Canadian Magazine Industry News
10 November 2009,     TORONTO
Media in Canada pay wall to go up next week
Following the success of putting a pay wall on its broadcast and production journal, two years ago, Brunico Communications will be charging a fee to access starting November 16, says executive vice president Laas Turnbull.

Turnbull says the company has put a lot of time and resources into the place that Media in Canada is at now and isn’t worried about web traffic decreasing significantly with the change. It currently has 65,000 unique visitors and 120,000 page views per month according to Google Analytics. “With Playback we were surprised that our web traffic didn’t dip at all,” he says. “I don’t have a scientific explanation for it but I think that when people are paying for something they want to get full value from it.”

If users register before Nov. 16, they get the reduced rate of $99.95. Otherwise it will cost $149.95 for a year’s use of the site. Turnbull says advertising rates will remain the same and the newsletter, which has a circulation of 13,000 will continue to be sent out for free. Turnbull says he wanted Media in Canada to come in priced well below its main competitor, AdNews, which costs users about $299 per year.

Those in media agencies will still be able to access Media in Canada free of charge because Turnbull says those are the most attractive users to the company. “There are three goals of the pay wall,” he says. “One is to set it up. Second is to keep media planners and buyers on for free and thirdly is to increase our reach into that community.”

Turnbull says that they have been expanding Media in Canada over the past few months, adding video and setting up a dedicated team to the site which sets them up well for the pay wall. “I think we have been moving towards this for a year-and-a-half to two years,” he says. “It has always been our intention to do this. People still squawk about it but the reality is that media is based on two revenue streams — subscriber and advertiser. I think that the one stream model doesn’t work. There are such high staffing costs and overhead. I think that if you have a good product people will pay for it.”

— Val Maloney
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Wow, Torstar really seems to be on a mission to bankrupt one magazine after another....
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