Fast Forward Weekly
|Owner(s)||Great West Newspapers (Glacier Media)|
|Ceased publication||March 2015|
|Headquarters||Calgary, Alberta, Canada|
Fast Forward Weekly (FFWD) was a news and entertainment weekly which provides news, alternative viewpoints, entertainment information, review articles and specialized advertising. It is distributed throughout Calgary, Banff and Canmore. It is owned by Great West Newspapers, LP. With an assessed readership of 70,000 upon a distributed circulation of 30,000, the paper is one of the most widely circulated and well-respected alternative newspapers in Canada.
The paper originated in December 1995 as the city's first alternative weekly publication. As of 2007, it is the only freely distributed weekly newspaper of its type in the city, having outlasted a number of competitors including a short-lived Calgary edition of The Georgia Straight which had originally been called VOX, the long-running Calgary Mirror (which folded in 2001), and the Mirror's successor, FYI Calgary In-Print, which ran for only five months in 2001.
While the paper was initially arts-focused, in recent years it has been covering more news stories and social issues.
In 2008, the paper was criticized over publishing a controversial article quoting Calgary Conservative MP Lee Richardson on comments regarding immigrants and crime which he later stated he regretted; clarifying he was referring only to youth gangs in the city. Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper called the reporting "gotcha journalism" for taking his comments out of their intended context, while other party leaders called for his resignation.
One of Fast Forward's most popular editions is its annual Best of Calgary readers' poll. For this, readers voluntarily submit their responses to a large variety of questions, indicating their favourite (or least favourite) aspects of Calgary, including its food, people, culture, infrastructure, political leadership and more.
After 19 years, Fast Forward Weekly is shutting down. Great West Newspapers announced Feb 21, 2015 that the last issue will be March 5, 2015. "Ad revenue was not enough to support the continuance of a free weekly newspaper" was cited as the main reason for the publications demise.
The future of ffwdweekly.com is yet to be determined: it remains online, but without updated content.
- The Peak: "Dan McLeod's Straight" (refers to history and role of FFWD)
- Braid, Don (2008-09-26). "Sliming of Tory a typical campaign crock". Calgary Herald. Retrieved 2008-09-26.
- Fekete, Jason (2008-09-26). "Harper rejects calls for Calgary Tory candidate's resignation". Calgary Herald. Retrieved 2008-09-26.