It’s the biggest magazine market in Canada, and the women’s lifestyle, arts, and travel magazines have been a mainstay of the women and men’s magazines for decades.
Now, a new report from the Canadian Press shows women’s magazines are losing out to the men’s titles as women turn to the internet and social media to find content and information.articleWomen are not getting the news they want, nor the information they need, said Debra St-Lambert, a Toronto-based researcher who has tracked the changing face of women’s publications for more than 30 years.
They’re also losing access to resources they might otherwise rely on, she said.
“They are losing the knowledge they need,” St-Laambert said.
“They’re not getting what they want to know.”
The new report finds women’s titles in the print, online and mobile media markets are losing subscribers, readership and revenue.
The decline in readership has been particularly pronounced among women under 35 and the digital age.
According to the report, the average monthly subscriber has declined to 6,000 from 6.6 million in 2017.
That’s a loss of nearly 20 per cent.
The report also shows women are losing access online, particularly online video and video game content, and their access to the latest news from the newsrooms they cover.
“The digital revolution is shifting the media landscape in a way that we haven’t seen before in our lifetime,” said Erin McLean, executive vice-president of women and books at the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB).
“Women are losing their traditional outlets of news, and it’s creating an environment where women are not just reading about a subject or a topic, they are reading it for the first time,” she said in an interview.
St-Laampet said she is frustrated by the number of women she sees reading about topics such as the Zika virus and the impact of the carbon tax, but the lack of women-centric publications in the market is something that needs to be addressed.
“We need more women-focused media outlets that are looking at topics like climate change, climate justice and other women-related issues,” she added.
“What we have to remember is we need a lot more women in journalism, and we need more voices like Erin McLaine.”
The CBC, for example, has published more than 200 articles about women’s issues and more than 20 books about women.
In 2018, the CBC launched the Women in Journalism program, which aims to teach women the industry and the field.
But even as women’s journalism continues to expand, the industry’s gender imbalance remains stark, with women accounting for only 18 per cent of the CBC’s workforce and 18 per in the boardroom.
Stambert’s research also found the proportion of female journalists has decreased in some regions.
In Quebec, for instance, women make up 13 per cent in the field, compared to 26 per cent five years ago.
In a report released in June, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) found the number one reason women do not become journalists is lack of interest.
In 2017, women made up only 27 per cent, while men made up 30 per cent and the proportion in journalism was almost identical.
“When women aren’t making up the lion’s share of journalists, they aren’t the face of the profession,” said Sarah Ruhl, a CCCA research fellow who has studied the changing nature of journalism.
Stallone said the CBC is changing its approach to women in the industry.
It is increasing its involvement in the editorial process and has hired more women to its editorial staff.
But it remains the exception rather than the rule, he said.
Stampes said she has noticed a growing gap between what women want in their magazine and what is available.
“Women want a magazine that reflects them, but they don’t want the same kind of coverage of their lives that they have in other spaces,” she wrote in an email.
“So women want to see their stories in magazines that reflect their identity, not just the stories of other women.
This is why it is so important for women to have access to diverse media platforms like magazines.”
The report comes as the CBC faces mounting pressure to update its print and online offerings to include more women’s content, which could be as simple as offering the same stories in all formats, she added.
“The reality is that women are just not receiving the same level of content they deserve, whether that’s on the print or online side, as it relates to their experiences, said Danielle Macdonald, executive director of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).
Macdonald said the CFIB supports women in business but the organization has long been critical of the current structure of the business publishing industry, and its perceived bias toward men.”
There is a significant