What Are The Daytime Emmy® Awards?

The Daytime Emmy® Awards recognize outstanding achievement in Daytime entertainment programming broadcast or made available between the hours of 2:00AM and 6:00PM, by conferring annual awards of merit in various categories. The presentation of these awards is intended to be an incentive for the continued pursuit of excellence.


What Programs Can Enter?

  • The Daytime Emmy® Awards are open to both telecast and online/digital programming. Entries must have been transmitted to the public by a television network, a cable company, satellite, the Internet, or other digital delivery medium. Digital is defined as multimedia projects that combine various forms of traditional media with social media and interactivity, as well as linear programming delivered online (over the Internet, VOD, and various mobile distribution platforms, such as TV apps and other connected devices that stream content, etc.). Eligibility is limited to digital and telecast programming that was originally made available during the 2020 Calendar year.
  • Programs
    • Broadcast: Series and Specials (depending on the category), and their related craft achievements, must have originally aired or been made generally available for viewing, by at least 50% of the US Television households between the dates of January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020 and between the hours of 2:00am and 6:00pm. For programs not previously submitted in the Daytime Awards, you may be asked to submit coverage data demonstrating the 50% availability in the US. A coverage document can be uploaded directly to the ©YANGAROO entry form. A regional program that later receives national distribution may compete in the Daytime contest, but not in the same eligibility year.
    • Digital: Daytime content made available via an online platform fitting any of the various category and genre descriptions contained in the Daytime Emmy® Awards contest are eligible, but are subject to review and final Emmy® Awards contest placement approval.
    • Regional: Online programs intended for a regional audience only should submit to one of the regional Emmy® Award competitions - emmyonline.com/chapters-map.
  • Game Shows which air or are made available for viewing nationally between 2:00am and 8:00pm compete in the Daytime Emmy® Awards contest. Game Shows initially broadcast in the standard definition of Primetime (8:00pm - 11:00pm eastern / 7:00pm - 10:00pm central), must enter the Primetime Emmy® Awards contest. Game shows initially transmitted at 8PM ET on a single feed network, (e.g., via the internet or some cable platforms that reach less than half of the country at 8PM ET and more than half the country prior to 8PM ET - 7PM CT + 6PM MT + 5PM PT), qualify as national programs in the Daytime rather than the Primetime competition. NOTE: Outstanding Game Show is a Series-only category and at least 15 episodes must have aired in the 2020 Calendar year in order to be eligible.
  • Entertainment News Programs which air nationally between 2:00am and 8:00pm may compete in the Daytime Emmy® Awards contest. They may also choose to enter the Primetime Emmy® Awards contest in the category of Outstanding Informational Series or Special (competing with a variety of different kinds of shows), however they may only chose one contest and the choice is “locked-in” for future years.
  • Limited Theatrical Release – Daytime programs that have had a limited theatrical release before being telecast or made available online are eligible to enter the Daytime Emmy® Awards provided they first aired nationally during the eligibility year. Any program that has had a limited theatrical release, defined as showing on 600 or fewer screens in the US over the period of one year from its release date, is eligible for submission. Entries will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  • A Broadcast series considered eligible for Daytime (destined for, promoted as and predominantly airing in the Daytime hours – from 2:00am to 6:00pm) may submit any episode in to the Daytime Emmy® Awards contest whether that episode premiered in Primetime or Daytime hours. An episode from the series premiering in Primetime hours may not enter the Primetime Emmy® Awards unless the episode is a stand-alone primetime special.
  • All shows must contain at least 2/3 original material for the 2020 eligibility period, unless the previously produced material has been given substantial, unique and creative treatment that results in an original program.
  • The animation content of either a fully animated or a combined animation and live-action program must be at least 65% new animation to qualify in an animated program category.
  • Categories are reviewed and monitored each year by the National Awards Committee. The Committee may consider eliminating a category or folding submissions into another appropriate category if it receives less than four entries. Conversely if a category containing varied genres receives a high number of entries the Committee will consider creating separate categories.

What Programs Cannot Enter?

  • Motion Picture Premiered Programs. Motion pictures originally presented in general release to the public in theaters are not eligible.
  • Previously Aired Programs. A program, series or related craft, which aired and met eligibility requirement during a previous awards year or another Emmy® competition is not eligible for participation, even though it may have been modified with new footage, sound track, musical score, etc.
  • Telethons. Telethons aired for the purpose of raising money for political parties or charities are not eligible.
  • Clip Show or "Best of..." Programs. These programs are not eligible.
  • Acquired Foreign Productions. Acquired foreign productions are not eligible.

U.S.-International Productions

U.S.-International productions that feature financial and creative involvement between U.S. and international partners may be eligible for submission to the Daytime Emmy® Awards.

Submissions must have had their first run in the continental United States. Any production that has aired first in any other country is not eligible. Should extenuating circumstances arise in which a U.S.-International production airs simultaneously or first outside of the U.S., just ahead of its U.S. broadcast, the Daytime Administration will review the eligibility of the submission on a case-by-case basis.

Foreign Language Entries

Entries with content containing a language other than English or Spanish, must include either an English language voiceover or English subtitles. When it is necessary to submit a Spanish language program in an English language category (eg. Children’s and Animation), the submission must contain voiceover or subtitles.

Spanish Language Categories

Entries for the Spanish Language categories can be submitted without subtitles or voiceover and will be judged by a panel of Spanish-language media professionals who are bilingual or Spanish proficient. Jury panels are comprised of members who have a credited body of work at the national level.

Programming created originally in the US or work created internationally for US Hispanic audiences which are first run in the continental United States, must be submitted by US- based media companies. Any production that has aired first in any other country is not eligible. In addition, eligible entries must have aired on US-based networks with a national distribution.

Submissions must have had their first run in the continental United States. Any production that has aired first in any other country is not eligible. Should extenuating circumstances arise in which a U.S.-International production airs simultaneously or first outside of the U.S., just ahead of its U.S. broadcast, NATAS will review the eligibility of the submission.

Submissions will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Specials and Series

A Special is defined as a single original program, which is not part of a series and is broadcast in one or two parts. A Series is defined as a program comprising 3 or more parts or episodes. Special Note: For the Outstanding Drama Series category, a minimum number of 35 original episodes must have aired during the calendar year. For Outstanding Game Show a minimum number of 15 original episodes must have aired during the calendar year.

Some categories accept a Series only. Refer to the By-Category Submission section of this document to determine which categories allow Series and/or Specials. A “special” episode of a Daytime series may be entered separately as a stand-alone special, but only if it was not part of the regular series, or it involved significant and substantive format changes such as a different program running time or different producers, writers and cast, or the content was designed with a beginning, middle and end rather than open-ended serial-style.

An Episode or Episodes Specials and Series

Since the Daytime Emmy® Awards includes a wide variation of genres and program styles, an Episode generally refers to a coherent narrative unit within a larger work, or Series, that occurs over a period of time. Depending on the genre, the episode –whether fictional or non-fictional - may be serialized and ongoing, or predetermined to be presented as a limited run. Daytime typically contains Series programming with large numbers of episodes (Daytime Dramas, Talk Shows and Game Shows) and Series programming with smaller, more limited numbers of episodes (Culinary, Lifestyle, Children’s and Animation). Episodes from these Series are generally bracketed by opening and closing titles and credits, and/or are marked as individual units for streaming or download if released digitally. When a conflict exists between the packaging of a program by its producer and that by its distributor, the final distributed work as delivered to the viewer takes precedence. If a submission contains requirements relating to the number of episodes in an entry, the entrant will be responsible for identifying the start and conclusion of each episode, especially if the program does not contain any of the aforementioned traditional markers.

Who Can Enter?

Anyone can enter! NATAS/Television Academy membership is not required. Producers, designated Awards Directors, Show Contacts or individual entrant Team Members may submit entries on behalf of their program, performer, host or craft.

  • If entering multiple categories, we strongly recommend that shows designate a main contact or “entrant/show shepherd” to handle submissions and general communication with the Daytime Administration during the contest period.
  • If you are entering a Series into a team award Program or Craft category, in most cases the submission will be represented by one episode. The entrant must include all eligible team members on the entry form, even if they did not work on the submitted episode. Please refer to the By-Category Submission Guide document for by-category eligibility determination.
  • NEW/IMPORTANT: If you are entering on behalf of an individual or entity (program, network, performer or craft), you must fully confirm that the parties contained in the submission have complete knowledge of all eligibility rules, and have viewed and given consent to the content submitted on their behalf. There is now an entry system field that must be checked before the submitter can proceed and complete the submission.

Can I enter in more than one category?

  1. A program may be submitted in one Program category only; however that program may be entered in as many related Performer and Craft categories as are appropriate.
  2. In most program and craft categories, only one entry per program is allowed, with the exception of Performers, Song, Promos, Musical Performance and Individual Achievement in Animation categories (see detail specific to this category).
  3. Multiple performers from a particular program should enter individually, however Hosts or Co-Hosts must be entered collectively as a single entry. In the case of single character being played by more than one person, all performers would be included on a single entry. Please refer to the By-Category Submission section of this document for more detail.
  4. Individuals who work in different craft disciplines on a program may enter in each of the appropriate categories associated with that discipline.
  5. Individuals who work on different programs may enter their work for each program as separate entries in the same category.

When a program has the choice of category placement, the producer has the discretion to enter the program and its individual achievements in the most appropriate category where it is eligible. Placement in that particular category locks in the subsequent years’ placements and cannot change from year to year without review and approval of the National Awards Committee. The placement of a program automatically directs the placement of all related performer and craft achievements. Please refer to the By-Category Submission section of this document for assistance in choosing additional and appropriate related categories.

What needs to be included on an entry form?

Submission Guidelines

Please refer to the By-Category Submission section in this document for individualized category requirements, and deadlines. The index links to all categories, and within this document, internal links help navigate back to the index. For some categories there are links to related categories and contests for easier reference and assistance in selecting correct or appropriate associated Performer and Craft categories. Additionally, once a Program category has been selected in the ©YANGAROO system, and the submission processed, a list of available categories is displayed on the final Summary page.

Entry Information

The entrant must provide complete and accurate information when completing the entry form. Refer to the By-Category Submission section in this document for complete category requirement. Please be sure to enter team members in the order you wish them to be displayed. This information is presented in official nomination and recipient documentation including press releases, invitations, print programs, and archive.

NOTE: If you are submitting on behalf of a program or achievement, when recording entrant team member in the entry form, the system defaults to your contact information, however you may replace with individualized team member contact information by directly typing over if desired. By providing individualized information, nominees and winners can receive notification and information directly regarding reception, invitations, awards ceremony and certificates. If you are supplying your contact information, you will be responsible for distributing this information to the entrant team members.

WYSIWYT - What You See Is What You Typed!

Entry information appears exactly as entered into the ©YANGAROO system - odd capitalizations, misspellings, missing credits, everything in lower case or CAPs etc. The Daytime Administration is NOT liable for errors in listings that are the result of incorrect information being submitted on the entry form. There is window of opportunity to make corrections following the Nomination Announcements. Keep in mind that information supplied by the submitter is displayed in official nomination and recipient documentation, including press releases, invitations, print program and EMMY® statue engravings. Once entries are submitted and closed for editing, corrections should be emailed to daytime@emmyonline.tv. Corrections conveyed by any other method including social media will not be accepted.

Team Awards

Important Note: The Primetime Emmy® Awards and News and Documentary Emmy® Awards often honor individual work for a specific episode or story. For the Daytime Emmy® Awards, many craft categories related to a Series are team awards. This means that a series will be represented in most cases by one episode or a clip reel, however, the entrant must include all eligible team members who worked on the series in the entry form, even if they did not work on the submitted episode or no longer work on the program. Please refer to the By-Category Submission Guide section of this document for specific eligibility detail.

Entering Related Performer, Host or Craft Categories for a Series

When submitting categories in addition to a Series Program category the entrant may choose the same or a different episode from the program entry - one that best highlights the work done by the entrant, performer, host or craft team.

Additional Entry Information

Some categories require additional supporting documentation and reference materials for judges. This can be typed in to the Informational/Essay section of the entry form and in some cases uploaded directly to the system. The entry form will prompt for these documents and you may refer to the By-Category Submission section of this document for complete detail. In order for the Daytime Administration to fully archive complete submission information for future reference and request, it is recommended that Series episode information be recorded in the Informational section also.

Program Categories - Paper Credit Crawl: For new programs a complete long paper credit crawl may be required for Program categories in order to verify eligible entrant team members. If requested, this document (either PDF or word document - not video) can be uploaded directly to the submission form.

Emmy® Essay

It is recommended that entrants include an Emmy® essay or précis up to 200 words explaining why they believe the program or achievement to be Emmy®–worthy. This is an opportunity to include information regarding the entry that may not be evident in solely viewing the visual submission, such as a technical descriptions or how program, performances or crafts challenges were met during the season. The essay will be included on the judge’s ballot as an accompaniment to the viewing material. The Essay should NOT be unduly promotional in nature and may be subject to review and editing.

Over a number of years, The Daytime Administration team has received feedback from Daytime judging communities regarding the essay. Submissions are judged by peers, however many have stated that the essay can be helpful in their deliberation, and that the extra time and care taken by an entrant to inform and highlight their submissions is noted and appreciated.

NOTE: All entrants are required to reveal in writing any previously produced material submitted for Emmy® Award consideration or material which was not done by the entrant(s) themselves. This must be recorded on the online entry form in the Informational/Essay section.

Submission Video Upload

Video is uploaded directly to the ©Yangaroo system at daytimeemmys.dmds.com. The ©YANGAROO homepage contains a guide to the standard and accepted media file formats for Daytime system documents and video. Should a post production person or department need to handle the media upload process, log-in information can be shared. Video and other required files are uploaded on the Assign Files to Submissions page.

Where the same video file is used for multiple categories, the file is uploaded once and assigned to the appropriate categories. The Entrant is responsible for checking the source file audio/video quality before uploading. Once the submitted video has been encoded for the judging platform, a confirmation email is sent to the submitter, and the Entrant MUST conduct a final review for “judging-readiness.” If you are entering audio categories on behalf of a program, we strongly suggest that a supervising mixer and/or editor from the team review and approve the audio of your submission file BEFORE uploading to the ©YANGAROO system and AFTER the video has been encoded, to ensure that it presents the best quality for the judges.

For technical support, contact Yangaroo: emmysupport@yangaroo.com
Toll Free: 1.866.992.9902 x403

Younger Actress and Actor Categories

Awards for Outstanding Younger Actress and Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series recognize the work of Performers aged 25 and under at the time of the original airdate of the submitted material.

NOTE: This year, all Younger Actress and Actor entrants will NOT participate in the Drama Performer Pre-Nomination Judging round.

Entry Certification

All entrants must certify entries before submitting and paying for the entry. In doing so, he or she certifies that the entry material is submitted free of encumbrances and grants NATAS permission to use

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