With an election coming next year, Zuckerberg defends free speech

Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg is under attack because of the consequences of too-free speech on his platform.

But it’s possible he may be a more considerable public figure than many had him down for, after he made a reasoned and principled address defending free speech (and his company’s approach to it) at Georgetown University last week.

The immediate kerfuffle was over political campaigning.  The Trump campaign put out a social media ad which implied that Democratic candidate Joe Biden had corrupt motives in helping fire a Ukrainian prosecutor investigating the Ukrainian company which employed his son.  Elizabeth Warren, another Democratic presidential contender, riposted by attacking Facebook for letting politicians run advertisements with false claims.  To prove her point and get some publicity (good for her, not so good for rival Biden), she ran a self-proclaimed false ad – on Facebook. Continue reading “With an election coming next year, Zuckerberg defends free speech”

How Andrew Becroft is nudging the pakeha press to get out and learn te reo

There was a time when your Point of Order editorial team’s vocabularies enabled them to comprehend most of the press statements that came their way.

No longer.

It has become fashionable in government circles to inject te reo into English-language press statements, thereby creating a curious Kiwi argot.  The expectation, presumably, is that recipients are as well versed in te reo as the writers of these statements, or that they will be embarrassed into studying the language rather than confess to not knowing.

At the very least, a recipient who stumbles on an unfamiliar word will try to find out what it means.

Such a statement crossed our desk the other day, headed  The revolution that failed to eventuate.

It came from Children’s Commissioner Andrew Becroft and said:

Almost 30 years ago New Zealand had the opportunity to revolutionise how we whakamana Māori children and young people affected by the Care and Protection and Youth Justice systems. It came with the 1989 Children Young Person’s and their Families Act, legislation that, at least in its approach to indigenous children, could be described as a statutory prescription for revolution. Continue reading “How Andrew Becroft is nudging the pakeha press to get out and learn te reo”