Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

NZ Post's audio recordings practice deemed 'unsettling'

Katie Doyle, Journalist

New Zealand Post has stopped the audio recording of posties who drive delivery vehicles after being told the practice is intrusive, unsettling, and unreasonable.

NZ Post Paxster
delivery vehicle

The Paxster delivery vehicles recorded audio via cameras installed inside. Photo: RNZ / Max Towle

The company previously suspended the recordings, following a complaint from the Postal Workers Union who said they breached privacy.

The Privacy Commissioner has just released the results of a subsequent investigation, which backs the union's argument.

The investigation was launched after an official complaint was made by a postie, who said he had been unfairly recorded by New Zealand Post.

"An NZ Post delivery agent complained to us about audio recordings made by cameras installed on "Paxster" electric delivery vehicles," said the Office of the Privacy Commissioner in a statement.

"His team leader had confronted him about phone calls he had made during his mail run and conversations he had had with members of the public. He was shocked and upset as he was unaware that the cameras had an audio capacity."

The investigation found that much of the recordings were taken of personal conversations, which breached the Privacy Act.

New Zealand Post said the recordings were an important tool for investigating accidents that may have occurred during the delivery round.

However, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner said it was unconvinced the recordings were necessary for safety purposes.

"Thousands of hours of footage were being collected about the delivery agents and members of the public, and yet there were relatively few accidents. It was not clear that the audio recordings would prevent accidents from happening or provide information that would lead to changes in safety policies."

The Office said the recordings had breached the postie's privacy and had caused him emotional harm.

"In our view, the need to investigate possible incidents and accidents needed to be balanced with the Delivery Agents' right to maintain a reasonable degree of privacy and dignity, and that of the people with whom they interact as they make their round," it said.

"The delivery agents spend a considerable amount of time in the Paxster vehicles and it would be unsettling for them, and unreasonably intrusive, to record audio during the entire time a Paxster is being driven."


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On Politely Fake Political Obituaries (And The Paris Discord)

One unfortunate side effect of “personality politics” is that when prominent politicians die, the niceties we observe at the death of private individuals get automatically extended to them as well... More>>

ALSO:

Unique And Vanishing: NZ Biodiversity Losses Match Global Crisis

One might think that it is buffered from some of the effects of biological erosion, especially since people only arrived less than 800 years ago. But as we show, the impact on wildlife has been catastrophic. More>>

Your Name Here(ish): Sponsor A Section On Scoop.co.nz!

Scoop.co.nz has just launched Section Sponsorships - the newest way for you to gain exposure for your brand to Scoop’s high value audience of 500,000 monthly readers. More>>

ALSO:

You Did It! The Scoop 3.0 PledgeMe Closes

Update: The Scoop 3.0 Crowdsale and Crowdfunding Campaign met its target with a total of $36,024 pledged. It looks like it has all been worthwhile. We are nearly there and Scoop.co.nz will ride again in 2019, our 20th year of operations. Moreover the past week has brought a number of inquiries from larger organisations, many of which have till now failed to respond to our messages... More>>

ALSO:

Lyndon Hood: Quiz: Advice For Nats On Collins Leadership, Or Quote From Indiana Jones Fan Fic?

In a recent rest home speech, Judith Collins pitched for the leadership of her party, while at the same time the ghost of Margaret Thatcher struggled to regain control of Collins’ body from the incoherent raging demon that animates Western ethno-nationalist protofascism. More>>