CFMEU to launch video news app in bid to circumvent media


Preview image of the app.

One of Australia’s largest unions will tomorrow launch a mobile news app aimed at bypassing the mainstream media and allowing them to present a union perspective to its members, Mumbrella can reveal.

The Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union CFMEU news app has been developed in conjunction with a public affairs and research company Essential Media Communications and comes after the union invested in the creation of a news studio and developers to create the app.

“There is a conspiracy of silence in the mainstream media to getting a union point of view across. I’ve been around a long time now and I’ve never had as much difficulty getting a straight union piece in the press,” claimed Tony Maher, national president of the CFMEU. 

“We’ve always been a bit innovative. All unions have a real problem with how to communicate with members and get around the mainstream press this is a good distribution method,” he said.

“Our membership have smartphones and they’ve all got the TAB app, the AFL app, the NRL app and that’s where they go for things they are interested in. If there’s a union app then that’s the way to get stuff to them.”

The CFMEU Mining and Energy app will offer access to union and industry news and alsocontacts and information about union campaigns. It is available for free from the iTunes app store and Google Play.

“It’s a bit of a trial and my gut feeling is that there is a role for it,” said Maher.

“Apps and the web require us to keep the content up fortunately we’ve put some financial resources into this. Together with EMC we’ve invested to build a studio in Sydney so we can do a weekly news read — it’ll be short, a couple of minutes, no union officials just the newsreader with an ‘around the grounds’ of what is happening in the union.”

Nic Christensen 


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