Timeline of The Humane League

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This is a timeline of The Humane League, a US-based international farm animal protection organization.

Big picture

Time period Development summary
2005 First year of THL, with the creation of The Humane League of Philadelphia.
2012 THL is already recognized as a top charity.
2013 < THL grows with the creation of The Humane League Labs. HLL would pioneer exploratory research on various forms of activism.
2016 In 2016, after significantly expanding their campaign staff, THL's efforts result in over 100 cage-free commitments from dining companies, restaurants, manufacturers, and retailers in the United States. THL’s corporate outreach program lands another major achievement in 2016, after convincing United Egg Producers (UEP) to pledge to eliminate the practice of culling male chicks.[1]
Present time Started in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, today THL's grassroots offices are centrally located in 11 cities throughout the United States, including Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Dallas, Washington, D.C., Denver, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and South Florida.[2] THL has grown its presence in the United States, Latin America, Japan, and the United Kingdom.[3]

Full timeline

Year Month and date Event type Details
2005 April 14 Founding The Humane League is originally incorporated as The Humane League of Philadelphia, Inc., in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[4][5]
2006 March Legal Nick Cooney, THL's founder and board member, is convicted of making terroristic threats, harassment, and criminal conspiracy. According to media reports and court documents, he threatened to kill the children of an employee of a drug company.[6][7][8][9]
2008 David Martosko takes out an ad in the New York Times asking the question, "Why Is the Humane Society of the United States Helping a Terrorist Group Raise Money?" Another part of the ad intimates that Nicholas Cooney had "threatened the child of an employee of a pharmaceutical company that works with an animal-testing lab." Martosko claims that the Humane League of Philadelphia's alleged former association with an animal rights group, one whose members had been imprisoned under the Animal Enterprise Protection Act, has been the impetus for the campaign.[10]
2009 Year-round Financial THL reports assets at US$85,943 and revenue at US$65,393.[6]
2010 Year-round Financial THL reports assets at US$160,620 and revenue at US$133,925.[6]
2011 Year-round Financial THL reports assets at US$243,958 and revenue at US$253,444.[6]
2012 August Review The Humane League is listed as a top charity by Animal Charity Evaluators.[11]
2012 Year-round Financial THL reports assets at US$215,782 and revenue at US$302,816.[6]
2013 January Study THL runs a series of online advertisements to see which farm animal cruelty video was more effective at inspiring young women to want to change their diet: What Came Before by Farm Sanctuary or Farm To Fridge by Mercy For Animals. A total of 83,000 viewers are tracked. A smaller-scale comparison, reaching 19,000 viewers, includes two additional farm animal cruelty videos in the comparison: 10 Billion Lives and Meet Your Meat. As a result, What Came Before outperformed the other farm animal cruelty videos by a large margin. Young women who viewed What Came Before were 70% more likely to click to order a vegetarian starter guide than those who saw Farm To Fridge.[12][13]
2013 Organization The Humane League Labs is created as a unit of The Humane League. Since its creation, HLL would pioneer exploratory research on various forms of activism related to the mission of THL.[5]
2013 Year-round Outreach THL breaks its outreach number record, leafletting more schools and young people than ever before.[14]
2013 Year-round Financial THL’s budget is reported at US$555,000 for the year.[15] Assets are reported at US$316,460 and revenue at US$555,275.[6]
2014 January Expansion THL opens office in Seattle.[16]
2014 December Review Animal Charity Evaluators publishes its first detailed review of THL. According to the review: "THL’s most impressive accomplishment for us is not through any one of their programs, but through their overall outlook and approach to advocacy. Among animal advocacy organizations, they make exceptionally strong efforts to assess their own programs and to look for and test out ways of improving them. Their success in applying these techniques to their online ads program, and their publication of their research through Humane League Labs, has shifted the outlook and programming of several larger advocacy organizations toward finding the best ways to advocate for animals."[17]
2014 Year-round Financial THL’s budget is reported at US$968,000 for the year.[15] Assets are reported at US$715,762, and revenue at US$968,246.[6]
2015 February Outreach As of date, THL has been involved in at least 67 successful campaigns to convince corporations to use only non-battery cage eggs. These victories include major corporations Costco, Grupo Bimbo, Starbucks, Compass Group, and Dunkin' Donuts.[15]
2015 December Review Animal Charity Evaluators publishes review of THL. According to the review, THL's campaigns department, which grew significantly in 2015, is expected to keep expanding.[18]
2015 First three quarters According to Animal Charity Evaluators, THL distributed 841,778 leaflets and reached 4,358 students through humane education in the first three quarters of 2015.[19]
2015 Year-round Budget THL’s budget is reported at between US$1,300,000 and US$1,400,000 for the year.[15]
2016 January Campaign The Humane League announces its campaign department has convinced Target, Denny’s, Campbell Soup Company, Wendy's, P.F. Chang’s, California Pizza Kitchen, Mondelez International and six other organizations to switch to cage-free eggs.[20]
2016 February Funding THL is awarded a US$1 million grant from the Open Philanthropy Project (a spinoff of GiveWell working in collaboration with Good Ventures) for its corporate cage-free campaign. OPP expresses belief that corporate cage-free campaigns are a particularly effective method for reducing animal suffering, and that The Humane League has played an important role in the success of many of these campaigns in the past.[21]
2016 February Campaign THL launches an aggressive national campaign against Kroger, the largest grocer in the United States. Along with their methods of online campaigning and grassroots activism, activists place bench ads outside of Kroger's headquarters in Cincinnati. As a result, the grocer responds with a policy that would free 20 million hens from cages.[2]
2016 June The Humane League Labs announce a statement of commitment to certain priorities and principles, including a commitment to improved research practices and to revising and reanalyzing their research.[1][5]
2016 June Expansion THL expands its presence and begins work in the United Kingdom. Since then, THL would work with a number of leading food companies, including Tesco, Iceland, Morrisons, Whitbread, etc., to produce public policies to eliminate cages from their supply chains.[22]
2016 June Following negotiations with THL, American Capper–Volstead agricultural cooperative United Egg Producers—which represents companies that produce 95% of all eggs produced in the United States— announces it will eliminate the culling of male chicks by 2020.[23]
2016 July THL wins a major victory with a pledge by French food services company Sodexo, which announced the first global cage-free commitment in the foodservice industry. Sodexo has committed to source 100% cage-free eggs worldwide by 2025, marking a historic, global commitment that will impact animals around the world. The commitment comes after THL and its newly formed global coalition met with Sodexo’s global leadership to discuss the delivery of a global cage-free egg policy.[24]
2016 July Funding The Open Philanthropy Project awards THL an additional grant of US$1 million for international expansion of cage-free advocacy.[25]
2016 November Funding The Open Philanthropy Project awards THL an additional grant of US$1 million for general support.[26]
2016 Late Organization THL launches the Open Wing Alliance (OWA), an international coalition of organizations aiming to end cage confinement practices globally.[1]
2016 Year-round Animal Charity Evaluators estimate that THL’s overall efforts spared 500 animals per dollar in 2016 (expressing this as a range from 95 to 1,700) and the main reason for the gigantic figure is the agreement with United Egg Producers to eventually introduce sexing technology which would replace the practice of grinding up live male chicks in macerators or suffocating them in bags.[27]
2017 February Event THL hosts the inaugural Global Summit to End Cages for Open Wing Alliance members. 50 representatives from 17 member organizations and 22 countries attend and receive training, share experiences, and discuss tactics.[28]
2017 April Campaign THL launches an aggressive national campaign demanding that restaurant chain Olive Garden commit to basic animal welfare standards for the chickens in its supply chains, after it was found that chickens raised for the chain endure some of the worst factory farm abuses.[29]
2017 September Funding The Open Philanthropy Project awards THL a grant of US$ 2,000,000 for general support of the Open Wing Alliance to expand corporate campaigns in Europe.[30]
2017 November 27 Recognition Animal Charity Evaluator updates their charity recommendations, and announce that their newest Top Charities are Animal Equality, The Good Food Institute, and The Humane League, with GFI and THL retaining their top positions from the previous year.[31]
2018 March Demonstration THL launches a public campaign targeting McDonald's. The campaign begins Tuesday 29 with the purchase of dozens of colorful anti-McDonald's ads—slogans including "There's nothing happy about McDonald's Happy Meals". On Wednesday 30, members of THL —including a man dress as Ronald McDonald and a person in a disfigured chicken suit— protest outside a McDonald's outlet in Chicago.[32][33]
2018 April Funding The Animal Welfare Fund distributes funds based on Animal Charity Evaluators’ recommended allocation:

33 ⅓% goes to the Humane League (grassroots education initiatives) 33 ⅓% goes to the Good Food Institute (supports animal product food alternatives) 33 ⅓% goes to Animal Equality (exposes factory farming)[34]

2018 May Website THL launches eatingveg.org, a site containing food recipes and information about why switching to a plant-based diet, with aims at inspiring people to make more compassionate food choices.[35]
2018 August Funding The Open Philanthropy Project awards THL a grant of US$ 10,000,000 over 3.5 years for general support.[36]

Numerical and visual data

Google Scholar

The following table summarizes per-year mentions on Google Scholar as of December 18, 2021.

Year "The Humane League"
2008 1
2009 0
2010 4
2011 0
2012 0
2013 3
2014 7
2015 12
2016 11
2017 17
2018 20
2019 21
2020 21
The human league gscho.png

Google Trends

The comparative chart below shows Google Trends data for The Humane League (Nonprofit organization) and The Humane League (Search term) from January 2005 to February 2021, when the screenshot was taken. Interest is also ranked by country and displayed on world map.[37]

The Humane League gt.png

Google Ngram Viewer

The chart below shows Google Ngram Viewer data for The Humane League from 1500 to 2019.[38]

The Humane League ngram.png

Wikipedia views

The chart below shows pageviews of the English Wikipedia article The Humane League on desktop from December 2007, and on mobile-web, desktop-spider,mobile-web-spider and mobile app, from July 2015; to January 2021.[39]


Meta information on the timeline

How the timeline was built

The initial version of the timeline was written by User:Sebastian.

Funding information for this timeline is available.

Feedback and comments

Feedback for the timeline can be provided at the following places:


What the timeline is still missing

Timeline update strategy

See also

External links


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "THE HUMANE LEAGUE". animalcharityevaluators.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 "JOIN THE HUMANE LEAGUE IN CELEBRATING 2016'S FIRST QUARTER!". blog.thehumaneleague.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  3. "OUR STORY". thehumaneleague.org. Retrieved 31 July 2018. 
  4. "The Humane League". businesswiki.info. Retrieved 1 August 2018. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 "Humane League Labs". humaneleaguelabs.org. Retrieved 3 July 2018. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 "The Humane League". activistfacts.com. Retrieved 20 July 2018. 
  7. "MUNICIPAL COURT OF PHILADELPHIA COUNTY" (PDF). consumerfreedom.com. Retrieved 20 July 2018. 
  8. "Some Thoughts on Our Legal Victory". humanewatch.org. Retrieved 20 July 2018. 
  9. "New York Times Ad Condemns Humane Society of the United States for Terror Fundraising". consumerfreedom.com. Retrieved 20 July 2018. 
  10. "How the Center for Consumer Freedom Disseminates the "PETA Kills Animals" Campaign". whypetaeuthanizes.com. Retrieved 20 July 2018. 
  11. Animal Charity Evaluators (November 2016). "The Humane League". Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  12. "Report: Which factory farming video is more effective?". humaneleaguelabs.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  13. "Which factory farming video is more effective?". talk.eco. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  14. 10 Big Wins for Farm Animals in the Past 10 Years. onegreenplanet.org. 
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 "The Humane League — Corporate Cage-Free Campaigns". openphilanthropy.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  17. "December 2014 The Humane League Review". Animal Charity Evaluators. December 1, 2014. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  18. "THE HUMANE LEAGUE". animalcharityevaluators.org. Retrieved 6 August 2018. 
  19. "The Humane League Review". 2015. Retrieved 19 July 2016. 
  20. "The Humane League fights factory farming". huntnewsnu.com. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  21. "The Humane League — Corporate Cage-Free Campaigns". openphilanthropy.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  22. "The Humane League Expands Presence In The United Kingdom". vevolution.co. Retrieved 20 July 2018. 
  23. "This is the best news for America's animals in decades. It's about baby chickens.". vox.com. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  25. "The Humane League — International Cage-Free Advocacy". openphilanthropy.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  26. "The Humane League — General Support". openphilanthropy.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  27. "We're researchers from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE). We just released our 2017 charity recommendations. Ask us anything!". reddit.com. Retrieved 20 July 2018. 
  28. "THE OPEN WING ALLIANCE ACHIEVED INCREDIBLE PROGRESS FOR ANIMALS IN 2017". blog.thehumaneleague.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  29. "Olive Garden: End Animal Abuse". thunderclap.it. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  30. "The Humane League — Open Wing Alliance". openphilanthropy.org. Retrieved 1 October 2018. 
  31. "UPDATED CHARITY RECOMMENDATIONS: DECEMBER 2017". animalcharityevaluators.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  32. "Not-so-happy meals: animal rights group takes on McDonald's in Chicago streets". chicagoreader.com. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  33. "McDonald's new West Loop HQ is 'perfect' location for protesters to get their messages out". chicagoreader.com. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  34. "Donate to the Rethink Charity Animal Welfare Fund". rcforward.org. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  35. "WE JUST LAUNCHED A NEW FOOD-FOCUSED RESOURCE FOR YOU: EATINGVEG.ORG". blog.thehumaneleague.org. Retrieved 3 July 2018. 
  36. "The Humane League — General Support (2018)". openphilanthropy.org. Retrieved 1 October 2018. 
  37. "The Humane League". Google Trends. Retrieved 26 February 2021. 
  38. "The Humane League". books.google.com. Retrieved 26 February 2021. 
  39. "The Humane League". wikipediaviews.org. Retrieved 24 February 2021.