jeudi 21 octobre 2010

Les femmes sont-elles plus généreuses que les hommes ?


Cet article publié par le Daily Mail de ce matin nous rappelle que les femmes aux Etats-Unis sont plus généreuses que les hommes à l'heure de répondre à des appels de fonds humanitaires.

Women really are more generous as study proves they donate more to charity

Generous: Women are signifcantly more likey to make a donation to charity, a new study has found.


It has long been suspected by charities and not for profit organisations.
But now an American study has found that women across nearly every income level give signifcantly more to charity than men - in some cases twice as much.
Researchers at the Centre of Philanthropy at Indiana University studied the donating patterns of 8,000 American households.
They found that women gave more in all income brackets apart from one, those with incomes between $23,509 and $43,500.
The research also said that there were several factors that contributed to the growing generosity of women.
Among them were that women's income has grown and that the number of American women who earn more than their husbands now stands at 26 per cent.
Debra Mesch, director of the institute that led the study, said that the results are so decisive that charities can stop wondering about whether women give more.
'I think the general assumption is that women might be more likely to give, but that they give less money,' Ms Mesch said.
However women gave more often than men to both different charities, and in the total number of dollars, Ms Mesch added.
The data used for the study was not broken down by gender, so researchers looked solely at households headed by single men or single women, including adults who have been divorced, widowed or never married.

Debra Mesch: Said the study's results are so decisive that charities can stop wondering about who donates more
Previous research had shown that women encourage their husbands to give, but generally it is the women that make donations within married households.
However Suzie Upton, chief development officer of the American Heart Association, disputed the findings of the research.
Ms Upton claimed her organisation had no data to show that women are more generous, despite the Dallas based charity targeting women in it's fundraising.
She said: 'We target lots of our efforts to women, not because they are more generous, but because they are the decision makers for themselves and for their families.'
But World Vision, a Washington State charity, said they were not surprised by the results.
Spokesman John Yeager claimed the charity had known for decades that its target voter was a a 47-year-old, college-educated female.
The American Red Cross has also targeted women for donations and added a donor group in 2005.
Nearly 600 women across the United States give $10,000 a year to its Tiffany's Circle fundraising arm to help provide a stable base for its disaster relief.
' Women have been incredibly generous, and they want to make a difference,' volunteer chairman Elaine Lyerly said, referring both to her organisation and philanthropy in general.
The charity said it has no plans to add a male only donation group.

jeudi 14 octobre 2010

Combien vaut un baiser de Steffi Graf ?

Intéressantes données chiffrées sur la valeur marchande des People sur le marché du caritatif aux Etats-Unis (vu dans le blog de l'AFP, voir sur la colonne de droite de votre écran).


Grand Slam for Children rakes in millions


Elton John wants to return to the Strip on a regular basis.

"I really miss Vegas," the former Caesars headliner said at Andre Agassi's concert for charity late Saturday night.


"One day, I'd love to come back, OK?"

OK, Elton.

He sounded very good at the Wynn, singing "Tiny Dancer" and "Your Song" to help raise $8.5 million (a half-million more than last year) for Agassi's Foundation for Education.

Other top highlights from the swanky Wynn ballroom:

1. KISSING A TENNIS HERO

A kiss from Steffi Graf is worth $25,000.

Agassi asked partyers at the Grand Slam for Children to donate $2,500 to sponsor one pupil, per year, for his Vegas Prep school.

Many did. Steve Wynn sponsored 50 kids. U.S. Rep. Shelley Berkley sponsored two.

To spice things up, Agassi said his wife would kiss anyone who sponsored 10 kids.

Agassi Foundation board member Brent Handler got the kiss for 10 sponsorships. Caveat: Steffi and Andre were comfortable with it because they've known Handler for many years.

2. THE VALUE OF KATIE AND ROBIN

The value of having drinks with Katie Couric is $15,000. One auction item at the Agassi event: Get flown to New York for a tour of the CBS newsroom and to see David Letterman's show. But the real nut of the auction item was getting drinks with Couric.

Almost every other auction item fetched even more.

Three people paid $100,000 to have dinner with Robin Williams.

Three people paid $100,000 to go on a week's vacation with Agassi and Graf in the Cayman Islands.

Someone paid $75,000 for a vacation in India, including lunch with Freida Pinto of "Slumdog Millionaire."

Someone paid $65,000 for a sports package of four seats to the Super Bowl, World Series and NBA and NCAA finals.

Swimming lessons from Michael Phelps took $60,000.

Personalized dinners by Susur Lee and Emeril Lagasse each raked in $50,000.

Drumming lessons from Lars Ulrich got $35,000.

And fantasy camp with Wayne Gretzky and Luc Robitaille: $15,000.

3. THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WEALTHY AND RICH

On stage, Rob Thomas looked down at the front rows, where seats cost $8,500 each, and he observed, "It's like the wealthy."

Then he looked at the people behind the wealthy -- where seats cost only $1,000 to $4,000 -- and he said, "And past here is just rich."

The rich and wealthy laughed.

Défendre l'usage du papier

Intéressante analyse de l'agence Seprem qui apporte des arguments utiles pour convaincre certains clients séduits par le tout virtuel.


Défendre le papier, un enjeu moral et marketing

Lorsque Michel-Edouard Leclerc annonce que son enseigne a pour objectif la suppression définitive des prospectus en 2020, tout le monde applaudit, tant le papier est devenu un symbole de la destruction de la nature par des industriels irresponsables, et ceci à tous les niveaux de la société : à l’école, les enfants dessinent (sur du papier) le triste destin des chênes centenaires que l’on abat ; au bureau, nous faisons suivre nos courriels de la mention « pour préserver l’environnement, n’imprimer que si cela est vraiment nécessaire » ; dans les directions de la communication, on tremble à l’idée d’être critiqué pour avoir imprimé un magazine client ou un rapport annuel …

Face à tant d’émotion, l’association Culture Papier réagit en communiquant des informations qui doivent nous faire réfléchir : selon l’Ademe, la production de papier est à l’origine de la plantation de 500 000 hectares de forêt supplémentaires en France en 10 ans seulement, soit la surface du département des Bouches-du-Rhône ou de l’île de Bali ; le papier est le seul support qui soit issu de ressources renouvelables, biodégradables et recyclables jusqu’à 5 fois ; enfin, avec 60 % des papiers et cartons recyclés, c’est aussi la matière première actuellement la mieux recyclée en France. Bien sûr, le papier n’est pas exempt de critiques, mais il faut bien reconnaître qu’il est beaucoup plus attaqué que l’Internet dont les besoins en énergie représentent déjà 2 % des émissions mondiales de gaz à effet de serre, soit l’équivalent du trafic aérien mondial !

Lorsque les professionnels de la communication n’ignorent pas ces données (ce qui est rare), ils font semblant de ne pas les connaître par peur de ne pas apparaître comme suffisamment responsables. Or, c’est en agissant ainsi qu’ils ne sont pas responsables, si l’on considère que leur premier impératif professionnel est d’utiliser les supports les mieux adaptés à leurs messages et à leur cible. Si les catalogues et mailings imprimés reviennent en force malgré cette mauvaise image et un coût supérieur à l’Internet, c’est bien parce qu’ils sont efficaces pour faire connaître et vendre des produits, des services et des idées. Et si les « pure players » de l’information se lancent dans l’édition de magazines, c’est bien parce qu’ils ont conscience qu’à côté de l’Internet, certaines informations et analyses ont besoin du support imprimé pour être traitées correctement.

Plutôt que de se réfugier dans des postures vertueuses qui vont à l’encontre de l’efficacité qu’ils recherchent, médias et communicants feraient mieux d’utiliser les supports imprimés qu’ils éditent pour informer leurs destinataires de réalités écologiques qu’ils ignorent et lever des préventions qui n’ont pas lieu d’être et nuisent à leur efficacité.

SEPREM ÉTUDES & CONSEIL, spécialiste des études et stratégies médias/messages
vous propose une nouvelle « Matière à réflexion » pour comprendre et anticiper l’évolution des médias.

mercredi 13 octobre 2010

Mariée à 12 ans sur Facebook

Une vidéo pour dénoncer les mariages d'enfants. Une campagne de Plan qui secoue les consciences.


Un exemple de campagne lancée à l'aide des réseaux sociaux (Facebook).

mardi 12 octobre 2010

Grâce aux Petits frères des pauvres, Bernadette reste jeune



Un site internet attractif et bien fait.

Les Petits Frères des pauvres réalisent des miracles en aidant les plus isolées des personnes âgées à combattre la solitude et la misère. Ils remplissent un rôle social très utile.

Leur campagne de recrutement annuelle leur permet d'atténuer l'imparable attrition du nombre de donateurs réguliers (169 400 à la fin de 2009).

Une lettre à l'épreuve du temps qui passe

Les responsables de cette association sont si contents de leur message qu'ils le gardent d'année en année. Avec, heureusement quelques changements… et des oublis.

Pourquoi changer pour changer ? Tant que les rendements sont bons, autant amortir le coût d'un mailing en l'usant jusqu'à la corde. Rien qu'en 2009, 32 000 nouveaux donateurs ont été recrutés.


Seul inconvénient, l'objet de l'accroche commence à sentir le moisi. Bientôt, la « canicule de 2003 » sera oubliée de tous.

Les changements dans le texte sont minimes. En comparant les deux paragraphes en bas de page on peut en déduire que l'association a entre ces deux lettres fêté son soixantième anniversaire.

Tout comme le verso nous apprend que Michel Chegaray a remplacé Jacques d'Acremont à la présidence de l'association.

Toutefois, le principal changement dans la lettre ne concerne guère le contenu du texte mais son apparence. La police du gras a été remplacée et l'effet est désormais bien plus agréable à l'œil (ci-dessus).

Une enveloppe porteuse en technicolor

L'enveloppe à double fenêtre met en valeur un petit magnet (le même depuis 2005, ce qui permet de supposer qu'ils en ont acheté des millions à des fournisseurs chinois…).

L'accroche est passe-partout et sans casser les briques véhicule un message qui sent bon la « feel good attitude ».

En cinq ans, les enveloppes ont pris des couleurs.

Un lifter qui s'oublie

Il est amusant de constater que les responsables de l'association et leur agence conseil ont oublié de rectifier l'âge de Bernadette qui en 2010, comme en 2005, a toujours le même âge !

Le miracle de Bernadette, grâce aux Petits frères des pauvres, elle ne vieillit plus. Encore un effort et elle deviendra immortelle.

Un sou est un sou

Toutefois, les Petits frères ne perdent pas le Nord. A défaut de corriger l'âge des vieilles dames, ils savent tenir compte des effets de l'inflation.

A droite, le lifter de 2005, à gauche celui de 2010.

En cinq ans, le coût moyen de transport a augmenté de 50 %, le coût moyen d'un colis complet de 56 %, en revanche, le réveillon se contente d'un modeste 5 %.

L'évolution du don d'appel reste modeste, témoignage de la dureté des temps. Il est passé modestement de 12 à 15 euros.


Le bon de fraternité de 2010 est amélioré sur quelques points de détail. Il est question de « réduction d'impôts » et non plus de « déduction fiscale » et l'enveloppe retour est pré-affranchie et non plus une banale enveloppe T.

Des comptes solides comme le Pont neuf

Les comptes de l'association sont disponibles sur le site ici.


Je n'ai pas bien saisi la spécificité du poste « Témoigner, alerter ». Pour un lecteur non-averti, cela peut sembler une astuce pour dégonfler le poste marketing direct lequel consomme la somme respectable de 5 millions d'euros. En réalité ce poste concerne des actions d'information sur les personnes âgées articulées autour de quelques campagnes.

Les résultats des efforts de communication sont tangibles. Les Petits Frères des pauvres ont récolté près de 13 millions d'euros de dons et 19 millions de legs et donations. C'est un très beau résultat pour une œuvre méritante.

Au vu de ces chiffres, pourquoi changer un mailing qui rapporte ?

Voici ce que l'association écrit au sujet du marketing direct dans son rapport 2009, disponible dans son intégralité ici.

Rechercher des fonds

En 2009, le maître mot pour les petits frères des Pauvres était le développement. Rien d’étonnant à ce que les bénévoles et salariés des services de la collecte de fonds aient mis toute leur énergie à rendre ce leitmotiv possible.

En termes de collecte de fonds, 2009 n’a rien eu à envier à 2008, au contraire. La crise, bien que sans cesse présente dans les médias, n’a pas touché le cœur des donateurs qui n’ont pas souhaité priver les plus âgés démunis de leur aide. Ainsi, même dans un contexte économique difficile, 32 301 nouveaux donateurs ont rejoint les petits frères des Pauvres. Les campagnes d’appel de dons ont permis de collecter quelques 15 millions d’euros (incluant les dons faits à la Fondation), dépassant d’un million environ la somme collectée en 2008.

Nouvelles technologies
Il existe bien des manières de collecter des fonds mais parmi elles il en est une qui devient incontournable… le don en ligne. Depuis mai 2009, cette solution est désormais proposée aux donateurs et elle rencontre un réel succès. En quelques mois, nous avons collecté 200 000 euros grâce à notre nouveau site internet institutionnel, dont la fréquentation s’est fortement accrue, des mini-sites dédiés à certaines opérations et aux courriels de sollicitation adressés.

[Ces quelques lignes devraient faire tilt !]

Et l’ISF dans tout ça ? [En voilà une question qu'elle est bonne ]
En 2009, nous avons lancé l’opération « Bâtir la Fraternité », pour soutenir nos projets de création et de rénovation d’établissements. Des publipostages spécifiques ont été réalisés et un site Internet dédié a été créé spécialement pour cette collecte. Compte tenu de cette campagne et du dispositif fiscal des dons déductibles de l’ISF (loi Tepa de 2007) les dons en faveur de la Fondation ont singulièrement augmenté, passant de 2,3 millions à plus de 2,6 millions d’euros. Au-delà, non content de promouvoir les dons ISF, le dispositif de communication présentait tous les moyens offerts aux généreux donateurs pour nous soutenir : dons en nature, donations temporaires d’usufruit, donations, bénéfice d’assurances-vie ou dons sur succession ce qui a entrainé beaucoup de demandes d’informations ou propositions.

Les autres modes de soutien
Collecter des fonds ne se limite pas aux dons. Les legs représentent une part importante des ressources des petits frères des Pauvres. Le service Relations avec les testateurs conseille et aide pour la rédaction de leur testament ceux qui ont choisi les petits frères des Pauvres pour héritiers. En 2009, 127 nouveaux contacts, qui aboutiront peut-être à une succession dans les années à venir, ont été établis par le service. Presque la moitié des bienfaiteurs ayant testé en faveur des petits frères des Pauvres chargent ces derniers de l’exécution de leurs volontés post-mortem et ce à travers toute la France. Le maillage national des petits frères des Pauvres a permis d’assurer une présence (bien souvent la seule) aux obsèques des testateurs décédés en 2009. On observe un nombre croissant de demandes des bienfaiteurs qui souhaitent, par exemple, mêler un apport de patrimoine à une idée de Fondation ou la reprise d’une activité existante, conférant au service un rôle important d’orientation des bienfaiteurs vers les structures les plus adaptées à leurs volontés.

De son côté, le service Donations et Legs, en charge de la gestion juridique et administrative des legs, donations et ventes immobilières a tenté de limiter l’impact de la crise de l’été 2008 qui s’est répercuté sur toute l’année 2009. Avec une activité similaire en nombre de dossiers ouverts ou ventes immobilières réalisées, la baisse globale des montants encaissés n’est que de 19% grâce à des arbitrages dans la réalisation des legs et à une vente immobilière exceptionnelle au prix de 4 500 000 euros sans laquelle la baisse aurait été de près de 40%.
Les dons en nature

Les legs ne sont pas constitués uniquement d’immeubles et de portefeuilles titres. Bien souvent, des meubles et autres objets sont légués aux petits frères des Pauvres. Dans ce cas, c’est le service « Garde-meubles » qui intervient. Et en 2009, ce service est intervenu 31 fois aux quatre coins de l’hexagone pour gérer, trier et stocker le mobilier successoral ou d’autres dons en nature et préparer les ventes.

Les ventes « Antiquités et solidarité »
Si les petits frères des Pauvres gèrent avec tant d’attention le mobilier successoral, c’est d’abord pour honorer la mémoire des testateurs ayant fait d’eux leurs héritiers. Quel héritier digne de ce nom laisserait les meubles de ses parents à l’abandon après leur mort ? Ensuite, c’est parce que l’ensemble des biens légués seront vendus au cours de ventes d’objets d’art et d’antiquités des petits frères des Pauvres. Une fois de plus, c’est le service « Garde-meubles » qui intervient pour tout ce qui concerne la logistique de ces événements très attendus du grand public, qui sait que l’on pourra y trouver des objets de qualité au prix les plus justes. Des ventes de timbres, de monnaies et d’objets de collection ont également lieu chaque année comme celle du 7 mars 2009 au 33 avenue Parmentier à Paris – siège des petits frères des Pauvres. Ces ventes sont le fruit d’un long et méticuleux travail des équipes de bénévoles numismatique et philatélie. Sur ce point, il faut noter que d’autres canaux de distribution existent pour les timbres notamment. La vente par correspondance et internet tiennent aujourd’hui une place importante dans la vente de ces petits morceaux de papiers dentelés que les collectionneurs s’arrachent à prix d’or, pour le plus grand bonheur des bénévoles qui participent activement au financement des actions des petits frères des Pauvres.

Hors de nos frontières
Récolter de nouveaux fonds indispensables à la pérennisation et au développement de leur action, tel a été l’enjeu de quatre associations européennes des petits frères des Pauvres en 2009. Ainsi, l’Espagne, l’Irlande, la Pologne et l’Allemagne se sont vues attribuer un soutien financier et technique de la part de la France. Ce soutien du département de collecte de fonds français s’inscrit dans la volonté des petits frères des Pauvres de France de développer le réseau européen des petits frères des Pauvres dans son ensemble.

Je n'ai pas une vision globale de la communication des Petits frères des pauvres, mais ce que je peux en connaître me semble caractéristique d'une bonne gestion de l'outil marketing direct.

Une dernière chose : j'ai posté un don en leur faveur.

samedi 9 octobre 2010

Je préfère un chien que je ne connais pas à un voisin que je connais

Le Royaume-Uni est célèbre pour la générosité de ses habitants à l'égard des animaux, peut-être le révélateur d'une certaine misanthropie.

Dans ce post du blog de Pete Wedderburn, le journaliste spécialisé dans la vie animale du Telegraph, on apprenons quelques chiffres intéressants.

Quelques sites à visiter :


RSPCA

PDSA

Dogs Trust

Battersea Dogs & Cats Home


Animal charities: the battle for financial survival


In my Pet Subjects column in the Weekend Section of the Daily Telegraph today, I mention the latest animal charity fundraising effort that I’ve come across. Ask Jeeves, the “question and answer” website has launched a partnership with the RSPCA. From now on, people can not only ask questions about dogs – or anything else – but they can also download cute dog pictures for free. Every time somebody sets a “dog theme” as their home page, Ask Jeeves will make a donation of 50p to the RSPCA.
Animal charities don’t receive any public funding, although some argue that they’re all funded by the taxpayer because of the fact that donations are exempt from income tax. Effectively, the state donates the equivalent of the unpaid tax. This is one of the reasons why it’s so important that the Charity Commission monitors charities, ensuring that they meet their goal of “benefitting the public in a way the law agrees is charitable”.
In all sectors, there are 180000 registered charities in England and Wales, with a combined income of £52 billion, but more than half of them have an annual income of less than £10000. The Commission watches charities carefully, dealing with 2600 reported “serious concerns” last year.
Animal charities have high overheads. Costs rapidly mount up, from employing staff to run animal rescue centres (kennelled animals are labour intensive), to paying for all the establishment overheads that any business needs to fund (light, heat, telephone etc), to the specific extra costs of food and veterinary care. Fund-raising is a continual challenge to generate income to enable them to survive.
It’s well known that British people give generously to animal charities, and they have good reason to do so: there are no state agencies charged with caring for animals that find themselves in trouble with no owner to care for them. The RSPCA also has a role of investigating cases of alleged animal cruelty, and instigating prosecutions. Arguably, the animal charities fulfil a role that ought to be carried out by the state itself, which is why it’s right that donations are exempt from tax.
Despite the rumours, animal charities fall far behind other sectors in the “giving” stakes. The top four sectors are medical research, charities benefitting children and young people, religious organisations and those engaged in relief work overseas.
To look at the “big five” animal charities, according to 2008 figures: RSPCA income is about £120M a year; PDSA is £93M; Dogs Trust £60M; Cats Protection £36M; Battersea Dogs & Cats £16M. These are big numbers, and they’re big organisations, carrying out wide reaching work on behalf of animals across England and Wales. Despite the high income figures, they still struggle to cover the overheads of their daily workload.
Legacies traditionally have played a major part in funding animal charities, with the stereotypical elderly person living alone with their pet, perhaps feeling more loved by the animal than any humans in their lives. The PDSA, for example, earns 45% of its income from legacies, 23% from donations and gifts, and 22% from marketing activities and shops. The remaining income comes from selling preventive treatments (e.g. wormers, vaccinations) and miscellaneous sources. Other animal charities have a different balance of sources of income, with busy professional fund raising departments vying to find innovative ways of steering the organisation to financial survival.
If you care about animals, donate to an animal charity. They need all the help they can get, and they’re doing a job that just wouldn’t get done if they weren’t around.

vendredi 8 octobre 2010

Les femmes seules en hausse

Cet article de Steve Doughty, publié dans le Daily Mail, rappelle que le nombre de femmes seules en âge de travailler augmente.

Cette évolution statistique n'est pas sans conséquences pour le levage de fonds.

Une femme seule qui gagne sa vie est bien plus susceptible de répondre à des appels charitables et de donner du temps au titre du bénévolat.


The Bridget Jones generation: How half of women aged 18-35 are living alone

Trend: Fewer than half of young women now share their lives with a man - just like movie singleton Bridget Jones
Fewer than half of young women now share their lives with a man, researchers said yesterday.
Some, like movie singleton Bridget Jones, live alone while others are forced by the high cost of housing to remain with their parents.
A study shows that just over half of all women aged between 18 and 34 – 50.8 per cent – do not live with a partner.
The single majority reflects a big increase in the numbers who either by choice or necessity live with their parents, who have put their career before relationships, or have become lone mothers.
Less than 30 years ago well over half the women in the same age group were married, and around two thirds were living full-time with either a husband or boyfriend.
The figures were compiled by the European Union’s Eurostat statistics arm from figures collected from across EU countries by Brussels.
They also showed more than six out of ten men in the same age group are on their own – although men have always married or taken live-in partners at an older age than women.
In Britain the rise of singledom is partly a product of university or higher education for greater numbers of girls, together with far more opportunities for well-paid careers for young women.
However, the high cost of housing is also persuading many to stay at home with their parents.
It may also be that well-educated and well-paid young women are far more choosy about the qualities of the men they may pick as partners. Among less well-off young women, the ‘couple penalty’ built into the benefits system discourages the forming of partnerships.
Single mothers can lose as much as £200 a week in benefits and tax credits if they live with their child’s father or another man, and British official statistics have shown there are 1.2million couples who keep separate homes and regard themselves as ‘living apart together’.
Researcher and author on family life Patricia Morgan said: ‘We are always told the single life is exciting, but these figures hide a lot of dissatisfaction and a lot of heartbreak. The number of women who want to be married and to have a family is very high.
‘There is a squeeze on women at both ends of the income range. At the bottom the benefits system stops them finding partners. Higher up it is hard to afford somewhere to live and there is no tax help for couples. The Child Benefit changes are hardly going to help.’

True reflection: A Scene from the film 'Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason' starring Renee Zellweger as Bridget - today 50.8 per cent of women aged 18-35 do not live with a partner
There is no equivalent in figures collected for the British government to the percentage for those ‘living in a consensual union’ that have been published for the first time by the EU.
However in 1981, according to counts by the Office for National Statistics, 53 per cent of women in England and Wales aged between 16 and 34, some 3.7million young women, were married.
Since teenagers aged between 16 and 18 were the least likely to be married, the percentage among 18 to 34 year olds would have been higher.
A further 10 per cent of women in the same age group are thought to have been cohabiting. Mealtimes have been one of the traditions that have suffered as more people live alone.
Almost three-quarters of Britons no longer have three meals a day, with snacking becoming the preferred form of eating.
Half of Britons admitted they snacked because they were bored, with almost a quarter describing themselves as emotional eaters who nibble when sad and stressed, the survey for food company Feasters found.
One in ten said they snacked because they were too busy to prepare a meal and 72 per cent said they never ate three meals a day.
Feasters boss Nicola O’Dwyer said: ‘Today’s generation appear to prefer quick, convenient snacks over preparing a meal.
‘This is far from surprising when you consider hectic work schedules, social lives and other activities, which fill up the day.’

jeudi 7 octobre 2010

L'objet du délit, sacrifié sur l'autel de la notoriété.

Voici un papier de Kathy Marks dans The Independent qui met en lumière les déviances d'une association à la recherche d'échos médiatiques.

Whaling activist sunk own boat 'as a publicity stunt'



It was one of the most dramatic moments in the annual hostilities between the Japanese whaling fleet and members of the militant conservation group Sea Shepherd: the ramming of a protest boat, which sank in the icy waters of the Antarctic.

But all was not as it seemed, according to the Ady Gil's captain, Pete Bethune, who claimed yesterday that Sea Shepherd deliberately scuppered its own boat last January as a publicity stunt. Acting on orders from the group's founder and president, Paul Watson, Mr Bethune boarded the vessel with two fellow activists and opened compartments and hatches to let in water, he said.

The allegation was denied by Mr Watson, who released emails revealing that Mr Bethune, a New Zealander, had been expelled from the organisation. The group posted a video on its website which appears to confirm that Mr Bethune let the Ady Gil sink while it was being towed back to port by another Sea Shepherd vessel, the Bob Barker.

However, the sabotage claim and the public war of words between the two former comrades seem certain to damage Sea Shepherd's credibility.

Mr Bethune told Radio New Zealand that the Ady Gil, a high-tech trimaran owned by a Californian businessman of that name, had been salvageable. Of the alleged plot to scupper it two days after the collision, he said: "It was all done in secret. I was ordered not to tell any of the crew, not my family, and especially not Ady Gil. I was ashamed of it at the time, and I'm ashamed of it now." Accusing the Sea Shepherd leadership of "apparent moral bankruptcy", Mr Bethune said Mr Watson wanted to "garner sympathy with the public and to create better TV".

The Ady Gil sank after being hit by a Japanese factory ship, the Shonan Maru II. Sea Shepherd claimed the Japanese vessel deliberately rammed its boat, shearing off its bow. The Japanese blamed the protesters, saying they abruptly slowed down while crossing the path of the ship, which was unable to stop.

A month later, Mr Bethune was arrested by the Japanese, after boarding the Shonan Maru II to confront its captain over the incident. He spent five months in jail in Japan, pleaded guilty to trespass, assault and other charges, received a suspended sentence and was deported.

A possible reason for Japan's leniency, it has emerged, is that Mr Bethune blamed Mr Watson, saying he ordered him to board the ship and carry out other illegal actions. As a result, Mr Watson is now on Interpol's Blue List, which means border authorities are notified that he is a "person of interest".

At the time, Sea Shepherd said the Ady Gil sank after its tow line snapped and it began taking in water. Mr Watson insisted that Mr Bethune, as skipper, had made the key decisions. "Pete is on camera saying, 'yes, I guess we're going to have to let it go'," he said.

During Mr Bethune's trial, Sea Shepherd distanced itself from him, which it later said was a ploy to help him secure a light sentence. According to the group, it spent more than US$500,000 (£314,000) on his defence, but later discovered he had given "false information" to Japanese police.

For his part, Mr Bethune claims he was not expelled from the group, but quit in disgust. His version of events appears to be supported by Mr Gil, who told Radio New Zealand that Mr Watson used publicity stunts to attract funding and Mr Bethune was pushed into sinking the boat.

The bitterness between the two former colleagues is clear from their emails, in which Mr Watson accuses Mr Bethune – who was at the Ady Gil's helm when it was struck by the factory ship – of not having control of his own vessel. He also says Mr Bethune failed to show courage in custody, unlike other Sea Shepherd activists detained in the past in Canada and Norway.

Mr Bethune, meanwhile, writes that three of his fellow Ady Gil crew members can support his account, and are prepared to sign affidavits and undergo lie detector tests.

The row is a serious blow to Sea Shepherd's image. Chris Carter, a former New Zealand Conservation Minister, told Associated Press that Mr Watson's credibility and the group's anti-whaling programme had been "compromised" by Mr Bethune's claims.

The rivals

Paul Watson

A veteran of marine activism who has spent years roaming the oceans attempting to save life in the sea, the 59-year-old started early. Aged nine, the young Canadian destroyed traps intended to catch beavers, according to the Sea Shepherd website. He claims to have been one of the founders of Greenpeace and embarked on a series of voyages to try to prevent nuclear testing. He was part of the Greenpeace campaign against whaling, confronting the Soviet whaling fleet. He left Greenpeace in 1977 in a disagreement over the use of direct action campaigns and set up the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. He freely admits to damaging property in pursuit of his goals but says that in more than three decades of confronting whalers and sealers he has never injured a person.

Pete Bethune

Pete Bethune was the captain of the powerboat Ady Gil when it and a Japanese whaling vessel collided and sparked the series of events that led to the bitter falling out with Paul Watson. The 45-year-old New Zealander was convicted in July by a Japanese court after throwing a bottle of butyric acid – likened to a stink bomb – over a whaler.

Mr Bethune climbed aboard the Japanese vessel, intending to arrest its captain for attempted murder and bill him for the sinking of the ship. Instead he was arrested and taken to Tokyo for trial. At the trial, the prosecution showed a video shot by the whalers that appeared to show him whooping with delight after throwing the liquid. Mr Watson, who was not before the court, said at the time that Mr Bethune was "being used as a political football by right-wing nationalists in Japan".

Les peines de l'argent


Aidons l'argent
envoyé par ccfd. - L'info video en direct.

Ce film fait partie de la campagne du CCFD « Sauvons l'argent » dont nous avons déjà parlé.

Les qualités de ce clip sont indéniables. Il fera mouche auprès du public visé.

Son approche intellectualisante sera adorée par les abonnés au Monde diplomatique mais je crains que les abonnés à Témoignage chrétien ou les donateurs à des causes tiers-mondistes ne la trouvent un peu trop désincarnée.

L'intitut pour la justice rebondit

Savoir faire ne suffit pas. Il faut aussi faire savoir ce que l'on fait. Dans cette activité, l'Institut pour la Justice mérite une note d'excellence.


Il est toujours difficile pour une association de surmonter les campagnes négatives surtout lorsqu'elles se concentrent dans les milieux qui constituent le meilleur vivier de donateurs potentiels.

l'Institut pour la justice a fait face à de dures critiques sur des blogs et a dû gérer le départ d'une recrue emblématique, le père d'une jeune fille victime d'un tragique fait-divers.

Comment faire dans ce cas de figure ?

Il est pratiquement impossible de répondre car, à elle seule, la réponse est un aveu : « il n'y a pas de fumée sans feu ». Il vaut mieux confier au temps qui passe et à la volatilité de la mémoire humaine la solution des maux qui vous accablent.

Toutefois, il est une autre méthode que l'Institut pour la justice a chosie, en faire des tonnes sur son activité. Photos à l'appui, ses animateurs battent le tambour et embouchent la trompette à chaque fois qu'ils rencontrent un sous-sous-ministre ou visitent un palais de la République.

Leur bulletin trimestriel Droit et liberté destiné aux donateurs est remarquablement fait et applique à merveille le principe de se mettre en valeur. J'ai beaucoup aimé cette légende en dessous d'une photo du ministre de la Santé : « L'IPJ a demandé au cabinet de Mme Bachelot de renforcer son projet de loi ». Celle-ci n'est pas mal non plus : « L'IPJ auditionné par M. Jeanneteau. » ou encore « L'IPJ réunit de grands experts pour améliorer le sort des victimes ». Le texte aussi gonfle à l'hélium les réalisations de l'IPJ. Le main du rédacteur n'a pas tremblé en écrivant : « un interlocuteur respecté des pouvoirs publics » selon les grands médias. D'autres phrases du même acabit transforment l'IPJ en interlocuteur habituel des pouvoirs publics.

Tout est une question d'interprétation. Dans la mesure où les faits rapportés par le bulletin sont vrais, la licence poétique s'applique de plein droit. Je n'y trouve d'autant moins à redire que les rédacteurs sont intelligents et savent jusqu'où ils peuvent aller.

La qualité des copy-writers se retrouve dans le récent mailing de prospection du 23 septembre dernier que j'ai reçu grâce à un échange de fichiers entre IPJ et la Ligue des conducteurs.

J'ai aimé

L'enveloppe



Une accroche très efficace qui incite le lecteur dans les tranches d'âge visées à ouvrir l'enveloppe. l'astuce du rédacteur se trouve dans le non dit du texte.

La lettre


Huit pages au compteur ! Quand on a des choses à dire et des destinataires qui n'ont pas grand chose de mieux à faire, pourquoi se priver ? D'autant que du papier imprimé en une seule couleur ne grève pas le budget.

Une typographie à espaces fixes, style machine à écrire, mais en plus propre.

Des paragraphes courts, quatre lignes le plus souvent, des inters, des soulignés, des décrochés, des puces, toute la panoplie est mobilisée (à l'exception des mentions manuscrites).

Des illustrations au fil du texte qui prouvent la pertinence de l'Institut : l'IPJ chez Sarkozy, l'IPJ à l'Assemblée nationale, l'IPJ au ministère de la Justice, il ne manque que le pape et Dieu le père.

La qualité du texte repose principalement sur sa capacité à susciter l'indignation et la révolte du lecteur et à le conduire à soutenir l'action de l'IPJ.

Contrairement à leurs collègues des Contribuables associés qui envoient des mailings qui font allusion sans le dire à une actualité de 2007, l'IPJ sait lire les journaux et inclut dans son texte des références précises à des faits d'actualité : 12 et 19 août 2010, 16 et 18 juillet 2010. Cette récence fait passer les autres faits cités qui remontent à 2009 ou 2006.

La structure est des plus classiques.


Pourquoi je vous écris à vous ?
Parce que j'ai trouvé votre nom sur un liste où il n'y a que des gens bien et honnêtes.

Quelle est la raison qui motive mon courrier ?
La majorité des forces de l'ordre sont soit dans des bureaux soit sur le bord de la route.

Que puis-je faire ?

Participer au référendum sur la Justice.

Pourquoi est-ce important ?

Parce que les autorités sont d'une indulgence révoltante à l'égard des vrais délinquants.



La phrase de transition, the page turner, est d'une parfaite simplicité :

J'exagère ?

La suite de la lettre alterne la description de faits-divers révoltants bien mis en bouche par des inters alléchants :
Ils essayent d'assiner un policier… le juge les libère aussitôt

Ils cassent, brûlent et pillent;
les policiers reçoivent l'ordre de laisser faire

Un squatter s'installe chez lui en son absence… la police « ne peut rien faire » !

La fille de Michel Sardou coupable d'avoir été violée

Tous les prétextes sont bons pour relâcher les criminels

Je mets au défi un lecteur de plus de soixante ans de rester insensible à l'argumentaire de l'IPJ. Les huit pages font mouche.

L'appel à l'action est justifié par une citation du Figaro qui mentionne l'Institut et fait une valoration positive de son influence sur la politique judiciaire du gouvernement.

Le bon de retour




Le référendum sur la Justice combine astucieusement le bon de retour et le questionnaire à caractère pétitionnaire. Simple et percutant.

Le prix d'appel est à 20 euros, ce qui tend à prouver que les campagnes de l'IPJ recrutent à petit prix. C'est d'autant plus nécessaire que l'IPJ ne bénéficie pas, ou plus, de la capacité d'émettre des reçus fiscaux.

Ils abordent sans fard cette question dans un paragraphe ad hoc :

C'est bien vu.

J'ai moins aimé

L'accroche de la lettre est à mon avis un peu faible tout comme l'explication de l'origine de la l'adresse, on a l'impression de l'avoir lue dix fois.



Un bon travail

C'est pratiquement un sans-faute que réussit l'Institut pour la justice avec un mailing bien conçu, agréable à lire et incitatif au don.

D'un bon rapport qualité/prix, il est un bon exemple de mailing de prospection.

mercredi 6 octobre 2010

Le fund raising sert-il à quelque chose ?

Jolie histoire signée par Jenny Hope ce matin dans le Daily Mail. Un médicament va finalement être mis à la disposition des malades britanniques d'Alzheimer grâce à une campagne lancée par ce quotidien et à l'argent recolté auprès des lecteurs. De quoi inspirer bien des associations et des marketers.

Alzheimer's victory: After three-year campaign by the Mail, sufferers will finally get vital £2.50 drugs banned by NICE

Hundreds of thousands of people in the early stages of Alzheimer’s will no longer be denied crucial drugs that slow the devastating disease.

A three-year campaign by the Daily Mail ended in victory yesterday when the NHS drug rationing body reversed a ban that had been universally condemned by doctors, patients and their families.
Patients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s - who knew they were losing their minds - faced the scandalous situation of waiting for their condition to deteriorate before being prescribed the three drugs.

'It's wonderful': Alzheimer's sufferer Derek Quinn, pictured with wife Teresa, said he will 'now be able to do something positive'. Read his full story below
Aricept, Exelon and Reminyl cost only £2.50 a day, but the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence ruled in 2007 that they can be used only by patients in moderate - not early - stages of the disease.

This prompted a legal challenge partly funded by £230,000 raised in one week by Mail readers, which forced NICE to reveal its calculations behind banning the drugs.
Now the rationing body has succumbed to pressure and issued new draft guidelines which will allow doctors to prescribe the treatments to patients with mild symptoms.
The U-turn also means the drug Ebixa can be prescribed for the first time to severely ill patients. This will save thousands from taking antipsychotic medication – dubbed the ‘chemical cosh’ – which is not proven to work and can cause dangerous side-effects such as strokes.

The Mail campaigned vigorously with the Alzheimer’s Society, and with the help of physicians and celebrities, to end the scandal which affected some of the most vulnerable in our society.
Although the drugs are not a cure, up to half of patients respond with ‘life-changing’ improvements. Their symptoms are lessened and the progression to dementia is slowed, trials have proven.
Research also shows that those who begin the drug treatment at a later stage never catch up with those who began earlier, suggesting prompt intervention leads to an improved long-term prognosis.
Nice previously claimed the NHS could not afford to offer drugs to all eligible patients, but has now carried out a review using a different computer model to assess their cost-effectiveness.
This time it concludes the benefits are worthwhile, when compared with full-time care which can cost up to £40,000 a year.
Enlarge
The change in policy could be confirmed early next year in England and Wales, where the ban applies.
The potential cost to the NHS is unclear because thousands of patients could now ask for re-assessment, to add to the newly diagnosed.
At present the NHS spends around £100million a year on anti-dementia drugs. A Government estimate says using Aricept for mild disease would add only £5.7million next year. It says this would be offset by delays in patients needing long-term care.
And the drug will lose its patent in 2012 which means the price will fall as cheaper generics are supplied to the NHS.
Professor Clive Ballard, director of research at the Alzheimer’s Society, said doctors had faced an ethical dilemma for the past three years: Knowing there was treatment available that they were banned from prescribing.
He said: ‘If this guidance is issued, doctors will no longer have to watch people deteriorate without being able to treat them.’
Professor Ballard is convinced some doctors had been reluctant to diagnose the disease because of the restrictions, while patients might also have delayed seeking help.
He paid tribute to the Mail readers who raised £230,000 towards the court battle, which failed to overturn the ban but forced Nice to disclose key information.

Thanking Mail readers, Ruth Sutherland, interim chief executive of the Alzheimer’s Society, said: ‘In 2007 thousands of people supported our campaign to get access to Alzheimer’s drugs. We would like to say thank you to each and every one of these people for their support.
‘People with dementia tell us that taking the drug treatments can be like a fog lifting.
For the price of a cup of coffee these drugs can help many people continue to play with their grandchildren or recognise their loved ones. You can’t put a value on these benefits.’ Gordon Wilcock, professor of clinical geratology at Oxford University, said ‘common sense’ had prevailed and NHS patients would at last get help – not just those who could afford a private prescription.
Nice’s chief executive, Sir Andrew Dillon, said: ‘Our increased confidence in the benefits and costs associated with the use of the three drugs for treating mild and moderate stages of the disease has enabled us to make a positive recommendation for their use in mild disease.’
Drugs that 'lift the fog'
Fewer than one in ten Alzheimer’s patients are prescribed anti-dementia drugs to treat their symptoms, yet clinical trials clearly show the benefits of early treatment.
Aricept, Exelon and Reminyl compensate for low levels of a key chemical in the brain.
They stop breakdown of the enzyme acetylcholinerase, which plays a crucial role in memory and helps nerve cells communicate.
When they work the drugs ‘lift the fog’ for patients who remember names, or how to make a cup of tea, with effects lasting up to two years on average. Aricept, which costs £75 a month, is the most popular.
Another, Ebixa, at £69 a month, has never before been recommended for routine use on the NHS. It is the first in a new class of drugs which appear to have a protective effect, by blocking a messenger chemical that increases damage to brain cells.
A long-term study found Ebixa restored the ability, for at least a year, of severely ill patients to do routine daily activities and feel more alert.
In the U.S. and France, clinicians routinely combine a drug such as Aricept with Ebixa to get maximum protection for patients.

The 63-year-old chartered surveyor was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s in 2000 and was prescribed the drug before Nice changed its guidance.
His wife and carer Mary, 67, said: ‘He was going downhill fast, but Aricept returned things almost to normal. It gave us four to five years of normal life, in which we managed to do things together which we knew we wouldn’t be able to do later.’
Mr Stevenson, from Ambleside, Cumbria, was even able to give away three of his daughters at their weddings. Sadly, his condition has since deteriorated and he is now needs full-time care in a residential home.
This is the news we have waited so long for
When Derek Quinn, 69, pictured earlier, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s two years ago, he was told there were no drugs to help.
He was in the early stages of the disease when, under the old NHS guidelines, drugs were banned until his condition worsened.
He sought help after suffering memory lapses working at the wood recycling company where he was co-director.
‘I found I couldn’t recognise customers I’d been serving just a week before,’ he said.
His wife Teresa, 66, says they both felt let down by the NHS after months of worry.
She said: ‘We went to the memory clinic where the diagnosis was confirmed but the doctors said they couldn’t prescribe anything at this stage. It was quite a blow to be told there was nothing they could do. It took a lot of getting used to.
‘Derek wanted to take Aricept and they turned him down, and he tried again a few months later. The doctors said they would have to make a special case and so we accepted he wasn’t going to get it.’
The couple, who have six children and live in Calne, Wiltshire, will now ask again for Aricept.
Mrs Quinn said: ‘It’s great that we’ll get the chance. We appreciate it might not work but Derek would like the opportunity to try it.’
Mr Quinn said: ‘It’s wonderful that I might now be able to do something positive.’

La fin d'une industrie

Le marketing direct s'interroge sur la survie su courrier traditionnel à une époque quand le volume du courrier papier diminue et quand le mail se développe. Le monde de l'édition fait lui aussi face à une évolution technologique comparable. Un intéressant papier de John Walsh dans The Independent fait le point.

Is the publishing industry doomed?

It's the busiest week in the publishing calendar – with a host of events from the Frankfurt Book Fair to the Man Booker Prize. But this year, there's only one topic of conversation at the awards ceremonies and public receptions...

Today, in the endless, cavernous halls of the Frankfurt Book Fair, British publishers and agents are dealing in next year's books. They're buying and selling the rights to Kiran Desai's follow-up to her Booker Prize-winning The Inheritance of Loss. Martin Amis's new novel State of England: Lionel Asbo, Lotto Lout, despite its heinously awful title, is much discussed. The air is thick with hype, spin, competition.

Meanwhile, in Stockholm later this afternoon, will come the announcement of who has won the Nobel Prize for Literature – always an important moment in the books year, and a guarantee of sales, no matter how obscure the recipient.

And next Tuesday is Man Booker Prize Night. At 9.45pm, at a candlelit dinner in London's Guildhall, Sir Andrew Motion, chairman of the judges, will announce whether Peter Carey has won the prize for the third time. The winning book will be reverentially brandished. Publishers and agents will congratulate or console one another, while the nation's top booksellers will beam at the prospect of massive sales in coming weeks, as the trade gears up for Christmas.

Books – their writing, publishing, sale and celebration – make up a rich weave in the nation's cultural quilt. But who, looking at the faces in Frankfurt or Stockholm or at the Guildhall could tell that the industry that produces them is in disarray? Is this the last time that all these people (and these large, solid books) will exist in the same professional relation to each other? Will these authors, agents, publishers and booksellers be speaking to each other next year, after the current toxic dust has settled? Will they all, by then, be doing each other's jobs? Or just doing each other out of a job?

British publishing is in a parlous state. Year-on-year sales of books are down. Guaranteed-bestseller celebrity memoirs are no longer bestselling. Discounts to booksellers are unhealthily bulky, margins are narrowing, profits are down, cash advances are a fraction of their former munificence and acquisitions of exciting new books have dropped to a rumoured one per day. But worse is the turmoil into which these sensitive men and women have been thrown by the advent of the electronic book (or e-book).

"Technology has made virtually anything possible," says Neill Denny, editor-in-chief of the publishing industry magazine The Bookseller. "If you look at it conceptually – there's a five-link chain between the person who writes and the person who reads. You've got Author-Agent- Publisher-Retailer-Reader. Theoretically, the three middle bits could all now vanish and the author could write online directly to the reader."

However, he continues, "A more likely possibility is that just one of the three central links will vanish on-line. It could be that Amazon, the retailer, becomes the publisher. Or that the agent becomes the publisher, or the publisher becomes the retailer, and you go to a publisher's site to buy the book. One of those links will certainly disappear on-line. We just don't know which."

The paperback-sized e-books haven't been responsible for all the trouble, but they certainly started it. Literary types took one look at the Amazon Kindle's sleek metallic lines and rejected it on the grounds that it looked nothing like a Penguin copy of David Copperfield with dog-eared pages and a bookmark stuck inside, and was therefore Not A Book. Newspaper bibliophiles harrumphed about its lack of page numbers (they were made redundant by the variable size of the text – larger words generate more pages). Clubmen pretended to be terrified that an electronic device that could hold hundreds and access thousands of books would spell the end of the personal library. Less anxious commentators thought the Kindle might be handy to take on holiday, because it was lighter than carrying six books in your luggage.

Few noticed its incendiary power to torch the publishing world. Nicholson Baker, the lofty author of The Mezzanine, called it "an alpenhorn blast of post-Gutenbergian revalorisation". In Time magazine, Jacob Weisberg, editor-in-chef of the Slate group, called it "a machine that marks a cultural revolution. Printed books, the most important artefacts of human civilisation, are going to join newspapers and magazines on the roads to obsolescence."

Apocalyptic stuff. But you may think: "Where's the evidence? I don't see so many people reading books on screens." And the new phenomenon might indeed have remained a passing fad, had it not been for the involvement of four major companies: Amazon, Sony, Apple and Google. It's their quadrilateral Battle of the e-books that is sending gouts of blood all over the arena.

Two years ago, Amazon ran the show. It had the Kindle, and had millions of books in its warehouses that could be scanned electronically into it. Sony had the rival Reader e-book, but didn't own any books – it had to arrange with publishers for the digital rights to their authors' works. In January this year, Steve Jobs of Apple announced the iPad, a laptop computer which can run e-books while allowing its owner also to play films and games and send emails. Apple owns the iBooks store, where you can buy millions of "virtual" titles.

Suddenly the electronic publishing world was a battle for "intellectual property", the digital rights to books new and old. Then in April, Google entered the fray. It announced that it had scanned 12 million books, and its products, named Google Editions, would be ready for customers to access, online, this winter.

Holy moly, as they say. It was a battle between corporate titans to buy and sell more e-books to the world's readers. "There are no official figures yet for e-book sales," says Denny. "There are only estimates – and they estimate that e-books now constitute between 2 and 5 per cent of total UK book sales. But it's growing. I think they'll count for 10 per cent of all book sales in the next four or five years." How alarming is that? "It depends who you are. If you're a publisher, and e-book prices are kept reasonably firm, it won't matter that the electronic books are cannibalising your print sales. You'll still be making a decent margin, because you haven't got to print or distribute virtual books. The losers could be independent bookshops. They risk being cut out of the loop, because people will buy e-books direct from the publisher or, more likely, from a third-party retailer like Amazon or Apple, rather than from a local bookshop."

But who should set the basic price for an e-book? The chaps who brought it into the world? Or those who put it online? This is uncharted territory. Publishers once set a book's "recommended retail price", and it was protected by the Net Book Agreement, which forbade discounts. When the Agreement was abolished in the Nineties, there was a discounting free-for-all; bestsellers went on sale at half-price in supermarkets; small bookshops, which rely on top sellers for their basic income, saw their profits slashed. Retailers went head-to-head with each other, while publishers watched their profit margins decline.

How can booksellers survive? "It's hard for them to work in the digital arena," Denny acknowledges. "But I don't think they're finished. Their main hope is to make the local angle work. And, of course, there's browsing, which is much better done in a shop than online. Finding a book you didn't know you wanted – it's much harder to do that on Apple or Amazon." His voice becames dreamy. "Physically bumping into a book, in a shop, in real life. Having a bookseller put it into your hand..."

In July, the literary agent opened a new front in the war. Andrew Wylie, the feral super-agent who represents everyone from Martin Amis to Madonna, made a Hiroshima-like proposal. He said he was creating his own imprint, to publish his clients' books online and sell the digital rights direct to Amazon – thus cutting out the publishing middleman completely. This was a spectacular slap in the face to his former friends in the trade. Random House replied curtly that, if he went ahead with his scheme, they would never again buy or publish any of his clients' print books. Wylie eventually backed down.

"I think publishers are learning to be retailers, but I'm not sure agents are trying to be publishers," says David Godwin, former MD of Jonathan Cape, now a well-respected agent representing Vikram Seth, Howard Marks, Simon Armitage and Claire Tomalin. "I think Wylie's proposal was a wheeze to make publishers nervous. It wasn't serious. Frankly, a man less qualified to be a publisher is hard to imagine."

Godwin is a keen evangelist for the e-book. "Here's an amazing fact. I sat yesterday with Jonathan Galassi, the man who published Jonathan Frantzen's Freedom in America. There are about a million copies in print, he's sold a huge amount – and 35 per cent are e-books. That's phenomenal. That's a jump forward that's happened in America in just a year. But when there's a terrific buzz about a book, as with Frantzen, that's exactly when people want the book immediately... The bigger the book, now, the bigger the e-book sale will be."

There remains the thorny question of who decides the price of an e-book. Since the Kindle was born, most publishers resignedly assumed that Amazon would call the shots. A gripping standoff took place in January this year, when the head of Macmillan, John Sargent, told Amazon that publishers should set the price of their books in any format and, furthermore, that if Amazon didn't like the idea, Macmillan wouldn't sell them any more books. Within days, Amazon removed all Macmillan e-books from its shelves. A seismic shudder went through the industry. Other British publishers threatened to copy Macmillan – and Amazon finally gave in.

"A friend of mine bought his wife a Kindle," says Godwin, "and she bought three books in the current Top 10 for £2 each. A total of £6! Amazon priced its books very low, firstly because you can only read them on a Kindle, and secondly because they wanted to get as big a share of the market as they could. But all that's going to change now in the US – the price of the e-book is now controlled at $12.95. It's vitally important that prices are controlled, otherwise retailers will use it to take a huge share of the market and damage the profits for both writers and publishers."

On this side of the pond, Hachette, Britain's largest publishing conglomerate, has signed a deal with Apple, to try to impose a flat price for e-books – namely £6.50, less than half the price of a new hardback, and cheap for a paperback. However, warns Neill Denny, "some of the other retailers aren't agreeing to it, or they're not implementing it, even though they've agreed in principle. Or they disagree in principle because they think they know better than the publishers what the price should be. It's a hot topic, the struggle's going on right now, and it's not clear what the outcome will be."

There's the war, in plain sight: publishers on one side, retail companies on the other. What complicates things is that companies like Apple and Amazon are so huge, they don't actually need to sell books at all. "They'd be quite happy selling books for 50p," said Denny, "because they make their money from selling hardware. They can afford to make a loss on a few e-books while they're building their market share."

None of this will be apparent to the browser in the high street branch of Waterstone's this autumn. Bookshops will continue to stock thousands of print copies of old classics and modern bestsellers, the lovely mixum-gatherum of cookery and fitness and travel books alongside sober works of reference, biographies and misery memoirs. But out there in cyberspace, starting in the US and gathering strength, the digital revolution is under way.

The rise of online selling had for years threatened to put bookshops out of business. Now the e-book scramble threatens to do the same for publishers. And the agents, who own the destinies of the writers whose works we long to read, may also become redundant. All that's needed is for a bestselling novelist to publish a new book online, inviting readers to check it out – as Stephen King and Stephenie (Twilight) Meyer have done. In both cases, though, they did it for free.

Who'll be the first to charge for a money-based, author-reader relationship that dispenses with agent, publisher, retailer, editor, production department and glamorous publicity director?

mardi 5 octobre 2010

Dans les colonnes du Monde, la journaliste Virginie Malingre rapporte les progrès de la Taxpayers' Alliance, un mouvement qui peut être comparé en France aux Contribuables associés. En dépit de leur baisse de régime depuis le départ de l'équipe de Score Marketing, ses animateurs seraient-ils capables de faire de même dans notre pays ?

L'heure du thé a sonné

David Cameron, qui a ramené les tories au pouvoir après treize ans d'opposition et s'est installé au 10 Downing Street en mai, ne donne pas toujours satisfaction à l'aile droite de son parti. Mais rares sont ceux qui, comme Daniel Hannan, ont décidé de manifester leur mécontentement à l'occasion de la traditionnelle conférence d'automne du parti, qui se tiendra à Birmingham, du 3 au 6 octobre.

Elu tory à Strasbourg depuis 1999, cet eurosceptique assumé de 39 ans défilera avec quelques autres sous la bannière du British Tea Party qu'il a lancé en février. Ce fan de Sarah Palin et de Fox News veut importer au Royaume-Uni le mouvement qui perturbe la vie politique américaine, avec comme mot d'ordre la baisse des impôts. Alors que les dépenses publiques représentent 48 % de la richesse nationale, contre moins de 38 % au début des années 2000, M. Hannan attend que M. Cameron, qui promet pourtant la plus grande cure d'austérité qu'ait connue le pays depuis la seconde guerre mondiale, accélère le rythme. Pour l'heure, l'organisation de M. Hannan reste embryonnaire. Mais il n'est pas seul sur le créneau.

La Taxpayers' Alliance (TPA) occupe déjà le terrain. Matthew Elliott, son président de 32 ans, ne revendique pas l'appellation, peu patriotique à son goût. "Le Tea Party a été baptisé en référence à la rébellion des colonies américaines contre la Couronne britannique", rappelle-t-il, quand des habitants du Massachussets, le 16 décembre 1773, fâchés de payer les taxes imposées par Londres sans pour autant être représentés au Parlement de Westminster, jetèrent dans le port de Boston une cargaison de thé. Mais il rêve, lui aussi, d'un mouvement de masse contre un Etat oppresseur.

D'ailleurs, début septembre, la TPA a organisé une conférence à Londres à laquelle ont participé ses homologues européens mais aussi, et c'est une première, les plus importantes de ces organisations qui aident les "tea partiers" à s'imposer outre-Atlantique (organisation de manifestations géantes, support logistique et financier à des hommes et femmes politiques d'un nouveau genre...). Elles ont financé l'événement et fait le déplacement, espérant trouver sur le Vieux Continent un relai à leur pasionaria.

"Ce qui se passe aux Etats-Unis n'est pas transposable à l'identique en Grande-Bretagne", juge M. Elliott. Les Britanniques n'ont pas la culture de la rue, les partis politiques n'organisent pas de primaires ouvertes, et le volet conservateur social du Tea Party n'a pas d'avenir de ce côté-ci de la Manche. Il n'empêche, juge-t-il, "plusieurs pays européens ont eu leur moment Tea Party, à leur manière". Et de citer "la révolte des Allemands contre le sauvetage de la Grèce, le dégoût des Britanniques après le scandale des notes de frais de Westminster".

La TPA compte 60 000 membres, affirme M. Elliott, "à peine 5 000 de moins que le parti Libéral démocrate" qui participe au gouvernement des tories. Là dessus, 7 000 hommes et femmes donnent régulièrement de leur temps pour distribuer des tracts, faire signer des pétitions ou manifester, ici ou là.

Avec un million de livres de budget et des donateurs qui ont souvent en commun de financer le parti conservateur, la TPA, qui, à ses débuts, organisait ses réunions chez Starbucks, peut s'offrir des locaux à quelques encablures de Westminster, employer quinze personnes à temps plein et avoir des représentants dans plusieurs grandes villes du pays.

L'histoire commence en 2004. M. Elliott, diplômé depuis peu de la London School of Economics, supporte mal de voir le Labour de Tony Blair "jeter l'argent par les fenêtres". Et ce, sans que le parti conservateur, désireux de rompre avec l'image de "nasty party" qui lui colle depuis l'ère Thatcher, ne s'en offusque.

Très vite, la TPA occupe le vide. Ses travaux sur les gaspillages des administrations, les excès des parlementaires ou les millionnaires de la fonction publique font régulièrement la "une". "Les journaux ont moins d'argent qu'avant pour enquêter. Et plus de travail. Alors nous leur fournissons du prêt à publier", explique M. Elliott, devenu spécialiste des rapports concis, avec des chiffres éloquents et des titres percutants.

Certains contestent le sérieux de ce travail, "plus souvent une synthèse de ce qui existe qu'une véritable recherche", juge Sunder Katwala, de la Fabian Society, un think tank de centre gauche. "Chaque année, nous déposons au moins 10 000 demandes d'informations au nom du Freedom Information Act, qui concernent le secteur public", rétorque M. Elliott.

Qu'importe, la TPA fait évoluer le débat. A force de marteler, sans répit et exemples à l'appui, que l'argent des contribuables est gaspillé, "elle a acquis une forte influence", juge Tony Travers, politologue à la London School of Economics. D'ailleurs ni le Labour, ni les tories, ni les lib-dem n'ont fait campagne, en 2010, sur un Etat plus fort.

La récession, du point de vue de la TPA, est une aubaine alors que les Britanniques apprécient peu de payer les frasques des banques. Les grèves, que promettent les syndicats pour protester contre les coupes budgétaires à venir, pourraient en être une autre. "Notre heure est venue", veut croire M. Elliott.

Courriel : malingre@lemonde.fr.

I'm not a witch… I'm you

Que faire quand une organisation, une personne font l'objet de graves accusations ?

La tentation est le plus souvent de faire comme si de rien était. On escompte que les donateurs ne regardent pas la télévision, n'écoutent pas la radio, ne lisent pas les journaux et, surtout, ne consultent pas internet.

Hélas, c'est souvent vrai. En outre la volatilité de la mémoire humaine fait que dans la majorité des cas, ce pari se révèle gagnant.

Il faut des crises très longues avec un grande exposition à la télévision pour que l'impact sur les donateurs soit réel, citons le cas de l'ARC ou celui de l'Opus Dei. Encore que cette organisation catholique a su réagir avec une grande intelligence et transformer une crise en opportunité grâce à la réactivité et à l'inventivité de leur équipe basée à New York.

Dans le domaine de la politique, les cas sont comparables et peuvent inspirer les fund raisers.

Prenons le cas récent de Christine O’Donnell, la candidate républicaine au sénat des Etats-Unis pour l'Etat du Delaware. Farouche réactionnaire (j'utilise ce terme dans son sens premier, sans connotation péjorative), elle a déboulonné le candidat républicain traditionnel grâce à l'appui du Tea party.

Cette jeune femme fait l'objet d'un tir de barrage dans les médias qui a pour objectif de réduire à néant ses chances de succès en novembre prochain. Une des accusation portées contre elle est d'être une « sorcière » car elle serait associée à un culte non chrétien.

Dans un message vidéo mis en ligne sur You tube, elle a trouvé une superbe parade : I'm not a witch… I'm you.»



Va-t-elle réussir son pari ?

Je ne le sais pas. Mais sans atteindre le sommet de la fameuse déclaration télévisée de Nixon, ce joli petit film restera comme un réussite dans la communication de crise.

Pour en savoir plus :

The genius of Christine O'Donnell? 'I'm not a witch… I'm you.'

This is one of the strangest political ads you will ever see. It could also turn out to be one of the most effective because of its arresting simplicity.
The ad is already being widely mocked (as is everything about Christine O’Donnell, the GOP’s Senate candidate in Delaware) but maybe that’s part of the point. At worst, it’s a roll of the dice – she’s way behind in the polls and she has nothing to lose:

O’Donnell had many weaknesses as a candidate. But is that she is, as the ad states, like “you” – an ordinary American who’s struggled to pay the bills, done some silly things (dated a witch in college!), exaggerated her CV a tad and been looked down on by elites. Despite being in her 40s, she has a little girl lost kind of demeanour that, as The Other McCain points out, makes her “awfully hard to hate”.
Again and again on the campaign trail, I hear statements about Sarah Palin – the harder-edged prototype for O’Donnell – along the lines of “when I first heard her, I thought, ‘She’s like me’”. That ability to get people to identify with you on such an elemental level in politics is a powerful thing (though not necessarily enough in itself to win national or even statewide elections).
Some on the Left get this. Here’s Glenn Greenwald:
Much of the patronizing derision and scorn heaped on people like Christine O’Donnell have very little to do with their substantive views…and much more to do with the fact they’re so . . . unruly and unwashed.
Frank Rich tries to say that O’Donnell is a “useful idiot” who gives “populist cover” to what he sees as the corporate-backed Tea Party movement. Though written with his characteristic style and verve, his column is essentially a diatribe against Republicans, the Tea Party and anyone outside the liberal Left. But Rich – almost despite himself – gets some of what O’Donnell and Palin are about:
But [Palin] quickly wove the attacks into a brilliant cloak of martyrdom that positioned her as a fierce small-town opponent of the coasts’ pointy-head elites. O’Donnell, like Palin, knows that attacks by those elites, including conservative grandees, only backfire and enhance her image as a feisty defender of the aggrieved and resentful Joe Plumbers in “real America.”
I disagree with Rich’s overall theory but I think he’s onto something when he suggests that O’Donnell will help the Republicans nationally, even if she does lose in Delaware. He is right that the “more O’Donnell is vilified, the bigger the star she becomes”.
Her new ad says: I’m just like you ordinary Americans and when they’re mocking me they’re mocking you. Which is why Christine O’Donnell might just be crazy like a fox.

Dans le grenier aux souvenirs

dimanche 3 octobre 2010

Le Daily Mail nous rappelle que le niveau apparent de richesse n'est pas toujours l'indicateur d'une absence de fortune.



The £1.4m man: Amazing fortune of widower who owned just one suit, got by on £5 a week... and left a fortune to animal charities


Wearing the same old suit day in, day out, he couldn’t have looked less like a millionaire. But when Gordon Hardy died at 83, it turned out he wasn’t quite the poverty-stricken pensioner he had appeared to be.
The retired civil servant and his wife Jean, who died in 2008, did not have any children. And decades of saving and sensible investments had left the couple remarkably well-off.
However, it was only after Mr Hardy’s death that it emerged he was worth £1.4million.
Their solicitor, Lyndsey McHale, was the only person aware of the couple’s wealth.
Yesterday, she said: ‘Mr Hardy was a real gentleman, modest and old-fashioned, and you would never have guessed he was worth over £1million.
‘He always wore the same suit, and when he had to move into a nursing home it turned out they were the only clothes he owned.

Gordon Hardy and his wife lived a simple life, only owned one suit, and lived on £5 a week
‘I couldn’t believe it the first time he showed me the paper work about all the investments they had, but he just wasn’t interested in spending it.’
The couple, who were animal lovers, are believed to have worked in Derbyshire, where Mrs Hardy was a postmistress, before retiring to a bungalow in the seaside resort of Southport, Merseyside.

They wanted their estate to be split between three animal charities: the PDSA, the Blue Cross and the Donkey Sanctuary.

Neighbour Maureen Taylor, 60, said: ‘There were no signs at all that they had so much money.
'Jean was always out walking their poodle, Bobby, and I suppose they decided they wanted the money to help care for animals after they were gone.’
In 2006, they sold the bungalow for £250,000 and moved into sheltered accommodation, taking with them their collection of antiques, including a grandfather clock worth £4,000.
After Mrs Hardy died, her husband came to see their solicitor, a specialist in wills and probate at Brown Turner Ross.
‘He said his wife had always done the finances and gave me a scrap of paper with details of their savings on.
‘My first thought was, “That can’t be right!”, but it was all there – various bank and building society accounts plus a lot in National Savings certificates.
‘How it was built up we don’t know, but it seems they were just very careful with money.
‘I would always ask him if he wanted to buy anything or go anywhere and he would always say the same thing, “What do I need to spend money on?”.

Gordon and his wife sold their bungalow and moved into sheltered accommodation in later life
‘Later on he asked for £20 a month of which around £9 was for his electricity bills.’

Mr Hardy died in February. His solicitor added: ‘Sadly he never really recovered from his wife’s death, but at least their wealth will now go to benefit the causes they supported.’

Aimer les animaux et détester les gens ?

Voici une brève chronique du député conservateur au parlement européen et redoutable ennemi de l'Union européenne, Daniel Hannan qui pointe le doigt sur la force de la haïne.

Les causes militantes savent bien que les sentiments négatifs sont le meilleur moyen de motiver un prospect.

C'est vrai pour les personnes âgées.

C'est aussi vrai pour les défenseurs des animaux et dans une plus large mesure la gauche du spectre politique n'échappe pas à la règle.


Where would Lefties be without hatred?

Richard Curtis’s eco-prop video confirms the worst impression people have of greenies, namely that, behind all the self-righteous rhetoric, they are misanthropic (hat-tip, James Delinpole). See how easily they glide from platitudes about low-energy lightbulbs to fantasies about killing those who dissent.

I’ve noticed before that a surprising number of animal lovers are really people loathers. Not all, of course, nor most; but some. In every age and nation, there are people casting about for a valid reason to detest their neighbours. Such people are often attracted to apparently high-minded campaigns. Think of the abolitionist campaigner in Steven Spielberg’s film Amistad who would rather lose the case, condemn the slaves and win more publicity than free them on a technicality.
Of course, ideas are not responsible for the people who back them. Bad people can take up good causes. I have Leftie friends who are generous and idealistic, and most greenies are actuated by a sincere concern about the future. Almost all of us, after all, want clean air and water; almost all of us like the idea of pandas mating ineptly for years to come; and almost all of us want a diversity of energy supply. But, just occasionally, as during the Brent Spar fiasco, we see that some eco-campaigners are, like the abolitionist in Amistad, more interested in bashing people they dislike than in advancing the cause they notionally represent. If you doubt me, start reading Guardian comment threads. Ah, hatred: where would Lefties be without it?

Pourquoi donner 20000 £ de manière anonyme ?

Dans le Guardian, un article qui rapporte le don anonyme à une association caritative de la somme de 20 000 £ en espèces.

Pour remercier ce mystérieux donateur, l'association n'a rien pu faire d'autre que d'accrocher une banderole avec le mot « merci » au-dessus de la porte de leurs bureaux.

La campagne de presse de l'association pour rendre public ce don est aussi une manière indirecte de remercier ce donateur et d'encourager d'autres à suivre son exemple.

Man hands £20,000 in envelope to Cancer Research charity shop

Staff at Glasgow branch unveil banner thanking mysterious benefactor who delivered donation and left without saying a word

A mystery man walked into a charity shop and handed in an envelope with a £20,000 donation inside, then left without saying a word, it emerged today. Staff unveiled a banner at the shop with the words "thank you" to send a message to the mystery benefactor. Workers said it was the biggest donation they had "ever seen" at the shop. Volunteer Alexandra Macmillan, 48, was handed the envelope while helping at the Glasgow Cancer Research UK shop.
Ms Macmillan, who has been volunteering at the shop in Sauchiehall Street for nine years, said: "It was quite busy in the shop, so I thought he was just another customer. He didn't say anything, just smiled and handed me an envelope. Before I could say anything to him he had turned around and walked away.
"I took the envelope into the back room and gave it to the manager. We occasionally receive donations here, so I was hoping it might be a cheque for as much as £100.
"When we opened it up and found a banker's draft for £20,000 inside we literally couldn't believe what we were seeing. We had to read it several times before we were really sure we had just been given so much money."
Staff want to get a message to the generous man.
Shop manager Michelle Fulton said: "The man wasn't one of our regular customers and we didn't get the chance to say thank you, so we're all hoping he sees this and knows just how incredibly grateful we are for such a generous gift.
"I have been working at this shop for 15 years now, and this is far and away the biggest donation we have ever received.
"Occasionally, we are given a nice designer dress, or a cheque for a couple of hundred pounds, but this was in a different league altogether."
The envelope was handed in around three weeks ago.
Glasgow-based cancer researcher Dr Liam Faller, from the Beatson Institute for Cancer Research, said: "Cancer Research UK is entirely funded by the public, so donations like this are crucial to our work. We all want this mystery man to know that all the money he donated will be carefully invested in finding new ways to treat, diagnose and prevent cancer."
Other donations to the charity's shops from mystery people have included a copy of the first Beano annual, which was given to the St Andrews shop in Fife in April this year and a rare Hermès handbag, worth more than £1,500, which was handed in to the shop in Pitlochry, Perthshire, in October last year.
The Beano annual sold at auction for more than £4,000, a spokesman for Cancer Research UK said.