialty papers are not eligible.

Tearsheets should be included for each entry. Return the tearsheets and required information form to Inland. If entering both the Black and White and Color divisions, both entries may be submitted in the same envelope.


There will be one winner and one runner-up selected for each circulation category in both the Black and White and Color divisions. Winners and runners-up will receive recognition awards from Inland.

In addition, there will be a "Best-in-Show" winner selected from both the Black and White and Color divisions. One representative from each of the "Best-in-Show" winning newspapers will win a $500 cash prize.


A panel of independent judges will select winners based on how close the reproduced photo matches the proof.

The judges will be selected and administered by Inland.

Judging criteria include registration accuracy and pressmanship (cleanliness of print and general appearance). Photos will be judged against the proofs sent with the digital files.

Decisions of the judges will be final. Proofs are produced with every effort made to ensure their consistent quality for the competition.


Entries with payment should be submitted online by Monday, August 6, 2018. Photo kits will be sent to all participants. The photo or photos must be printed between July 20, 2018 and August 17, 2018. Printed copies must be sent to Inland and received by August 20, 2018.