OCN’s sheet format and printed subscriptions: The reasons behind our design and publishing model

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By Mark Buckshon
Publisher, Ontario Construction News

As Ontario Construction News continues to grow in its fifth month of publication, I would like to let you know about some resources and options available for readers and advertisers, and explain our publishing design and model.

You’ll notice that our electronic newspaper is designed to have the look and structure of a conventional printed newspaper. In fact, you can order printed single copies and we offer readers the option to order monthly printed subscriptions.

The printing process is quite costly. I expect virtually all readers will elect to read our publication in electronic form, but we will provide it in printed format to anyone who wishes to purchase it that way, and this offer is important to ensure our compliance with the Province of Ontario’s legal definition of a “newspaper”.

The newspaper format is essential to properly and legally publish certificates and notices under the Ontario Construction Act. The act’s regulations specify they must be published in a “construction trade newspaper”. There is an additional law, The Legislation Act (2006), which defines the word “newspaper” quite specifically. This law, which applies to all publications where public notice requirements are fulfilled through a newspaper, notes that the publication must be in “sheet form” and be published in regular intervals, with a frequency not less than weekly.

The proofing and review process for the PDF newspaper issue (which can then be printed), helps to ensure that the notices we publish are accurate and are properly archived, and comply with the both the Construction Act and Legislation Act requirements for a construction trade newspaper.

That said, the Construction Act allows the newspaper to be “electronic” and this is where we are able to save our advertisers significant amounts of money, since printed copies are sent only to individuals who request and pay for them. Without the need for “mass” printing and postage, our production costs are much lower, so we save advertisers money.

We make our entire issue available each day for our readers, while giving advertisers additional, complete access all of our archives/library files. As well, advertisers can view all the Databid.com leads and information that we publish in an online format, and receive a free updating daily eletter. The value of the overall electronic edition subscription package is $499.00 a year – but all of our regular advertisers receive it for free.

We’re excited about the future as more advertisers accept the opportunity to save money on their legally mandated notices, with confidence they are properly published according to Ontario’s laws and regulations. And we’re looking forward to improving our news coverage, delivery speed, and enhance our services our subscribers and advertisers.

I welcome your comments and questions about these observations. You can email me at buckshon@ontarioconstructionnews.com or phone (888) 627-8717 ext 224.

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