It's been a big few weeks here at InternetNZ. As well as ticking along with our work including community grants, the Telecommunications Review, online GST, copper pricing and the ICANN accountability process - the TPP was finally agreed.
We have appeared on many media outlets over the past week including Radio NZ, RadioLive, Newstalk ZB, the Herald, NBR and Stuff. We have welcomed the media queries as an opportunity to get across our views on the TPP and how it relates to New Zealand's Internet. Our CEO Jordan Carter speaks a little bit about the TPP in the video below. You can also find links to some of the media articles below.
Internet issues programme
Since the last issue of What's Up, the Internet Issues team has been busy writing - a lot! We've been full on with a range of submissions as the Government machine cranks into a heavy phase of legislative contemplation.
You can see all of our work to date on our website - but below is a few links:
- Our submission on Online GST argued that any solution shouldn't impede online commerce, but that otherwise there was no reason why online retailers shouldn't pay their fair share.
GST: Cross-border services, intangibles and goods
- Our shared cross-submission on the final stage of copper pricing is complete, arguing in quite some detail why the Commission risks setting prices too high for copper broadband and what could be done about it.
Cross-submission in relation to UCLL and UBA draft pricing review determinations
So while a few submissions are out the door, we are still working on even more too - here's what's coming up:
- our submission on Content Regulation as part of the Convergence Programme is due on the 16th of October...
- ...on the same day as our submission on the Convergence Programme itself
- our submission on the Telecommunications Act Review, also part of Convergence, is due November 3 - stand by for an announcement of some member focused discussion sessions on this too!
Keep an eye on the PAG mailing list for separate discussion on each of these submission. If you're not a member of that list, and would like to be, ping Andrew on firstname.lastname@example.org.
It's here - or at least the announcement is, as we along with everyone else haven't seen the full negotiated text of the agreement.
That said, what we do understand is that what could have been quite a threatening process to the Open Internet in New Zealand has become far less so. By working in unison with the wider New Zealand tech industry, we appear to have seen off challenges to Safe Harbour for Internet Service Providers and disconnection for infringement. Questions remain about what an end to preferential onshoring of data really means, and around Technical Protection Measures.
The Issues team at InternetNZ isn't done here. There is the big job to do to monitor and work on how the TPP works its way into New Zealand law. We are across those linkages already. And of course, an analysis of the full text itself.
For now though, let's tip our hats to some hard work done - Jordan Carter, Susan Chalmers and now James Ting-Edwards are the people that have led the charge at InternetNZ, and there are some outcomes they can be proud of in where this has ended up. Our work certainly isn't done though in terms of keeping an eye on the TPP from here, and James is always keen to hear more from you on this. You can email James at email@example.com.
Below are a few links to some of the media articles where we have featured:
- ISP Scorecard: We're cooking up a review of some of the important non-price factors about New Zealand Internet Service Providers, which we hope will help New Zealanders make more informed choices about their ISPs. We see it as a compliment to services like the Broadband Map and TelMe. More to come, but in the mean time contact Andrew for more info on firstname.lastname@example.org.
- CSIRT: Ben is still working hard with the New Zealand Internet Task Force (NZITF) on working out how we can make something happen for a "Computer Security Incident Response Team" (CSIRT) - think of it as a watchdog and helpdesk for all those Internet nasties out there. Ben can be reached at email@example.com.
- UFB & RBI: These are particularly relevant since the Government has announced a goal of 50mbps to 99% of New Zealanders by 2025. We love that, but want to know more about how exactly. And these next tranches of these two programmes are a big part of the answer and we're expecting to learn more any day now. You can contact Reg about this at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- And of course, SubmissionFest 2015 will be rolling on!
We are excited to announce the successful applicants for our July/August conference attendance and community projects grants round. We received many high quality, diverse and inspiring applications showing a range of initiatives in the New Zealand Internet community, and we wish the best of luck to everyone who applied.
Conference attendance (total of $15,000)
Bronwyn Holloway-Smith was awarded $3,500 to attend SubOptic in Dubai in April 2016. Bronwyn will be presenting 'Capturing the Public Imagination: Communicating the Cultural Significance of Submarine Internet Cables' which focuses on the creation of a body of artworks about the Southern Cross Cable.
Dr Qiang Fu of Victoria University was awarded $3,500 to attend IEEE GLOBECOM in San Diego in December this year. He will be presenting 'Selected Areas in Communications - Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Functions Visualisations (NFV)' which is designed to engage with the international SDN/NFV community and present what New Zealand is doing in the area.
The MOA Kluster was awarded $8,000 to attend the ISTE Conference in Denver in June 2016. The MOA Kluster is a collaboration between four schools in South Taranaki who are working to become STEM schools. The Kluster attendees are the principals of all four schools, who will present on their progress and use the conference as an opportunity to up-skill.
Community projects (total of $115,000)
Kiwicon was awarded $20,000 for the provision of it’s ninth New Zealand information security (infosec) community conference, to be run in Wellington from 10-11 December 2015. A grassroots event run by volunteers and for the infosec community, Kiwicon brings together security professionals, enthusiasts, students and the wider IT industry to present the latest developments, recruit for the industry, and to provide a touchpoint for the community as a whole.
Venture Southland was awarded $15,000 to help make better use of Internet connections for both rural and urban users (both private and commercial) through digital connections liaison and enablement support. This project will focus on two areas. 1) to increase awareness and streamline technology pathways and connection options for end users; and 2) increase digital competence through enablement support.
Welcome Bay Community Centre Inc was awarded $9,062.00 to install two outdoor rated Ubiquiti "Unifi" access points to provide controlled public Internet access to the area containing Welcome Bay Hall, the Community Centre and Waitaha Park, also encompassing the playground adjacent to the centre. By installing a separate controlled public network, they will improve the centre’s day-to-day service offerings to the public by giving them open access to two online computers.
National Collective of Independent Women's Refuges Inc. was awarded $22,000 for The Refuge Online Project which will ensure that the 41 tauiwi and tangata whenua refuges affiliated with Ngā Whare Whakaruruhau o Aotearoa / National Collective of Independent Women's Refuges (NCIWR) have an accessible online presence which encourages clients to seek help online as a first port of call.
Matihetihe Marae Trust was awarded $25,000 for a continuation of their 'on the grid' work. Mitimiti on the Grid 1 saw the arrival of a full telecommunications infrastructure in a small, isolated marae in the Far North in March 2015. Mitimiti on the Grid 2 aims to 'water the seeds' and to generate a self-sustainable global community from Mitimiti. This funding will help consolidate local and diaspora support amongst tribal members around the world - and its future business partners.
WIC NZ was awarded $24,000 to provide access to Internet through free WiFi, CodeClub, Minecraft Club and robotics workshops for adolescents and adults and a Video Factory to enable the community to tell their new and existing stories. By innovating in a creative way, WIC NZ will create a shared social space for the entire community, from public displays on the weekend, to monthly classes.
Next grants round opening soon
Two new community grants rounds will be opening next month - the second conference attendance grants round totalling $15,000, and the Internet research projects grants round totalling $100,000. Keep an eye on our website for the opening date, or email email@example.com for more information.
New Zealand Internet Research Forum
After the success of this year’s first NZIRF, InternetNZ will host another NZIRF on 4 and 5 February 2016 at the Auckland University of Technology.
Next year’s forum will have two streams - one for technical and one for non-technical Internet research - and will be an opportunity for researchers and interested parties to discuss their proposed, current and finished research with the New Zealand Internet research community.
More information, a call for expressions of interest in presentations and attendee registrations will be available in the coming months. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in being involved.
December Speaker Series event
InternetNZ will be hosting a Speaker Series event focused on 'sex and the Internet' with a tentative date of Thursday 3 December. This event will be held in our new offices in Wellington and streamed live for those who can’t attend.
The topic of this event is a continuation of a hugely popular Barcamp run by Jessica Ducey (formerly of Family Planning International) at this year’s NetHui. The event will explore relationships online, privacy, safety and young people, but will take a positive and proactive outlook on how the Internet influences sexuality and relationships in 2015.
More information, confirmation of date and registrations will be posted on our website over the coming weeks.
This month we are giving you a snapshot of Nicole Skews-Poole, InternetNZ's Community Programme Liaison.
What do you actually do: I help facilitate InternetNZ’s community grants rounds and support our Grants Committee. That means I also keep in contact with our grants recipients and the amazing things they’re doing in the New Zealand Internet Community. I also help award sponsorship to community awards and events, work with our Strategic Partners to support our collaborations and I’ll be part of organising the next NetHui and related events!
What’s your favourite thing about the Internet? The way people can build communities and families online based on shared values or interests. It’s an incredible tool for helping people to find their tribes and energise each other.
What’s your least favourite? Minions 50 Shades of Grey memes. WHY?!
What’s your favourite book? The Harry Potter series.
What’s your favourite band: Patti Smith. She’s not a band but she has one so it counts.
Favourite meal: Sushi
Who would you want to play you in the film of your life? The Rock or a really well groomed Irish Setter.