Tcktcktck? Tsk tsk tsk

by | Aug 7, 2009

Back in February, I figured that the pre-G20 “Jobs, Justice, Climate” NGO campaign was probably the “pointless NGO campaign of the year”, naively arguing that,

Yes, it’s only February, but it seems pretty unlikely that anything will top this for sheer pointlessness and banality.

Alas, would that it were so.  With 121 days to go until December’s critical UN climate summit, it’s clear that Jobs, Justice, Climate was merely a prototype, a limbering up for the road to Copenhagen.

And so to ““, who profess themselves to be building “the world’s biggest mandate for change”. They’re determined to “show our leaders people are ready for bold climate action, now”. So you might suppose that with that end in mind, they’d have some kind of idea of what constitutes sufficiently “bold climate action, now”.  But you’d be wrong.  Here’s their full policy platform, in glorious technicolour:

“An ambitious, fair and binding climate change agreement.”

That’s it. I tweeted tcktcktck HQ to ask if there was any more than this, and the reply I got said “Bear with us” – this from a campaign whose entire brand is built on the “there’s not a second to lose” vibe.

Not that this lack of specificity has stopped tcktcktck from fanning out in pursuit of its fabulously vague objectives – oh no. Thus for example their “adopt a negotiator” platform:

…as we really want all of our countries to agree to a safe and fair Climate Change treaty in December, we decided to do something about it. That’s why we thought we would Adopt a Negotiator, and follow them through the many meetings, conference and events that they will take part in from now to December…

I asked an actual negotiator whether they had been adopted.  The reply: “Oh yes, them! They seem very nice, but I’m not sure what they actually want.”

Sigh. Welcome to NGO campaigning in 2009 – where it doesn’t matter whether you have anything to say, as long as you’re getting the donations, attention, members and airtime.

Update (28 August) – TckTckTck have just emailed to say:

Thanks for your blog post looking at TckTckTck. We’d been waiting for our site to officially launch so that we could point you and your readers to a resource that specifically addresses your questions. The site launched earlier this week, and we’ve put this page together for that purpose:


  • Alex Evans

    Alex Evans is founder of the Collective Psychology Project, which explores how we can use psychology to reduce political tribalism and polarisation, a senior fellow at New York University, and author of The Myth Gap: What Happens When Evidence and Arguments Aren’t Enough? (Penguin, 2017). He is a former Campaign Director of the 50 million member global citizen’s movement Avaaz, special adviser to two UK Cabinet Ministers, climate expert in the UN Secretary-General’s office, and was Research Director for the Business Commission on Sustainable Development. He was part of Ethiopia’s delegation to the Paris climate summit and has consulted for Oxfam, WWF UK, the UK Cabinet Office and US State Department. Alex lives with his wife and two children in Yorkshire.

More from Global Dashboard

Justice for All and the Economic Crisis

Justice for All and the Economic Crisis

As COVID-19 plunges the world into its most serious economic crisis for a century, a surge in demand for justice is inevitable. Businesses face bankruptcy – and whole industries may be insolvent. Similar pain is being felt in the public and non-profit sectors....

Who Speaks for the Global South Recipients of Aid?

Who Speaks for the Global South Recipients of Aid?

The murder of George Floyd and the resurfacing of the Black Lives Matter movement has led to heightened discussions on race in the international development sector. Aid practitioners in the North have not only condemned the systemic racism that they (suddenly) now see...