A rapidly changing media landscape means it's not the happiest of financial times for many in the newspaper and magazine publishing sector at the moment, but those issues were briefly forgotten on Friday night as the industry gathered in Auckland to reward the best in the business at the Canon Media Awards. And it was APN, which has recently enlisted the help of Deutsche Bank to conduct an asset review, that again popped the most corks on the night and followed on from its 'grand slam' last year by taking out the vast majority of the big awards.
The Weekend Herald was named as Canon newspaper of the year, the fifth year in a row that either Weekend Herald, The New Zealand Herald or Herald on Sunday has taken that honour, and best weekly newspaper of the year for the second year running. Canvas was also named best newspaper inserted magazine.
“... So much good journalism was produced across the country in one of the most challenging years for newspapers, with the Christchurch earthquake, Japanese tsunami as well as the big set pieces of the Rugby World Cup and the general election," says Weekend Herald editor David Hastings. "The award is a tribute to the staff, reporters, photographers and those on the production side who worked so hard to stay on top of events.”
Fittingly, given the hardship Christchurch has faced in recent times and the role local media has played in reporting on it, The Press had a good night too, picking up a total of nine awards, including best newspaper of the year (with a circulation of over 30,000) and best newspaper design. The fact that the paper, with the help of the Fairfax network, managed to get a paper out on the day after the February 22 quake probably deserved an award of its own.
Martin van Beynen from The Press was named senior reporter of the year and senior newspaper feature writer of the year and also won the Wolfson Fellowship to Cambridge University. His colleague Olivia Carville was named junior reporter of the year.
nzherald.co.nz won both the best website and best online news site awards, its coverage of the NZ Election 2011 received an award for best innovation in multimedia storytelling, and its social media editor Troy Rawhiti-Forbes won best website for community interaction.
“This is an unprecedented win for us and something the online team are incredibly proud of," says Jeremy Rees, nzherald.co.nz's editor. "Over the past six years we’ve taken out the top honours six times winning best news website four times, including three consecutive years – 2007, 2008, 2009 and best website twice – 2011 and 2012 ... We’ve focused a lot of attention on the quality of our digital storytelling and this has really paid off with readers spending more time during a site visit on nzherald.co.nz than any other New Zealand news website."
APN's regional newspapers won both top awards in the same year for the first time, with The Bay of Plenty Times rewarded for its strong coverage of the Rena disaster with best newspaper of the year (with a circulation of up to 30,000) and The Star in Christchurch taking out the award for community newspaper of the year.
Star editor Barry Clarke said the award recognised the efforts and tenacity of Star and APN journalists in converting the bi-weekly broadsheet to a morning daily tabloid after the quake to meet the heightened public demand for information and news.
“All these people went more than the extra mile, in amazingly difficult circumstances, to produce a great paper," he says. "I’m grateful to them all.”
Continuing APN's winning ways, NZ Magazines' The New Zealand Listener won best newsstand magazine, the third time it has won the award in the past six years.
"Our aim is to produce a compelling magazine that is not afraid to rattle cages but which is a positive, energising force in the nation’s cultural and intellectual life," says Listener editor Pamela Stirling. "Our intelligent, well-educated and sophisticated readership wants to be challenged and entertained with stimulating and insightful journalism and the fact that a full 60 percent of our readers are loyal subscribers indicates a readership that is highly engaged with the magazine and trusts it to deliver what its target audience wants. The Listener has a circulation [63,238] more than twice that of its nearest current affairs competitor.”
Best trade/professional magazine went to Landscape Architecture NZ, Good won best magazine design and New Zealand Geographic's senior contributor (and its founding editor more than two decades ago) Kennedy Warne was awarded magazine feature writer of the year.
Stuff.co.nz/thepress won the best breaking news coverage and Fairfax's Stuff App won the best Innovation in New Technologies award.
“Canon is delighted to be both a sponsor and part of this event and it is always a pleasure to see the great efforts of the New Zealand print and online media," says Yusuke Mizoguchi, managing director of Canon New Zealand. "Tonight was a chance to commend the hugely talented and dedicated people that help to make up New Zealand media."
Winners of the Canon Media Awards 2012
Canon Newspaper of the Year Weekend Herald
Newspaper of the Year (over 30,000 circulation) The Press
Newspaper of the Year (up to 30,000 circulation) Bay Of Plenty Times
Weekly Newspaper of the Year Weekend Herald
Community Newspaper of the Year The Star
Press Photographer of the Year - Senior Alan Gibson
Press Photographer of the Year - Junior Benjamin Curran
Best Single news picture Geoff Sloan
Best Video Daniel Tobin
Best Online News Site nzherald.co.nz
Best Newsstand Magazine New Zealand Listener
Best Trade/Professional Magazine Landscape Architecture NZ
Magazine Feature Writer of the Year Kennedy Warne
Senior Reporter of the Year Martin Van Beynen
Junior Reporter of the Year Olivia Carville
Reporter Sport Simon Plumb
Senior Newspaper Feature Writer of the Year Martin Van Beynen
Junior Newspaper Feature Writer of the Year Alex Fensome
Best Investigation Jon Stephenson
Student Journalism Award Jonathan Carson
Best Artwork Richard Dale
Cartoonist of the Year Guy Body
Best Columnist Simon Cunliffe
Editorial writer of the Year Bruce Rennie
Best Headline Nicholas Sorensen
Reviewer of the Year Russell Baillie
Reporter Science and Environment Marty Sharpe
Reporter Politics Vernon Small
Reporter Human Relations Imogen Neale
Reporter Business David Fisher
Reporter Crime and Justice Clio Francis
Reporter Arts & Entertainment Vicki Anderson
Newspaper Feature Writer Science and Environment Chris Barton
Newspaper Feature Writer Sport Ben Stanley
Newspaper Feature Writer Politics Claire Trevett
Newspaper Feature Writer Human Relations Tony Wall
Newspaper Feature Writer Business Karyn Scherer
Newspaper Feature Writer Arts and Entertainment Adam Dudding
Newspaper Feature Writer Crime and Justice Steve Kilgallon
Magazine Feature Writer Science and Environment Kennedy Warne
Magazine Feature Writer Politics Jonathan Milne
Magazine Feature Writer Human Relations Donna Chisholm
Magazine Feature Writer Arts and Entertainment Diana Wichtel
Magazine Feature Writer Business Donna Chisholm
Magazine Feature Writer Crime and Justice Joanna Wane
Magazine Feature Writer Sport Scotty Stevenson
Best Magazine Design Good
Best Newspaper Design The Press
Best Newspaper Inserted Magazine Canvas – NZ Herald
Best Website Community Interaction nzherald.co.nz
Best Innovation in Multimedia Storytelling NZH Election 2011
Best Innovation in New Technologies Stuff app
Best Sports Picture Simon Watts
Best Photo Essay Geoff Sloan
Best Breaking News Coverage stuff.co.nz/thepress.co.nz