Spark Jump Hui 2018

Spark Jump held a hui in Auckland on Friday 30 November 2018.

InternetNZ was invited to participate, and this page links to relevant content.

Our Chief Executive, Jordan Carter, spoke to this slide pack. His speech notes are below - they vary from delivery but include a lot of context.

Jordan mentioned:

We welcome any feedback you have on this issue.


Speaking notes for Jordan Carter, at the Spark Jump Hui, on November 30, 2018.

  • Thanks to  Kate Thomas (Spark Foundation Lead) and Andrew Pirie (Spark Foundation Chair) for the opportunity to speak.
  • The Internet has become an essential tool for everyday life.
  • InternetNZ vision is to have a better world through a better Internet and we work to promote the Internet's benefits and uses and protect its potential.
  • One of our key principles is that the Internet is for everyone. It should be accessible by and inclusive of all New Zealanders.
  • InternetNZ applauds initiatives like Spark JUMP that help make sure every New Zealander who wants to be connected, can be.
  • Earlier this year we made a bold call for universal access to the Internet for all New Zealanders. Yet we are aware that a small group of New Zealand's remain excluded from all the benefits of the Internet.
  • We supported this call by undertaking a research project we've called "Out of the Maze: Building Digitally Inclusive Communities".
  • We meet with people around New Zealand who come from groups vulnerable to digital exclusion to talk about how the Internet fits into their lives.
  • Over 2 months, my team in partnership with (The Vodafone Foundation), and the Workshop, travelled to Ngaio, Kawerau, Mangere, and Westport and ran workshops with youth, support workers and parents.
  • Today I'd like to share a few of the quotes we heard from these people about what the Internet means to them.
  • With their experiences in mind, I would like to leave you with "three big things" to keep in mind throughout today's important discussions.
  • Big thing one - it's not just access - we also need to think about motivation, skills, and trust

    • Digital inclusion is not just about physical access to digital technologies and services. People must also:
      • have the core digital skills to participate
      • be motivated to use the Internet and see the benefit, and
      • trust the online services they are using.
      • Each of these element is a slightly different problem and for each we will need to think different about how to address it. There is no one-size fits all.
      • Some people will face multiple types of exclusion, others will only face one. Understanding the nature of the exclusion will help us to support people to benefit from the digital world.
      • To address the issues we need to look at both systemic drivers of exclusion and understand the everyday impacts of digital exclusion.

    Stories from the report

    On Trust:

    • "I think people worry about [risks online] but still don't understand how to protect themselves against it." – Wananga, Kawerau

    On Motivation:

    • A lot of youth we spoke to saw their parents as a disconnected generation who didn't "get it"
      • "My parents, they grew up without the Internet, so it's a thing they think you don't really need it. It just wasn't a thing in their generation." - Mangere high school student
    • Schools filtering their Internet due to Fear Uncertainty and Doubt:
      • "It seems strange but I know it happens at a lot of schools. I think it's a control thing. And people being a little afraid of the Internet and knowing what kids might access. And a side of that is that they put barriers up in front of stuff that would actually be good for them." - Teacher and parent of child with disabilities, Wellington

    On skills:

    • "Huge literacy issues. I mean for instance we work with a local fishing school. Students from all over come to a residential-based school. They can all use a computer but most can't spell or write. They all know how to turn on a computer, go to YouTube. That's the first thing they all want to do. 'Can we go to Facebook?' But basic typing skills? We've lost that. We're losing it very quickly" – Community education coordinator, Westport

    Big thing two - there are intersecting factors that make people people digital excluded

    • Although we have come a long way in making the most of the Internet, the effects of digital exclusion are impacting some of our most vulnerable people and communities.
    • The research we have shows that
      • 23 percent of New Zealand households reported that they didn't have access to the Internet in the 2013 Census.
      • However, when looking at Māori households, that figure rises to 33 percent.
      • Comparable international research shows that 30-40 percent of people with disabilities are not connected to the Internet.
      • The people who are most at risk of being digitally excluded are also the most likely to be socially excluded: -
        • those living in low socio-economic communities
        • Māori and Pasifika
        • migrants and refugees with English as a second language
        • people with disabilities
        • offenders and ex-offenders
        • older age groups
        • people living in rural communities.
        • Lacking or losing access can have a disproportionately harmful impact on these people who are already experiencing social exclusion.
        • Research we have undertaken points to a need to remove broader social and economic barriers in order to create more conducive conditions for interventions designed specifically to increase digital inclusion.

    Some stories from the report:

    • The Internet is a huge opportunity for people with disabilities:
      • "The Internet offers a multitude of positives to assist youth with disabilities to live healthy, happy lives. The ability to research a condition, link up with other individuals living with it even if they're on the other side of the world, can be invaluable." – Youth with disabilities, Wellington
    • Although access to the right tools for people with disabilities really matters:
      • "I have a beautiful, beautiful Surface Pro, which I got when I was first losing visual ability. Now I can't fricken use it, because it's not accessible. Like we can't make it large enough without too much movement. So I have a very expensive paperweight!"
    • One participant who was a former refugee told us that she used the Internet for several purposes including; translating English terms into her native Spanish, staying in contact with her family in Colombia and keeping up with news and current affairs in Colombia:
      • "I don't speak English, so it's easier to use the Internet to translate … And my family live in Colombia so social media is very very important, because that is my way of communicating with them." – Former refugee, Wellington
      • But the same person, without Internet access, is completely disconnected from their home:
        • "[If I had Internet] I wouldn't have to be going out rain or shine to do homework at the library, you know? I could adjust the times in a more suitable way to be able to talk to my family [at a time when they are awake]."

    Big thing three - we need to work with, and listen to communities to co-design the future

    • Coming together on this is critical. We need to be working with and enabling community led development
    • We need to collaborate, codesign, and bring everyone on the journey. Each community will face slightly different issues, and have different forms of exclusion. As an Internet community we need to be working with communities to build capacity solve their own problems.
    • We need to understand and hear the voices of vulnerable New Zealanders. We need to continue to ask the question: what does it mean for you to be a digital society? And we need to listen to what they say.

    Stories from the report:

    While the objective of our report was to uncover the obstacles vulnerable people face in being digitally included, we also uncovered the incredible ways people are using, or want to be using the Internet:

    • "Actually my daughter used it to find alternative education, because she was not going to school due to severe social anxiety and truancy officers were involved. What's she's done is she's found an online accessible art course down in Wellington and she's just been accepted into it, and it's NCEA and everything, and she's done that herself at 15. - Women's Refuge group, Manurewa"
    • "I probably have learned more from YouTube than I have in school, or any form of education to be honest." -Māori youth in tertiary education, Kawerau

    To conclude

    • To make progress we need to ensure we work together. So i want to finish by sharing with you our Whakataukī, or proverb, that was gifted to us:

      Kua raranga tahi tātou he whāriki ipurangi mo āpopo: Together we weave the map, in terms of the Internet, for future generations.

      To borrow a saying from our Prime Minister "Let's do this".