Yes Edinburgh West meeting minutes Newliston Arms 7.30pm Mon 7 Aug 2017

Share thisShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someone

1. Anne Donohoe opened the meeting by welcoming everybody, and introduced our speakers, Jan Goulding from English Scots for Yes, and Selma Rahman from Women for Independence. 2. A Livestream broadcast is available for people who couldn’t make the meeting. 3. There were 23 attendees. Email addresses given will be added to the mailing list unless anyone objects. 4. Jan gave an overview of the thinking behind English Scots for Yes – an organisation for English people living in Scotland, who share our view of a better country – which campaigns for Scottish Independence, believes that it is possible to embrace another country without losing your own identity, and tries to dispel the myth that Indy supporters are anti-English. Originally from Yorkshire (geographically and culturally halfway between London and Edinburgh), Jan both feels the alienation of the rest of England from London, and understands the threat that English people feel because of the lack of a unified national culture. An estimate of 420,000-440,000 of English Scots voters was given – representing a significant chunk of the No vote. She outlined what ESfY have done, and intend to do again – in publicity, street stalls, countering the caustic media, and trying to raise the quality of debate on the issues. Jan took, and addressed, questions during her presentation – about the nature of mass movements, and the primary importance of Independence. Website: http://www.englishscotsforyes.org/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/englishscot4yes Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/englishscotsforyes/

  1. Selma then gave an overview of Women for Independence, an open and diverse network of women who aim to improve the representation of women in public and political life throughout Scotland, campaigning for Scottish independence, greater democracy, gender equality and social justice. She had 3 main themes:
  • Convincing women – by asking questions (what do you want to change?) rather than aggressive, challenging argument and directly asking women to abandon their previous opinions.
  • Female participation in politics – starting from “ordinary” politics – health, inoculations, clean water – which she experienced directly in Bangladesh, then in the voluntary sector in the UK. Politics must start by translating people’s needs into policies – making the point that the unionist politicians have lost touch with people, and are left without any real policies to help them.
  • The effect of austerity on women

–          the 18% gender pay gap, reducing only because men’s wages are falling –          80% of people in the lower paid sector are women –          the return to Victorian levels of poverty, even in working households –          the inequity of the pension system, penalising women at all stages – in education, because of their low wages, career breaks while having a family, paying the small NI stamp on the assumption that they would be provided for by a man, and the £5bn Treasury saving by raising their retirement age. Selma took questions throughout the presentation, covering, among others, the primary importance of Independence, Basic  Income, how to address the lack of women on panels, in the media and politics,  the protection afforded to women like Michelle Thomson and Cat Boyd, and the adversarial nature of UK politics . Website: http://www.womenforindependence.org/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/WomenForIndy Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/women4independence/

  1. Anne finished with some announcements:

Mon 11 Sep (Newliston Inn 7.30pm): Ross Greer on “Education strategy for an independent Scotland(please note change of date, due to risk of heavy traffic to/from Queensferry Crossing) Mon 2 Oct (Newliston Inn 7.30pm): AGM Mon 6 Nov (Newliston Inn 7.30pm): Michelle Thomson and Roger Mullin on “Brexit: what might it mean for business in Scotland?

  1. AOCB

7.1   We have published a number of briefing notes (as online E-Flets, rather than old-fashioned leaflets!), book previews and film previews – all comments welcome! If you want to make comments, set up, lead or join groups on any other subject, please email Bob Glen. 7.2   Gerry Mulvenna has implemented a donation facility on the website. 7.3   Please subscribe to the mailing list on our website, like our Facebook page, follow us on Twitter, look us up on the National Yes Registry, and find a library of useful information on the Yes liaison Forum.

Yes Edinburgh West meeting minutes Newliston Inn Mon 24 July 2017

Share thisShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someone
  1. Ian Grant opened the meeting by welcoming everybody, and introduced our speaker, Jason Baird from National Yes Registry.
  2. Apologies to people who couldn’t make the meeting, a Livestream broadcast wasn’t appropriate for this event.
  3. There were 14 attendees. Email addresses given will be added to the mailing list unless anyone objects.
  4. Jason give a demonstration of version 1.1 of the IndyApp (from the Apple Appstore or Google Play if you have an iOS or Android smartphone, or the NYR website https://nationalyesregistry.scot/), together with help videos (which are available within the app – click on the ? symbol – or on the website Demo films). He explained that the design ideas mainly came from running the Largs Yes shop in IndyRef1.

Continue reading “Yes Edinburgh West meeting minutes Newliston Inn Mon 24 July 2017”

National Yes Registry update 24 July 19.30

Share thisShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someone

Jason Baird will bring us up to date on the National Yes Registry and answer your questions. He will describe how the grass-roots are coming together across Scotland in preparation for Independence campaigning. In particular, he will describe the networking platform tool ‘the IndyApp’ – the NYR’s concrete response to the many practical problems commonly encountered at grass-root level by Yessers during the heat of IndyRef1. The current version allows communication between individual members of a group, communication as a group and finally, communication between all groups at a national level, and is ready for all groups to start using now. He will also discuss how to use the platform to initiate and organise campaigns. All welcome! Function room of the Doocot, 731 Ferry Rd, Edinburgh EH4 2UA
https://www.facebook.com/events/868499096637521/

An Open Invite

Livestream for Media strategy for IndyRef2: Michael Gray

Share thisShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someone

Livestream of Michael Gray of CommonSpace speaking on “Media strategy for IndyRef2” and answering questions. Apologies for the green hue (lighting problem) but the content and the discussion are excellent! https://livestream.com/IndependenceLive/michael-gray

Minutes                                 Mon 5 June 2017

  1. Anne Donohoe opened the meeting by welcoming everybody.
  2. There were 25 attendees – a good turnout considering it was the last week of the General Election, and a number of people were out leafletting or attending a hustings of local candidates.
  3. Anne started with some announcements:

–          The Clermiston Inn has booked future Mondays for slimming classes. The meeting would prefer to stick to Mondays, so we need to look for alternative venue – any suggestions to Bob Glen.

–          Mon 3 July 2017 No meeting. We could have a training session on Canvassing  – anybody interested should email Bob Glen.

–          Mon 7 Aug 2017 7.30 : Selma Rahman on Women for Independence (NOT Clermiston Inn)

–           Mon Sep 4 7.30: Ross Greer of the Scottish Greens on “An education strategy for an independent Scotland” (NOT Clermiston Inn)

  1. Anne introduced our speaker, Michael Gray of CommonSpace, who spoke on “Media strategy for IndyRef2”. Michael began by setting the background – how the degree of uncertainty about the future has increased since IndyRef1 (with no further information on Brexit, massive swings in polls on the election result), and how the media landscape has changed (with 2 pro-indy newspapers, the Daily Record moving towards indy support, the growth in social media, and investigative journalism such as the Ferret and OpenDemocracy). Broadcast media still sees its purpose as scrutiny of government – but particularly the Scottish Government. He spoke about the media “bubble” – the self-referencing churnalism (“Yer Da Sells Avon”), and the way that broadcast media are led by print media. He spoke of the pressure on journalists, due to severe cutbacks in recent years.

He then drew some lessons we should learn – to be specific rather than generalise, to support and share positive messages, and not to expect the media’s editorial position to be changed by writing letters to them. Above all, to realise that the media isn’t that important –its early stance on Trump and Corbyn, for example, prove it to be an unreliable guide to the future. He gave some practical advice, drawing on Noam Chomsky’s book Manufacturing Consent, and a student exercise which showed how much coverage you could get in the Daily Mail if you approached it in the right way, used the right language, and thought of how your message would be received. The Wee Blue Book was a great example of reaching and creating new audiences, and he recommended using media information as a tool (e.g. having print articles to hand while campaigning).

His key issues were: the generation gap (wider than pensions), economics (proving that we can afford independence), and persuading Labour supporters who are open to independence. This time round, we face a new opportunity in Brexit (because of its likely negative impact on living standards, jobs, house prices, and civil liberties – with many of these uncertainties strongly linked to Edinburgh); and a new danger (in the Yes movement being too closely linked with the SNP – a strength in elections, but a weakness in a referendum).

  1. Anne opened the floor to questions, and a wide-ranging discussion ensued: about Brexit implications in Ireland, BBC licenses, media presentation of Ruth Davidson, whether we need to be more assertive/ aggressive to get our message out, dodgy sponsors, whether we’re burdened by too much information and need simpler messages, how circulation of The National is restricted by sales outlets (we should spread our copy around the community?). A particularly telling intervention was made by Liz, a homeless woman who reminded everybody of the importance of the transformational potential of independence – the managerial competence of the Scottish Government is not sufficient. Hope motivates, not despair.
  2. AOCB

–          The meeting was asked if it objected to being shown as the Livestream audience – no objection.

–          We have published a number of briefing notes (as online E-Flets, rather than old-fashioned leaflets!), book previews and film previews – all comments welcome! If you want to make comments, set up, lead or join groups on any other subject, please email Bob Glen.

–          Gerry Mulvenna  has implemented a donation facility on the website.

–          Local Crowdfunder to support our efforts on #ScotRef has been delayed till after the summer.

–          Please subscribe to the mailing list on our website, Like our Facebook page, follow us on Twitter and find a library of useful information on the Yes liaison Forum.