Dear NatGeo, don't you think you have enough quality photographs in your archive that you don't need to swindle average, unsuspecting photo-contest entrants out of their mediocre photos? Stop it already.
From the above linked site:
By entering the Contest, all entrants grant to Authorized Parties (National Geographic Society and its licensees) a royalty-free, worldwide, irrevocable perpetual, nonexclusive license to reproduce, distribute, display, and create derivative works of the entries (along with a name credit) in whole or in part, without further review or participation from the entrant, in any medium now existing or subsequently developed, in editorial, commercial, promotional and trade uses in connection with NGS Products.
Bottom line, **every photo submitted** to them (not just the winning photo, which would be bad enough) becomes theirs to do with what they want. Forever. And ever. Amen. If you enter this contest after knowing this, you're an idiot. If you've entered without reading the fine print, you're naive.
Props to Twitter user Photo_Guide for pointing this one out.