There are two kinds of contests you can join online. Most of them are the commercial type in which your entry will be judged according to votes garnered or popularity. The other one is the formal or academic type where your entry could win by the approval of judges.
If you join a commercial type, be prepared for surprises — especially if you’re a foreign contestant. You will probably be amazed and even dismayed by the results. It happened to me the first time I joined. The winning entry, which wasn’t mine, doesn’t even make sense to me! And that’s the problem with the commercial type. Entries will not be judged according to brilliancy. The winning entry only needs votes, not right judgment. And of course you will get more votes if you’re a resident of the country where the contest is being held. Your friends and relatives are there aren’t they?
On the academic type, you will need to be more serious and meticulous. Most editors of such contests will not give you a chance to edit your work. If your entry does not pass on the first submission even for a slight mistake, then you’re out.
Here is an example and a still live entry I’m promoting and submitted for a commercial contest:
Hilariously Dumb Tech Crimes
What makes people commit such stupid crimes that makes us laugh? These crimes happen so much that The National Museum of Crime and Punishment dedicated an entire display at the museum for “America’s Dumbest Criminals.” Huffington Post calls it ‘Dumbocracy’. These are just some cases I personally archived: