Peak Publications Society Board of Directors meeting

Peak Publications Society Board of Directors Meeting Agenda

September 17, 2015

The Peak offices

Chair: Max Hill

In Attendance:

  • Maia Odegaard (Board Secretary, non-voting)
  • Max Hill (Editor in Chief)
  • Tamara Connor (Collective Rep)
  • Melissa Roach (Collective Rep)
  • MuhammadQasim Dewji (Employee Rep)

Regrets:

  • Natalie Serafini (At-large Rep)
  • Call to Order
  • Approval of Agenda
  • Approval of past minutes from August 20, 2015
  • Financial update

Maia will present the finances from the spring semester and a budget proposal for the fall.

  • Approval of The Tartan for a second issue

Whereas the success of the pilot of The Tartan Magazine outlined in appendix A demonstrates a considerable interest in a subsidiary, sister publication under the control of the Peak Publications Society for readers, SFU community members and contributors, Whereas a second issue will serve as further experimentation and be followed by a hiatus in which its long-term future can be suitably investigated, Be it resolved to approve a second issue of  “The Peak Publications Society presents: The Tartan,” as detailed in appendix A. Be it resolved to reallocate $2,285 from short-term investments to the second issue budget.

  • Adjournment

Peak Publications Society Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

August 20, 2015 — Havana, Vancouver

In Attendance:

  • Maia Odegaard (Board Secretary, non-voting)
  • Max Hill (Editor in Chief)
  • Melissa Roach (Collective Rep)
  • Katherine Gillard (Employee Rep)
  • Natalie Serafini (At-large Rep)

Regrets:

  • Tamara Connor (Collective Rep)
  • Call to Order 6:03 p.m.
  • Approval of agenda

Add election of employee rep to replace Katherine, who is giving her two weeks notice, as item 8

Katherine / Natalie

All in favour

  •  Approval of past minutes from July 23, 2015
    Melissa / Katherine
    All in favour
  • Investment update

Maia presented the Society’s investment portfolio to date, noting that overall our investments are doing quite well.
No vote.

  • Financial update
    Maia reported that rent for the Peak offices has gone up from previous years and noted that he budget will be adjusted to reflect this increase going forward. The amount spent on wages by the end of July was relatively low as the new contributor invoicing system has allowed for only those contributors who want a pay cheque to be paid, cutting the number of cheques that end up stale dated.
    No vote
  • Peak newsstands
    Max and Maia summarized their meeting with Todd Gattinger or SFU Facilities Services regarding the current state of the newsstands on the Burnaby campus. They asked that we consider replacing the stands in honour of the upcoming 50th anniversary celebrations and the efforts to beautify the campus. However, we have an agreement with CJSF and the Tartan magazine, who will both be using other portions of our stands in the fall. As a compromise, Maia will reply to Todd and explain the agreements and offer to have a group do some cleaning of the stands, and request that facilities aid us in removing badly damaged stands/repositioning the existing stands to maximize placement of those in good condition.

No vote.

  • ACP conference in Austin, Texas
    BIRT the fall conference budget will be $11,000 to accommodate sending 7 individuals to the upcoming Associated Collegiate Press conference in Austin, Texas from October 28 to November 1, 2015.

Katherine / Natalie
All in favour

  •  Katherine Gillard’s resignation

Katherine is leaving the position of Promotions Coordinator effective September 3, and will also be leaving the position of Employee Representative on the Board. Maia will post the Promo position on the-peak.ca on Monday, August 24, with a deadline to apply of Sept. 2, in hopes that Katherine may be able to interview potential candidates with Maia and Max. Maia will meet with the only remaining employee, MuhammadQasim and discuss the board position available to him.
No vote.

  • Replacing broken chairs
    BIRT $300 will be used to purchase a minimum of four new office chairs and all those that are unsightly/broken will be disposed of.
    Katherine / Natalie

All in favour

  • Adjournment: 7:11 p.m.

Approved by_______________________  &  ___________________________ on _________________.

Appendix A: The Tartan Magazine Proposal for Second Issue

             September 17, 2015

Evaluation

1.1 Success of the pilot issue of The Tartan

The first issue of The Tartan enjoyed great success. From the very beginning, there was a lot of interest in both working for The Tartan, as well as contributing to it. There were 17 people who applied for the four editorial positions and 26 students had their work (writing, illustrations and photos) published in the magazine. There were also many additional contributors whose work either ended up not fitting into the pilot issue or were not completed in time. Many pieces, especially in the nonfiction section, are still being worked on for their inclusion in a future issue.

Two weeks following distribution, there are barely any of the 1,000 copies of The Tartan left on the stands. The Alumni Association was so impressed with the magazine that they requested extra copies to hand out to their members.

There were many compliments on the look of The Tartan during the Week of Welcome and at the Activity Fair for Orientation and it contributed to a very successful engagement of new students towards being involved in both the magazine as well as The Peak newspaper.

The online version of the magazine has also been a success in capturing the interest of students and other community members, especially for the Top 50 article which is one of the most viewed and liked articles published on The Peak’s Facebook page this semester. In addition, many students have expressed an interest in future issues both in terms of reading and becoming a contributor. The Tartan has also been solicited by groups expressing interest in being featured in the magazine. For example, the Univer City Public Art Society has contacted The Tartan in hopes of having an article about them published in the Spring edition.

1.2 Proposed vs. Actual Budget of Pilot Issue

The pilot issue of The Tartan cost $1,927.20 more than the original amount budgeted. This discrepancy is due largely to a lack of advertising, as well as additional costs to the printing fee due to previously unaccounted for taxes. With a successful issue now available to show advertisers and the fact that this issue will be produced in the fall instead of the summer, The Tartan should be able to receive our original projection of $2,000 worth of advertising. With more knowledge gained through the process of creating the pilot issue, adjustments can be made to ensure printing is done for under $7,000.

Proposed Pilot Budget

REVENUE
Features Editor Wages (summer + fall semesters) 7,215.00
Advertising 2,000.00
Other 0.00
TOTAL REVENUE 9,215.00
EXPENSES
Printing 7,000.00
Miscellaneous 0.00
Staff wages 4,400.00
Managing Editor 1,600.00
Associate Editor, non-fiction 800.00
Associate Editor, fiction 800.00
Designer 1,200.00
Contributor wages 700.00
Writers 500.00
Photographers/Illustrators 200.00
TOTAL EXPENSES 12,100.00
DIFFERENCE 2,885.00

Actual Pilot Budget

REVENUE
Features Editor Wages (fall semester) 3,900.00
Features Editor Wages (summer semester) 3,315.00
Advertising 80.00
Other 0.00
TOTAL REVENUE 7,295.00
EXPENSES
Printing 7,627.20
Miscellaneous 0.00
Staff wages 4,400.00
Managing Editor 1,600.00
Associate Editor, non-fiction 800.00
Associate Editor, fiction 800.00
Design Editor 1,200.00
Contributor wages 80.00
Writers 50.00
Photographers/Illustrators 30.00
TOTAL EXPENSES 12,107.20
DIFFERENCE 4,812.20

The Tartan renewal

2.1  Second Issue of The Tartan

It is proposed that the Peak Publications Society allow for the continuation of The Tartan in order to release an issue for the Spring 2016 semester. The focus will continue to be on long-form journalism, fiction writing and other content that does not necessarily fit into a weekly newspaper. The 50th Anniversary theme will continue, but the articles will not be exclusively on this theme. The content will once again depend on the writers’ interests. A number of articles that did not make it into the pilot issue are presently being researched and worked on for inclusion in this second issue.

2.2 Staff

Due to the time constraints of producing a second issue by the beginning of January, the proposal is that those staff members who were hired for the pilot issue (Managing Editor, Non-Fiction Editor, Fiction Editor, Designer) be given the opportunity to continue for one more semester.

If any of the previous editors and/or designer do not want to return to their positions or are unable to continue, their jobs will need to be posted and hiring will take place.

The hiring system will be the same as for the pilot issue. New applicants will be asked to send in a Resume, a cover letter explaining why they would like to be in the position and why they are the right fit for the job, and a portfolio of any editing, writing and design work which proves their skills for the particular position they are applying for.

2.3 Format and Distribution

The second issue of The Tartan will most likely continue to be 1,000 copies of a full colour 64-page magazine however for the 2nd issue, the binding may change to a saddle stitched spine. This could help make it easier to read near the centre spine and may also result in cost savings, as well as flexibility in the amount of copies and number of pages that can be printed. Distribution will be via Peak newsstands around the Burnaby/Surrey/Downtown campuses, as well as by request.

2.4 Costs

The printing cost of the magazine will be kept to approximately $7,000 no matter what particular style and length is ultimately decided on. The wages will remain the same for the staff.

2.5 Subsequent issues of The Tartan

It is proposed that after the release of the Spring 2016 issue of The Tartan, there be a one semester hiatus during the Spring semester as there are no plans for a Summer issue. During this time, a comprehensive plan will be developed to ensure the successful continuation of The Tartan, as a semesterly magazine, into the future. During this time, successes and failures of the first two issues will be explored, and in conjunction with a review of the Peak Publications Societies financial information, a plan will be established for how the project could work and fit into the budget in the long term.

Timeline

3.1 September 17, 2015: Commitment to a second issue of The Tartan magazine

On September 17, 2015, it is suggested that the Board of Directors agree to finance the second issue of The Tartan magazine and nominate a board representative for the hiring committee.

3.2 September 18, 2015: Reinstate previous staff and run ads to hire for open positions

Upon approval, staff members from the pilot issue should be contacted and, if they so choose, reinstated for the second issue. They will begin work immediately. If necessary, a call for applications for any position that is not re-filled will be made both online and in the newspaper for the next two weeks. The jobs@the-peak.ca email account should be used to receive applications.  

3.3 September 28, 2015: Welcome meeting

Following a week of preparation, the returning members of the editorial team will hold a welcome meeting for all interested contributors explaining the different types of content that will be accepted and making an initial call for submission pitches. They will be informed of this meeting through ads in The Peak both in print, online and through social media. This meeting, along with messages sent out through various other means, will also serve as a chance to collect emails for a mailing list of potential contributors. Potential contributors will have 2 weeks to pick up non-fiction pieces pitched at the meeting and subsequently online and five weeks to send in fiction and poetry submissions.

3.4 October 5, 2015: Hiring process begins

The interview process will begin for all applicants of any positions that were posted.

3.5 October 8, 2015: Replacement editors announced, second meeting

With the full editorial team decided, a second meeting will be held which will reiterate and expand on the introductory meeting. The collective will once again be informed of this meeting through ads in The Peak both in print, online and through social media, as well as direct emails to those who showed an interest during Welcome Week. This meeting, along with messages sent out through various other means, will also serve as a chance to collect emails for the mailing list of potential contributors.

3.6 October 12, 2015: Deadline for pitches, general issue planning meeting

After two weeks, the staff will have had time to sift through all the pitches and compile a list of acceptable potential writing. At a Thursday meeting, in which all potential Tartan collective members will be invited, all the pitches will be discussed and a basic outline of what will be in the magazine will be determined and writers to each piece will be confirmed. At this point, the staff will begin working with writers and set-up weekly to biweekly in-person meetups with contributors working on articles to keep track of the progress of all pieces. The designer will begin coming up with the basic look of the magazine and be communicating with the other editors on what sort of design elements will be required for the different pieces at this time. Two weeks will be allotted for editing and the following two weeks will be allotted for design work with a final deadline of  of November 9 for all content, and the beginning of production.

3.7 November 9, 2015: Deadline for all content, production begins

After a month of working closely with writers on their submissions, all content will officially be done and the major editing and design process will begin. After all content has been sent in, the editorial team will work together and separately on production work. The designer and managing editor will work on layout and the associate editors will work with the managing editor to perform copy editing. All production work done together will hopefully be done at The Peak offices at times when the staff is available, except for Fridays as to not interfere with the newspaper production.

3.8 November 30, 2015: Production ends, The Tartan ready for print

On December 9, 2015 the editorial team and designer will finish production the 2nd issue of The Tartan.

3.9 December 7, 2015: Approval from The Peak’s EIC and send off to printers

A week after production has been completed, the Managing Editor will take a last look over the magazine with The Peak’s EIC, and then send it to the printers.

3.10 January 4, 2016: Distribution of 2nd issue to all SFU campuses

The Managing Editor will coordinate the distribution of the magazine to stands at all SFU campuses.

Budget Items

4.1 Printing Expenses

After collecting numerous quotes for different styles of publishing for the pilot issue, there is confidence that the printing can be done for approximately $7,000.

4.2 Staff Expenses

The Managing Editor should receive $1600 per/issue (equivalent to $200 a week for 8 weeks), the Associate Editors should receive $800 per/issue and the Designer should receive $1200. In total this would be approximately a $4400 endeavor.

4.3 Contributor Pay

The Tartan will use The Peak’s current contributor pay scale, which requires three articles to be published in a Peak Publications Society publication before a writer can receive payment. For writers meeting this requirement, a long form nonfiction piece (2000-5000 words) will be worth $50-75. A long fiction piece (2000-5000 words) will also be worth $50-75. Short fiction and long poems (500-1500 words) will be worth $30 and short poems will be paid $10.

4.4 Savings

The elimination of the Features Editor position should save the Peak Publications Society $3900 for the fall semester and $3315 for the summer semester, with additional funds being saved due to shorter issues of The Peak newspaper.

4.5 Advertising Revenue

While the pilot issue of The Tartan did not feature very much advertising, because of its success and a hard copy available to show businesses, we hope to secure $2000 worth of advertising space in the 2nd issue with rates based on The Peak’s current model, with changes made based on the alternate size and scale of the magazine.  

4.6 Net cost

Based on the costs and savings projected above, this project should cost around $2,285.

4.7 Proposed Budget

 

REVENUE
Features Editor Wages (spring 2016 semester) 3,900.00
Features Editor Wages (summer 2016 semester) 3,315.00
Advertising 2,000.00
Other 0.00
TOTAL REVENUE 9,215.00
EXPENSES
Printing 7,000.00
Miscellaneous 0.00
Staff wages 4,400.00
Managing Editor 1,600.00
Associate Editor, non-fiction 800.00
Associate Editor, fiction 800.00
Design Editor 1,200.00
Contributor wages 100.00
Writers 50.00
Photographers/Illustrators 50.00
TOTAL EXPENSES 11,500.00
DIFFERENCE 2,285.00

 

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