Canada Subsidizes Fly Fishing Magazine

April 10, 2009 By: Marshall Cutchin

Will we see U.S. journalists race north to enjoy new subsidies from the Canadian government aimed at supporting magazines? Doubtful, given the legal hurdles. But it does raise the question of whether U.S. fly fishing magazines, which have faced a crushing downturn in ad revenues, aren’t in danger of having their audiences drawn away by government-funded competition.
Yesterday the Canadian Parliament publicly announced new funding to support The Canadian Fly Fisher magazine. A quick review of the records shows that the magazine received $40,000 in support in both 2006 – 2007 and 2007-2008.
No doubt U.S. publishers will be scratching their heads over this one. The Canadian Fly Fisher magazine has a very strong circulation already, with a Web site that ranks above most in the U.S. fly fishing marketplace. They are also the official publication of Fly Fishing Canada, the non-profit organization responsible for organizing the Canadian National Fly Fishing Championships. And they are sold in U.S. fly shops and have a significant international readership.
If, as many are saying, the future of a large portion of print periodical publishing is in the non-profit or even government-subsized model, are Canadians simply ahead of the times?