There’s an interesting posting up on the Canadian Magazines blog from Jon Spencer of Abacus Circulation, who has asked recent applicants to the Canada Magazine Fund's "Support for Business Development for Magazine Publishers" to fill out a survey about their experience:
I would be interested to hear whether your applications to this program in the current fiscal year (from April 2008 to March 2009) have been handled as they have been in previous years, or if you have encountered any changes to the approval process.
I have also heard some rumblings and grumblings about how the way CMF applications are being handled this year, particularly with regards to response times. Unfortunately, like publishers across the country, I’m pretty much in the dark when it comes to questions like “What’s happening with the Canadian Periodical Fund?” or “What happens when Canada Post pulls its $15 million contribution to the PAP in April?”
It’s not like I haven’t tried to get some answers. I make periodic calls to the Department of Canadian Heritage and once in a while I even get someone on the phone, but every time I ask for information about funding for magazines, I get “no comment.”
I understand that things must be difficult for people working in government right now, what with parliament prorogued until next week, but we really need to hear something from the DCH on this stuff soon. The economy is going to make 2009 a difficult enough year for publishers as it is; the least we can ask from our government is that they communicate to us about what’s going on with funding that many magazines rely on for survival.