I don't enter contests like these, but it's still disappointing. Add Nikon to the list of companies I used to admire...
It's like holding a writing contest, and insisting that all submissions be done on a word processor. No manual typewriters allowed, even though you could certainly use an OCR to scan the typed pages into a digitally-readable file format, or even just scan the pages to a PDF file.
But in terms of EXIF, problem solved easily, just scan your slide or neg with a DSLR and macro lens...;-)
I suspect the contest entry form that is submitted with your photos will ask you to certify that you have complied with the contest rules. To me, it would be a matter of personal integrity not to lie by trying to pass off images that weren't taken with digital cameras.
It's Nikon's contest so Nikon's rules apply. If you don't like the rules write Nikon and tell them.
I've got to say that if I won and all the equipment was given to me, I'd probably end up giving it away to others who want to learn.
A while after my son was born and I had two kids to run around after instead of one, I embraced digital. During the earliest part of their lives, it was just too hard to keep developing film and I couldn't afford to send all the film I was running out to a lab. I got a Digital Rebel and went about relearning how to use photo editing software.
I realized something about six months in, though: I hate it. I actually HATE digital photography. The pictures I have of my kids are awesome and I don't really regret my choice, but I found negatives of my daughter recently from when she was a baby and there's just something completely DIFFERENT about them. I realized about two weeks ago that what I really wanted wasn't a 5DII/III, which is the way I was heading within a year and a half or so, but a damn Chamonix. I don't just like the images better with film, but I like the *process* better. I do enough on the computer already. Photography doesn't *always* have to be one of those things.
Nikon is really screwing up with this. People like me, who *do* use both film and digital, will likely not be supporting their brand in principle. They're going to miss out on *amazing* images. While it isn't the better business decision in the short term, I think that Nikon should look past the desire to sell as many digital devices as possible and actually come out as supporters of *all* forms of photography. Yeah, it's a pipe dream in these times, but have they looked at what's coming from film and alternative process users lately? It's obviously making a resurgence in a big way.
While it doesn't surprise me, it does piss me off and, to be honest, it's quite disappointing.
I wish you win and please give the digital equipment to me when you win. I own a lot of film equipment including darkroom stuff but no digital so I definitely want to have some to explore the new aspects.