Standing Up For Canadian Voices

Please read our Rules and Regulations below before you submit your essay.


Original, unpublished English works of non-fiction on the link between media and democracy. Essays can be up to 2,000 words (not including footnotes or citations).

Essays should be dynamic, engaging, and provocative and will be judged on both subject matter and strength of written expression. Avoid technical and academic writing.


Any Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada may enter except members of the FRIENDS’ Board of Directors, its employees, retained consultants or business associates, and members of the jury, as well as their immediate family members. Previous winners are ineligible.

Post-secondary students or recent graduates from a journalism, broadcasting, media studies or communications program may also submit for the Student Journalism Prize. A student is defined as someone who is enrolled full-time in a journalism, broadcasting, media studies or communications program at a recognized Canadian post-secondary institution, at the time of entry or at any time during the 2023 or 2024 calendar year. Students who graduated from one of these programs in 2023 are also eligible.


Essays must be submitted in a Word Document or other OpenDocument format through the form on the submission page. PDFs will not be accepted.

There is no entrance fee.

Include a cover page with the title of the essay, name of author, and contact information of the author. Do not include your name or any information identifying the author on any other essay pages besides the cover page. Eligible essays are judged on an anonymous basis.

Submissions should have a title that reflects the unique topic of the essay. Do not use “Media and Democracy” as your title.

Entrants assume sole responsibility for the accuracy and veracity of their essay. Direct quotations, borrowed ideas, and factual assertions that are not common knowledge shall be cited to the information source.

An entrant may submit one essay only.

All entries for the Student Journalism Prize are automatically considered for the main Dalton Camp Award but the same essay cannot win more than one prize.

An entry written by more than one person is not eligible.

Pseudonyms are not permitted.

No photographs or other visual images may be submitted.

All ideas in an entry shall be the original written expression of the entrant, save only for attributed quotations, and shall not infringe any third party’s intellectual property rights, violate privacy or publicity rights, or contain any libelous, defamatory, obscene or otherwise unlawful or objectionable content. An essay shall not have previously been published or submitted elsewhere for publication prior to entry.


To be eligible, essays must be received before 8pm Eastern Time on January 8, 2024. Entries will be acknowledged with an automated reply confirming receipt.

FRIENDS will not enter into communication with entrants, other than to acknowledge receipt of an entry at the time of submission.


The jury will award one prize of $10,000 for the best overall essay from among all eligible entries received, including from any essays authored by a someone who identifies as eligible for the Student Journalism Prize.

The jury will award one additional Student Journalism Prize of $2,500

FRIENDS may publish the winning essay(s), as well as the name and the biographical sketch submitted by the winning entrant(s), in any medium, including electronically over the internet, at a time of its choosing after announcing the award(s). Each winner is required to grant a licence or assignment to this effect. Winners may also be requested to participate, to the best of their ability, in the announcement process including recording an acceptance video and granting media interviews.

Decisions of the jury are final.