In the August 2019 photo competition: 'Seen through a train window.', there is the following text in the rules:
All votes count as upvotes, (to decide the winner.)
I asked Willeke, the moderator responsible for writing the photo contest post, for clarification, and she stated that she meant it literally: that a downvote against a particular photo submission would be treated as if it were an upvote.
To be clear, I do agree with her position that downvotes on photo contest submissions spread unnecessary negativity and shouldn't count against the submission. But when a user downvotes such a submission, it's likely that they don't agree that the photo should win the contest (and also likely that they haven't read the contest rules). Personally, I think that this is overstepping the line a bit and trying to rewrite how the Stack Exchange system works. I prefer a more conservative approach of only considering upvotes while ignoring downvotes.
I understand that there may be opposing viewpoints on this issue, so I'm opening the topic up for discussion: Should downvotes on photo contest submissions be treated as if they were upvotes, or should they just be ignored?