ABC Magazine Rule Changes

ABC Magazine Rule Changes

At the ABC AGM held on Tuesday 31st May 2016 the ABC Board passed the proposed new magazine rules as tabled by the Magazine Publishers Association (MPA).

The ABC Magazine rules have not been reviewed for some years and it was felt the need to revisit the criteria to meet the following objectives:

  • Simplify the ABC Magazine categories
  • Change Magazine minimum paid sales price to 33% of cover price (was 50%) to be consistent with Newspapers
  • Reduce Publisher compliance costs and barriers to audit
  • Maintain a robust circulation measure with market credibility
  • The ability to call for an independent review of a Publishers circulation figures if they are challenged

Summary of the Magazine Rule Changes:

The adoption of the new magazine rules can be summarised as follows.

  • Change to 33% minimum sale price from 50% for paid sales
  • Simplification of paid sales categories and subtotal for subscriptions
  • Retention of multiple paid sales as a category
  • Directed Not Requested rules clarified to include all magazines where transmission to an individual can be verified
  • Simplification of some of the rules to better reflect actual practice
  • Audits will now be six monthly rather than quarterly – the next Audit will be the 12 months to 30th September 2016 (No June Audit)
  • External audits are now every 2 years (with publishers statements only for the intervening audits) – the first external audits will be the 12 months to 30th September 2016
  • So March and September 2017 and March 2018 audits will be publisher statements
  • Provision for MPA to appoint an auditor that is not required to be a CA

Please note that the new rules take effect immediately, which means:

No June 2016 Audit

  • Audits will now be six monthly rather than quarterly – the next Audit will be the 12 months to 30th September 2016 (No June Audit)

First External Audit

  • The first external audit will be the 12 months to 30th September 2016
  • External audits are now every 2 years (with publishers statements only for the intervening audits) 

We believe these changes will streamline the ABC process, reducing costs, whilst maintaining market credibility. 

See here for more details about the ABC Rule Changes and the ABC Supplement.

For any queries about the ABC Magazine Rule Change, please contact - 

Pip Elliott

Executive Director, Magazine Publishers Association (NZ)

mpa@mpa.org.nz