Reflections on the making of the Review 2023 spring issue, from the editorial team

The new Review of Journalism logo

For the first time in three years, the Review of Journalism has been assembled by a team of students entirely in a physical building. As we return to work in person, we consider the time we spent apart, and how much of an impact it has had on both our magazine and the industry it covers—the ways we have returned to normal, the ways we have changed, and the chances we have missed.

The magazine in your hands is one symbol of renewal. Our dimensions have changed for the first time in six years. We’re narrower, and a little taller. A new logo graces the cover. While many writers and contributors are credited throughout these pages, this magazine wouldn’t be possible without the tireless work of several people behind the scenes. Visuals editor Katrina McGaughey oversaw the redesign and ensured the magazine was visually appealing. Head of research Rachel DeGasperis made certain each piece was thoroughly fact-checked. Copy editor Leslie Sinclair kept the copy crisp. And production editor Maddy Mahoney’s people skills guaranteed that everything moved along on schedule.

Online, we’ve been hard at work trying new things, introducing interactive elements. In these pages, Timothy Cooke examines how deep-dive podcasts have emerged as a genre of note, and, appropriately, Silas Le Blanc’s feature story “The House Always Wins” is told in podcast form (see the QR code on page 121).

In some ways, we see encouraging changes rippling through the journalism industry. Charlize Alcaraz looks into how AI is being used to streamline editorial decisions at The Globe and Mail, while Carly Penrose charts how sports journalism adapted to lockdowns by emphasizing investigative reporting—in the process uncovering important stories of abuse.

Yet, not every newsroom came out of the pandemic unscathed. Anthony Milton explores the recent history of Now magazine, as it weathered union battles, pandemic cuts, bankruptcy, and, finally, a transformation into a digital-only brand. Emily Clare Elliott takes us inside the cabs of the “Freedom Convoy” and the minds of journalists who fought their way through misinformation and distrust.

Some things stayed, depressingly, the same. Aloysius Wong probes the CBC, where questionable hiring practices leave long-time employees stuck in short-term contract hell. Christin El-kholy investigates the workplace culture at the Toronto Star, and the ways it can sideline voices outside the mainstream. And Hyeji Yoon takes aim at Canadian media’s persistent stereotyping of North Korea—and the resulting shallow journalism.

With these and other stories, the Review has stayed true to its mandate of holding the Canadian media to account. It’s never easy: like all others before it, this issue is the product of early-career journalists, figuring it out as they go, often late into the night. This year we do so in the absence of beloved long-time instructor Stephen Trumper, who died at age 69 on January 4, 2023. Alumnus Justin Dallaire remembers him and his matchless contributions to the magazine on page 5. We hope this issue honours his memory.

Anthony Milton, managing editor, print

Rachel DeGasperis, head of research

Silas Le Blanc, managing editor, podcast

Carly Penrose, managing editor, online

Katrina McGaughey, visuals editor

About the author

+ posts

Carly Penrose is a second-year Master of Journalism student at Toronto Metropolitan University. She is from Halifax, Nova Scotia and did her undergraduate degree in psychology at Mount Allison University in New Brunswick. Carly likes to understand how and why people think and act the way they do. She has bylines in the National Post, and THIS Magazine, and currently works with Pagemasters North America. She loves animals, comedy and long walks with podcasts.

+ posts

Anthony Milton is a Master of Journalism student at Toronto Metropolitan University. Before entering journalism, he worked as a consultant in the electricity and climate space. He’s interested in longform writing and data journalism, about culture and politics. You can find his words in Toronto Life magazine, and his tweets at @C_AnthonyMilton.

+ posts

Silas Le Blanc is a second-year Master of Journalism student at Toronto Metropolitan University. She has previously worked as the Sports Editor and Managing Online Editor at The Varsity, and as an intern at Xtra, and at The Logic. She is currently the news coordinator at CJRU 1280AM, and does production for CBC’s Cross Country Checkup. In her spare time she listens to SOPHIE, Charli XCX, and Bladee.

Photo of Katrina McGaughey
Katrina McGaughey
+ posts
+ posts

Rachel DeGasperis is a second-year Master of Journalism student at Toronto Metropolitan University. She has worked as an associate producer at CBC’s Cross Country Checkup, and helps produce On the Frontlines of Democracy, an upcoming TMU podcast. She is also the co-editor of The Otter and the research assistant for TMU’s Journalism Research Centre. Previously, she has interned at The Big Story. She loves anything and everything produced by Alice Munro, Nina Simone, and Mary Pratt.

Sign Up for Our Newsletters

Keep up to date with the latest stories from our newsroom.

You May Also Like

Review of Journalism 2023 Diversity Report

The Review of Journalism strives to create a workplace and publication that reflects the diversity of both our readers and the stories we tell. Here’s how we stacked up in 2023.

Then and Now

Workers in revolt, unpaid wages, revolving-door management: inside five chaotic, difficult, tumultuous, teetering years at Now magazine