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From the discussions in this question, I think we have the beginnings of a plan for our Anniversary Competition, but as it is a community competition we'd like you to review and provide comments (constructive or amusing only please :-)

The top voted answer was to assign topics, and along with @Aarthi's comment and @Gilles' answer my proposal is as follows:

  • Beginning the 9th of July, for the following 4 weeks, we will assign a topic of the week.
  • Best question and Best answer (based on votes) in this topic will receive a prize
  • Highest rep gain for a new user and highest rep gain overall will receive a prize
  • To improve the quality of some of our questions and answers, a prize will also be awarded for the most accepted edits each week
  • Throughout those 4 weeks we will also monitor activity on our unanswered questions over one month old and a prize will be awarded for the person with the highest votes tally from answers on those questions
  • And finally, for those who wish to contribute, we can set up contributor accounts on our blog system and encourage wider participation in our Question of the Week blogs or our more detailed blog posts - if this works with SEI, I'd quite like to measure stats on views of the blog over the next year and perhaps assign a prize for the most popular QoTW blog post for our second anniversary.

So tell us what you think on this for a competition, but do it quickly so we can get back to SEI asap!

And for the prizes - keep helping out over on the prize question so we can provide SEI with a likely list of prizes you lot will desire, but remember, prizes specific to only one branch of security may be less than useful to the rest, so the more generally useful or interesting a prize is, the more likely it will be do-able.

Also, looking at cost will be a significant factor - I went through pricing up some of the options already raised, and I have a feeling many of them are well out of SEI's price bracket for this, as this current proposal will need 15 prizes (plus one in 12 month's time.)

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I don't think it is a good idea to encourage people with prices to do posts on a fixed subject. gaming.stackexchange.com did that and the site became practically unusable during the competition.

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  • All I did through one of their competitions was ignore tags I wasn't interested and all was well - still loads of normal questions:-) Did you see the topics @Gilles posted - some good ones in there for deliberately widening our catchment. – Rory Alsop Jun 29 '12 at 22:39
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    I don't this this will be as big a problem on security SE as we have a far smaller userbase after all. – user10211 Jun 30 '12 at 2:12
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    Science Fiction & Fantasy did that and had no problem. It's a matter of audience. When we did a contest that only regulars were aware of, we didn't have much of a traffic bump, just more attention on the week's subject. I think it was the same thing with Arqade: they had an overwhelming rush of traffic only when they went the extra mile with a dedicated subsite and a lot of publicity outside SE. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Jun 30 '12 at 12:43
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An update, based on one of the comments the Arqade got is to possibly add an extra consolation prize:

All entrants with questions +5 or above get an entry - 5 randomly-drawn entrants get a prize

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