I want to submit my photos to the contest but just cannot because of the 5 reps limit on answering any question. Shouldn't it be made available to everyone? Why Meta alone?

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The contest is available to everyone. The only bar is a very low amount of site participation. If we had the ability to do so (without disrupting the rest of meta!) I'd actually like to raise the threshold to 200 or more, to make it more of a perk for active site participants. There are plenty of random photo contests on the internet.

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    I tend to agree with the bar you suggest, but I've avoided my opinion in that process despite having the ability to effectively do it since I do the banner updates. I wonder, however, if the community has an opinion on this as I really do think that the honor of our banner should go to someone that expends some modicum of effort on our site. – John Cavan Apr 9 '15 at 3:59

Meta is where site management questions are asked and answered. The photo contest is a good example of such a contest, it's not appropriate for the main site since it's not a photography question under our general rules. A "bar" of 5 reputation is remarkably low and, if nothing else, requires at least some form of minimal participation in our site to join in. I don't think that it's too much to ask, really, since the image is supposed to come from a site participant and that's not a lot of participation to begin with.

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