Gurushots (gurushots.com) is an online gaming platform (The World's Greates Photography Game, according to the site) that connects, inspires and educates photographers around the world. Participants enter photos in challenges which users vote on (and comment on, although the comment section is not always used) and track their ranking progress. Winners earn prizes, but basically the bragging rights of being ranked each challenge - from popular, skilled, premier, elite and all stars, are quite enough. At the same time, the more points users gather in the total challenges that they have participated in, they get ranked as well - from newbie, rookie, challenger, advanced, veteran, expert, champion, master, and top-most level being the guru. Each level has its own perks (for example, votes count more if you are in a higher level) and once you reach the guru level (150,000 points plus other requirements), you can conduct your own challenges! This is where the "gaming" aspect lies - especially for people with addictive personalities - they want to be on top all the time. While the site is free to join, there are certain elements that are monetized like swaps, boosts, and autofills that one can purchase. Just looking at the stats - how many swaps are successful for example (in random participants), you have an idea how they rack in a lot of dough. Each swap, which you can earn in your participation/finishing and ranking, but that is a slow process, can be had for $0.99 a swap (with volume discounts). Swapping low rated photos with a new one most of the time ensures that the swapped in photo earns higher points that the swapped out - their algorithm is supposed to make sure that each photo has the same number of exposure whether it was submitted early or late - so when you swap late, that photo will be exposed the same amount of time. Because this is a game, I am sure, results can be "gamed" and I am sure they change their algorithm a lot. But I digress, there are many other perks that the site offers that I really like: they have what they call "guru picks" which are chosen by the challenger (so it's like a mini curated section in the challenge), they also have offers to join physical art gallery exhibits internationally (Berlin, London, Amsterdam to name a few locations) and, be featured in one of their many articles that sometimes go viral - with titles like "44 Color Schemes Created By Nature" or "42 Photos That Will Have You Dreaming" and such.
I have never won in the challenges although I have been in the top ten, have more than ten guru picks, and have been featured in several articles.
Here are some of the photos that have been on top or have been in articles.