Protected: National NewsMedia Council Notice of Annual General Meeting

Competition for 2018 Fraser MacDougall Prize for Best New Canadian in Human Rights Reporting now open

TORONTO, March 27, 2018 – The National NewsMedia Council, in partnership with Journalists for Human Rights, is pleased to announce the opening of the second annual Fraser MacDougall Prize for Best New Canadian Voice in Human Rights Reporting.

The Prize is awarded to an exceptional piece of human-rights-focussed journalism published in campus-based media during the past academic year, as determined by a panel of distinguished judges.

Winners (typically, the story’s writer and editor) receive a cash prize of $1,000 and are recognized for their achievement at the annual Journalists for Human Rights Gala, held in Toronto, where their campus publication will be distributed to all guests. As well, the winning story will be re-published in The Toronto Star.  Last year’s winning piece from The Varsity can be read here.

The award is made possible by a generous endowment of the late Fraser MacDougall, who had a distinguished career in journalism, chiefly with The Canadian Press. Later in life, he was the first executive secretary of the former Ontario Press Council, which was a forerunner to the NNC.

This year’s competition will open on March 27, 2018. Submissions will be accepted until May 15, 2018 at 23:59 EST.

To be considered complete, your application must include:

  • A copy of the story in either print or digital format
  • The names of the principle writer and editor who worked on the story
  • A one page write up (maximum) that contains information on:
    • What kind of human rights issue was addressed
    • Why this story was important to its readers
    • What changes, if any, came of its publication
    • Any other information about the editorial process you’d like to highlight to judges

Queries about the award can be directed to Brent Jolly, the NNC’s director of communications and community management, at:

National NewsMedia Council debuts new ‘True Confessions’ podcast

The National NewsMedia Council is proud to present the first episode of our Acts of Journalism podcast.
The first season of the Acts of Journalism podcast is titled True Confessions, which riffs off of the imagery of the renowned 1940s and 1950s noir magazines often placed near grocery store checkout counters.
The series offers a frank discussion about the professional and ethical dilemmas encountered by many of Canada’s most prominent journalists during their storied careers. During the in-depth conversations, journalists ‘come clean’ about editorial mistakes, misjudgments, and/or ethical dilemmas. In short, we offer a forum where respected reporters can take ‘a mulligan’.
In talking about these ‘do-overs’, the goal of this podcast is not vindictive, but a chance to allow veterans to show young journalists that everyone, at some point in their career, commits errors. The purpose is not to focus on the mistakes made, but how one goes about correcting them and setting the record straight. In that way, True Confessions is rehabilitative of the soul.
Our first episode features a conversation with agent provocateur Jesse Brown from Canadaland.
It is available on your favourite podcast app, including: iTunes, Google Play, and Stitcher.

NNC and Ryerson University launch ‘2018 Local News Survey’

Ryerson University, in partnership with the National NewsMedia Council, is officially launching a survey geared to small-market Canadian newsrooms. The objective of the survey is to gather data to better understand innovation and engagement at the local level.

This results of this survey will be used to compare data to similar surveys that have already been conducted in the United States, Spain, and Austria.

We’re asking Canadian journalists working for newspapers with a print circulation under 50,000 to please complete the survey at this link:

For more information on the survey, visit the Ryerson Journalism website.

If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to contact Brent Jolly, director or communication, research, and community management at: 416-341-1981 ext 3; or

Former Ontario Press Council executive director passes away

A message from John Fraser, President and CEO, National NewsMedia Council of Canada:

On behalf of the National NewsMedia Council, we were saddened to hear of Don McCurdy’s death today.

Don was the last executive director of the Ontario Press Council and it was his initial push to create a litigious-free national news media dispute resolution organization that ultimately led to the creation to the NNC. On a personal level, I will always be grateful for his generosity and loyalty during the transition period and then his continued support of the new organization right up to his death. The Canadian news media has lost a good friend.

John Fraser appointed as National NewsMedia Council’s Executive Chair

The National NewsMedia Council of Canada today announced that its new Executive Chair will be John Fraser, the veteran journalist, author and educator who was the founding president and CEO of the three-year-old institution. He succeeds Shelley Chrest of British Columbia who now resumes her former role as vice chair (Western Canada). The other vice chairs are Joanne De Laurentiis (Central Canada) and Miller Ayre (Eastern Canada).

In the position of Executive Director is Pat Perkel who will continue as Complaints Co-ordinator in this reconfiguring of the pivotal role she has been playing at the NNC since its inception. Brent Jolly, who has also joined the NNC full-time as Communications Director, will report directly to Ms Perkel. Ms Perkel has the special responsibility of providing speedy, non-litigious redress to members of the public for mistakes and ethical concerns or lapses in the media.

The NNC was formed in the fall of 2015 out of the former provincial press councils in British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario and Atlantic Canada. The Alberta Press Council members have recently elected to join the NNC in January 2019.

The NNC founding chair was the Hon. Frances Lankin, now in the Senate of Canada. The new executive chair will take up his new position effective immediately. His special responsibilities will be to continue recruitment in the innovative academic membership programme, to expand the digital news media base of the Council, to liaise with various government bodies, and generally to disseminate the council’s mandate to defend journalistic ethics and the notion of non-litigious resolution of errors and disputes.

New Newsletters!

The National NewsMedia Council is pleased to bring you our latest newsletters. Please click here to read a copy of our Spring 2017 edition. You can also click here to read our May 2017 edition.

Documents for December’s AGM now online

The entire suite of documents that members will require for the NNC’s first annual general meeting, to be held on December 8, 2016, are now available.

Please see the appropriate links below.

  • For a copy of the AGM Agenda, please click here.
  • For a copy of the Nominations Ballot, please click here.
  • For copies of the auditor’s report and other financial documents, please contact Brent Jolly, NNC’s community manager, at: immediately.