Things were bad for Brunico Communications but it looks like things have taken a turn for the worst as we got a tip that the Toronto-based publisher has shut down two print publications and will move to producing the magazine online. Boards and Playback been effected and most of their staff have been laid off as a result. According to a note on Playback’s website:
After 24 years of delivering you the news via traditional paper and ink, Canada’s film, TV and digital entertainment industry journal of record will now be published exclusively on its digital platform at PlaybackOnline.ca.
Embarking on this new print-less chapter seems only fitting as each of the sectors Playback serves tries to evolve their business models to reflect the relentless growth of the digital media landscape. Now that we’re focused on more flexible real time content, expect to see expanded coverage as Playback continues its legacy of providing topical commentary and context for the issues affecting the broadcast and production community.
While the transition may appear sudden, this decision was made from a position of strength. Since 2007, when we decided to convert playbackonline.ca to a paid access site, we have been preparing for the inevitable reality that demand for a bi-weekly compendium of industry news, analysis and insight would cede to the immediacy of the web. Our online readership has never been stronger with over 10,000 readers of Playback Daily, our site traffic is continually growing and we now boast a significant paid digital circulation.
Playback‘s reporting team, led by editor Brendan Christie, will continue to cover all the entertainment business news to be distributed via Playback Daily, and will be expanding their online remit to better serve the industry’s up-to-the-minute information needs.
Earlier in the year we saw Strategy Magazine, also owned by Brunico move to a pay wall model where they charge readers to access the online content. To date pay walls have not been a successful revenue model for publications.