Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Report calls for action to address harassment online

New report calls for government action to address harassment online


A comprehensive new report from ActionStation launched Monday examines the harm that unmoderated and under-regulated online platforms are causing New Zealanders.


The report, comprising of new research, individual experiences, and expert opinions highlights a damaging side of the internet, and makes the case for more scrutiny of the role tech giants play in our society.


Report findings include:
• One in three Māori (32%), and one in five Asian (22%) and Pacific (21%) people in New Zealand experience racial abuse and harassment online (New research from UMR);
• Analysis of comments sections during ‘Te Wiki o te reo Māori’ shows Facebook and Stuff are allowing racism to flourish on their platforms;
YouTube hosts and promotes conspiracy theories on Maori history, which have hundreds of thousands of views;
There are serious gaps in the Harmful Digital Communications Act;
Solutions could lie in indigenous thinking and values.




ActionStation are calling for government action to address gaps in current legislation. The report includes recommendations and a petition calling for the government to:


1. Remove: Ensure platforms are active in removing harmful content quickly. An investigation into the most effective method to do this would be required, but the responsibility should be placed on the platform, not the users.
2. Reduce: Limit the reach of harmful content. Neither the platforms nor the users who create hateful and harmful content should benefit from algorithms that promote divisive and polarising messages.
3. Review: The New Zealand government needs to review our hate speech laws, the Harmful Digital Communications Act, the Domestic Violence Act, the Harassment Act and the Human Rights Act to ensure they are fit for purpose in protecting people online in the 21st century.
4. Recalibrate: One of the most significant themes to emerge in this research was the need to attend not just to individualised concerns (e.g. individual rights and privacy) but also to collective dynamics and wellbeing. Any policies that are developed to protect people online need to have indigenous and collectivist thinking at their centre.


“Social media companies have done a great job of connecting whānau and friends around the world. But they also provide a powerful and relatively cheap way for groups and individuals to spread hate, fear, abuse and misinformation across time and space, and without transparency.” says ActionStation Director and report author Laura O’Connell Rapira.


“The spread of disinformation and the damaging impact on democracies overseas is well established. What our research starts to show is that online misinformation, particularly around Māori and New Zealand history, is rife and causing harm here too.”


The report includes insights from 69 people who detailed their experiences with online hate and harassment, expert opinion from Distinguished Professor Paul Spoonley about the need to review and improve our hate speech laws, and a detailed account of the online abuse faced by Lani Wendt Young for her work as a writer and journalist.


The foreword is written by esteemed economist Shamubeel Eaqub who says, “Being online is a misnomer. It’s like walking on footpaths and driving on roads - part of everyday life. Yet we seem to treat online as a separate space rather than an extension of everyday life.”


“The solution is not just for people to log off or put their phone down. Many of us rely on the internet for connection, employment and information. The solution is government regulation.” says O’Connell Rapira.


The full report is available to read at www.peopleharassmentreport.com


The full results of the UMR research is available here.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Government Confirms Royal Commission of Inquiry:

Friday: National Remembrance Service

A National Remembrance Service for the victims of the Christchurch mosques terrorist attack, and all those affected by it, will be held at 10am on Friday 29 March, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced. More>>

Ban On Military Style Semi-Automatics And Assault Rifles
Military style semi-automatics and assault rifles will be banned in New Zealand under stronger new gun laws... Related parts used to convert these guns into MSSAs are also being banned, along with all high-capacity magazines. “An amnesty will be put in place for weapons to be handed in, and Cabinet has directed officials to develop a buyback scheme...All semi-automatic weapons used during the terrorist attack on Friday 15 March will be banned." More>>

SCOOP COVERAGE: CHRISTCHURCH MOSQUES TERROR ATTACK
For the Latest: Scoop Search - Christchurch
 

Gordon Campbell: On The School Climate Strike

Locally, the school strike has won a ton of support for bringing climate change to the fore. Yet the strikers don't want mere expressions of support. They want action. More>>

ALSO:

"Grabbed And Struck In The Face": Greens Co-Leader Attacked While Walking To Work

Green Party co-leader James Shaw was the victim of an unprovoked attack when he was walking to work in Wellington. More>>

ALSO:

████████ ████ ███: Latest OIA Statistics Released

The latest statistics cover 110 agencies that collectively completed 18,106 official information requests between July and December 2018, a 16.4% increase on the 15,551 requests for the previous six months. More>>

ALSO:

'Hit And Run' Inquiry: New Legal Action Over Secrecy

The lawyer representing the Afghan villagers in the inquiry into Operation Burnham has launched legal proceedings calling for a judicial review in the investigation. More>>

ALSO:

From Hydro Plan To...: Mokihinui River Land To Join Kahurangi National Park

A total of 64,400 hectares of conservation land in the Mokihinui River catchment on the West Coast north of Westport, including 15 km of riverbed, is being added to Kahurangi National Park. “Adding this area, roughly half the size of Auckland City, to Kahurangi is the largest addition of land to an existing national park in New Zealand’s history,” Eugenie Sage said. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels