The competition rules specify that after October 4, 2012 at 06:59:59 UTC, we can have no new entrants or team mergers. A few things to note about that:
- We don't have the ability to forcibly block new submissions, but contestants who enter after that date will not be eligible and may be removed from the leaderboard. We'll add very large letters to the top of the contest description to make sure people notice this, and we'll also write to anyone who may enter by mistake.
- The rule actually says "You may register at any time prior to 06:59:59 UTC on October 4, 2012.". Our interpretation of "registering" is that you have registered if and only if you have agreed to the contest rules. (Because it says after you register you have access to the data and may join a team. So registering for the contest isn't the same as making a Kaggle account, and isn't the same as making a team.)
- Contestants who have registered prior to the deadline but not yet joined a team may form their own team or even may still join another team. This isn't a "team merger", since they haven't formed or joined any team yet.