2009-12-18 / Community

NYC Hosting Condom Wrapper Design Contest

The Health Department is inviting creative New Yorkers to give the NYC Condom a new look. The city-branded condom will retain its classic image, but the winning design will grace a special limited-edition package that debuts next fall. Any New Yorker at least 17 years old can submit an entry between now and January 22. During February, the Heath Department will unveil a small group of finalists - designs that capture the city's distinctive culture while promoting safer sex. New Yorkers will then choose a final winner through an online popular vote. Besides appearing on several hundred thousand condom wrappers, the winning design may be featured in future condom promotions.

"The NYC Condom has helped New Yorkers talk about and practice safer sex," said Dr. Thomas Farley, New York City Health Commissioner. "We now give away more than 40 million condoms a year - up from 3 million in 2002. We want to keep people excited about the brand, because we know that condoms protect health. Used correctly and consistently, they prevent HIV, sexually transmitted infections and unintended pregnancy. This is every New Yorker's chance to help convey that message."

New York City residents can submit design entries online (at nyc.gov/condoms) or in print (see details below). The artwork must be original, and can't include images that are copyrighted, trademarked or sexually explicit. A panel of judges, made up of artists, advertising professionals, health experts and social marketing experts, will select a small number of finalists from the qualifying entries. The finalists will then appear on the Health Department's website and the NYC Condom's Facebook page, allowing all New Yorkers to select a final winner.

The NYC Condom is a lubricated Lifestyles male condom - the same one sold in stores - but has its own distinctive wrapper and is free. Any NYC-based organization, public or private, can order them at nyc.gov/condoms. As a result, individual New Yorkers can now find them in bars, clubs, restaurants, gyms and coffee houses, as well as clinics and community centers. The original 2007 design, based on a New York City subway motif, got a 2008 makeover at the hand of designer Yves Behar, who also created a sleek dispenser. This year, on Valentine's Day and National Condom Day, the NYC Condom got its own Facebook page - facebook.com/NYCCondom - where users can discuss sexual health and send e-condoms to their friends. New Yorkers can also receive condom-related tweets via twitter. com/nyccondom.

Summary of Select Contest Rules and Regulations You must be a resident of New York City and 17-years-of-age or older to be eligible to participate in the contest.

Applicants under 18 must obtain written consent from a parent or guardian, and submit it along with their entry. Consent forms can be found online along with the entry at nyc.gov/condoms.

Only one design entry per eligible person will be accepted. Duplicate entries and entries by groups will be discarded.

Employees of the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Ansell, members of the NYC Condom Wrapper Contest judging panel or any of their respective parent companies, subsidiaries and affiliates, and their families, are not eligible to participate.

Entries should be uploaded on the Health Department's website or mailed to New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene Bureau of HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control ATTN: Director of Condoms and Materials Distribution 40 Worth Street, CN-A/2, Room 1602 New York, NY 10013

Artwork submitted via postal mail must be in an 8 ½ by 11 inch format. Artwork uploaded on the Health Department's website should be a minimum resolution of 300 dpi and 11 ½ by 11 ½ inches in size for possible display purposes.

All artwork must be original. Copyrighted or trademarked images such as those of the Empire State Building or Statue of Liberty cannot be included unless legal permission to use the image, satisfactory to the Health Department, is submitted.

Entries that are incomplete, illegible, damaged, or include any false, deceptive and/or obscene images or words will be rendered ineligible.

When designing, please keep the final format in mind. The winning artwork will be displayed on a condom wrapper that is 2.3 inches square. If you submit a large design and it is chosen as the winner, only a portion, or a reduction, of a larger design will appear on the condom wrapper.

Entries do not need to include the NYC Condom logo. The NYC Condom logo will be added to winning artwork at the discretion of the Health Department.

All entries must be received no earlier than 12:01 a.m. on December 15, 2009 and no later than 11:59 p.m. on January 22, 2010.

The New York City's condom initiative dates back to 1971, when the Health Department started distributing male condoms through its clinics. The program expanded during the 1980s when it added communitybased service organizations to its distribution channels. Free female condoms were incorporated into the program in 1998. The condom initiative increased more than seven-fold in June 2005 when the Department launched an Internet-based bulk ordering system. The city-labeled NYC Condom, first of its kind in the nation, was introduced on Valentine's Day 2007. The Health Department, together with more than 2,000 community partners, now distributes more than 41 million condoms a year - an average of 3.5 million every month - to venues ranging from hospitals to bars and beauty salons.

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