Current News

ACP's 2019 Pre-Budget Submission to the Standing Committee on Finance08-03-2018

ACP and ANEL have made a joint pre-budget submission to the Standing Committee on Finance. Together ANEL and ACP represent more than 215 book publishers, located in all ten provinces and Nunavut. Our members are independent businesses, owned and operated by Canadians, and they make critical contributions to Canada’s creative industries.

The brief can be accessed in our Government Briefs and Submissions page.

ACP statement on litigation between K-12 sector and Access Copyright07-23-2018

The Association of Canadian Publishers notes that Access Copyright has served and filed its Statement of Defence and Counterclaim in the legal action initiated by Ontario school boards and the Ministries of Education for all provinces and territories except Ontario, British Columbia and Quebec. Together those plaintiffs are seeking to recover more than $25 million collected by Access Copyright under a legally certified tariff for the period of 2010-2012.

Download the press release.

ACP launches Canadian Book Publishing Diversity Baseline Survey07-16-2018

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) has launched a baseline survey to measure diversity in the Canadian book industry. Inspired by the Lee & Low Diversity Baseline Survey, the survey will measure the diversity of English-language Canadian book publishing workplaces.

The survey will be online until September 7, 2018 at 5:00 pm EDT and will take approximately 10 minutes to complete. A link to the survey can be found below:

Complete the Canadian Book Publishing Diversity Baseline Survey Now

Class action settlement regarding copyright: Copibec and Université Laval07-10-2018

On June 19, Copibec and Université Laval announced they had reached an amicable settlement, ending the class action that Copibec had filed on behalf of creators and publishers against Université Laval in 2014.

A legal Notice to Members has been issued. Authors and publishers are invited to read it and share with their networks.

No action is required on your behalf to be a member of the group or to receive compensation. 

The notice and the settlement agreement are available on Copibec’s website:
Legal Notice:
Settlement Agreement:

Updates related to the settlement will be posted on Copibec’s website.

If you have any questions, please contact [email protected].

ACP welcomes Creative Export Strategy06-26-2018

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) welcomes today’s announcement by Hon. Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, of the Creative Export Strategy, which will invest $125 million over five years to support the export initiatives of Canada’s creative industries. In addition to the creation of Creative Export Canada, a new funding program, ACP is particularly pleased that the strategy will build on the success of existing Canadian Heritage programs, and will increase the export funding available through the Canada Book Fund (CBF) and other programs.

Download the press release.

Canadian publishers welcome settlement between Laval University and Copibec06-21-2018

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) congratulates Copibec and Laval University on reaching an amicable resolution to their longstanding dispute over unlicensed copying of copyright-protected materials. Laval ended its licensing agreement with Copibec in 2014, which prompted the copyright collective to bring forward the suit against the university on behalf of publishers and creators.

Download the press release.

Study: Canada’s policy on foreign control in the book industry is ineffective06-06-2018

On the occasion of its 2018 Annual General Meeting, today the Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) released Net Benefit: Canada’s Policy on Foreign Investment in the Book Industry. This longitudinal study commissioned by the association’s membership in 2017, was sparked by renewed public discussion in 2017 around the sale of McClelland and Stewart to Random House. Cultural policy consultant Roy MacSkimming examines the implementation of the Revised Foreign Investment Policy in Book Publishing and Distribution (1992) by successive governments over the past 25 years. His report shows broad disparities and inconsistencies in the policy’s implementation.

Download the press release.

Independent publishers respond to provincial governments' legal attacks on Canadian creators and publishers02-28-2018

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) is alarmed by the legal actions launched last week by Ministries of Education for all provinces and territories (except Quebec, and in Ontario through the provinces’ school boards) against the Canadian Copyright Licensing Agency (Access Copyright) demanding repayment of more than $25 million collected under a legally certified tariff for the period of 2010 to 2012. ACP calls on the Ministries and school boards to withdraw the suits, pay the tariffs certified by the Copyright Board for the copying of materials in K-12 schools for the period beginning in 2013, and bring Canadian K-12 schools back under licence.

Download the press release. 

ACP Welcomes the Government of Canada commitment to strong, domestic creative industries10-02-2017

The ACP is pleased to see initiatives related to book publishing within the Government of Canada’s Creative Canada Policy Framework, which was released by Minister of Canadian Heritage Mélanie Joly last week. Support for an effective and well-funcioting copyright regime and continued support for the marketing and distribution of Canadian books through the Canada Book Fund are among the commitments made by the Minister.

Download the press release.

Canadian publishers call for renewed dialogue with universities on fair compensation to creators08-03-2017

In light of York University’s announcement that it will appeal last month’s Federal Court of Canada decision in Access Copyright vs York University, the ACP calls on York to stop relying on the copying policies that the Court found unfair, to end the illegal behaviours that result from those policies, and to re-engage in negotiations on fair compensation for the copying and use of copyright-protected material.

Read the press release.

ACP releases submission on NAFTA and Canadian book publishing07-26-2017

In its submission to Global Affairs Canada’s consultations on the upcoming renegotiation and modernization of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the ACP calls for maintenance of NAFTA’s cultural exception, a renewed commitment to Canadian ownership of cultural industries, and stronger protections for copyright and intellectual property.

The first round of NAFTA negotiations is scheduled to take place in Washington, D.C., from August 16-20, 2017.

Download the press release.

Independent publishers applaud Federal Court’s decision on Access Copyright v. York University07-12-2017

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) welcomes the decision of the Federal Court in the case of Access Copyright v. York University. The Court found that the guidelines around fair dealing are not fair and tariffs certified by the Copyright Board are enforceable.

Read the press release.

Independent publishers applaud Supreme Court decision on Google v. Equustek06-29-2017

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) welcomes news of the Supreme Court of Canada’s ruling on the case of Google Inc. v. Equustek Solutions Inc. et al.

Read the press release

ACP to honour Kirk Howard and Michael Harrison at 2017 AGM04-20-2017

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) is pleased to announce that Kirk Howard, founder and president of Dundurn Press, will be presented with the President’s Award at the association’s 2017 Annual General Meeting. ACP is also delighted to present Michael Harrison with honorary lifetime membership in the association.

Read the press release

ACP Statement of Principles02-08-2017

In light of recent events in both Canada and the United States, the Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) affirms its commitment to the principles of equity, diversity, tolerance, and inclusion.

Read ACP statement here. 

Submission to Canadian Heritage on "Canadian Content in a Digital World"11-28-2016

ACP releases a submission to Canadian Heritage on “Canadian Content in a Digital World” consultations.

Read the ACP’s submission here.

ACP mourns the passing of Jim Douglas09-26-2016

It is with sadness that the Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) shares news of the passing of Jim Douglas, who died September 24 in Vancouver. We extend our condolences to Douglas’ family, and the many friends and colleagues who worked with him over the course of his storied career.

Read the press release

ACP stands in support of Turkish publishers and freedom to publish08-09-2016

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) opposes the state closure of 29 publishing houses in Turkey, which have had their assets seized by the government following a failed coup d’état last month.
Read the press release. 

ACP releases a 2017 Pre-Budget Consultations submission08-08-2016

ACP has provided a submission to the Standing Committee on Finance’s 2017 Pre-Budget Consultations.

Read the ACP’s submission here. 

Canadian publishers endorse federal initiatives supporting Indigenous arts06-15-2016

At its 2016 Annual General Meeting, held June 8-10 in Winnipeg, the Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) voted unanimously to endorse initiatives announced recently by the Canada Council for the Arts and Department of Canadian Heritage, which make support for Indigenous arts and Indigenous peoples a funding priority.

Read the press release

ACP to honour Margaret Reynolds and founders of McNally Robinson at upcoming AGM05-11-2016

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) is delighted to announce that Margaret Reynolds, the Association of Book Publishers of British Columbia’s long-time executive director, will be presented with the President’s Award at the ACP’s upcoming Annual General Meeting. ACP is also pleased to announce that Paul McNally and Holly McNally, celebrated independent booksellers and founders of McNally Robinson, will be granted Honorary Lifetime Membership in the association.

Read the press release

Canadian publishers welcome renewed investment in the Canada Council for the Arts and promotion of cultural industries abroad03-23-2016

The Association of Canadian Publishers congratulates the government on its planned investment in the Canada Council for the Arts, announced in yesterday’s federal budget.

Read the press release

Copyright Board decision offers little clarity on fair dealing for education03-03-2016

Canada’s independent publishers are discouraged by the Copyright Board’s recent decision on the 2010-2015 K-12 tariff, issued February 19.

Read the press release

ACP statement on TWUC & CAA open letters02-19-2016

Click here for ACP’s response to TWUC and CAA’s recent open letters on author contracts.

Remembering J. Gordon Shillingford02-02-2016

Earlier this week, a celebration of publisher J. Gordon Shillingford’s life was held at Winnipeg’s King’s Head Pub. Friends, family and colleagues gathered to share our memories of Gordon, and many more were there in spirit! The King’s Head was one of Gordon’s favourite hangouts and often served as his “satellite office.” I can see him working away on his laptop or taking meetings at his usual table, which has now been immortalized with a plaque marking it as “Gord’s office.” He also frequently dropped in to our office, just across the street from the King’s Head. We will miss his visits.

At the celebration, many people praised Gordon’s support of poets, playwrights, and Indigenous writers. He was known for his willingness to take risks on books and writers and his instincts were often right, as evidenced by his many Governor General Award nominations and wins. He was remembered for his intellect, generosity, love of music and literature, wry wit, and trademark hoodie!

Gordon was born in Saskatchewan in 1960, and even after many years of living in Manitoba, still cheered for the Riders. He entered the publishing world in 1986, when he teamed up with a friend to start the Winnipeg drama publishing house Blizzard, using his student loans for start-up money. He left publishing for a short time, and went to work for the Manitoba Arts Council, but returned to publishing in the early 1990s, establishing J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing Inc, a respected literary press comprised of several distinct imprints including Scirocco Drama (theatre), The Muses’ Company (poetry), Watson & Dwyer (Canadian social history) and J. Gordon Shillingford (politics, religion, true crime, biography).

Gordon made a huge contribution to Manitoban and Canadian literature. He was a passionate volunteer in support of the industry, having served as president and long-term board member of our association. He was genuinely passionate about books.

Gordon passed away on January 25, 2016 after a brief illness.

Our thoughts are with his wife Karen Haughian (Signature Editions) and son Griffin.

We miss you, Gordon!

Michelle Peters, Association of Manitoba Book Publishers, February 5, 2016

Ontario Culture Strategy12-04-2015

ACP is participating in Ontario’s Culture Strategy consultations. Download our statement

More information about the strategy, including the Ministry’s discussion paper, can be found here:

Matt Williams: Wordsmiths can't work for free10-20-2015

An opinion piece on the outcomes of the Canadian education sector’s fair dealing guidelines by ACP President Matt Williams appears in the National Post. Click here to read the full column.

Remembering Dave Godfrey, 1938 - 201507-10-2015

Dave Godfrey was truly a man of diverse interests and talents. Born in 1938 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, he acquired a BA from the University of Iowa and an MA from Stanford University in English literature in the early 1960s. At Stanford he met his future wife, Ellen, and also enrolled in Wallace Stegner’s celebrated creative writing program, numbering among his fellow students soon-to-be famous authors such as Larry McMurtry, Ken Kesey, and Robert Stone. Armed with a subsequent MFA in creative writing from the University of Iowa, he taught with Canadian University Services Overseas in Ghana in the mid-1960s, then returned to North
America to earn a PhD from the University of Iowa and teach at the University of Toronto.

Godfrey’s two years in Africa provided the inspiration for a number of his short stories and his novel The New Ancestors, which won the Governor General’s Award for fiction in 1970, besting Robertson Davies’s Fifth Business. His time in Africa also introduced him to a powerful and enduring icon — Anansi, the trickster of folktales who often takes the form of a spider. That creature became the colophon for and lent its name to Godfrey’s first venture into publishing: House of Anansi, the small press he co-founded in 1967 with Dennis Lee to publish contemporary Canadian poetry and literary fiction.

Next came New Press in 1970, a company he launched with Roy MacSkimming and James Bacque to publish books on political and social issues. Ever restless and searching, he founded a third publishing venture in the early 1970s with Ellen and moved to Erin, Ontario. Like Anansi, Press Porcépic (renamed Beach Holme Publishing in the early 1990s) focused on poetry and literary fiction with the addition of drama and some non-fiction. In the mid-1970s, the Godfreys took Press Porcépic with them when Godfrey was appointed head of the Creative Writing Department at the University of Victoria, eventually adding to their list young adult titles in the form of the Sandcastle imprint as well as science fiction and children’s picture books.

For Godfrey’s generation the afterglow of centennial year led to a confident and new Canadian nationalism. Godfrey played a major role in developing the Canadian-owned publishing industry. He was a founding member of the Independent Publishers’ Association (later the Association of Canadian Publishers), helped set up the Association for the Export of Canadian Books (now Livres Canada Books), lobbied successfully for federal and provincial government financial support for Canadian-owned publishing houses, and co-authored, with Robert Fulford and Abraham Rotstein, Read Canadian: A Book About Canadian Books, a guide to the best writing about Canada in a number of different areas.

In the 1980s, Godfrey’s creative and ceaseless intellect took him to computers and the role they could play in the cultural industries. He wrote Gutenberg Two: The New Electronics and Social Change, and with Ellen created software for distant learning as well as an Internet service provider company.

After retiring from teaching in the late 1990s, Godfrey turned his attention to wine and became a vintner on Vancouver Island. He is survived by his wife, Ellen, and his daughter, Rebecca, both talented, award-winning authors, and his son, Samuel.

Kirk Howard, President & Publisher, Dundurn
Past President, ACP
July 2015

Budget pressures on Canadian university libraries force them to leave many Canadian-published books out of their collections06-25-2015

ACP’s Higher Education committee released the results of their quick survey on the representation of Canadian-published books in Canadian university libraries.

Read the press release.