For my own part, I'd comprehended the open format of the contest and submitted in the expectation that Avery T. Deacon Harriegh* and the web-bots of the world would be able to have a gander for free. Since this thread appeared, I've been wondering whether there would have been more or less entries if it had been more clear that the whole affair was out in public, or similarly if it had been explicitly occult from the get-go.
...but wondering without asking any of those involved. I have a notion I wouldn't have had a try if it had been under the same lid as Short Storied (Members Only)
department, but I don't claim to know my own motivations so well as to be able to form a certain opinion.
In contests as yet unconceived, it's probably a good idea to settle the public/private thing ahead of time and stick it in the rules, just to save the extra work this switching of availability must have been.