And if your idea wins? You’ll get a hearty thank you and at most $1,000 — and then will hand over all rights to your idea to the government.
The winners grant “GSA a perpetual, non-exclusive, royalty-free license to use any and all intellectual property to the winning entry for any governmental purpose …,” according to the rules of the game. Oh, and you also assume all liability if anything goes terribly wrong (“death, bodily injury, property damage …”) and waive any claims against the federal government (for “injury, death, damage, or loss of property, revenue, or profits …”).
But at least you get bragging rights that the government is using your idea to make its data better?
Actually … participants cannot promote the GSA’s use of their work, so as to not imply that the GSA is endorsing their services.
Though you can probably tell your mom.