Masthead News Archives
June 2003
June 26, 2003
AMPA suspends operations
CALGARY-All staff at the Alberta Magazine Publishers Association will be laid off July 1 and most operations will be suspended. In an e-mail bulletin distributed to members this afternoon, executive director Marion Harrison informed members that the association doesn't have enough money to continue operating. Funding from the Canada Magazine Fund, operated by the Department of Canadian Heritage, had yet to be received; it was expected to arrive mid-May and since that time AMPA has been drawing funds from its operating account. AMPA will continue the distribution program of its arts and literary titles as well as ensure access to Sequel Software.

June 23, 2003
New custom publication for beer drinkers
TORONTO-You might notice a new men’s magazine when you pick up a couple of cold ones this August. Chill, the official magazine of The Beer Store, will be available in its 436 stores across Ontario just in time for Labour Day weekend. The 200,000-circ bimonthly give away is The Beer Store’s first foray into consumer magazine publishing, says Scott Simmons, vice president, marketing. Produced in partnership with Chill Media Group, the publication is part of The Beer Store’s retail renewal efforts, Simmons says. “The magazine is a great way to be able to give consumers added value and celebrate what we think is a great product: Canadian domestic beer.” And we certainly like our beer. According to the Brewers Association of Canada, legal-age Canadians consumed 91.5 litres of beer per capita last year. More specifically, men love beer; 75% of The Beer Store’s customers are male. Unlike Food & Drink magazine—a 500,000+-circ, thick glossy giveaway from the LCBO (the only other beer retailer in Ontario) with female-skewed content on cooking and decorating—Chill plans to speak to the barbecuing, cottaging, sports-watching, beer-swilling gender with a men’s lifestyle magazine on beer and beer-related topics for the “average male”. Look for more on this story in the July/August issue of Masthead.

June 19, 2003
Major shake-up at Homemakers, Canadian Living
TORONTO-A reorganization effort at two of Canada's largest women's interest magazines has resulted in the dismissal of Homemakers editor-in-chief Dianne Rinehart and Canadian Living publisher Debbie Gibson. Their positions were eliminated two days ago. Editorial and management structures at the two Transcontinental Media titles are being integrated, says Francine Tremblay, senior vice-president of consumer publications. "We thought this would be more efficient," she says, adding that an integrated strategy is preferred to one that could see the magazines bump against one another in a competitive sense. Homemakers relaunched this spring in a larger format with refreshed editorial in a bid to reverse declining readership (1.98 million readers in PMB 2003 compared to 2.27 million readers in PMB 2001) and reduced ad sales (Leading National Advertisers reports that Homemaker's Q1 run-of-press ad pages were down 32.9% compared to the same period last year.) Replacing Rinehart and Gibson is Canadian Living editor-in-chief Charlotte Empey, who was offered the role of group publisher and editor-in-chief of both titles. Empey will captain her hand-picked senior editorial team consisting of three newly promoted senior Canadian Living staffers who will oversee each magazine's associate and section editors as well as Web and design operations. Empey says she's "fully energized" for her new role. Former Homemakers publisher Carol Shea will remain publisher of sister title Style at Home, continue heading up the company's custom publishing division and assist Tremblay in future undisclosed projects. "This move is not about downsizing and saving money," Shea says. "It's a new model [in Canadian publishing]." Neither Rinehart nor Gibson could be reached for comment.

June 17, 2003
Delap quit, but not over church/state, publisher says
TORONTO-The sudden resignation of Fashion editor-in-chief Leanne Delap last week gave rise to a report published on the weekend suggesting that Fashion publisher Giorgina Bigioni had pressured Delap to produce advertiser-friendly editorial which in turn prompted the editor to quit. "I don't know where that came from," Bigioni said yesterday of that aspect of the report. "It's absolutely not true." Bigioni said that Delap "definitely resigned but not over church-and-state issues." Whatever the reason, Delap's decision seems based on a principle that three of her colleagues also support; Bigioni confirmed that Fashion columnists Lynn Crosbie and Karen von Hahn have informed the magazine that they will not renew their contracts in support of Delap while columnist Elizabeth Renzetti resigned immediately. A press release issued yesterday by the St. Joseph Media title expressed appreciation for Delap's role in growing the magazine's readership during her three-and-a-half-year reign. Delap declined to comment on the circumstances surrounding her departure. "At this time I'm unable to comment," she said in a voice mail message, adding that she was "very proud...of the entire editorial team."

June 12, 2003
Province to pump up to $225,000 into mags
TORONTO-A pro-media agency of the Ontario government announced last week at the annual Magazines University conference that it will contribute as much as $75,000 each to three new magazine start-ups. The new initiative, called Volume One, was created by the Ontario Media Development Corporation. The OMDC will hold a two-hour information session on the program and how to apply to it on Thursday June 26. Applications must be submitted no later than 5 p.m. on Monday September 22. Successful applicants must publish their first issue by September 22, 2004. Prospective publishers of both consumer and trade magazines are invited to apply. For applications and information on eligibility, visit, select "New Voices, New Visions" on the navbar, scroll down in the main screen and click on "Volume One."

June 10, 2003
Kontent to launch second title
TORONTO-Kontent Publishing has partnered with CHUM to launch Fashion Quarterly in September. The 200,000 controlled-circ glossy will be slightly taller than oversized U.S-category competitor W magazine, which sells about 7,000 copies on Canadian newsstands. Approximately 185,000 copies of FQ will be inserted into targeted Globe and Mail subscribers, with the remainder distributed at retail outlets and on the newsstand (price $5.95). Jeanne Beker, host of CHUM's popular Fashion Television since the mid-1980s, has been named editor-in-chief. Publisher Shelagh Tarleton, who resigned as vice-president of advertising at Multi-Vision Publishing last month, says advertiser response has been positive. "In 20 years of selling magazines I've never been so warmly received," she says, noting the marketing advantages that come with having a broadcast partner. Kontent also publishes Inside Entertainment, the 310,000 controlled-circ glossy on show biz that launched last year and is distributed through the National Post; it's produced in partnership with the Global Television program of the same name. Kontent Publishing was founded about 18 months ago by industry veteran Geoffrey Dawe, who was formerly vice-president of marketing and new business development at the National Post Co.

June 5, 2003
More jobs lost in trade publishing
TORONTO-Nine employees were let go last week from Brunico Communications, publisher of Strategy, RealScreen, KidScreen, ‘boards and Playback magazines, (11 positions were recently eliminated at Strategy’s competitor, Rogers Publishing’s Marketing Magazine.) “[The layoffs] were a normal adjustment to the state of the market and the declining value of the U.S. dollar,” says Brunico president and executive publisher Jim Shenkman. He adds that half of Brunico’s revenue is from the U.S. and the ailing U.S. dollar has affected its bottom line.
Released were three people from Brunico’s creative department, one circulation staffer, three events personnel, a Strategy sales rep, and executive vice president Shelley Middlebrook, for a total of 8% of Brunico’s workforce.
Playback magazine in particular, which covers the Canadian production industry, has felt the effect of the struggling U.S. dollar due to its impact on the Canadian film industry.
Besides the sluggish U.S. economy, SARS has also affected business in terms of its conferences, says Shenkman. As a result, he has decided to run fewer events but make them larger including The RealScreen Summit in Washington, D.C., The KidScreen Summit in New York, The Boards Summit in Los Angeles and Strategy events in Toronto.

CAmagazine takes home six KRWs
TORONTO-No stranger to the Kenneth R. Wilson awards, CAmagazine walked away with six of them at the 49th awards annual last night, hosted by CanWest Global’s Peter Kent. CAmagazine won four silvers and one gold in the visual categories and a gold for best issue from its pool of 20 top-10 nominations. Marketing magazine was right behind with 15 top-10 appearances, winning two golds and two silvers for writing. The Medical Post also won four awards; one gold and three silvers for writing with seven top-10 mentions. Other winners included Forum with two golds and Canadian Lawyer with one gold and one silver. A complete list of the winners will soon be made available at

June 3, 2003
Canadian Newsstand Awards winners announced
TORONTO-Canadian Business magazine, published by Rogers Media, has won the Newsstand Magazine Cover of the Year award at this year's Canadian Newsstand Awards/Grand prix d'excellence en kiosque. The prize, for the Dec. 30, 2002 issue of the magazine, was announced yesterday at the awards presentation held at Mags University in Toronto. (Click the Canadian Newsstand Awards button on this page to see all the winning covers.) In the Extra-Large circulation category (over 200,000 total circ), the September 2002 issue of Homemakers from Transcontinental Media took the top spot. In the Large circulation category (circulation 75,000 to 200,000), Avid Media's Canadian Gardening's April 2002 issue was named winner. The winner in the Mid-size circulation category (10,000 to 75,000), was the September 2002 issue of Shambhala Sun, an independent Buddhist magazine. The Small circulation category (under 10,000) winner was This Magazine, for its November/December 2002 issue. Kelvin Lillico, key account manager for Transcontinental Media, was named Newsstand Marketer of the Year, a new award. National Magazine Award winners were honoured at a gala event last Friday night in Toronto. Outpost magazine received the President's Medal for General Excellence. To see a list of all the winners and nominees, visit

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Jaded says:
Wow, Torstar really seems to be on a mission to bankrupt one magazine after another....
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