World Newspapers Sing in Unison Before Copenhagen Conference

World | December 7, 2009, Monday // 22:30|  views

The concerted power of a united world press: papers around the globe co-operated to publish the same editorial as the UN Climate Change Summit opened in Copenhagen. Photo by

The Guardian, a British daily newspaper, organized a world press demonstration of solidarity to coincide with the opening of the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.

A total of 56 newspapers around the world in 20 languages including Chinese, Arabic and Russian, participated in the novel venture on Monday.

A Guardian team drafted the text during more than a month of consultations with editors from more than 20 of the papers involved.

Like the Guardian, most of the newspapers took the unusual step of featuring the editorial on their front page.

Some of the world's leading papers, such as Le Monde, El País, Russia's Novaya Gazeta and the Toronto Star, carried the leader, as well as two Chinese newspapers - the Economic Observer and the Southern Metropolitan - and India's second largest English-language paper, The Hindu.

However, no newspaper in Australia carried the editorial, following the week when the country's Senate voted against a carbon trading bill and the opposition party's leader was ousted by a climate change skeptic. The editor-in-chief of Melbourne's The Age, Paul Ramadge, said in a statement: "We applaud the Guardian's global initiative. At The Age we decided it was important to put our own views – to be consistent and partly because of the nuances of the debate in Australia.''

The common leader was described as a success by commentators. Mark Borkowski, the founder of and head of Borkowski PR, wrote on Twitter that it was a "great Copenhagen PR stunt ... Let's pray it has impact despite current greenwashing.”

Alan Rusbridger, editor-in-chief of the Guardian, said: "No individual newspaper editorial could hope to influence the outcome of Copenhagen but I hope the combined voice of 56 major papers speaking in 20 languages will remind the politicians and negotiators gathering there what is at stake and persuade them to rise above the rivalries and inflexibility that have stood in the way of a deal."

To view an online gallery of contributing papers click HERE

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Tags: The Guardian, world press, Alan Rusbriger, editorial, Copenhagen Summit, media


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