Monday, January 22, 2018

AMPA conference speakers lineup announced

Registration is now open for the Alberta Magazines Conference and awards, March 8 and 9 in Calgary. The lineup of speakers has been announced, including
  • Jeremy Leslie, magCulture Studio UK
  • Kate Lesniak, publisher, BitchMedia
  • Amy Shellenbaum, online director, Popular Science
  • Penny Caldwell, former Cottage Life editor and publisher
  • Melanie Deziel, branded content consultant and speaker
  • Chris Baylis, president, The Sponsorship Collective
  • Anthony Licata, editorial director, Bonnier Lifestyle
  • Todd Hirsch, chief economist, ATB Financial
  • Brinda Luckoo, president, Inovva by Equisoft
  • Mark Marhorsky, creative director, Texas Highways
  • Paddy Harrington, founder, Frontier
  • Louis Delone, president, Whippoorwill Advisors
  • Devra Ferst, freelance writer and former editor at Tasting Table and Eater 
Early bird registration Thursday, February 15, 5 p.m. MST; regular registration Thursday March 1, 5 p.m. MST. Learn more

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Rogers severs joint venture with Vice Canada

Rogers Media Inc. announced Monday that it is ending its three-year-old, $100 million joint venture with Vice Canada to develop a production studio called Vice Studio Canada and money-television channel Viceland. According to a Financial Post story, 
Viceland, which lost $2.5 million in the year ended Aug. 31, 2016, according to the broadcast regulator, will stop broadcasting on Mar. 31. 
The move comes as no surprise, as Rogers’ three-year deal with Vice expired in October. Rogers’ wireless brand Fido subsequently dropped its Daily Vice promotions.
“In this crowded content universe and as audience habits change, we continue to evolve our strategy to deliver unique content to Canadians,” [Rogers said in the announcement]. “We will be actively exploring new content opportunities that appeal to a broad audience.”


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Friday, January 19, 2018

Bonnier Corp cuts 70 positions in the U.S. and converts five titles to all-digital

Bonnier Corp., the U.S. arm of the Swedish media company, has cut 70 positions, or about 17% of its U.S. workforce, according to a story in the New York Post. About 370 people will remain with the company. It has converted five of its print magazines to all-digital and reduced the frequency of foodie title Saveur to quarterly from six times a year.

Among the titles going all-digital are Wakeboarding, WaterSki , Sport Dive and motorcycle titles Dirt Riders and Baggers.

Adam Sachs, the editor-in-chief, photo editor Michelle Heimerman and creative director Richard Baker were among those laid off at Saveur.

Bonnier AB is a privately held Swedish media group of 175 companies operating in 15 countries. It is controlled by the Bonnier family.

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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Mag world view: Rodale staffers laid off; Mags win digital ad challenge; 5 more journalists jailed in Turkey; Hungry Girl launched; New look Guardian

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[Update] Brett Popplewell wins inaugural $10,000 Allan Slaight Prize for Journalism at The Walrus

[Update] The winner of the inaugural $10,000 Allan Slaight Prize for Journalism at The Walrus magazine is 
[This post has been updated] On January 17, one fortunate writer for The Walrus magazine will receive the $10,000 Allan Slaight Prize for Journalism. It is for the  most outstanding article published in The Walrus in 2017. The prize will support journalists in pursuing compelling stories of social import. The shortlisted stories are:
The prize is funded by the Slaight Family Foundation, which was established in 2008, in honour of Allan Slaight, a philanthropist who created Canada’s largest privately owned multi-media company, Standard Broadcasting, and was instrumental in bringing the Raptors (and the Air Canada Centre) to Toronto. Community works include having served as the chair of the United Way of Greater Toronto and the Shaw Festival. 

Listed magazine has been put on hiatus,
pending a sale

Advertisers in Listed magazine have been told by its publisher Marty Tully that it has been placed on hiatus after 8 years of publication. Listed, which launched as a quarterly and recently has been publishing 5 issues a year, is written for senior executives and board members of Canadian listed companies. 
Tully's message, in part:
I just wanted to let you know that Listed’s 2018 Mining issue has been put on hiatus.... 
I am currently looking for a buyer and will keep you posted. I have personally funded Listed and I do not regret one cent that has been invested. Listed has been a very rewarding experience, however it is time for me to find new champions to bring Listed to the next level. I am optimistic that someone will pick up the reins and regard the standards set to date as the starting point to bring Listed to the next level. 
I look forward to providing you with the news of Listed resuming its publishing schedule with the Spring issue.
The magazine's controlled circulation is to about 12,000, including 10,000 mailed to directors and C-suite executives and 2,000 distributed through Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounges. 

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Sports Illustrated reducing to fortnightly after 63 years as a weekly

Sports Illustrated subscribers may be surprised to learn that their heretofore weekly magazine will be coming out only ever two weeks, beginning this Friday, according to a report in Poynter. In a letter to readers with the December 25th issue, editor Chris Stone said
"Sports Illustrated has been a weekly staple for more than 63 years, delivering the best sports journalism with near metronomic regularity. That will continue to be the case, but beginning next month the metronome clicks a little less often."
Stone said the new frequency will have more of the long-form stories that SI is known for and more photos on better paper. It will also mean heftier issues.  And the popular swimsuit issue will continue. 
"Optics do matter," Stone told commentator Bo Sacks. "If an issue feels light" as SI and its sister weekly Time have lately, that gives off an insubstantial vibe to both readers and potential advertisers...."Hundreds of thousands (of 2.75 million subscribers) would prefer to stick with the weekly cadence," Stone conceded, "but we think the better choice is a magazine that is heftier. The next issue, for instance, will have three more long stories than the same issue a year ago."

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Tuesday, January 09, 2018

UPPERCASE plans subscription promotion by planting a little forest

UPPERCASE magazine has embarked on a promotional venture to plant a forest. The Calgary-based magazine is already printed on 100% recycled paper, but publisher Janine Vangool has told the readers of the quarterly makers' magazine that more could be done. So the plan is to plant a tree for every new subscription or renewal received in 2018.

The project is being done through a Calgary-based company called TreeEra, which helps individuals reduce their carbon footprint. (Since only the first of the year there have been 96 new subscriptions to UPPERCASE, hence 96 trees to be planted.) She notes that a single tree can offset up to one ton of carbon in its lifetime. 
"It's exciting to think that we could plant a little UPPERCASE forest of trees! Plus it is motivating to have this new benefit as part of my business goals and to give back in a tangible way. (Magazine subscription prices will remain the same as they have been since 2009.) TreeEra's 2018 planting will take place north of Kamloops, BC, Canada as well as in South Dakota, USA."
 [Disclosure: I am an UPPERCASE subscriber.]

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Monday, January 08, 2018

Garden Making reducing frequency
to 2 issues a year

Inspiring Media Inc. of Niagara-on-the-Lake is reducing the annual print subscription frequency of Garden Making magazine to 2 issues a year, February and May. Previously the magazine was a quarterly. 

Existing subscribers (who were informed last August) will receive the total number of issues they paid for. New subscribers may pre-pay for 2 issues for $9.98 ($4.99 an issue); or per issue for $5.99.

In addition to the print magazine, Garden Making produces Gardenmaking.com and My Garden Containers.

Playboy seriously exploring ending its iconic print edition

Playboy magazine is seriously considering doing away with its iconic print edition. Losses of around $7 million annually may be but one of the reasons. Today, the magazine only publishes 6 issues a year and has a circulation of 500,000 (less than a tenth of what it was at its peak.) An article in MediaPost notes that Playboy was at one time one of the most aggressive and innovative seekers after new revenue streams and developer of lucrative line extensions. 
While it’s sad to see a print publication die, one wonders if keeping the print version of Playboy is just a nostalgic impulse, rather than a shrewd financial strategy. At a time when print media is more endangered than ever, it's not always a bad idea to build up a brand, rather than hang onto the past.

Sunday, January 07, 2018

Tick-tock: Deadline approaches for winter evening magazine courses at the Chang School

The next few days see the deadline for enrolling in winter term magazine and web publishing courses being offered by the Chang School; courses start the week beginning January 15th. 

Among courses worth considering:

CDJN 206  — Creating Website Editorial (Online)
This distance education course (i.e.online) is being taught this term by D. B. Scott, the academic coordinator of mag and web publishing.  From chats and blogs to streaming video, the editorial elements available for websites differ radically from those for ink-and-paper magazines. For magazine editors with website responsibilities, the trick is to use those things creatively to attract and hold readers while still maintaining the magazine's identity and mission. This course provides students with a valuable understanding of web tools and opportunities to workshop appropriate content for them. It also addresses the most common strategic, logistical, and business-related challenges that come with producing great magazine websites.


Saturday, January 06, 2018

Canada Council reviewing granting procedures to address sexual harassment and misconduct

Apparently referring in part to the situation at the Soulpepper Theatre Company, the Canada Council for the Arts has issued a brief statement about sexual harassment and misconduct. (The statement is anodyne and not particularly illuminating for grant recipients including literary and cultural publishing:
"Following the wave of reports and allegations in the cultural sector and beyond, we reiterate that Canada Council for the Arts believes there is no place for harassment, sexual misconduct or abuse of power in any workplace. We’re currently reviewing our granting policies to ensure that there are adequate provisions which allow us to fairly and more effectively address situations which involve artists or organizations receiving Canada Council funding."

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Wednesday, January 03, 2018

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Canadian Magazines job board
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Tuesday, January 02, 2018

Two top execs of Vice Media suspended over sexual harassment allegations

Vice Media has suspended two top executives, one of whom is the company president, in the wake of  allegations of sexual misconduct. A company memo Tuesday, quoted by the New York Times and the Associated Press, said that there were four settlements involving allegations of sexual harassment or defamation against Andrew Creighton, president of the company, and chief digital officer Mike Germano. The Times talked with more than two dozen women who say they experienced or witnessed sexual misconduct, including groping and forced kisses. Both men were put on leave pending an investigation. 
The Times reported that Vice paid a former female employee a $135,000 settlement in 2016 after she said she was fired when she rejected Creighton’s advances. The Vice memo says her claims were found to lack merit at the time after a review by law firm, but a special committee of its board is looking at the matter now. It will make a recommendation on what to do before a Jan. 11 board meeting.

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The year that was in Canadian Magazines 2017

It has been the custom on the Canadian Magazines blog to arbitrarily tally some of the stories that were published during the year previous. They are not every story and may not even be the best or most important stories to you. Though I think the merger of the upstart Grands Prix awards of Magazines Canada with the  venerable National Magazine Awards is pretty important. (fourth bullet in November.) And the passing of important colleagues such as Ruth Kelly (June) Prue Hemelrijk and Rick Campbell (October) and Lloyd Hodgkinson (April) are certainly milestones worth noticing. Every link takes you to a story. 
January
February
March
June
Read more »

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