Masthead News Archives
December 1999
Phil Boyd to replace Johnson at helm of CBP
Toronto, Ont., Dec. 17, 1999: Judy Johnson is stepping down as president of the Canadian Business Press (CBP) at the end of December. Replacing her in January as president will be Phil Boyd, currently executive publisher with Rogers Media's Research Group. Johnson first joined the CBP in September 1995 as vice-president. She was appointed president in June the following year. According to Johnson, she will continue working with the CBP on a contract basis, managing this year's running of the revamped Kenneth R. Wilson Awards and helping to organize June's Magazines University 2000. Boyd, currently a CBP board member and co-chair of the association's legislative affairs committee, is retiring from Rogers at the end of this year. As part of his current committe co-chair duties, he is also a member of the joint CBP-CMPA Task Force dealing with Ottawa on the administration of its newly announced subsidy package (see yesterday's Daily News posting). Watch for the February issue of Masthead magazine for a complete profile on Johnson and her years with the CBP.
Contact: 905-946-8889
--The Editor
Ottawa finally unveils magazine subsidy plan
Ottawa, Ont., Dec. 16, 1999: The federal government has created a $150-million "Canadian Magazine Fund" to support the creation of Canadian content while boosting the "long-term competitiveness" of the magazine industry. The announcement was made this afternoon by the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Sheila Copps, by way of a scrum on Parliament Hill and a subsequent press release. Through the new fund, which is expected to be operational by the April start of the 2000-2001 fiscal year, $150 million will be dispensed over three years to Canadian publishers. According to a Heritage press release, the program will then be renewed following a review of the funding level. While details of the so-called Canadian Magazine Fund and how it will be dispensed have yet to be fleshed out--that is expected to be conducted in tandem with the pan-industry Task Force--it is known that the financial assistance will come in two forms:
• direct assistance to publishers for the creation of Canadian content, and;
• project funding to help publishers with initiatives in marketing, promotion, distribution, new technologies and professional development. As well, specific funding will be set aside "to meet the needs of small- and medium-sized publishers," notes the press release. To be eligible for program grants, magazines must be Canadian-owned and controlled, while 80% of their content must be Canadian. As well, magazines must apply separately, not under the aegis of a publishing house. Initial reaction from the industry's two major associations--the Canadian Business Press (CBP) and the Canadian Magazine Publishers Association (CMPA)--has been favourable. "It's a good start. It's a good first step," says John Thomson, chair of the joint CBP-CMPA Task Force. "Thank God it's finally out and now we can get on with the program design." According to Thomson, the industry isn't out of the woods yet, though. "We'll have to see what comes across the border," he says, noting that it remains to be seen how "down and dirty" U.S. publishers will get in terms of undercutting Canadian advertising and subscription rates. Today's news ends seven months of speculation as to how Ottawa intends to bolster the magazine industry now that American publishers can access Canadian advertising dollars. Late last May, the federal government amended Bill C-55 to quell U.S. threats of trade retaliation, effectively ending Ottawa's 30-year-old policy of linking ad revenue to the creation of Canadian content. Under the amendments, foreign titles will eventually be able to set aside 18% of their advertising space--without restrictions or content requirements--for Canadian advertisers who want to exclusively target Canadian readers. A three-year phase-in period for this "de minimis" exemption began on July 1, the date the Bill was enacted: the limit is 12% for the first 18 months, after which it increases to 15%, and then 18% after three years. For complete background on all of the amendments to Bill C-55, see the July/August issue of Masthead magazine.

New look for title serving centre of universe
Toronto, Ont., Dec. 15, 1999: Toronto Life is poised to unveil what it's terming a graphic design "refreshment" with the release of its January 2000 issue. The "new and improved look" is scheduled to begin appearing on newsstands tomorrow. "We feel the changes result in a more interesting and contemporary magazine without dramatically interfering with the country's most recognizable brand," a press release quotes editor John Macfarlane as saying. The redesign was executed by Toronto Life art director Sandra Latini, associate art director Mary Jo Fitz Gibbon, and design consultant Robert Priest, who assisted in the city book's 1993 redesign. Priest, a consulting art director with Time Inc.'s InStyle, has headed up the art departments at such major U.S. titles as Esquire, GQ, Us and Newsweek. He also oversaw the early 1998 redesign of Report on Business Magazine. Among what Macfarlane says are "very subtle changes" are:
• a new and "refined" look to the 28-year-old logo
• a new text body type: Globe Century
• two new display fonts: Globe Century and the sans serif Interstate
• minor changes to column headers
• the switch from saddle-stitch to perfect binding
• and with the change to perfect binding, the CityGuides will now be tipped in.
Contact: 416-364-3333

Vancouver mag editor heads for The Sun
Vancouver, B.C., Dec. 14, 1999: Jim Sutherland is stepping down as editor of Telemedia's Vancouver magazine at the end of December to join the Mix, The Vancouver Sun's broadsheet Saturday section on West coast culture. Vancouver staff were informed of the news just last week, although Telemedia West vice-president and group publisher Greg Hryhorchuk has known since early November that Sutherland had been contemplating a career move. At the Mix, Sutherland will take over as editor from David Beers, who has been promoted to a senior editorial position within the main paper. As part of his new job, Sutherland will also be working with Beers to improve The Sun's features. Interestingly, Beers served as a contributing editor for Vancouver during Sutherland's editorship, earning a National Magazine Award for column writing in 1998. Sutherland, who acknowledges that the decision to leave Vancouver wasn't easy, is largely credited with breathing new life into the city book after taking over the editorial reins six and a half years ago. At the time, recession-weary Vancouver had gone through four editors in the previous five years. "There was a lot of speculation when I arrived that the magazine was going to be folded," Sutherland recalls. "It had been going through a combination of a lot of change and some rough times." Since then, though, Vancouver has seen newsstand sales more than double, RPC numbers climb significantly and ad sales jump by 50%. While some of this turn-around could be attributed to the improving economy, there's no question that Sutherland has been producing a quality book: alongside numerous other awards, Vancouver earned the Western Magazine Award for Magazine of the Year in both 1996 and 1997, and the National Magazine Awards' Magazine of the Year in 1998. The search is now underway for a new editor.
Contact: 604-877-7732

December 13,1999
FASHION names new editor-in-chief
TORONTO-The Globe and Mail's fashion editor has been appointed editor-in-chief of Toronto Life FASHION, with award-winning journalist and author Wendy Dennis assuming over the post of executive editor. Leanne Delap, who was associate editor at Toronto Life before moving to The Globe, takes over the top editorial job on Feb. 1. Her predecessor, Joan Harting Barham, left the magazine roughly one month ago after serving eight years as editor-in-chief. She is currently travelling in the South Pacific with her husband. Wendy Dennis, who had been pinch-hitting as senior editor to cover off a maternity leave, begins her new job Jan. 3. The author of The Divorce From Hell, Dennis has contributed to several newspaper and magazines, including Toronto Life, Flare, New Woman and Cosmopolitan. In FASHION's sales department, meanwhile, business development manager Ellen Loomis has left to rep for Condé Nast in Toronto. Effectively replacing her on the masthead is new advertising sales director Kelly Whitelock Latimer, who was most recently with Today's Parent Group. Also leaving the Toronto-based glossy is associate sales director Leslie Haber, who has decided to stay at home following the birth of her second son. Finally, the founding editor-in-chief of Venue magazine, Jane Francisco, has joined FASHION as marketing director.
Contact: 416-364-3334

December 10,1999
Subsidy announcement thought imminent
OTTAWA-Department of Canadian Heritage (DCH) officials were set to unveil Ottawa's long-awaited subsidy package for the magazine industry today, but the announcement has once again been postponed. According to a DCH source, the decision to delay came yesterday from Minister Sheila Copps' office, most likely due to a scheduling conflict.
Today's postponement marks yet another in a series of delays, the most recent occurring just last week when the announcement was put off presumably due to Ottawa's attention shifting to the WTO debacle in Seattle. It is now thought that a decision on when to unveil the package will be made by Monday, although it is uncertain whether the announcement will now be made by way of press release or press conference. For the latter scenario, sources say the venue will be a medium-sized publishing house based in Toronto. If the press conference plans are scuttled, a press release could conceivably be forthcoming as early as later today. Likely to propel an announcement soon was a report this morning on CBC-Radio suggesting that Ottawa is set to unveil a $150 million subsidy package to underwrite the creation of Canadian content in magazines. The report said that an announcement would be made next week. A senior DCH official contacted by Masthead Online declined to confirm or deny the report.

December 09,1999
Small publishers get seat at subsidy table
OTTAWA-In a move to quell growing disquiet among small magazine publishers, a new player has been brought to the table in the high stakes game of subsidy planning. Joining the industry's so-called "Task Force" now lobbying Ottawa for publisher support is a member of the vocal small magazines committee of the Canadian Magazine Publishers Association (CMPA). The former associate publisher of This magazine, Trevor Hutchinson, was appointed to the team during last Monday's CMPA board meeting in Ottawa. The move came as Ottawa continued to hold off announcing how it intends to support the magazine industry now that foreign publishers have access to the Canadian advertising market. A subsidy package has apparently already been approved by cabinet, but there is still no word on when details will be unveiled. Sources say there had been plans for a late November press conference, but those were scuttled as Ottawa's attention shifted to the WTO debacle in Seattle. For members of the CMPA's small magazine committee, Hutchinson's appointment is seen as crucial to ensuring that the concerns of small publishers are adequately represented. That's because once the subsidy package has been unveiled, the industry Task Force will begin discussions with Department of Canadian Heritage (DCH) officials on how to administer the new programs. The decision to include Hutchinson--who is also a CMPA board member--was made after the board heard motions from the small magazine committee calling for direct representation. Before the matter could be brought to a vote, however, the board decided to bring Hutchinson aboard--a move that met with approval from Petra Chevrier, chair of the small magazine committee. "The important thing is that the intention of the motions was acted upon," says Chevrier, "and I'm going to make sure it's followed through." With Hutchinson's appointment, the Task Force (a.k.a The Working Group when it meets with DCH officials) is now comprised of the following CMPA and Canadian Business Press (CBP) representatives:
• CMPA public affairs committee chair John Thomson (Canadian Geographic), who is the Task Force chair
• CMPA chair Sharon McAuley (Quill & Quire)
• CMPA executive director Mark Jamison
• CMPA public affairs committee member Al Zikovitz (Cottage Life)
• CBP legislative affairs committee co-chairs Phil Boyd (Rogers Media) and Mike Doody (Action Communications)
• CBP president Judy Johnson
• public affairs consultant Jim Everson
• CMPA board members Michael Rea (Key Publishers) and François de Gaspé Beaubien (Telemedia Publishing), who have attended meetings to provide "institutional memory" of last year's discussions surrounding Bill C-55.
Meanwhile, last Monday's CMPA board meeting was held against the backdrop of the industry's second annual Magazine Day in Ottawa. Unlike 1998's lobbying blitz, however, this latest event was relatively low-key, with just 30 publishers meeting with various MPs, cabinet ministers and staff. "It was really quite a heartening day," says the Task Force's Thomson, explaining that along with maintaining the industry's profile on the Hill, the thrust of the lobbying effort was to talk up the proposed subsidy package, stress the importance of the existing Publications Assistance Program, and push for cultural exemptions at global bodies such as the World Trade Organization.
Contact: 416-504-0274 (CMPA)

December 08,1999
More categories, judging changes for KRWs
TORONTO-The Canadian Business Press has revamped the judging procedures for the annual Kenneth R. Wilson Awards (KRWs), along with adding several new categories. And perhaps best of all for the contestants, they no longer need to wait until the night of the awards ceremony to find out if they've been nominated. Announced this week (in early December), the changes were devised by an ad hoc CBP committee chaired by Style Communications president Pat MacLean. According to MacLean, the new "judging system combines the best elements" of the National Magazine Awards and the Jesse H. Neal Awards, presented by the American Business Press. "There were two reasons that made it obvious it was time for a change," explains MacLean. "For one, the rules hadn't been looked at for a long, long time…and Paul Rush [the outgoing head of the KRW judging committee] had said that changes were required. We just decided we were going to start from scratch." Under the changes, judging in the 11 writing categories will now follow a two-tier process. First, each category will have a peer review panel that judges all entries and selects 10 finalists. The finalists then advance to the KRW judging committee, which chooses the winners. Previously, there were no peer review panels and all entries had to be screened solely by the judging committee. There are also several changes and additions to the actual writing categories:
• the "Best Industrial Article" and the "Best Technology Article," which were previously combined, now have separate categories
• also split into two separate categories are "Best Profile of a Person" and "Best Profile of a Company"
• "Best Feature" has been changed to "Best Single Article"
• "Best News Story" has been changed to "Best News Coverage"
• new to the competition are the categories "Best How-To Article" (or related series) and "Best One-of-a-kind Article"
In the four visual categories, five judges (three art directors, a photographer and an illustrator) will handle all entries and choose the winners. Here, there are also changes and additions:
• "Best Photograph" and "Best Illustration" are now separate categories
• new is the category "Art Direction of a Complete Issue"
Joining "Best Issue" in the category for the integration of words and pictures, meanwhile, is "Best Cover" (previously in the visual categories). Judging "Best Cover" will be a three-member team comprised of an editor, an art director and a writer, while "Best Issue" will be chosen by members of the judging committee (each of whom will have a month to choose the silver and gold winners from a list of 10 finalists). Finally, in a change designed to "heighten excitement" in the KRWs, the top 10 finalists in each category will be announced immediately after they are chosen by the respective peer review panels. And a month prior to the awards ceremony at Magazines University, the five finalists will be announced. As well, the five finalists will be displayed during at the awards gala. The gold and silver winners, meanwhile, will be posted on the CBP's Web site. Copies of the new guidelines will be available in January. The deadline for entries in this year's competition is March 10.
Contact: 519-473-9890

December 07,1999
A lofty look at Canadian geography
VICTORIA-Beautiful British Columbia magazine has co-published a 192-page coffee table book with a lofty perspective of Canada at the millennium. That's because the hefty tome's 155 full-colour pictures from across the country were shot from a helicopter. Over Canada: An Aerial Adventure, which is distributed by Whitecap Books Limited, was released in October in conjunction with an accompanying CD, video and television special on CTV.
Contact: 250-384-5456

December 06,1999
Explore marks century's end with 100th issue
TORONTO-Talk about good timing. Eighteen-year-old Explore's contribution to the rash of end-of-the-century commemorative editions also happens to be the outdoor adventure mag's 100th issue. The eight-times-a-year title took the opportunity to look back at 100 years of outdoor recreation in Canada, tackling the subject by decade. Published by Thompson & Gordon Publishing Co. Ltd., Explore is based in Calgary.
Contact: 1-800-771-7290

December 03,1999
Today's Parent Group founder Topping resigns
TORONTO-Beverly Topping has stepped down as president and CEO of Today's Parent Group (TPG), the company she founded 17 years ago. Staff were told of her decision in mid-November, although her official final day was Dec. 1. Topping is currently on a two-month tour of South Africa, New Zealand and Thailand. The announcement came as no surprise to TPG insiders. In fact, Topping had long been reducing her stake in the company. In 1992 Maclean Hunter (now Rogers Media) acquired a 49% share, and in August 1998 the publishing giant bought out the remaining equity. Topping herself is the first to admit this was all part of her exit strategy. "I built the business and I sold it," she said days after telling staff about her resignation. "And that was my original goal." See the January 2000 issue of Masthead magazine for a complete profile. Contact: 416-596-8675

December 02, 1999
Cameron's role at Elm Street still up in the air
TORONTO-The search continues for a senior editor to take over editor-in-chief Stevie Cameron's day-to-day editorial responsibilities at Elm Street magazine. Multi-Vision Publishing president and CEO Greg MacNeil said today that two people have so far been interviewed for the job, and that he hopes to have someone in place by the end of January. While Cameron says she wants to remain with Elm Street, she recently agreed to a three-book deal with Macfarlane Walter and Ross and can no longer maintain her current workload (see "Elm Street editors" in the November '99 Daily News archives). "The reality for me, to try and run this magazine and write these books, it's very difficult to do a really good job for either," acknowledges Cameron, adding that she "loves" working at Multi-Vision. According to MacNeil, the extent of Cameron's ongoing involvement in his flagship title depends on who he hires to take over the editorial reins. For example, she could carry on as editor-in-chief, at least in name, if such an arrangement is palatable to the incoming editor Meanwhile, a replacement has been found for Kristin Jenkins, who stepped down last month as editor of Multi-Vision's HealthWatch and Owl Canadian Family. She's now editor-in-chief of the Internet firm Taking over Jenkins editorial responsibilities is Diana Swift, who was previously the managing editor of Rogers Media's The Medical Post. She joined Multi-Vision last week.
Contact: 416-595-9944

December 01, 1999
Le Magazine 7 Jours celebrates 10th year
MONTREAL-Le Magazine 7 Jours, published by Trustar Limitée, marks its 10th anniversary this month with a special commemorative edition. The celebrity-friendly weekly is celebrating the milestone with a look back at 10 years of entertainment, significant world events and the Montreal-based magazine itself. Also featured in the perfect-bound special edition is a 52-page pictorial of 25 "belles et sexy" Quebec celebrities.
Contact: 514-848-7000

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