Oct
19
2017
0

Victories in Canada, Egypt, Norway …

This week can celebrate a bit.  We have three victories to report on …

Toronto Pearson Airport campaign: This campaign was a win for the workers and we were glad to help. The strike is now over and the workers have won major concessions from their employer. Details coming soon.

Egypt campaign: Another win as all 9 trade union leaders have been freed from jail (on bail). Kamal Abbas of the CTUWS writes “Dear comrades, Many thanks for your support and solidarity in the LabourStart campaign to release the Egyptian nine Trade Union Leaders.”

Norway campaign: No, you’re not forgetting something. We very nearly had a campaign for Norwegian workers, but the workers won before we had a chance to launch this. (This is not the first time this has happened to us.)

Cambodia campaign: With over 8,200 supporters this is our largest current campaign. We’ve been asked to give it another boost next week with some new graphics supplied by the Clean Clothes Campaign, and will do so. In an effort to boost support for the campaign in its last weeks online, we ran a Facebook ad campaign. The campaign was shown 22,705 times and 375 people clicked on the ad, reaching the campaign page. Of those, only 27 seem to have supported the campaign, at a cost of $3 per additional new supporter — so not a great use of our money.

Indonesia campaign: We did a followup mailing in English to the 72,422 people who received but did not open the previous message. This led to a boost of 1,035 new supporters for the campaign, which is now over 6,000 supporters.

Mailing lists: Our lists continue to grow as we launch new campaigns. We picked up 451 new subscribers this week.

Written by admin in: Campaigns,Mailing list |
Sep
29
2017
1

New campaign for jailed trade unionists in Egypt

A round-up of what’s been happening at LabourStart this week:

Campaigns:

We launched a major new campaign in support of jailed independent trade unionists in Egypt. After just one day online, the campaign is live in 6 languages (some of these are being uploaded as I write), with over 3,600 supporters.

The campaign in support of Carlos E. Castañeda Ravelo in Colombia which we launched last weekend is in 11 languages and has just over 5,000 supporters.

We have been approached by the ITF to launch a campaign next week in support of Indonesian dockers; more details coming soon.

We received a complaint that the Twitter link on the campaign landing page was not working. I tested this again, and it was.

Mailing lists:

We add 105 new supporters to our mailing lists.

Written by admin in: Campaigns,Mailing list |
Sep
22
2017
0

A very busy season for online campaigning as we launch 3 new ones

This is the first update in more than two weeks — this was due to my week-long visit to Georgia to launch my book, The Experiment: Georgia’s Forgotten Revolution, 1918-21.

Campaigns:
We have just launched a new campaign at the request of PSI, in support of a trade union leader in Colombia.

We expect to shortly launch two more campaigns at the request of unions in Egypt and Canada.

We closed one campaign — Freeport Indonesia — that ran for more than three months. This was one of our largest campaigns ever, with nearly 15,000 supporters, many of them from Indonesia.

Our translators are struggling to cope with the load of many simultaneous campaigns and for some of our key languages — the ones with large mailing lists — we are falling behind. I have noted that some of our translators always come through on time, even when we are given four campaigns in as many weeks, and written to those to thank them for their effort.

Mailing list:
We added just 70 new campaign supporters in the last two weeks.

Website redesign:
Our friends at Outlandish, the north London web design workers’ coop, have been doing some work for us (on a pro bono basis) and we expect to hear shortly what they have done so far.

Burma/Myanmar:
We’ve begun the process of changing the country name, first in English. At the moment, both names work and soon searching for one will also show results for the other (in a few days).

Georgia:
I was invited to address the congress of the Georgian Trade Union Confederation and did so last week.

India:
We’re working to build closer links with one of our correspondents who’s created a Facebook page for Indian labour news that has 12,000 followers.

USA:
Derek has been making a huge effort to grow our Twitter feed here.  We’re up to 1,145 followers.

LabourStart TV:
We fixed our home page to highlight when a story is a video — even when it’s a top global news story. There is no longer a need for correspondents to include the word ‘video’ in headlines; but do make sure to tag such stories as videos (on the second screen, when adding news).

UnionBook:
Finally, we are done with this, no longer paying for the domain name.

Sep
06
2017
0

Over 6,000 supporters for our Iran campaign – our 4th campaign in August

Jailed trade union leaders in Iran.

New campaign: On 28 August, we launched a new campaign — a joint effort by the Education International and the International Transport Workers Federation — in support of jailed trade unionists in Iran. As I write these words, the campaign has 6,119 supporters.

Mailing lists: We added 569 new subscribers to 15 of our mailing lists; 360 of those were to the English list.

Translations: We have a new volunteer translator for Indonesian. Our Dutch translator has asked for help and we’ve suggested ways to cope with ever-larger numbers of campaigns. It looks like some of our other translators are struggling to cope as we launch more campaigns than ever in August.

Georgia: Eric will speak next week at the Georgian Trade Union Confederation congress. We have been helping publicise statements by the GTUC and its international partners following up on a government crackdown on independent unions, and hunger strike by railway workers.

IUF: We participated in the IUF’s 27th congress all of last week, posting a great deal of material on social media and the website. This was also an opportunity to hold informal discussions with other GUF leaders, and leading trade unionists from a number of countries.

McDonald’s: On the eve of the first-ever strike by McDonald’s workers in the UK, we participated in the demo at the corporate headquarters in north London — and posted many photos to Facebook and Twitter.

Aug
25
2017
1

Two new campaigns launched this week

We launched two new campaigns this week — Kazakhstan (IndustriALL and ITUC) and Iran (Education International and International Transport Workers Federation).  

The first of these is already in 11 languages and has 4,200 supporters.

(Pictured to the left are Esmail Abdi and Reza Shahabi, the two jailed Iranian trade union leaders, who are the focus of our latest campaign.)

Prior to doing this, we closed the previous Iran campaign which focussed on Esmail Abdi’s hunger strike.

This campaign had 8,410 supporters and ran in 18 languages.

In the UK, we helped to publicise the upcoming strike by McDonald’s workers — including inviting our subscribers to demonstrate at the company’s headquarters in London next weekend.

Having finally caught up with an overflowing inbox, all campaigns and mailings that have been translated have now finally gone live.  Our volunteer translators have been working overtime to keep up with all the new campaigns, and this is greatly appreciated.

Our mailing lists grew by 184 this week due to new supporters for our new campaigns.

Written by admin in: Campaigns,Mailing list |
Aug
18
2017
0

Not a quiet August here, as three new campaigns launched so far this month

I wasn’t able to update this last Friday, as I was travelling, so this update is for the last two weeks. This week it’s mostly about campaigns …

Cambodia campaign: This campaign, launched two weeks ago, is now in 14 languages and has picked up 6,603 supporters. We are hoping for many more, as there’s been very good publicity, especially in Canada. We’ve asked British unions to also get involved, as British retailers are a key target.

Belarus campaign: This campaign, submitted by IndustriALL and the ITUC, went live yesterday (Thursday).

Kazakhstan campaign: We have had a campaign submitted by IndustriALL and the ITUC and we expect it go live tomorrow (Saturday).

Iran campaigns: We’ve been asked to help with a campaign in support of a jailed trade unionist in Iran, but are awaiting a response from the group which is currently promoting this. We’ve asked the Education International for permission to close the existing Abdi campaign as it is out of date.

DNO Yemen campaign: We closed this after more than seven months online, with 9,273 supporters. The campaign appeared in 16 languages. As IndustriALL summarised the result, “DNO has failed to act on your messages. The union has made a complaint against the company to the Norwegian parliament, and an OECD complaint is being filed. Please continue to share the story of how this company has treated its workforce.”

British trade union campaigns: We continue to do promotion for TUC-backed online campaigns. The most recent ones (which we promoted with mailings to our UK list and on social networks) included for the unions Equity (Greenwich Dance) and BECTU (VFX professionals) In addition, the TUC has pledged a donation.

And in other news …

Mailing lists: We picked up 341 new subscribers this week, due to the Cambodia campaign.

Brazil page in Portuguese: We fixed problems with the new photo of the day feature here.

Inside LabourStart: We removed links to older pages which are no longer being updated.

Tagging video stories: We’ve now completed the process, so on all our pages, video stories are appropriately tagged as such, no matter where on the page they appear.

Written by admin in: Campaigns,LabourStart.tv,Mailing list |
Aug
03
2017
0

Coming soon: Two new campaigns on Kazakhstan and Cambodia

Campaigns: We closed the Kazakhstan campaign after 4 months — but are likely to launch a new one soon with the support of several global unions. The campaign ran in 17 languages and had 8,157 supporters.

We have a new campaign in the works, brought to us by a coalition of trade unions and NGOs in response to the sudden closure of a garment factory in Cambodia. It should go live today.

Our Iran campaign seems quite out of date, as Esmail Abdi was apparently released and then re-arrested. We have asked the Education International for clarification and guidance.

News: Among the top labour news stories we’ve given exposure to this week were the road blockades and fires set by sacked workers at Haifa Chemicals in Israel; the ongoing strike by teachers in Peru, who have now marched on the capital; the struggle by Palestinian workers to form a union at a furniture factory in the occupied territories; the campaign to support Nissan workers organising to form a union in the USA; and finally, the struggle of train drivers in Pakistan.

Turkish Facebook page: This has grown spectacularly in the last few weeks, rising from about 250 to 1,815 — 480 of those in the last week.  See the page here.

Mailing lists: While we wait for new campaigns to launch (Cambodia and Kazakhstan – see above) our lists are stagnant and not growing.

Donations: The ITUC has made a generous pledge.

Jul
28
2017
0

A quiet week as we support IUF, GMB campaigns and prepare to launch new ones of our own

It’s been a relatively quiet week with no new campaigns launched by LabourStart.

We have two possible campaigns in the pipeline – one focussing on Cambodia and one on China and Saipan. More details coming soon.

In addition, we did a mailing to our UK list and publicised on social media the GMB’s current campaign on Uber. Our efforts added several hundred more supporters to the petition online.

We also did a mailing to our Arabic list to promote an IUF campaign on Morocco.

We’ve got a commitment to get our German translations working again, as this is hugely important and we cannot let it slip.

Our mailing lists continue to stagnate as we add just 12 new subscribers.

This week we also informed key partners, including the GUFs, of the revival of this part of our website and its Facebook page too.

Written by admin in: Campaigns,LabourStart.tv,Mailing list |
Jul
21
2017
0

Somalia campaign closes; we support Iranian sugar workers

Campaigns:
We closed the Somalia campaign after three months and 5,920 supporters. We’re waiting to hear what effect, if any, our campaign had.
We also did a mass mailing to promote the IUF’s campaign in support of Haft Tapeh sugar workers in Iran, as well as promoting extensively on social media.

Site redesign:
I’m pleased to report that we’re moving forward with a web design cooperative in London, and have discussed a number of changes they will make to modernise and refresh LabourStart. They’ve done some outstanding websites for progressive groups and unions, and are offering their services on a pro bono basis.

Outreach:
I had a long meeting at the TUC with their head of digital, John Wood, and we discussed ongoing cooperation.
I contacted the union official tasked with organising Uber drivers in the UK to see how we can help with their campaign.

Facebook:
We’ve picked up 510 new likes for our Turkish page (a tripling of the number) in just a few days this week thanks to our new ad campaign. We’ve informed 34,960 Turkish Facebook users about LabourStart at minimal cost. The campaign will run for a full month and it looks like after we’re done, our page will have several thousand likes.
Our ad campaign to promote LabourStart TV’s page ended after we picked up 151 new likes, having shown the ad to 4,767 Facebook users in the USA. We’ll probably resume this later this year.

Indonesian language:
We urgently need someone to translate our campaigns and mailings, and fortunately someone has now stepped forward. Indonesian is now one of our largest mailing lists.

Correspondents:
We added one new correspondent, from Canada.

Mailing lists:
Due to a lack of new campaigns, we’ve added only 1 new person to our lists this week.

Jul
15
2017
1

We try to support farm workers in North Carolina, but too little, too late

North Carolina: We were approached by FLOC for help with a campaign, but we approached the IUF and they did the campaign — with our support. Unfortunately, the campaign request came quite late and while we were able to mobilise a few thousand messages of protest (in English only), we were defeated in this fight. FLOC will let us know about next steps.

Mailing lists: We added just 21 new subscribers this week, the result of having no new campaigns.

Finances: The IUF has pledged a donation of £5,000.

Site redesign: We have a meeting set up for next week with a workers’ coop here in London that has been offering us help in redesigning the site.

LabourStart TV: We started an ad campaign on Facebook; the ads were seen this week by 3,810 people, 124 of whom have liked our new page. These are all trade unionists in the USA between the ages of 18-40, the target group for the current campaign.  The page currently has 356 likes.

LabourStart’s Turkish Facebook page: We’re going to be investing in an ad campaign to promote this as well. We currently have 254 followers and the page is being updated regularly.

LabourStart’s UK Facebook page: We’ve stopped the Facebook ad campaign, having shown the ad to 17,338 trade unionists in the UK, 1,477 of whom liked our page.  The page currently has 2,037 likes.

Brazil: We’ve given FTP access to our Brazilian editor and hope to begin showing rotating photos of the day on this page.

WINS: The Workers Independent News Service in the USA reached out to us and we’re discussing ways of improving our join work.

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