Recent Posts

Friday Music: Good ideas that don't work

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Hard News by Russell Brown
13

Stinky Jim has been playing a rather engaging cumbia version of New Order's 'Blue Monday' on his 95bFM radio show. Having tracked down the Soundcloud stream, I thought that I would quite like, in my old-fashioned way to, you know,…

The twilight state of the Psychoactive Substances Act

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Hard News by Russell Brown
8

Even as it was making its way to the statutes,
 New Zealand’s Psychoactive Substances Bill was the talk
 of the drug reform world. It was seen as a bold, visionary bid to deal with the proliferation of new drugs that…

Market failure in the research world

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Speaker by Mark C. Wilson
66

The “serials crisis” has been a feature of research life for over 20 years. According to figures from the US Association of Research Libraries, during 1986-2007 academic journal subscription charges increased by 340%, four times the rate of inflation. Publishers…

Incomplete, inaccurate and misleading

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Hard News by Russell Brown
234

The reporter of the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security into the release of information by the SIS is now public, and it turns out to be largely about a democratic problem we've discussed plenty this year: the growing contempt in…

Prague

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Hard News by Russell Brown
29

There are always candles at the memorial to Jan Palach and Jan Zajic, who immolated themselves in protest at the forcible ending of the Prague Spring in 1968, but there were more there than usual last Thursday when I walked…

Team Little: pretty good

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Hard News by Russell Brown
118

New Labour leader Andrew Little has announced his first caucus lineup and, with one or two questions, it would seem to be pointing the party in the right direction. A clearout of a few of the usual suspects is offset…

Music: Watching on Twitter from afar

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Hard News by Russell Brown
24

TV3's decision to broadcast the Vodafone Music Awards live to air was a great call. Not that I was able to actually watch it, but being able to read tweets both from Vector Arena and the living rooms of home…

Movement

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Capture by Jackson Perry
32 7

It felt like we were overdue for a post, and when I took the time to look back at what had come before, I realised yesterday we turned three. So before we get into it, thanks once again for another…

News from home ...

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Hard News by Russell Brown
257

I'll be brief (it's 5am where I am and have to catch a plane) but the Labour's leadership result and the means by which it was achieved both seem disastrous for the party and for the prospects of the centre-left.…

Sines of the times: Jakob at Galatos

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Capture by Jonathan Ganley
5 6

Jakob playing at Galatos to launch their new album 'Sines', on Friday November 14 2014. They are playing dates in Australia at the end of this month and will play at Laneway in Auckland on January 26 2015. The shots…

Music: To renew, you first need history

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Hard News by Russell Brown
22

Before I came to stay in Peckham, I had heard tell of its burgeoning gentrification, but to wander the streets of this South London borough and see it in action is something else. The terraces of the street where I'm…

Garbage in, garbage out

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Hard News by Russell Brown
57

Dr Jarrod Gilbert has a pretty blunt response today to the revelation that the government's pre-election crackdown on gangs was predicated on data so wildly wrong that it's hard to imagine how it happened. David Fisher lays out the scale…

The Boom Crash

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Hard News by Russell Brown
132

If you need a metaphor for Auckland in 2014, try this. So many people clamoured this morning to search for their new property valuations that they brought down the entire Auckland Council website. We broke government. To be fair, the…

The Song of Angry Women

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Up Front by Emma Hart
19

It's been a rough couple of weeks to be a woman. If the last couple of weeks were a person, it would cat-call a thirteen year old, punch her in the face, get her drunk and rape her at a…

LATE: The Age of Slacktivism

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Hard News by Russell Brown
26

Everyone is there for a reason at the LATE at the Auckland Museum session I'm fronting on Monday evening. The theme is The Age of#Slacktivism, which I'm effectively interpreting as "beyond slacktivism" -- that's why ActionStation cofounder and Amnesty International…

Friday Music: Virtual Rockstar Accountant

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Hard News by Russell Brown
25

All week, Matt Nippert and his new colleagues in the New Zealand Herald's investigative team have been dropping hints about Matt sweating over a spreadsheet. What corporate malfeasance was about to be laid bare in the cleansing sunlight of Nippert's…

Research Invitation - Life before and after the Internet

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Access by Philippa Smith
6

Kia Ora I am Dr Philippa Smith from the institute of Culture, Discourse and Communication at the Auckland University of Technology. I am the lead researcher in a project where we wish to interview people with disabilities to assess the…

Beware of the Leopard

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Busytown by Jolisa Gracewood
59

Democracy is a funny old thing, an exercise in trust. We concentrate expertise and execution into the hands of the few, in the expectation that they will be steered by the will of the many. Hence town hall discussions, regular…

Housing, hope and ideology

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Hard News by Russell Brown
177

As reported this morning by Radio New Zealand, Prime Minister John Key has given a few more clues to the mystery parcel that is his government's housing policy -- and in the process, contrived to make that policy seem even…

Some aspects of New Zealand’s disability history – part one

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Access by Hilary Stace
68

There is no definitive version of Pākehā disability history. My interpretation here may explain why disability was often viewed negatively, or is even invisible in the historical narrative. Nineteenth-century New Zealand was settled by immigrants mainly from Britain and Europe…

Music: The Homecoming Queen

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Hard News by Russell Brown
42

Astonishingly, it's only just over a year since a 16 year-old Lorde took the stage for a promotional gig at Vector Arena. It was easily the biggest room she'd played, and a mere four months since her public debut. It…

The uncooling of the inner West

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Hard News by Russell Brown
219

Over the past couple of weeks, the Herald's new data blog has been looking at population change data revealed by the 2013 Census. It's been a nice, open process culminating the Wellington firm Dumpark's creation of an interactive showing population…

TVNZ: Emptied out

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Hard News by Russell Brown
66

To those who visit TVNZ, as I do every week to record our TV show for another channel, the place has the feel of an abandoned building. The journalists toil on the ground floor at the west end, but nearly…