Canadian Magazine Industry News
3 March 2009,     OTTAWA
Why small mags are being left out of the CPF
Though lobbying efforts may reverse the policy, as it stands, magazines with annual circulations less than 5,000 will not qualify for annual funding under the new Canada Periodical Fund. We asked the Department of Canadian Heritage why this policy is being put forth and here is the response it provided:
There will be a requirement of 5,000 copies sold per annum (not per issue) for access to formula funding in the Canada Periodical Fund. This means the title must sell a grand total of 5,000 copies during the course of the year, through all sources - newsstand as well as subscription.  For example, a quarterly magazine (four times a year) with 1,000 paid subscribers and 251 newsstand sales per issue would still be eligible (4x1,251= 5,004 copies sold during the year, which would render the title eligible).

This policy takes into account a recommendation of the 2005 summative evaluation of the Publications Assistance Program that noted that there were significant administrative costs to manage extremely small amounts of funding for extremely small periodicals. This recommendation stated:

"Recommendation 5: Review the rationale for providing small subsidies as the Department’s delivery costs may significantly outweigh the benefits to subsidy recipients.Over 20 per cent of all PAP recipients received annual subsidies of less than $1,000 and combined, accounted for only 0.2 per cent of Canadian Heritage’s PAP expenditures. The Program should determine whether it is cost-effective to continue supporting titles whose annual subsidies fall below a certain threshold."

The full report is available on the Library and Archives website.

This 5,000 copies sold per annum minimum would not apply to the Business Innovation component of the new program.

There will be exceptions to this 5,000 copy per year rule in some very specific cases (such as weekly newspapers serving official-language minority communities or Aboriginal communities). The formula funding in the Canada Periodical Fund is still being finalized, so it is premature to talk about which titles will qualify for support or the specific amounts that they may receive.
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