Canadian Magazine Industry News
9 March 2012,     TORONTO
ON Nature magazine drops newsstand, focuses on membership
ON Nature magazine is no longer being sold on newsstands or through subscriptions, becoming an exclusive benefit through membership of its parent organization, Ontario Nature.

On Nature Spring 2012
On Nature Spring 2012

The magazine is now offered as an exclusive benefit for members who commit $50 or more (seniors and students get the mag for a $40 contribution) to Ontario Nature, which will follow through with existing subscriptions and then invite subscribers to become a member, said Caroline Schultz, executive director. Members get a charitable tax receipt for 100 percent of their contribution.

Schultz said changes to Canadian Heritage funding guidelines are partly to blame for dropping newsstand. "We had been on the newsstand for quite a long time and had won awards," she said, adding there were about 800 issues on newsstand per issue. "For [a charitable] organization to sustain the publication of a magazine, without the external support of external grant streams, it was not financially viable for us."

Also, because the magazine was offered on the newsstand, "it had a cover price, which means if we give [the magazine] to our members it's a material benefit through Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), so we can't give a charitable tax receipt," said Schultz. "We also wanted to increase our flexibility in providing the magazine without having that disincentive of not being able to issue a tax receipt."

ON Nature has grappled with the Department of Canada Heritage in the past. In early 2008, after months of communications between Canadian Heritage and the magazine regarding its eligibility for grants under the Publications Assistance Program (which was rolled into the Canadian Periodical Fund), the magazine conceded defeat, resulting in the quarterly losing a roughly $13,000 postal subsidy.
— Jeff Hayward
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