A great deal of consultation and research went into the creation of what is now called ComBase (Community Newspaper Database). Here, at a glance, is a short chronology of that development.
November 1999 ÔÇô CCNA board establishes Research Task Force to identify the research needs of the association and membership.
February 2000 ÔÇô CCNA sponsors an industry summit, which identifies readership research as a key need of the community newspaper sector.
April 2000 ÔÇô CCNA board approves a consultant contract to develop a set of standards for readership research which could then be used to conduct standardized research on a local or regional basis.
July 2000 ÔÇô Research Task Group recommends that CCNA investigate the creation of a single source, standardized national readership study for community newspapers. Two consultantsÔÇÖ studies are commissioned: Joanne OÔÇÖConnell of GPC is asked to define the study and its methodology, and David Stanger of DSA Baron to consult with publishers, advertisers and media buyers about the need and design of such a readership study.
November 2000 ÔÇô CCNA authorizes the Research Task Group to take steps to create a readership research bureau and the release of special funds to underwrite a pilot phase of the study and to create a Tri-Partite Committee of publishers, advertisers and media buyers to advise on the technical requirements of the pilot and proposed bureau.
February 2001 ÔÇô Tri-Partite Committee of 12, including four publishers, four advertisers and four media buyers holds first meeting in Toronto. David Stanger of DSA Baron and Derrick Chamberlain of VanNet are appointed co-chairs of the committee. Joanne OÔÇÖConnell is contracted to develop a Request for Proposal for the pilot study to be circulated to eight qualified research firms. Six proposals are received as a result.
April 2001 ÔÇô A sub-committee of the Research Task Group receives presentations from a short list of four research firms. This list is subsequently reduced to two finalists. A sub-committee interviews candidates for Project Manager for the study. Elena Dunn, a newspaper veteran with a background managing the NADbank study for daily newspapers is confirmed as the manager.
April 2001 ÔÇô CCNA board receives progress reports, reconfirms its intention to support the creation of a research bureau. Throughout the spring, co-chair David Stanger travels across Canada making presentations on ComBase to member provincial associations.
July 2001 ÔÇô Brief CCNA members at the Annual General Meeting in Saskatoon in July.
September ÔÇô December 2001 ÔÇô Pilot field work commences
February 2002 ÔÇô Data release to agencies and the advertising community