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March 13, 2013, 10:28 a.m.
LINK: torontostandard.com  ➚   |   Posted by: Joshua Benton   |   March 13, 2013

toronto-skyline-cc

Hallae Khosravi at the Toronto Standard:

The New York Times’ acclaimed series, TimesTalks, will have its Canadian premiere at the Luminato Festival this June as TimesTalks Luminato. TimesTalks is a series of live conversations between New York Times journalists and renowned artists, filmmakers, designers, politicians, and more, in front of an audience. To celebrate the announcement of TimesTalks in Canada, Friday’s series in New York, featuring a conversation between performance-artist Marina Abramović and Times culture reporter Patricia Cohen, is being produced in collaboration with Luminato Festival.

We’ve written a number of times about the Times’ expanding global strategy, which has mostly taken the form of country-targeted content (like India Ink) and foreign-language editions (in China and Brazil). But events also make a lot of sense as part of that strategy — the convening power of a brand like the Times is strong far beyond Manhattan.

Toronto would be an appealing market for a host of reasons — not least its size (having just passed Chicago as North America’s fourth biggest city) and its highly multicultural/international population.

Here’s the press release from Luminato, which featured this noteworthy quote from Yasmin Namini, senior VP of marketing and circ at the NYT Media Group:

Our collaboration with the Luminato Festival allows us to share this special series of TimesTalks with the city of Toronto and deliver our exciting, live journalism to both Festival attendees and our global New York Times audience.

I love the phrase “exciting, live journalism.”

Meanwhile, if I ran The Globe and Mail (or was even just a CanCon lover anxious about Canadian identity), I’d be thinking about what it would mean for The New York Times to get truly interested in Canada. The Times has already experimented with regional editions in places like Texas, Chicago, and the Bay Area; would a globally oriented but slightly Canada-tuned edition sell to a top-end demographic from St. John’s to Victoria? (The Globe already handles home delivery of the Times in Canada. Circ figures show the Times sells around 3,000 daily and 15,000 Sunday papers in Canada.)

As ex-Globe and ex-National Post staffer Chris Boutet put it:

Photo of Toronto skyline by stvntal used under a Creative Commons license.

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