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4th July 2011

Fondness Media Launches Gourmet Heartbeat Appetizer Contests

fondness mediaOnline marketing network Fondness Media has started a brand new initiative to promote awareness of health and gourmet cooking in local communities. The company has planned a series of contests worldwide. The first of these happened in Gatineau on June 20th. At the hub of the Fondness Media network is Gourmet Recipe, a site that draws more than ten million visitors.

“Fondness Media has created Gourmet Heartbeat©, combining a very rich and extensive online presence, a value system deeply rooted in creating quality, and a fun experience for people worldwide,” said Herve Ngalani, COO of Fondness Media. “A growing community of people keeps our heartbeat ticking every day with fun, exciting stories and rich life experiences. An appetizer contest can be started by an individual or company that is interested in involving a local community.‘What we are looking for are individuals and companies with a cause close to their community.”


If you are an individual or an organization interested in hosting a new contest, Fondness Media will be happy to talk to you. Their screening process is very simple and straight forward. As a starting point, please visit the Ask About New Contests for more information.

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4th July 2011

Canadian Geographic Wildlife Photography Of The Year Contest

Government of CanadaThe Royal Canadian Mint is pleased to announce that it is partnering with Canadian Geographic to invite Canadians to participate in the fourth annual Canadian Wildlife Photography of the Year contest. Canada’s best wildlife photograph to be selected among thousands of entries from across the country will be featured on a superbly-crafted collector coin, to be issued by the Mint in 2012.

Until September 2, 2011, Canadians can submit a maximum of ten photographs of Canadian wildlife in any of the five contest categories: Amphibians, Reptiles and Insects; Birds; Mammals; People and Pets; and Junior Photographer (ages 15 and under). In addition to featuring the grand prize winner’s entry on a collector coin, the Mint will also award prizes to the contest’s five category winners, 10 runner-ups and 15 honourable mentions.

“The Royal Canadian Mint is always proud to showcase wildlife through the work of talented Canadians on coins whose designs and craftsmanship captivate collectors, in Canada and around the world,” said Ian E. Bennett, President and CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint. “We are thrilled to collaborate with Canadian Geographic in a unique contest which brings together thousands of photographers from across Canada to celebrate the wealth and variety of our wildlife heritage.”

“Photography is one of the cornerstones of Canadian Geographic and we are thoroughly delighted to partner with the Royal Canadian Mint on the 4th annual Canadian Wildlife Photography of the Year contest,” said André Préfontaine, President and Publisher of Canadian Geographic. “Our partnership with the Royal Canadian Mint enriches the contest and featuring the grand prize winning photograph on a collector coin offers an unparalleled opportunity for Canadian photographers.”

The grand prize winner and five category winners will see their entries published in the December 2011 issue of Canadian Geographic. Additionally, the amazing work of the category winners will be showcased in a wildlife photography exhibit which will make its debut at Ottawa’s Canadian Museum of Nature in 2012.

**Something that should be a foregone conclusion when photographing wildlife. Do not put yourself in harm’s way to get that perfect shot. This past weekend, there were numerous highways reader boards up reminding people to not stop on the highway to view wildlife, and what did we see? People out of their cars, or standing beside their bikes on the side of the highway, taking photos of a black bear cub. Remember, people – where there is a baby bear, there is a big mama bear. You do not want to mess with mama bear. Or BC’s mama deer either, for that matter.**

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1st July 2011

Submissions Open For Independent Games Festival

UBM Tech NetworkThe UBM TechWeb Game Network, organizer of the industry-leading Game Developers Conference® events, has officially opened submissions for the 2012 Independent Games Festival, being held at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) 2012 in San Francisco next March 5 – 9.

The Independent Games Festival (IGF) is the longest-running and highest-profile independent video game festival, summit, and showcase, and is now accepting entries to its 14th annual edition, with deadlines in the Main and Student Showcase categories by October 17 and October 31  respectively, and finalists to be announced in January 2012.

All games selected as finalists will be available in playable form at the IGF Pavilion on the GDC show floor from March 7 – 9, 2012, and will compete for nearly $60,000 in prizes, a significant increase from last year. This includes the high-profile $5,000 Nuovo Award, honoring abstract, short-form, and unconventional video game development.

In addition, awards for Excellence in Visual Art, Audio, and Design, Technical Excellence, Best Mobile Game, the Best Student Game, and the Audience Award each now receive a $3,000 prize, and the signature Seumas McNally Grand Prize for the independent game of the year has been increased by 50% to a record $30,000.

Winners will be announced on stage at the high-profile Independent Games Festival Awards on Wednesday, March 7, 2012, at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. The Independent Games Festival Awards are held immediately before the wider Game Developers Choice Awards.

Both multi-thousand person attendee award shows are part of the 2012 Game Developers Conference, taking place March 5th – March 9th, 2012. GDC 2012 also includes the 2012 Independent Games Summit, which is entering its sixth year and offers two days (March 5 – 7) of inspiration, practical lectures, and rants from the top minds in the independent games world.

The Independent Game Festival continues to sit at a place of global importance as the largest, most prestigious and all-encompassing showcase of independent game talent across the wide spectrum of artistically- and commercially-aimed development. Notable former IGF winners include landmark indie titles such as Minecraft, Limbo, World of Goo, Braid, Castle Crashers, Everyday Shooter, Darwinia, Audiosurf and many more.

“All of us here at the IGF are excited for a new year of the innovation and artistry we consistently see from the independent games that enter the festival,” said Brandon Boyer, chairman of the IGF. “Our transition to a more expert-focused jury system last year was a tremendous success, and we expect it will again lead to another stellar set of finalists and winners that have made this festival the most respected in the industry. Best of luck to all the entrants!”

Submissions to the competition are now open to all independent game developers; important dates for IGF 2012 are as follows:

  • June 29, 2011 – Submissions are Open
  • October 17, 2011 – Submission Deadline, Main Competition
  • October 31, 2011 – Submission Deadline, Student Competition
  • January 5, 2012 – Finalists Announced, Main Competition
  • January 12, 2012 – Finalists Announced, Student Competition
  • March 5 – March 9, 2012 – Game Developers Conference 2012
  • March 5 – March 6, 2012 – Indie Games Summit @ GDC 2012
  • March 7 – March 9, 2012 – IGF Pavilion @ GDC 2012
  • March 7, 2012 – IGF Awards Ceremony (Winners Announced!)
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1st July 2011

Old Dutch Foods Launches Digital Music Promotion

old dutch foodsHip Digital Media, Inc., a California-based company with offices in Vancouver and Toronto, along with Sony Music Entertainment Canada Inc., has successfully launched a large scale digital music promotion for Old Dutch® Potato Chips and Dutch Crunch® Kettle Cooked Potato Chips.

Nearly eight million PIN codes good for one free digital music download each have been slated for the star-studded campaign that was designed to drive sales for the popular brands within grocery and convenience stores across Canada. The chip bags feature custom designed packaging that invite consumers to visit the Old Dutch web site where every customer has the chance to enter online for the grand prize VIP Concert Experience giveaway. Customers also have a chance to win a free digital music download at Old Dutch’s custom branded store.

In order to craft a promotion of this scale LPi Group, Old Dutch’s agency of record, called on Hip Digital to deliver not only the fulfillment for the promotion, but also the technology for the digital music platform. “Hip came back to us with the Sony Music library,” stated Erin Gunther, Account Director at LPi Group. “Since we are primarily targeting males between the ages of thirteen and 25, the opportunity to showcase the Sony Music artists that appeal to this group was a big plus.”

Chris Hardy manages Brand Partnerships for Sony Music Entertainment Canada Inc., who concurred, Sony Music has a vast catalogue of local and international artists that cross all genres and we were able to suggest artists that best fit their target consumer.”

The companies look forward to also providing two VIP Concert Experience grand prizes worth $5K (CAD) each, in which the lucky winners will be able to choose from a selection of concerts performed by major Sony Music artists. The grand prizes include round trip airfare, accommodations and limousine transportation to and from the concerts. Stated Hardy, “Hip Digital is one of our key partners for digital music distribution, and we worked well together in delivering this digital music experience to their client.”

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29th June 2011

Kobo Essay Contest Features Power Lunch With Author Kelly Cutrone

koboKobo has launched a new essay contest in which the winner will enjoy a private power lunch with television personality and New York Times’ bestselling author Kelly Cutrone. Today through July 8, 2011, Cutrone fans can visit Kobo’s Facebook Page and write a short essay answer to the question: “How has normal has gotten you nowhere and how are you ready to make new moves?”

Open to residents of the continental United States and Canada (excluding Quebec), the winning essay will be chosen by Cutrone. The winner will be flown to Toronto to power lunch with the author. Cutrone will Normal Gets You Nowhere by Kelly Cutroneshare her unique brand of no-nonsense wisdom to help the winner move forward in his or her life.

“Kelly was recently in Toronto and expressed her love of Kobo as well as her desire to work with us in a way which would be truly meaningful for her fans. Kelly loves Canada and was keen to partner with Kobo on this content,” said Liz Ridout, vice president of marketing at Kobo.

“Toronto stole my heart. Anytime I can come to Toronto to see my friends and fans is a good day!” said Cutrone.

Cutrone has been a force in the fashion industry for more than 25 years. She quickly moved from industry icon to media maverick, originally appearing on MTV’s hit shows The Hills and The City. She executive produced and appeared on the Bravo series Kell on Earth and is a special contributor on the syndicated Dr. Phil show. Cutrone has penned two books: national and New York Times’ bestseller “If You Have to Cry, Go Outside: And Other Things Your Mother Never Told You” and “Normal Gets You Nowhere,” released in May 2011 by HarperOne, an imprint of HarperCollins.

Deadline for entry is July 8, 2011. No purchase is necessary to compete in this contest. The winning entry will be made available on Kobo’s Facebook Page after being selected.

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23rd June 2011

Vancouver Airport Authority Launches Unique Live Blogger Contest

live at yvrVancouver Airport Authority is on the lookout for an awesome storyteller who’s got what it takes to come live at YVR for 80 days and 80 nights and tell the unique, interesting and little-known stories of Canada’s second largest airport. The only catch: the special correspondent can’t leave YVR and its Sea Island home for the entire duration of the gig, which begins on the heels of YVR’s 80th anniversary on July 22, 2011. YVR Airport Authority

That’s right, the Live@YVR assignment focuses on covering the unique people, places and stories that make the airport so unusual – from the midnight cargo flight full of blueberries to the mid-afternoon cleaning of an aquarium that’s home to a pair of breeding wolf eels.

“We know that nearly 90 per cent of Metro Vancouver residents come to YVR at least once a year, but most of those people only get a very superficial view of what happens here,” said Rebecca Catley, Director of Communications for Vancouver Airport Authority. “We’re looking forward to welcoming a special kind of storyteller who will become immersed in fascinating airport stories and share them with the world. YVR is a small city: with 23,600 people working here — from emergency responders to environmental specialists — the stories are endless and we hope people will tune in to find out more about their airport.”

The contest launches today and is open to residents of B.C. Prospective correspondents will submit a video online that highlights their storytelling savvy. After a shortlist of finalists is chosen, the public will have the opportunity to vote its favourite applicant onto Sea Island, where he or she will begin an 80-day assignment on August 17, 2011. The correspondent will sleep at The Fairmont Vancouver Airport Hotel, live in the YVR community and experience its shops, services and restaurants. He or she will receive a living allowance during the80 days at YVR and an honorarium upon completion.

The Live@YVR correspondent will be equipped with a camera and editing equipment and will act as an all-in-one producer, director, reporter, editor and post-production supervisor. He or she will uncover stories and share the triumphs – and trials – of living at an airport full time on liveatYVR.ca, Facebook and Twitter.

“When we heard about this idea we wanted to be a part of it,” said Craig Reaume, General Manager of The Fairmont Vancouver Airport. “The Fairmont Vancouver Airport is one of the many special features atYVR for locals and visitors alike to experience, and we’re excited to highlight our unique and unexpected stories as part of Live@YVR.”

Here’s how the program works:

  • From June 23- July 18, 2011, video applications from potential candidates will be accepted at liveatYVR.ca, with entries available for public viewing.
  • Once the application process closes, a panel of judges will identify a short list, and the public will vote on the winner in early July.
  • The winner will be announced — and start his or her 80-day adventure — on August 17, 2011.
  • The winner will live at the airport for 80 days and 80 nights to share the stories of YVR with the world on liveatYVR.ca.
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22nd June 2011

Aviva Community Fund Competition Version 3

avivaAviva Canada, one of the country’s leading providers of home, auto, recreational vehicle, group and business insurance, is proud to announce that the Aviva Community Fund competition will return in the fall of 2011. In 2009 and 2010, Canadians overwhelmingly answered the call, proposing over 4,000 ideas and casting more than four million votes in support of causes from every province and territory. Do your local youth centres or seniors’ groups need support? Are you ready to make a difference? Year three of the competition kicks off on September 26, 2011.

The company will once again offer $1 million to encourage Canadians to lead, empower and support community initiatives across the country. Whether it’s a project that will help get at-risk youth off the street and back into school, or other ways to extend a hand to those in need, the Aviva Community Fund enables individuals and groups to not only submit a community initiative for funding, but also become actively involved in making change happen.

Launched in the fall of 2009, the Aviva Community Fund competition has already provided over $1.5 million in funding to numerous charities and community groups including youth programs, animal shelters, public schools, camps and centres for those affected by disabilities or illness.

Canadians are encouraged to submit their ideas on the competition’s website and visitors to the site are asked to vote for their favourite ideas so they can advance through to the competition’s final round, at that stage they will be evaluated by an independent panel of judges. Also visit, and Like, the Aviva Community Fund Facebook page for additional program information.


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22nd June 2011

Deus Ex Human Revolution QR Scavenger Hunt Begins

Eidos MontrealSquare Enix, Inc. and Eidos–Montreal have launched the  Deus Ex®: Human Revolution™ (DXHR) QR Missions App for fans of  Deus Ex: Human Revolution, wherein participants will have the opportunity to win exclusive real world prizes as well as in–game rewards. In order to join the  DXHR QR Missions Scavenger Hunt, fans should visit the App store on their iOS device. The first code is already available in the exclusive content section of the game’s official Facebook page. New codes will be released every week for the next seven weeks.

Fans should visit the App store to download the App (Deus Ex: Human Revolution QR Missions) for their iOS device DXHR QR Missionsand register for the Deus Ex: Human Revolution QR Missions. Participants must be 17–years–old or older, have an iOS device with a camera and be able to register using Facebook Connect. Participants will also have to choose their preferred gaming platform.

Once the App is installed, users can begin looking for QR Codes — both online and in the real world — in a variety of locations including marketing and public relations materials, in–store advertising, the official website and Facebook page, and more. Hints for code locations will appear on the Official Eidos–Montreal Twitter feed as well as the game’s official Facebook page.

When a code is found, participants will use their iOS device equipped with a camera to scan it, thereby capturing that code and earning themselves (and all participants) 10 points.

The  DXHR QR Missions Scavenger Hunt delivers elite rewards for the fastest and most thorough code collectors as well as an amazing prize for all participants through a larger, unified goal. These prizes include:

  • For each code scanned, users receive an item immediately including special game footage, secret codes to unlock in–game doors, “Augment Yourself” codes and other assets and info from the game.
  • The first 1,000 participants to find 10 codes will receive an exclusive theme for their preferred platform (either the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft or the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system). These themes will be available for sale at a later date.
  • If the collective score for all participants reaches 1,000,000 points before August 23 (the North American release date), all registered participants in the  DXHR QR Missions Scavenger Hunt will receive an exclusive item for their Xbox LIVE Avatar or for PlayStation®Home. This item will be a toy version of the in–game “B–EE Chopper” that will appear as an Avatar prop item for their Xbox LIVE Avatar and will be available as a companion that follows the user within PlayStation®Home.
  • The first 10 participants to collect ALL 21 QR codes will receive the following prize package:
    1. One (1) copy of  Deus Ex: Human Revolution Augmented Edition (system based upon original console selection)
    2. One (1) pair of Custom  Deus Ex: Human Revolution headphones
    3. One (1) Square Enix Products Play Arts – Kai – Adam Jensen Action Figure
    4. One (1)  Deus Ex: Human Revolution Limited Edition Compression Sleeve

Users can find the first code in the  DXHR QR Missions Scavenger Hunt on the game’s official Facebook Page on the “Exclusive Content” tab. Participants must “Like” the page in order to see the code. Additional codes will be unleashed immediately.

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21st June 2011

New Release of OpenText Social Workplace Powers Purpose-Driven Teams

Open TextOpenText™ has announced the availability of the next major release of OpenText Social Workplace, a fully integrated social collaboration environment designed to help purpose-driven teams assemble, stay connected, and achieve breakthrough results.

The announcement was made at the Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston. During a keynote presentation, Tyler Knowlton, of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade for Canada (DFAIT), showcased how Social Workplace is helping the G-20 improve collaboration among delegates from member countries around the world. Also at the conference, OpenText announced the Prize for Purpose-Driven Business, a contest to recognize organizations that are effectively dedicated to a purpose.

The Prize for Purpose-Driven Business is an initiative to showcase those teams and individuals who embody what it means to be a purpose driven organization and have in-turn used social collaboration tools to help achieve their missions. The Prize for Purpose-Driven Business is open to all organizations, whether they are current OpenText customers or not.

OpenText Social Workplace is a new kind of people-centric enterprise application that works through either SaaS or on-premise deployment. It helps cross-functional teams form quickly and collaborate effectively with minimal training or technical support. The latest release has a number of new features including optional integration with OpenText ECM Suite 2010 for comprehensive records management and governance, chat, and important additions to the wiki editor, among other enhancements.

“In a purpose-driven organization, teams are not limited by geography, function, hierarchies or management structure.  They form by bringing the right people together for the right reason at the right time. These teams need new ways of collaborating and getting work done,” said James Latham, OpenText’s Chief Marketing Officer. “With this new release, OpenText Social Workplace is even more adept at supporting a fluid model of collaboration that allows teams to organize quickly and tap each person’s expertise to fulfill the team’s purpose.” Latham discusses how Social Workplace supports purpose-driven organizations in a new OpenText News Podcast posted today.

The Social Workplace experience is designed from the ground up to work the way people want to work, starting with a personal dashboard to drive personal productivity and provide easy access to everyone’s profile, status and blog. From there, community spaces unite distributed teams with the appropriate level of access. New microblogging capabilities provide an ambient level of awareness of activity throughout an organization. It now also incorporates chat to facilitate quick, real-time touches among one or more team members.

Compared to social media offerings from start-ups or smaller vendors, Social Workplace is backed by OpenText’s deep experience in delivering enterprise-class content management solutions. One way organizations can tap into that experience is to connect Social Workplace communities to OpenText ECM Suite 2010. This new option makes it possible for content created during a project to be automatically archived in compliance with an organization’s regulations and policies with full records management control to an enterprise content repository with minimal intervention from technical staff.

Inside the community, Social Workplace offers a number of tools for creating content using wikis, information feeds and document management, images and video repositories. With the latest release, wikis have been enhanced with support for tables and version comparison capabilities.  Document handling is more robust with advanced commenting, versioning and comparison functionality.

Modern workforces require flexible access to content. Social Workplace can be accessed from any Web browser and mobile devices. Pre-built apps for iPhone and BlackBerry devices are available with support for the new release and allow people to log-in from any location, check tasks, review project details, update status and search for information.

Beginning in June 2011, teams will be invited to submit their most compelling stories about how having a clear sense of purpose impacted their team’s success. Entries will be accepted through September 30th, 2011. The entries will then be screened and finalists judged by a panel that includes the speakers from the OpenText Purpose-Driven Speaker Series including Simon Sinek, Andrew McAfee and John Seely Brown.

The new release of OpenText Social Workplace, version 2.0, is available now either for download or as a cloud-based solution.  The Fast Start program offers a low risk way to get started and includes a 60-day full-version Social Workplace license for up to 950 users. OpenText also offers the public Social Workplace Sandbox community that allows people to experience the product at any time.

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21st June 2011

Desire2Learn Announces International Innovation Award

Desire2LearnSubmissions are now open for the brand new Desire2Learn Innovation Award in Teaching and Learning which was announced last week by Desire2Learn Incorporated and The Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education at the STLHE 2011 Conference, held at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon last week.

This Award, to be initially awarded in June 2012, has been established to celebrate and recognize innovative approaches that promote learning in new ways at post-secondary institutions. Up to five awards will be presented annually. Recipients will be the basis of a community of knowledge, expertise and innovation that can be drawn upon globally to enhance learning for all.stlhe

“With the launch of the Desire2Learn Innovation Award in Teaching and Learning, STLHE is proud to offer the most comprehensive national awards program in the world,” explains Arshad Ahmad, Ph.D., President, STLHE and 3M National Teaching Fellow. “Recognizing innovation not only complements existing STLHE awards in teaching excellence, educational leadership, collaborative learning, and lifetime achievements, but also fits strategically in the Society’s mission to promote learning through change.”

Instructors currently teaching at a post-secondary institution are eligible to apply. A demonstrable record of innovation(s) in areas including pedagogical approaches, teaching methods, course design, curriculum development, assessment methods, various tools and technologies that enhance learning and have had a significant impact on post-secondary education is required.

Ahmad adds, “The Desire2Learn Award also promises to build community as cohorts, who will be recognized each year, will have the opportunity to spend time together, learn from each other and collaborate in future undertakings. Desire2Learn’s legacy of innovation is matched by its enthusiasm to unlock the potential of learners globally. This is one of the many reasons why there is a natural fit between our organizations. Above all, we share a mutual interest in improving the quality of the student experience before anything else. We look forward to a long-term partnership with a common purpose to make a qualitative difference in the lives of our students.”

Patrick Lyons, Director, Instructional Technologies Educational Development Centre / Carleton University OnLine, Carleton University has been appointed as the inaugural coordinator. Lyons is well known in the Canadian post-secondary community as an advocate for effective teaching and use of technology.

“STLHE is the most important organization in Canada supporting the development, recognition and encouragement of excellent teaching and learning practices,” notes Lyons. “The Desire2Learn Innovation Award in Teaching and Learning is a powerful and concrete opportunity to encourage and promote innovative learning initiatives in post- secondary institutions across North America and from around the world.”

“We are pleased to be partnering with The Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher in Education in recognition of teaching that is truly innovative,” states John Baker, President & CEO, Desire2Learn. “Through this award, instructors who are providing a notable and sustained impact on student learning and development will be acknowledged for their inventive approaches to education. These individuals emulate our mission of transforming teaching and learning.”

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