|see note below|
Our blog, Facts For Working People has been publishing for a few years now. Initially it was just two of us keeping it going and writing for it. From the beginning we have avoided it being simply a clearing house for other people’s articles and views and have tried to ensure its working class character is prominent while including pieces on economics, philosophy and other subjects of interest to the class conscious worker.
As you can see from the graphic which covers one recent 30 day period, we have come a long way from our early days of 100 or so views a month. At present we are getting between 30,000 and 40,000 views a month. The numbers represent the top ten countries for views over the month covered by the graphic. Algeria, France, Germany, Australia, the UA Emirates, Pakistan and other countries also have regular viewers and the countries vary depending on the subject matter that month.
More people have joined the Facts For Working People Think Tank and weekly conference calls and we also had reports on the blog from comrades who attended the youth marches in San Diego, NY City and Chicago and we were present at the Gary airport in Indiana where regular protests are held against deportations.The blog has a Facebook Page with over 4200 “likes”. We have 1300 subscribers through e mail via the e mail form on the blog itself and 93 followers along with 260 that come to it through Twitter.
Some of our material is being picked up by other sources. Three official labor bodies in Britain and one in Ireland as well as a left publication there have published our material along with left publications here in the US.
Facts For Working People offers itself as a resource for issues and struggles of workers and youth throughout the US and internationally. The labels on the right of the blog contain most of the blog’s written history; Facts For Working People is also a useful research tool, a workers and activists library if you like as we are pretty good about sources. We helped publish, and were involved in, a campaign to get the AFL-CIO to open its AIFLD files to the public and have covered labor issues as well as social movements from the clean water struggles that have arisen in urban areas like Flint to the Standing Rock battle where US veterans supported Native People in the struggle to protect our water and land and other environmental issues.
It is a priority for us to explain the role of the working class, the obstacle caused by the pro capitalist policies of the trade union and labor leaders and the need to end capitalism and the corporate control of our economic and political life. We have also made it a priority need to integrate the struggle of all specially oppressed minorities and women with the struggle of the working class.
As Facts For Working People draws support as a news source and a workers’ Think Tank, we are moving closer to our goal of becoming more an activist group as well as some of our reports show. We refer to the process as becoming more a Think and Do Tank. In order for the blog and our presence on the ground to continue to develop we need your help.
The blog and the ideas it represents has increased its readership nationally and internationally through paying for or “boosting” postings through social media, notably at this point Facebook. This has been a major expense although there have been recent trips to Chicago and Gary Indiana as well as visits within California.
The costs of these are paid for through contribution and/or the personal sacrifice of a few individuals but we need help and support from our readers and others who support what we do and say. We have other costs such as media equipment, research and education material, communication costs and more related to publicizing the blog and producing important, relevant information, (the Wall Street Journal and Financial Times cost $1000 a year and are essential reading.) With growth come other expenses as we become more active on the ground. Some of the comrades are low waged or underemployed. We expect our activity on the ground to increase and that will increase our costs of keeping things going.
We received an original donation from a supporter of the blog of $1200 a couple of years ago and donations have come from others associated with it. But the most important thing as we continue to increase readership, growth and activity is that we do not only want the working class to write for it and participate in our Think Tank and activity, but to be its financial base. As we increase our readership so our expenses increase. We decline any offer of advertising or payment from companies or institutions or ventures that want access to our audience. We have strong belief in the old adage that “Who pays the piper calls the tune”.
If you are a reader of the blog if you are familiar with our work, what we stand for and what we want to accomplish can you help us with a donation? If you know me personally and my years of union activity you know I am not getting rich off this project (nor are others associated with it; it consumes a lot of our time.) Ideally, what we need is a regular monthly income coming through the donate button on the blog. Can you donate $10 or $20 month to Facts For Working People? Less is appreciated if that’s all you can afford. If we get enough responses, many people donating small amounts would make a difference. If you don’t want to do that can you send a one time donation of $10, $20 $50 or more? The donate button has a means of setting up regular contributions. We need money to keep the momentum going that’s just the plain truth of it.
Richard Mellor AFSCME Local 444, retired
For Facts For Working People
Note: I sent this appeal out to contacts of mine made over the years. However, I brought in the wrong graphic, an older graphic when the viewing audience was smaller.