Category: Radio LabourStart

Campaigns, conference, donations, mailing list growth – and much more

Campaigns:
We’ve asked the ITF for permission to close the Estonia campaign after 3 months. The campaign had over 8,900 supporters and appeared in 15 languages. Once this closes, we’ll only have 3 active global campaigns running.
As our Spanish translator has been ill, we need to find a new one urgently. I’m working on this today. None of our recent campaigns have appeared in Spanish, unfortunately.
We closed the Kyrgyzstan campaign after more than 4 months. The campaign had 7,752 supporters and appeared in 15 languages.
We posted translations our China campaign in several more languages. The campaign currently has just over 7,000 supporters and appears in 16 languages.
We publicized an IUF campaign (on Turkey) to our list, and used the opportunity to explain why we’d closed our recent Iran and China/Israel campaigns (with victories in both cases.)

Conference:
The conference opens in 108 days. We have 256 people registered from dozens of countries. In the next week or two we’ll have some details about workshops, topics and speakers and will do more publicity.

Donations:
UNISON in the UK has decided to donate £1,000 to LabourStart.
We’ve also been in discussions with the FNV in the Netherlands about joint work, possibly including a donation.
I will be following up with GUFs which have not donated recently.

Mailing list:
We picked up 624 new subscribers this month, mostly to the English list.

Publications:
Everything is coming together for our next book, edited by Joe Atkins, on migrant workers. We should have all we need by the end of this month, and the book should be available sometime in February (and of course for sale at our conference in Toronto).
I wrote to colleagues at the International Institute for Social History (where I participated in an all-day workshop in December) about collaborating on various projects, including a Global Labour Calendar.

Radio:
We’ve been asked by WINS (the Workers Independent News Service, based in the US) to contribute a 2.5 minute program every week and will do so. They’ve partnered with National Public Radio in the US and believe that their show will now reach an audience of 750,000 to 1,000,000. In addition to this, we continue to work closely with, and provide a weekly show for, RadioLabour based in Canada.

Ratify the Protocol:
We promoted this ITUC campaign to our mailing lists in English, Swedish and French, managing to crash their server in the process. Our efforts have more than doubled the number of people who’ve signed up. We also arranged translation of the campaign into several additional languages for them.

Twitter:
We had an exchange with a couple of senior staff at Twitter about a possible LabourStart involvement in their new Moments project; at the moment, this won’t happen but may down the road.

Radio LabourStart, R.I.P.

Radio Labour.
The new face of Radio LabourStart, R.I.P.

As Marc Belanger has correctly pointed out, Radio LabourStart has for some time now served to direct traffic to Radio Labour – and nothing else.

Our volunteer correspondents have not been posting links to other MP3 files – even though some of those correspondents are themselves the owners of radio labour stations and should have been using our facility to publicize their programs.

(Search this page for the word ‘radio’ to see what I mean.)

As a result, I’ve suspended Radio LabourStart and it now redirects all traffic to Radio Labour.

There’s also now a good-sized graphical link to Radio Labour on our front page.

Radio LabourStart: What’s the problem?

One week ago today I sent a message to our mailing list of correspondents (over 700 names) urging people to post videos and audio files to LabourStart.

Some videos were posted in the last week, but not a single radio show.

Not one.

I wonder why.

Basically, all it takes to put something up on Radio LabourStart is to add a file with an “.mp3” (or “.MP3”) suffix.

And there are plenty of these around.  For example:

Workers Independent News runs MP3 files every day – here’s one example: http://www.laborradio.org/files/mp3_web/2010/10/LaborRadio102010.mp3

RadioLabour creates MP3 files every day.  Here’s an example: http://www.radiolabour.net/RL5/2010/RL5-221010.mp3
Many local labour radio shows are also available for MP3 streaming.

For example, in New York City WBAI has a weekly broadcast called ‘Building Bridges – Your Community and Labor Report’.  Last week’s show was online as an MP3 file here: http://archive.wbai.org/files/mp3/101018_190001bbridges.MP3

    All three of these files are now in LabourStart’s news links database and will therefore appear automatically on Radio LabourStart.

    Please help by making sure that these labour radio shows are routinely added to our news database.  Thanks.

    My weekly podcast – continue?

    I’d love to hear your views on this – either as comments here or as emails to me.

    Back in May, at LabourTech Canada, I was enthused by the idea of doing podcasts.

    My first podcast went live at the end of that month, and overall I’ve now done a dozen of them.

    When I publicize a podcast to LabourStart’s mailing list, I’ll get between 200 to 700 listeners.  But if I don’t mention it in a mass mailing, and just publicize using the web, Facebook, Twitter, iTunes, etc, I can get as few as 75 listeners.

    I’m not sure I want to use the LabourStart mass mailing every time I do a podcast, and not sure there’s any real interest in my continuing to do them.

    What do you think?

    Friday morning in brief …

    • My lastest podcast on labour and technology is now online, here.
    • UnionBook 2.0 has 910 members as of this morning.
    • I’ve asked about closing down our Algeria campaign and am waiting to hear from the comrades there.
    • We’ve got a sponsor for our Canada page – ad to appear later today.
    • Our book of the month for September will be this one (but don’t order it just yet – not using that link).
    • Derek, Andrew and I have scheduled our first Skype conference call for next week to discuss the 2011 LabourStart Global Solidarity Conference.  Details coming soon.

    Labo(u)rlists, podcast, keywords, RSS, news, inbox – a day in the life …

    Some of the things I’ve been working on today —

    • Have taken further steps to transfer the domain laborlists.org over to our web server at 1&1 Internet.  As you may recall, we were using this domain name on a US-based server to do our mailings until they decided that we were mailing out too much and we needed to migrate everything over to labourlists.org on 1&1.
    • I recorded my weekly podcast on labour and technology, focussing on LabourStart and globalization.  It will go live tomorrow.
    • I checked if our search function works on keywords and it does — at least in English. If you search on the term ‘FBU’ you’ll see a news story I posted today that has the term in the keywords field, but not in the title or source of the story.  It was reported to us at our conference that this may not work in some other languages, so we’re doing further checks.
    • I looked into our RSS news wire in Russian, which has issues with character encoding.  Trying to fix this now.
    • And as usual, I added a number of new subscribers to our mailing lists (people who have supported our campaigns), signed up some new correspondents, answered correspondence, and posted a dozen news stories on the site.

    Fourth weekly podcast – this time about LS itself

    My fourth weekly podcast is on the subject of how we post labour news to LabourStart — comparing what we do to automated news aggregators like Google News.  I think correspondents will find this of interest.

    Meanwhile, listenership of my podcasts is rising from week to week.  The first three podcasts had the following total number of listeners:

    • Geocities and Facebook [11.6.10] – 555 listeners
    • LabourStart’s Global Solidarity Conference [4.6.11] – 255 listeners
    • Twitter [29.5.10] – 30 listeners