Actual press coverage of a LabourStart conference

Every day we’re learning about new media coverage of our Berlin conference — and there’s probably more out there that we don’t know about.  Here’s what I’ve come across so far — if you know of any others, please pass them on!

20 stories and videos so far …


Solidarity.  A very positive account under the headline “Forging global solidarity.”

Talking Union.  Ran this video showing Dan Gallin launching his book at our conference.

LabourStart.  Our own brief account.

WAC-Ma’an Israel.  A translation of the Hebrew account of our conference.



WAC Ma’an.  The English translation of this appears below.



ver.di News.  This was seen by activists in the 2 million plus member union; in addition, our conference demo was written up for the union’s membership magazine, which is seen by all members.

ver.di publik 1 – June 2014. Mainly about our demonstration in support of workers at Edeka and in their supply chain.

ver.di publik 2 – July 2014. A whole page about the conference.

Junge Welt. Had a couple of articles about our conference.

Jungle World. You can see the full article here.

Neues Deutschland.  You can see the full article here.

Labournet Germany.  A collection of materials including links to other press coverage.

AK – Analyse und Kritik. An article in the print issue of No. 595. A short mentioning in an article about the series  of Labour conferences in Berlin in May 2014.

Sozialistische Zeitung, SoZ. An article online and in the print issue of No. 6/2014

Sprachrohr, the journal of verdi’s media and communications sector in Berlin/Brandenburg. An interview in No. 3/2014,  see page 7.




LO-Media (trade union news service) According to the Google Translate service, which for some reason works really well with this article, the sub-title says it all: “Anyone can come, everyone can speak, no votes and nothing is approved: Labour Start Conference is the opposite of a normal convention.”



„Wütende Orangen“ fordern Verantwortung, by, 28.5.2014

Dan Gallin on the international labor movement, on Talking Union, 10.6.2014,

Various videos from the conference on the  LabourStart-Youtube-Kanal


Post-conference followup … in Addis Ababa



More than 40 hotel workers from Sheraton and Hilton Hotels in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia met and learned about LabourStart from Dawit, our new correspondent there — who attended our conference in Berlin.  Here’s his report:

The objective was to introduce labourstart to Sheraton and Hilton Addis Ababa employees and if possible to other people in another organization.  During the meeting the participants were from Sheraton Addis trade union and councils 9 and 30 members respectively.  In addition we also include 2 members of Hilton Addis trade union members whom they have total members of 500 employee in their organization.  In Sheraton we have 650 members. During the training and introduction the participant were surprised when they heard about labourstart global efforts for the right of worker.  Each of 40 participants took the web site of labourstart and to disseminate it into their email friends, members and to announce on the employees notice board.”



New campaign launched in support of Turkish workers sacked for joining a union

Two generations on the picket line in Turkey.

At the request of IndustriALL and the Turkish Metal Workers union we’ve launched a new campaign demanding that M&T Reklam reinstate workers sacked for joining a union.  

After less than 24 hours online, the campaign — launched simultaneously in Turkish and English — has just under 3,000 messages sent.  

A good start.  

Please spread the word:

Berlin: The good news keeps coming …

Here are some preliminary numbers from the conference that Gisela has correlated for us:

  • 360 people signed the participants lists, of which 46% women. Not too bad a quota although 4% short of ideal :).  (slightly cheating because voluntary interpreters signed up as well and they were overwhelmingly female. But a) they were interested as well b) it doesn’t make a huge difference). Great job!
  • We had 163 contributions in the programme (speakers/facilitators). Some people who spoke in several sessions are counted several times here. Of these 163, 71 or 44% were women. Again not bad, but a bit short of our goal :).  
  • People came from 48 countries. 

We’re currently working on a lot more conference followup including:

  1. Getting reports from all the workshops and getting these up on the web
  2. Getting feedback forms from a far greater number of participants — only 29 so far, so we’ll need to send out reminders.  I think a reasonable target is 20%, or 72 feedback forms back.
  3. Getting as many of those 163 contributions up on the web — and getting the best of them ready for publication in our next book — Global Crisis, Global Solidarity (publication date: September 2014)
  4. Continuing to thank everyone, to pay outstanding bills, and to followup with all the great ideas we got at the conference and aftewards

LabourStart in Numbers – May 2014

Mailing lists [with 200 or more subscribers]

English: 85,334 [85,670]
French: 7,827 [7,801]
Spanish: 5,150 [5,131]
German: 5,147 [5,069]
Italian: 4,099 [4,115]
Turkish: 3,442 [3,440]
Norwegian: 2,876 [2,878]
Russian: 2,525 [2,524]
Korean: 2,122 [2,122]
Dutch: 1,355 [1,349]
Chinese: 1,073 [1,073]
Finnish: 655 [609]
Japanese: 494 [494]
Arabic: 469 [390]
Portuguese: 356 [351]
Indonesian: 316 [265]
Polish: 269 [269]
Tagalog: 254 [254]
Hebrew: 246 [243]
Farsi: 242 [242]

Social networks

Twitter followers

English: 12,272 [11,995]
Canada English: 3,191 [3,067]
Canada French: 445 [432]
USA: 304 [252]
French: 209 [209]
Spanish: 69 [66]
German: 58 [48]
Indonesia: 32 [26]
Japanese: 23 [23]
Russian: 17 [17]
Portuguese: 7 [7]


Like page (English): 8,710 [8,633]
Members of LabourStart group: 7,691 [7,511]
Like LabourStart page (French): 421 [418]
Like LabourStart page (German): 344 [315]
Like LabourStart page (Turkish): 135 [134]
Like LabourStart page (Hebrew): 108 [105]


Members: 5,780 [5,760]


LabourStart group: 1,646 [1,625]


Union group on Flickr: 778 [774]


Correspondents: 714 [703]

Website traffic (Clicky)

Total visitors: 43,005 [40,845]

Where they come from:

USA – 9,670 [9,419]
Canada – 6,694 [7,245]
UK – 5,711 [5,478]
Germany – 3,126 [1,671]
Australia – 2,630 [2,670]
Norway – 1,665 [1,562]
France – 911 [871]
Indonesia – 853 [760]
Netherlands — 813 [--]
Belgium — 738 [718]

Their operating systems:

Windows – 68.3% [68.9%]
Mobile – 14.6% [13.8%] (iOS – 7.8% [7.2%]; Android – 4.8% [4.7%])
Mac – 15.1% [15.4%]
Linux – 2.1% [1.9%] (Clicky)

Total visitors: 32,148 [33,523]

Where they come from:

UK – 4,995 [4,679]
USA – 4,943 [4,343]
Canada – 3,698 [4,980]
Germany – 2,408 [3,292]
Australia – 1,644 [1,450]
Indonesia — 1,643 [--]
Spain – 1,282 [1,153]
Belgium – 1,036 [1,186]
France – 983 [1,224]
Italy – 897 [884]

Their operating systems:

Windows – 66.5% [68.5%]
Mobile – 20.9% [18.8%] (iOS – 8.9% [9.8%] ; Android – 9.5% [7.7%])
Mac – 10.4% [10.6%]
Linux – 2.1% [2.1%]

Update on LabourStart books

The Dan Gallin book is available on Amazon’s Canada site, but with a wait time of 3-5 weeks.  I’ve written to CreateSpace to raise this issue with them.  Meanwhile, I did a mailing to 12,000 Canadians today to tell them that they could order the book there — and also via Amazon Canada, on Kindle as well.

Our next book, Global Crisis, Global Solidarity, is beginning to take shape.  We will be asking all those who made presentations at our conference in Berlin to submit their texts, then we’ll make a selection, edit them and publish.  My target is to get a book ready by the end of August.

I’ve done an inventory of book sales since we began about 18 months ago.  We’ve sold 2,799 books so far.  Here are the totals for all, including Kindle sales:

  • Campaigning Online and Winning – 1,136
  • The Global Labour Movement – 823
  • Firefox OS for Activists – 390
  • Solidarity – Dan Gallin – 276
  • Campaigning – French – 97
  • Global labour – French – 77

The month in review – 25 April – 28 May



The most important thing that happened this month was, of course, the LabourStart Global Solidarity Conference that took place last weekend in Berlin.  We’re preparing a report on that right now, so nothing further to say here.


We published our 6th book — Solidarity, the Selected Essays of Dan Gallin. Sales are approaching 300 copies after little more than two weeks. A Kindle edition will go live later this week.

Work has already begun on our next book — Global Crisis, Global Solidarity — a collection of articles and speeches from our conference.


We launched four campaigns in the last month:

  • Germany: Solidarity with strikers at Autogrill – now closed
  • Philippines: Stop union-busting at NXP Semiconductors – still active
  • Indonesia: Support strikers at one of the world’s largest paper mills – still active
  • Turkey: For the right to celebrate May Day in Taksim Square – now closed

There is now a live running total showing for active campaigns — there is no need to do anything to show this.

The mycampaigns.cgi script — which is what we link to at the bottom of our mass mailings in English — was broken, but has now been fixed. It’s an important way to encourage people to support our other campaigns.

Finally, the display of news stories on campaign pages has also now been fixed.


As we anticipate the closure of the Lee Valley Technopark, we are currently looking for new, inexpensive offices in London.

Labour News Network:

This has now been revived. See here for details.


We have a new and growing list of 239 media contacts and have been doing regular mailings to them. We mailed 6 times to them in the last month. Every campaign launch now includes a press release from us.

Before the Berlin conference we printed out full-colour flyers advertising LabourStart in English, German and Russian. These were distributed at May Day events in London and Berlin, and many copies were taken away from our Berlin conference.  We also printed and distributed widely postcards advertising Dan Gallin’s new book.

We had stalls displaying our books and other publications at the 3rd World Congress of the International Trade Union Confederation in Berlin earlier this month, at the DGB (German national trade union centre) congress, and at May Day in Berlin.

We come to the rescue of Turkish unions – and revive an important part of LabourStart

lnnI had an email message yesterday from our comrades in Turkey reporting on the deaths of hundreds of miners in Soma, which they posted to their union website in English.  I immediately made it a top global labour news story on LabourStart — and then learned from them that their website had been hacked and their statement was no longer available.

With a general strike looming in Turkey, I asked them to send me the text of their statement — and then I built (from scratch) a new version of our Labour News Network which you can see here:

This allowed our readers around the world to see the Turkish unions’ statement, even though their own website was down.

The Labour News Network is something we tried some years back as a way to offer unions a way to post content to LabourStart even if they have no website.  It could be particularly useful for reports from the field — e.g., in future worker-correspondents could post reports, including photos and videos, directly from the field.

This is something we can discuss in Berlin and afterwards …