How to Pass Screening

Here are the most common reasons for a submission to fail screening

  • Missing font information. You MUST declare all fonts within your design See the Font Policy here. You must include the font name and the URL where to purchase/download the font.
  • Using elements you did not create yourself. If you have pasted any design elements from another source, your submission will fail. You MUST follow the TopCoder Terms and Assignment Document.
  • Not supplying the appropriate source files. For example, if you have created several icons for your storyboard design, you should include the source files of those icons (Illustrator files or ico files, for example) so the screener can see that those are your creations and not icons pasted from an outside source. Similarly, if a contest requires vector format, all of your source files must be created as vector files.
  • Missing stock art information or incorrect use of stock art. You MUST follow the specific rules regarding stock art that are posted on each contest that allows it. For contests that do not allow stock art, you must never use it.

It is very important to read the contest details carefully and format your submission correctly. If you ever have questions about what is acceptable in the contest you are competing in, you should ask the copilot in the contest forum. It is your responsibility to submit correctly.


Here are the most common questions about screening. If you still have questions, please ask in the General Forums and/or send us an email at

Why is my submission screened?

The screening process is in place to ensure that all submissions meet the file type requirements and to identify submissions with copyright infringement problems or submitters who are cheating.

Do screeners judge my submission?

No. Screeners do not judge the quality of the submission. Only contest holders judge your submission.

Can I fix my submission if it fails screening?

Unfortunately, no. Contest holders are able to choose their winners directly after the deadline, so we cannot accept changes to submissions after the contest (or round) ends. Most importantly, it would not be fair to the members who have submitted correctly.

When will final screening be complete?

The majority of contests go through a final screening within 4 hours after the submission phase deadline.


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