In his Toulon speech on 1 December 2011, President Sarkozy of France expressed his discontent with ‘social and fiscal dumping’ in Europe and condemned EU member states’ ‘disloyal competition’ practices ( The Economist, 2011). At about the same time, the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) launched consultations with its member organizations in preparation for a pan-European drive ‘against wage and social dumping’. Among the initiatives envisaged in the campaign, the ETUC intended to publish a black book revealing instances of social dumping in EU member states, which could then be used as a shaming device in the battle against attempts ‘to destroy national social and labour standards’ (ETUC, 2011). The business community seems equally concerned about the issue, albeit for a different reason: in its 2012 Annual Report, the European Construction Industry Federation maintained that preventing social dumping was crucial for the preservation of the sector's competitiveness (FIEC, 2012). None of these actors, however, provides a definition of social dumping, which is symptomatic for broader trends in Europe: even though the term appears regularly in the public discourse and in policymaking circles, it is usually used by differing proponents in the manner that best suits their particular argument, thus opening the door for misconceptions and ill-grounded accusations.