In 2006 a unionization drive was launched by the UAW to unionize UC postdocs. The fraudulent methodology of collecting authorization cards was entirely similar to the 2008 events, see the Authorization cards page for more details.
However, in 2006 the process was more in the open and postdocs were given the chance to inform themselves of the facts and of the true intentions of UAW reps as well as the true meaning of signing an authorization card. This led to massive protests by postdocs. Letters were sent to the UC administration, PERB and UAW itself protesting the behavior of UAW reps. This protest eventually led to the UAW withdrawing its petition for recognition as the exclusive representative of UC postdocs.
Since postdocs are typically employed for 2-3 years the UAW correctly estimated that in 2008 most postdocs will have no experience with them since they arrived after the failed 2006 attempt. In 2008 UAW reps acted much more secretly, there were no posters, flyers, seminars, workshops or any other public event or public debate concerning the advantages or disadvantages of unionization. As a result all approached postdocs were confronted with the issue at the very moment the UAW reps showed up at their offices.
Since at these personal meetings the UAW reps consistently and deliberately lied about the nature of the authorization cards and the entire unionization process they did manage to “trick” 50% + 1 postdocs into signing the cards.