Is The New York Times the Largest Paid News Outlet in Canada?

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logo of the New York times beside a maple leave on a brick wall
Is the New York Times the largest paid media in Canada?

In Canada, The New York Times is said to have more digital subscribers than any Canadian newspaper, according to a report by Harvard’s Neiman Lab. An estimated 94,000 Canadians pay for a digital subscription to the Times. Making it the largest paid audience of any news site in Canada.

The Globe and Mail, National Post, and Toronto Star should be concerned. When an American news institution outperforms local Canadian players in their own market it’s a clear sign their lagging in their digital subscriber strategy.

A quick summary of the original Canadaland interview with Catherine Porter, Canadian bureau chief of the New York Times, is below:

  • The decline in Canadian journalism created an opening in the market for The New York Times.
  • Canada represents 27% of the Times international subscribers.
  • NYT had one reporter in Canada for the last 10 year, now increased to three: Ian Austin in Ottawa, Catherine Porter in Toronto, Dan Bilefsky  in Montreal
  • NYT has more digital subscribers in Canada then any other newspaper Star, Globe etc. 
  • Articles need to be relevant to core NYT US/International audience. Not written exclusively for Canadians. 
  • Focused on depth and nuance of coverage. 
  • Not doing quick pieces. CBC does lots of quick stuff. NYT goes really deep but does some big story breaking news stuff. 
  • Look at Canadian issues with an international lens. Impact journalism. 
  • Super vigorous on editing and fact checking. They take the paper of record status very seriously. 
  • Business model is digital first subscriptions.
  • Not trying to compete with Canadian newspapers. Not doing local reporting.