The SDF was originally called the Democratic Federation until January 1884. With the name change, the organisation launched the newspaper. Many issues appeared with the by-line "Organ of the Social Democracy".
The paper was initially edited by C. L. Fitzgerald,  and later by H. M. Hyndman, Henry Hyde Champion, Ernest Belfort Bax, then Harry Quelch for many years, and finally Henry W. Lee. It attempted to present scientific ideas in a serious fashion, featuring work by William Morris, Peter Kropotkin, Edward Aveling and Alfred Russel Wallace.
When the SDF formed the British Socialist Party, it became the official journal of that organisation, but in 1916, the group around Justice split away to form the National Socialist Party. The paper then became the organ of that party, which soon joined the Labour Party and renamed itself as the "Social Democratic Federation" again. In 1925, Justice was renamed the Social Democrat and became a monthly publication, edited by William Sampson Cluse until its demise in 1933.
- G. D. H. Cole, British working class politics, 1832-1914, p.92
- Justice Internet Archive at Marxists Internet Archive. Links to a large number of articles from Justice, 1884-1914. Retrieved October 1, 2009.
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