CRMA Membership Guidelines

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May 12, 2013

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To qualify for membership in the City and Regional Magazine Association, a magazine must: 
Be recommended for membership by the Membership Committee which shall have responsibility for applying the following standards to the review of each applicant: 

  • Be an existing magazine, published at least quarterly, that is dedicated to a city, state, or region.
  • Be printed with a production quality and utilizing paper of a quality generally accepted within the magazine industry.
  • Be a general interest consumer publication rather than a single-interest publication, as determined by the Membership Committee. General interest consumer magazines are defined as publications with a broad range of editorial about life and living in a city or region.  Such magazines cover multiple aspects of life and living in the area.  There are a multiplicity of subjects that may be covered including but not limited to topics about lifestyle, people, food, travel and entertainment, political and social issues, etc.  General interest consumer magazines are not single interest publications.
    • No more than 50% of the editorial should be devoted to one subject area such as homes and home decorating, visitor’s interests, food, sports, etc. 
    • Does not focus on one segment of the population such as on women, families or children.
    • Does not focus on one aspect of living in the region such as would be the case with magazines targeting visitors to the region or magazines that focus on sports in the region or home design in the region.
  • Magazines are successful only if readers trust the information and advice given.  Applicant publications must exhibit a clear distinction between editorial and advertising, in the judgment of the Membership Committee.  Among factors to be considered are labeling of advertising sections, advertising and editorial adjacencies and the magazine’s policies with regard to listing restaurants and other businesses. 

    The layout, design and typeface of advertising pages should be distinctly different from the publication’s normal layout, design and typeface.  Any page of advertising that contains text or design elements that have an editorial appearance must be clearly and conspicuously identified with the words “advertising”, ‘advertisement” or “promotion” horizontally at or near the center of the top of the page in type at least equal in size and weight to the publication’s normal editorial body type face. 

    Advertising pages should not be placed adjacent to related editorial materials in a manner that implies editorial endorsement of the advertised product or service.

    For all listings compiled and published in the magazine, an explicit statement must be included stating how the list was compiled and whether the listing is the domain of advertising or editorial.
  • Magazines whose ownership or sponsorship dictates content are ineligible. 
  • To ensure the clarity of voice which city and regional magazines bring to the markets they serve, magazines which are owned by larger entities that conduct business in other media operations (ie. Television, newspaper, radio, etc.) are eligible for membership only if they conduct operations with autonomous management, editorial and marketing/sales staffs.
  • Be a stand-alone product, where the primary mode of distribution is in the mail or by equivalent means.
    • At least 90% of the audited total circulation of a member magazine must be distributed through newsstand sales, in-room hotel copies, as long as they do not constitute more than 20% of audited total circulation, or in the mail or by equivalent means, as deemed acceptable to the Membership Committee.  
    • Bulk distribution through charities and advertisers or other entities where the recipient is not readily and individually identifiable is not acceptable.  
    • Free rack distribution is not acceptable.    
  • Have its circulation audited or verified by an independent entity acceptable to CRMA and continues to obtain a circulation audit not less than every two years thereafter.
    • Magazines applying for membership must provide a copy of the audit report or may submit a letter from the audit firm that an audit has been scheduled to be completed  within 12 months provided they also submit copies of printer invoices for at least three issues which show the number of copies printed.

Magazines, which in the judgment of the Membership Committee, meet the above standards and whose circulation is 60 percent or more paid are eligible for Active membership.  Magazines that meet the above criteria, but have less than 60 percent paid circulation are eligible for Affiliate membership.
Circulation audits shall be performed by BPA, ABC, VAC or CVC. For publications located outside the US, firms providing equivalent audit services may be accepted at the discretion of the Membership Committee.
The Membership Committee shall consist of not less than 5 nor more than 9 representatives of member publications.  Representatives shall be proposed by the President and approved by the Board of Directors.  Each representative shall serve for a term of not more than three years, except that those selected for partial terms to serve on the initial committee, may serve one additional full term. It is intended that the committee membership include balanced representation from management and editorial positions of member magazines.  (The initial committee appointed shall be appointed to staggered terms.) 
All recommendations of the Membership Committee regarding membership are subject to final approval by the CRMA Board of Directors.

Adopted by the
Membership Committee 
May 12, 2013
Adopted by the
CRMA Board of Directors  
May 12, 2013

Updated July 2013

CRMA Approved Audit Firms

Alliance for Audited Media

48 W Seegers Road
Arlington Heights, IL 60005
Tel: 224/366-6939
Fax: 224/366-6949
Eastern Region Sales
The Chanin Building
122 E 42 St., Ste. 807
New York, NY 10168-0899
Tel: 212-867-8992
Fax: 212-867-8947
Canadian Member Service
151 Bloor Street West, Suite 850
Toronto, ON M5S 1S4
Tel: 416-962-5840
Fax: 416-962-5844

BPA Worldwide

Corporate Headquarters
100 Beard Sawmill Road,  6th Fl.
Shelton, CT 06484
Tel: 203/447-2800
Fax: 203/447-2900
Canada- Ontario
90 Eglinton Avenue East, Ste 980
Toronto, Ontario M4P 2Y3
Telephone: 416.487.2418
Fax: 416.487.6405


Verified Audit Corporation
900 Larkspur Landing Circ #295
Larkspur, CA 94939-1758
Sales: 800/775-3332
Corporate: 415/461-6006
Fax: 415/461-6007

Circulation Verification Counci
383 S Kirkwood Road, Ste. 102
St. Louis, MO 63122
Toll Free: 800-262-6392
Fax: 314-822-0666