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Canadian Press launching new “Pagemasters North America” service

Dear Colleagues:

The Canadian Press has announced the launch of a new international venture ? Pagemasters North America ? to offer newspapers and other publications in Canada and the United States a range of editorial and other service that may include editing and headline writing.

CP informed The Guild of the venture in advance of this week’s announcement, and we will soon begin discussions with the company about what it will mean to you and me, as employees of The Canadian Press.

As noted by CP President Eric Morrison, he has yet to meet with publishers to sell them on the benefits of Pagemasters, so it is unclear at this point which services they may be interested in using. It is clear, however, that the service will be designed to allow newspapers opportunities to reduce their own staffing levels by outsourcing so-called sub-editing services to an outside firm. To give you an idea of what the potential is for the North American venture, Pagemasters Australia currently offers a range of services to publishers in Australia, New Zealand and the U.K, including editorial production, TV guide, cinema listings, business data, comics pages, crosswords and racing form guides.

Many of you may have questions about the venture and how you may be affected. Unfortunately, we don’t have answers for you just yet. At this point, we don’t know, for instance, whether the company intends to hire new people or to employ existing staff to provide the service. But I can assure you that the Guild will have the interests of members at heart as we enter talks with the company about the venture.

We will provide you with updated information as quickly as possible following our discussions with management.

Terry Pedwell
President, The Canadian Press Branch

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