Canta (magazine)

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Cover of Canta magazine 16 Jul 2014
Editor Joshua Brosnahan
Former editors Liam Donnelly
Frequency Fortnightly during term time
Year founded 1930
Company University of Canterbury Students' Association
Based in Christchurch, New Zealand

Canta (stylised CANTA) is the official magazine of the University of Canterbury Students' Association (UCSA) of the University of Canterbury, established in 1930.

The magazine generally features a light-hearted tone, with an emphasis on short, image-heavy articles.

Canta is a member of the Aotearoa Student Press Association (ASPA) and the New Zealand Press Council.

Previous issues are archived and freely available in electronic form on the website of the National Library of New Zealand.

Publication information[edit]

Canta is freely available around The University of Canterbury campus every second Monday in term time. It is 32 pages long. Its editor is Joshua Brosnahan and deputy editor is Wajd El-Matary. There are over 30 regular contributors.[citation needed]

There are a variety of sections which typically appear in every issue. These include:

  • Letters To The Editor
  • Campus News
  • Flat Famous
  • How To Student
  • Hard Yards - classic movie reviews
  • Club Promoter - profiles on university clubs
  • Happy Ending - Sudoku, colouring in etc.
  • Critical Analysis and Investigative Feature.

Historical columns[edit]

  • An Open Letter - Ben Uffindell
  • The Cake Review - Dr. Handsome B. Wonderful Esq.
  • Problem Solved - David Palmer
  • Ye Olde Pub - Pot Belly Hayden
  • Editorial - Sebastian Boyle
  • The Challenge of "Yes" - Dani, The Yes Guru
  • The President's Piece - Nick McDonnell/Kohan McNab (collaboration)
  • The UNInformant - Reuben VM
  • Letters to the Editor - Various
  • News - Mostly Sebastian
  • UC Kai - Annabel Longbean
  • Sudoku - Anonymous
  • Getting Inside the Queen's Legs - Andy Luck
  • The Flat Profile - Andy J. Tan
  • Sustainability - Sharon McIver
  • The Inquisition - Various
  • Exclusive Deals - Liquorland


In 1996, the Canta editors Steven Fleming and Creon Upton were removed after publishing a range of controversial articles including a Mel Brooks Nazi parody, a column purporting to have been written by Michael Jackson, a mock Tintin comic strip, and a list of student criminal offenders[1] (a hoax). The editors claimed at the time that their sacking was more a result of their poor relationship with the university’s student executive council than anything else. An employment tribunal later found in favour of the sacked editors resulting in a substantial payout from the student executive.[citation needed]

Canta was again involved in controversy following the publishing of an article entitled "The Completely Unofficial Top 13 Ways of Cheating" in the issue preceding midterm exams in June, 2007. New Zealand newspaper The Press and internet news service Stuff [2] published an article which was reported on by 3 News.[3] The university announced it was introducing a random seating policy in exams following the attention. Canterbury University Students' Association president Belinda Bundy said the article was not meant to be taken seriously. "I think we only ever saw it as a humorous thing, It was just a light-hearted reaction to all the cheating issues that have been raised recently."[citation needed]

In 2008, a weekly column entitled "Trust Deborah - She's Always Right" surfaced. This column features a weekly rant against different groups of people, ranging from "fat" girls (females with a BMI>22, according to the column writer) and Christians. In issue 21 of 2008, Deborah again made headlines by suggesting that Christians "have the mental capacity of a Down's syndrome-sufferer with a head injury", are "mentally defective" and declaring that she wishes that all Christians would die. Her articles have generated considerable "Hate Mail", published in every issue of 2009. This has had little effect on changing Canta Magazine policy.[citation needed]

In late 2015, the magazine underwent a restructuring after an article on virtual rape entitled "The Epidemic of Virtual Butt-hurt" was published in March. Issues were recalled[4] and a new editorial team independent of the UCSA was appointed in 2016.[5] The first issue of 2016, under the new team, included a message stating: "Disclaimer: The opinions presented in this Canta magazine are not necessarily those held by the UCSA or this University. Canta is now independent of the UCSA and is run by a student-led team. Every issue of Canta is signed-off by the UCSA Exec before printing."[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "'Canta' editors reprimanded over list | National Library of New Zealand". 1996-02-20. Retrieved 2016-07-20. 
  2. ^ Steward, Ian (12 June 2007). "Cheat attack". The Press. Fairfax New Zealand. p. 1. 
  3. ^ "Canterbury student says cheating is blown out of proportion". 3 News. MediaWorks New Zealand. 12 June 2007. Archived from the original on 24 October 2007. 
  4. ^ "The Epidemic of, well, Rape Culture - Sexual Politics Now". 2015-03-31. Retrieved 2016-07-20. 
  5. ^ Wet Paint NZ (2016-02-28). "Controversial Canta". Wet Paint NZ. Retrieved 2016-07-20. 
  6. ^ "CANTA - issue #1 - 2016". UCSA. Retrieved 2016-07-20. 

External links[edit]