Weekly update – 12.12 – 18.12.12

With Christmas nearly upon us, work is beginning to slow down – not taking on any new, major projects (and, I hope, no new campaigns) before the new year.

Successful campaigns book: This is now complete, with an introduction by the IUF’s Ron Oswald.  It runs more than 60 pages and we should be able to submit it to Amazon tomorrow (Wednesday) and should have books in hand by the end of the year.  The working title is Campaigning online – and winning: How LabourStart’s ActNOW campaigns are making unions stronger.

Labour newswires: We’ve now set up and tested labour newswires in JavaScript and RSS for the four nations of the UK – England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.  (This was Edd’s first ‘techie’ job, editing and uploading the files.)  We’ll be promoting these to UK union websites, hoping to grow our base of UK sites using our newswires from 20 to 40.  In the process of doing this, we discovered we had no recent stories from Wales, so we’ve added some and are following up with our Welsh correspondents to make them active.

Today in Labour History: Did more work setting this up; a version now appears on the front page of the website, but this is a very rough draft.   (The PHP version will look much nicer.) We have our first additional volunteer to help (from New Zealand), so we’re now a team of 3, but I hope we’ll begin recruiting others soon.

Book of the month: This month we promoted a subscription to International Union Rights; we earn £8 per sub sold, and as of yesterday morning we’d sold 33, so we’ve made £264,  This is more than we made in the previous four months selling books with UCS.  It is less than I’d hoped (I was hoping for at least 50 sales, maybe 100), but this is still much better than we normally do in a month.

Internationalization of campaigns: Edd reviewed how our campaigns appear in different languages and we found a number of places where English was still appearing.  I wrote to all our translators and we’ve made quite a few fixes in the Spanish, French, Norwegian, Indonesia, Vietnamese, and Chinese versions of campaigns.

New correspondents: We’ve added several new ones, including two more from Taiwan, our first active correspondent in the Bulgarian language for some time, and more.

Facebook: I wrote to key correspondents about doing additional versions beyond our English, French and Turkish pages.  Some interest has been shown in creating Indonesian and Chinese pages.

New site design: I spent several hours crafting a new front page for English (which could be the template for other languages).  It’s three columns wide, contains many more images, has a larger font, and features a much simpler navigation.  (That’s a screen shot of where we stand now with this, above.)  I hope to have something to show you all in 2013, but the adventurous among you can ask me for the URL so you can see the work-in-progress for yourself.

Closed campaigns: We’ll be closing the Guatemala campaign after three months today.

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