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Welcome to the official blog of the British Columbia and Yukon Community Newspapers Association (BCYCNA).

We look forward to sharing stories from across our network of news providers, as well as articles, links, and announcements from industry friends everywhere. Be sure to check this space often for BCYCNA updates, and to offer your feedback on community newspapers!

Countdown to the Ma Murray Awards

Published on September 26, 2014, by in Uncategorized.
The countdown is on! The 2015 Ma Murray Awards Gala will be taking place on Saturday, April 25, 2015 at the River Rock Casino Resort.

Now is the time to start gathering your best work from 2014. Think about some of the best photos, campaigns, articles, and community services that your paper has been responsible for this year, and get ready to be recognized for your work!

In fact, you can avoid the mad rush that always happens at holiday time by uploading entries right now to the online electronic scrapbook. This is a new feature that lets you save your most award-worthy work directly to the online contest system site in advance. With this system you can upload it right to your new online scrapbook and it will be there waiting for you when it’s time to formally submit your entries. (And if you change your mind come contest time, no harm done – you are not required to use the entries you put in your scrapbook.) Get the easy step-by-step instructions here.

If you need a reminder of all the award categories, here is a complete list. (Please keep in mind that these categories are currently under review and there may be some changes coming before the 2015 competition officially opens.)

Also, the BCYCNA Awards Gala Committee surveyed the last few years of entries and came up with a list of your “Best Odds” categories. Check it out here.

We always welcome your feedback and suggestions, and could always use new contacts for Award Sponsors, so if you have ideas, please feel free to call or email the BCYCNA office at any time.

Let’s make 2015 the best Ma Murray Awards Gala ever!

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National Newspaper Week is Coming

Published on September 26, 2014, by in Uncategorized.


The 74th annual National Newspaper Week (NNW) will take place from October 5-11, 2014.

This week-long celebration recognizes the important role that newspapers play in the lives of communities large and small around the world. The theme of this year’s event is “Newspapers: The Foundation of Vibrant Communities”

NNW also includes Newspaper Carrier Day, which takes place on Saturday, October 11. This special day is designed to honour the hard-working men and women who make a vital contribution to the industry.

In order to help promote National Newspaper Week and Carrier Day, Newspaper Association Managers and Newspapers Canada have produced a package of free materials for newspapers to use in their own publications.

Newspapers Canada encourages all members to download and publish these materials in an effort to promote the enduring strength of the newspaper industry during this week-long celebration.

Here are two ads you can customize and run in your paper: one for National Newspaper Week, and one for Newspaper Carrier Day. The full National Newspaper Week resource kit—which includes a variety of editorial cartoons, puzzles, editorials and more—is available at


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Facebook is not out-competing community newspapers Or – Why we are awesome

Published on September 26, 2014, by in Uncategorized.


Contrary to popular belief, it is not less expensive to advertise online than in a community paper. In fact, it can be a lot more expensive to buy Facebook than print.

Before I explain, let’s take a moment to remember why you do what you and just how awesome community newspapers are.

You already know that the people in your communities trust the ads they see in their community paper more than the ads they see in any other media[1]. And that they prefer to see ads in their community paper over any other media. And that community papers have a far greater reach than online, TV, and radio advertising.

But sometimes advertisers need a little more convincing.

Suzanne Raitt, Senior Vice-President and Chief Marketing Officer at Newspapers Canada, has provided the BCYCNA with numerous studies that can be used to communicate the immense value, reach, and connectedness of community papers.

In a 2013 study by Totem Research, 95% of respondents said their number one reason for reading community newspapers was for local news or local events. In other words, when people want to know what’s happening in their community, they turn to their community paper. And that’s not going to change. As columnist Robert Williams[2] puts it:

“As long as parents take pride in the birth of a baby, a home run by their Little Leaguer, or graduation, marriage, promotion or any number of life’s milestones, people will enjoy reading about them in their community newspaper.

As long as people care about who died in their community this week, how high their taxes may rise or who scored the winning touchdown at the high school football game — community newspapers will be alive.

As long as bulletin boards and refrigerator doors display cherished family memories, community newspapers will be alive.


Despite what a few might have you believe, newspapers are far from dead.”

No, they’re not even close to dead. Rather, newspapers are “The Foundation of Vibrant Communities” – that is the theme of this year’s National Newspaper Week, running from October 5 – 11, 2014 (

As newspaper publishers, you already know your importance in your community. But sometimes it’s nice to be reminded.

The community paper holds a special place in the home. Community newspapers are part of the home, and part of the community. Often read by more than one person, they have a long shelf life. In contrast, a medium like radio is fragmented, requiring many ads on many stations to effectively connect with their market.

While many assume that community newspapers are losing out to an ever-more-digital world, here’s a tidbit you may not have thought about:

One ad in the BCYCNA network of 120+ papers will be circulated to almost 2 million homes. Since more than one person in each home will likely read the paper, our network’s weekly readership is around 2.3 million.

To place an ad in the BCYCNA network, an advertiser will need to spend $395 (for a classified ad) or $995 (for a 1 column x 2 inch display ad).

To measure “readership” in the online world, we have to think of “impressions” – how many times an ad appears before a potential reader. To get even 1 million impressions on Facebook, an advertiser would have to spend almost $10,000.

Let’s see… What makes more sense? Spending less than $1,000 for 2.3 million impressions in the most-trusted medium, where audiences prefer to receive their advertising? Or spending ten times the money for less than half the impressions – on Facebook?

The impact is huge when you look at it from a province-wide angle. Now let’s look at it from a more local perspective, where Facebook can be a useful advertising tool: in a town of 20,000 (White Rock, for example), what is the likelihood that a Facebook ad will reach all the residents? Answer: it won’t.

According to Facebook’s own advertising algorithms, only 15,000 people in White Rock actually use Facebook. So no matter how much money you spend, you can’t reach them all.

Also, the effectiveness of Facebook varies by location. In a city like Ladner, the maximum number of people that can be reached via Facebook is 3,800, even though the population is 21,000. So while it may be an inexpensive option, less than 20% of Ladner’s population actually uses Facebook, so most of them are not even going to see the ad.

But each and every one of them is going to receive their community newspaper.

There is simply NO OTHER MEDIUM with the depth and breadth of reach that community newspapers can provide. We are not only the most trusted media, but we also have the greatest reach.

So if you had any doubt, put it to rest. We’re not going anywhere.

Publishers, feel free to use any of the marketing materials provided by Newspapers Canada, linked below.

Connecting to Canadians with Community Newspapers

Community Newspaper Fact Sheet 2014

Shopping Habits of Rural vs. Urban Canadians.pdf

Media and Ad Engagement Research Summary.pdf

For all of the above fact sheets (and more):

[1] Except where otherwise noted, data comes from Connecting to Canadians with Community Newspapers, 2013).


[2] Robert M. Williams, Jr. is a weekly newspaper publisher in Georgia and president of the National Newspaper Association, representing more than 2,500 daily and weekly newspapers across America. Email him at



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Don’t forget about Bridge – One of Adobe’s most useful tools

Published on September 8, 2014, by in Uncategorized.

Screen shot 2014-09-08 at 11.07.23 AM

Checking my email has produced better than usual results this morning. Besides looking over questions from readers and browsing through the more than 2,000 spam messages I receive on an average morning, I’ve enjoyed seeing responses coming in from a survey that I posted late yesterday. As newspaper associations and groups throughout North America have begun sending requests to their  of newspaper publishers and managers to complete the survey, responses are arriving at the rate of one to two per minute this morning.

Survey questions relate to advertising, social media, industry evolution, technology and more. If you haven’t completed the survey, visit to share your responses.


Adobe Bridge: The most underused tool in Adobe’s Creative Suite/Cloud

I have to admit: I’m as much to blame as anyone. Honestly, I figured everyone was already using Adobe Bridge, so I’ve not put  much effort into teaching Bridge tools at workshops and classes over the past few years.

Longtime photo editors remember the Browser from versions of Photoshop prior to CS2. Since then, Bridge has been included in all Creative Suite/Cloud packages and also with stand-alone Adobe Photoshop.


The Image Processor allows Bridge users to convert files and run Photoshop Actions on large groups of images at one time.

So why am I bringing up the Bridge now? After recent trips to train small and large newspapers in several states, I noticed that most designers and photo editors rarely, if ever, use the Bridge. As a result, I added a Bridge class in a day long training session for a large paper in California in September, and the response was pretty surprising. Almost everything I taught was new to everyone in the group.


What is Adobe Bridge?

First and foremost, Adobe Bridge is a digital asset management application. It keeps track of your files, whether they are photos, PDFs or whatever and makes them easy to find and display intuitively.

The most common use for Bridge is simply finding files. Click on a folder or drive and see thumbnails of all the files in that location. I’ve found the Bridge most useful for browsing pictures on a camera card and quickly deciding which to keep and which to discard. Not only can you search files by name, users can find files using metadata. Metadata is a set of standardized information about a file, including author, resolution, color space, copyright, and keywords applied to it. For example, most digital cameras attach some basic information to an image file, such as height, width, file format and time the image was taken. These are all included in the metadata.

When I visited with Jean Matua, Minnesota publisher, three years ago, she asked how we could create a photo archive that would enable her staff to easily pull up any image from the past. We did that using Adobe Bridge. By adding keywords into the metadata of each image, a process that takes just a moment, the pics can be found in a matter of seconds with a simple search in the future.


Users can select “Batch Rename” in Adobe Bridge to move, copy and rename groups of photos from one place to another.


I’ve used a variety of Bridge tools since Photoshop added the Browser way back in March 2002. My favorite has been the “Batch Rename” feature, which allows me to take all – or any selected – images on a camera card and move or copy them to a new location with the name of my choice. This is incredibly valuable, as it allows me to take all 200 of those photos taken at the high school game and place them in a designated folder with the names “2014Football-001,” “2014Football-002,” etc.

The Image Processor is another valuable tool in the Bridge. With it, I can select a folder full of images and convert them to JPG, TIF or PSD format with the click of a button. Even better, the Image Processor allows me to run Photoshop Actions on all images in a folder at once, without leaving the Bridge.

I’d almost forgotten how easy it is to create web galleries using the Bridge. By simply selecting a folder or group of images, then clicking a few buttons, I have a complete gallery of images, in whatever format I choose, ready to upload to an FTP site. This means a user can literally create a Web page catalog of hundreds of photos, which can be clicked and enlarged on the screen, in a matter of seconds.

There’s more to Bridge. Edits made through Camera RAW are actually non-destructive. The settings are saved in an external file instead of embedded into the image. Sure, you can edit your RAW images in Photoshop, but working in Camera RAW in the Bridge is quicker.

Users can create image catalogs, assign copyright messages, export files for social media and more. Needless to say, Adobe Bridge is a valuable tool in any designer or photo editor’s arsenal.

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The Challenge of Client Engagement

Published on September 3, 2014, by in Uncategorized.

By John Foust

Raleigh, NC

These days, there’s a lot of talk about employee engagement. According to Gallup research, approximately 30 percent of employees in the US and Canada are fully engaged in their jobs; their organizations have won their heads and their hearts, and they are passionate about their work. On the other hand, roughly 50 percent of employees are not engaged; they are essentially going through the motions in jobs they see as unfulfilling and not using their talents. Even worse, about 20 percent are actively disengaged; they hate their jobs and spread their bitterness by complaining to coworkers, and along the way, they may even try to undermine the operation.

Although there are a number of reasons for these abysmal engagement numbers, the number one cause is an employee’s relationship with his or her manager. And the number one symptom of disengagement is turnover. Wise organizations – and wise managers – are working hard to create engaging environments and reduce employee dissatisfaction.

In the media industry, smart advertising managers are looking at another kind of engagement – customer engagement. They are asking, “What do our advertisers think of the way we manage our relationships with them? How many of them are excited about running with us? How many are running by rote? And how many are advertising with us, but resent it?

How does this impact the churn – or the advertiser turnover – rate? Look at it from the advertisers’ point of view. If a paper’s contact with them is always about selling something or asking for money, the relationship is on thin ice. If you were to measure your accounts’ engagement rate, would you find similar numbers? Out of every ten advertisers, do you have three big fans, five passive participants and two vocal complainers?

While this is not a problem that can be solved overnight, here are some thoughts which may be springboards for ideas you can use at your paper:

1. Make advertisers part of the creative process. Too many sales people forget this important principle. Listen to their ideas, before you present yours.

2. Attend special events hosted or promoted by your advertisers. Show them that you’re engaged in their activities and interests.

3. Host special events for advertisers. Use these occasions to express appreciation for their business and provide them with networking opportunities.

4. Host a focus group of key advertisers. This is a good way to explore how your paper can better serve your business community. You can also include discussions on possible changes in your products and services. Give them a voice in the decision process.

5. Speak at service clubs in your area. Take promotional material, but don’t make sales pitches. Talk about the role of journalism in your community.

6. Host career days for high school and college students. Don’t say, “Sit in the corner and watch us do our jobs.” Make it a worthwhile experience.

7. Adopt a local nonprofit agency each year. Solicit ideas from your advertisers, regarding which agency to select. Run articles to promote the organization’s fundraising and volunteer efforts.


(c) Copyright 2014 by John Foust. All rights reserved.


John Foust has conducted training programs for thousands of newspaper advertising professionals. Many ad departments are using his training videos to save time and get quick results from in-house training. E-mail for information:

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Municipal Election Advertising Guidelines

Published on August 20, 2014, by in Uncategorized.


With municipal elections coming up this Fall, the BCYCNA would like to share with you the recently-released Local Elections Campaign Financing Act from Elections BC.

In short, the rules for media outlets have not really changed; you can take as many ads as you want! The onus, and changes, are relevant for the candidates, not for the media. Just do ensure that you charge the same rate for all candidates.

The full document can be found here: ElectionsBC-Local Elections Campaign Financing Act

For now, Elections BC’s Communications department would like to specifically draw your attention to sections 44 and 45, below.

Local Elections Campaign Financing Act

Part 5 — Transparency Requirements for Local Elections and Assent Voting

Division 1 — Sponsorship of Election Advertising and Assent Voting Advertising

Advertising must include sponsorship information

(1) Subject to any applicable regulations, an individual or organization must not sponsor
election advertising or assent voting advertising, or transmit such advertising to the public, unless the advertising

(a)  identifies,

i.         in the case of advertising sponsored by a candidate or elector organization as part of the candidate’s or elector organization’s campaign, the name of the financial agent, or

ii.         in any other case, the name of the sponsor,

(b)  indicates that it was authorized by the identified financial agent or sponsor,

(c)   gives a telephone number, email address or mailing address at which the financial agent or sponsor may be contacted regarding the advertising,

(d)  if applicable, indicates that the sponsor is a registered third party sponsor or assent voting advertising sponsor under this Act, and

(e)  meets any other requirements established by regulation.

(2) If information is required to be provided under subsection (1),

(a)  any telephone number given must have a British Columbia area code,

(b)  any mailing address given must be within British Columbia, and

(c)   the sponsor must make available an individual to be responsible for answering questions from individuals who are directed to the telephone number, email address or mailing address.

(3) The information required under subsection (1) must be provided

(a)  in English or in a manner that is understandable to readers of English, and

(b)  if all or part of the election advertising is in a language other than English, in the other language or in a manner that is understandable to readers of that other language.

(4) For certainty, in the case of advertising that is sponsored in combination by multiple sponsors, the requirements of this section apply in relation to each sponsor.

(5) An individual or organization that contravenes this section commits an offence.

Restrictions on general voting day advertising


(1) An individual or organization must not sponsor or agree to sponsor election
advertising or non-election assent voting advertising that is or is to be transmitted to the public on general voting day, whether the transmission is within British Columbia or outside British Columbia.

(2) An individual or organization must not transmit election advertising or non-election assent voting advertising to the public on general voting day.

(3) Subject to section 153 (4) [prohibition on certain activities within 100 metres of voting proceedings on general voting day] of the Local Government Act and section 125 (4) of the Vancouver Charter, subsections (1) and (2) of this section do not apply in respect of the following election advertising or non-election assent voting advertising:

(a)  communication on the internet, if the communication was transmitted to the public on the internet before general voting day and was not changed before the close of general voting;

(b)  communication by means of signs, posters or banners;

(c)   communication by the distribution of pamphlets;

(d)  any other election advertising or non-election assent voting advertising prescribed by regulation.

(4) An individual or organization that contravenes this section commits an offence.


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Ma Murray Awards 2015

Published on August 20, 2014, by in Uncategorized.


It may not be on your radar yet, but perhaps it should be. The 2015 Ma Murray Awards Gala takes place on Saturday, April 25, 2015 at the River Rock Casino Resort. But the contest entry period will open up in just a couple of months! So now is a great time to start thinking about some of the great work you’ve already published in 2014, and how you can ensure that your paper and your staff are among the finalists celebrated at next year’s event.

In this month’s newsletter, we’d like to focus on some of the ways you can maximize your chances of bringing home one of the coveted statues to display in your paper’s front office.

The BCYCNA Awards Gala Committee surveyed the last few years of entries and came up with a list of your “Best Odds” categories. Check it out here.

If you need a reminder of all the award categories, here is a current list. Please note that this list may be updated in the coming months.

And finally, the staff in the BCYCNA office put together a step-by-step guide on how to create a year-round electronic Scrapbook of entries. This is a new feature that lets you save your most award-worthy work directly to the online contest system site. Save yourself the trouble of rushing around looking for that elusive Feature Series you wrote, or that really powerful photo you caught… if only you could remember which issue it ran in… With this system you can upload it right to your new online scrapbook and it will be there waiting for you when it’s time to compile your entries. Read more here.

We always welcome your feedback and suggestions, and could always use new contacts for Award Sponsors, so if you have ideas, please feel free to call or email the BCYCNA office at any time.

Let’s make 2015 the best Ma Murray Awards Gala ever!


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Free Software – Readers Send Questions to Kevin For Honest Answers

Published on August 6, 2014, by in Uncategorized.

So much to write about, so little space. That’s my dilemma this morning.

I’ve had people writing and calling, wanting my thoughts concerning some quotes from well known industry “experts” about changes at Gannett and Scripps. Readers have been asking what I think about The Times-Picayune adding two print delivery days – that’s back up to five days a week delivery – plus returning to a full broadsheet page. Our industry must be in a free-fall. Or is it?

My dilemma doesn’t revolve around those things, however. I promised to pen a question/answer column this month and I keep my promises. I might have to write a second column later, but for now here are a few questions I’ve received over the past few weeks from readers:

Q: From Heidi, in Iowa:

Our publisher suggested I email you with an InDesign question that we have. Occasionally we will receive pre-built ads in pdf format that were built in InDesign. When we pull the PDF onto our pages in InDesign and the PDF the page to send to press sometimes a white box will appear on the ad or part of the art will be whited out.  Do you know what could be causing this?


INT Half Vert.indd

A: I still get asked about these white lines all the time, Heidi. Karen wrote a couple of days after you, putting it like this: “What causes the white lines in a PDF?  This inquiring mind wants to know.  I got one from a client this morning and it was loaded with them.”

These white lines come during the creation side of the PDF process. So there’s not a lot you can do to keep it from happening, other than hoping your advertiser stops sending you PDF files with white lines. I have a couple of pieces of good news for you, though.

First, these lines are due to issues with transparency. Those issues have decreased over time and are much less common than they were a few years ago. As your advertisers upgrade their software, this will happen less often. Second, these lines don’t print most of the time. They are “visual elements” that don’t exist when printed.

Should it still concern you that you have lines on your page, there are a few fixes on your end. One of the easiest is to turn off the “Smooth Line Art” option in Acrobat. A second fix is to open the PDF file in Photoshop at a high resolution (600 or higher) and save the file from there.


Firefox and Gimp are examples of quality open source software. Still, there’s nothing to replace inDesign, Quark, or Acrobat.


Q: From Jim, in Chicago:

I’ve been very happy with our NewEdit/Quark newsroom pagination set up. However, in the process of purchasing new hardware and software I learned that Baseview had priced themselves  out of our market. So we are now about to use In Copy/In Design. (We’ve purchased and installed the new Macs, and shortly will begin to switch over). Any suggestions, comments and advice you can offer in this process would be greatly appreciated.

A: First, let me congratulate you on making the move to new hardware and software. You should see a tremendous increase in productivity, after a few days of growing pains while you learn the new software.

The best advice I can give to you is to have an expert trainer come in to work with your staff for two days. Learning InDesign and InCopy is simple, with good training. Without it, I’ve seen staffs work at a snail’s pace for months and years, never really getting a grasp on how to use the software efficiently. Good trainers pay for themselves in no time.

Q: From Carrie in North Carolina: My publisher asked me to ask you if there is any open source software, in place of Adobe and Quark products, available that would work to produce our publications. So I’m asking. Is there?

A: No, Carrie. There isn’t. Sure, you could use Gimp to replace Photoshop, but anything beyond that would require a significant investment in time. There are many good open source apps out there, including OpenOffice, Inkscape and Gimp. But there is a reason Adobe and Quark products aren’t cheap. If you want to create a quality publication, investing in quality hardware and software is a necessity.

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Read All About It!

Published on July 23, 2014, by in Uncategorized.

BCYCNA President’s note: This majority of this column by Vernon Morning Star editor Glenn Mitchell appeared in his paper for its 26th anniversary. Glenn is a long-time community newspaper editor and a respected person in our industry. I felt his comments here were relevant to our industry and our membership. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did. I would also love to hear your feedback on this column or any issue you feel is important to our association.   

Chuck Bennett


Read All About It

By Glenn Mitchell

Morning Star Editor

On this occasion of The Morning Star’s 26th anniversary I have to share a story of how much has changed in the newspaper industry.

Actually I’m going to go way back to when I was a youngster in Vernon and delivering The Vancouver Sun on my green Mustang bike to the 25 or 30 people spread out over East Hill and the BX.

You see The Sun was an afternoon paper in Vancouver in the ‘70s (basically no such thing as an afternoon paper anymore) and then it was trucked up to the Interior where it became a morning paper, as in the next day’s paper. So, I got up early every day, six days a week, to deliver yesterday’s news to my customers (which meant I had to deliver on holidays like Christmas because it was the Christmas Eve paper etc.).

Although daily newspapers were bigger then and sometimes the only source of national and international news, can you imagine people paying for that service today? When if it isn’t on the Web in 15 minutes or less it’s no longer considered ‘breaking news.’ I might be exaggerating slightly.

My point is, thanks to technology, everything’s a lot faster these days and the expectations on most industries aren’t far behind and we do our best to fulfill our duties online and in print best we can.

We still get the news to the community, we just do it in a variety of ways, from newsprint to the Web, to Twitter to Facebook to…..

And thanks to digital technology we can do that better, and faster of course, than ever before. I remember when The Morning Star started, the only way we could publish colour photos in the paper was to get separations done in Kelowna, which was at least a two-day turnaround, and which also meant front page photos were planned and not exactly timely or newsworthy.

However, what hasn’t changed around here are some of the talented people who still work very hard to bring an award-winning newspaper to our North Okanagan readers three times a week. I still like the paper product the best and I know I’m not alone (check any bulletin board at a school or orthodontist office near you, or even your favourite coffee shop) – long live newspapers.

Creative consultant Deb Moore and I just celebrated 25 years with Black Press and senior reporter Richard Rolke and marketing consultant Lynnaya Filbrandt are on the verge of their silver anniversaries here at The Morning Star.

It’s dedication and experience like this, and represented by so many others here at the paper and the press plant, that helps us to keep on top of things around these parts and brings our readers a community newspaper that we hope everyone appreciates.

Some think that newspapers will one day be the victims of the Internet, kind of like video rental outlets or record stores, but the comparisons are not valid for various reasons (and, personally I’m cheering on the recent revival of the vinyl record as I still have all mine from my youth and play them regularly, and get this, my 19-year-old son is buying them and playing them too).

No. 1, the community newspaper gets delivered to your door, often for free, along with your favourite retail outlet’s weekly flyer, in a nice, neat package that’s portable, transferable to everyone in the house, and entirely recyclable (no batteries or plug-in required).

How great a deal is that? What comes to your door these days, for free? The mail, you say, not for long.

Certainly the Web has had a profound impact on newspapers, especially dailies, and is an important component, as is Facebook and Twitter and whatever else comes down the pike in the future, in communicating with our readers and offering value to our advertisers.

They say the printing press was the most important invention of the last millennium, and it’s very likely the Internet (in some shape or form) will have a similar impact on this one.

And guess what? We get to utilize these two modern miracles on a daily basis as we reach out and communicate with our communities and tell their stories via print, photographs, videos, Website, Facebook…..

How cool is that? The best of the old and the best of the new combined into one vital vehicle that’s here to record history on the run as well as help lead our respective communities into the ever-changing future.

So thanks to all the readers and advertisers for their incredible support over the years and here’s to enjoying whatever the future, technologically and otherwise, may bring our way in the North Okanagan and throughout British Columbia.

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Canada’s Anti-Spam Laws and How They Affect You

Published on July 23, 2014, by in Uncategorized.

spam interdit

By now, you have probably heard of the Canadian Anti-Spam law (CASL) that came into effect earlier this month. In a nutshell, this law seriously prohibits your ability to send emails to your readers and followers.

In order to send any commercial emails to anyone, you need to have their express consent. This means that your readers must willingly check off a box or click a button that says they want to receive emails from your business in the future. This affects ALL business emails, even if you aren’t trying to sell something.

However, for the next three years, you can still send emails to those who have given implied consent before July 1st 2014. Any contacts acquired after July 1st, 2014 will have a two-year grace period.

Implied consent includes anyone who:

  • Has bought something from your company in the past two years
  • Has requested information from you in the past two years
  • Has given you their information without restriction and the emails you send them are relevant to their business

This law has hit every business across Canada, and many are scrambling to figure out how they can rebuild their lists. Any organization with a clean list will be in a much stronger position than before.

Newspapers are in a unique position of being able to rebuild their list in a way that many other companies do not have access to: print advertising. Here’s an example of copy you could use for an advertisement:

“Like our articles? Send us an email at with the subject ‘Subscribe me!’ for a chance to win a $500 VISA gift card and get all the latest news sent to your inbox!”

You don’t have to include a reward, but we recommend it. A message as simple as this is enough to qualify as express consent. The sooner you act, the sooner you can start growing your list and your leads from scratch.

For more information about CASL, click here.

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