Political barrels pushed in NZ internet debate

Some of the first shots in the election were fired last night, when the four main parties fronted up to a debate broadcast live over the internet and TV to discuss four of the key ICT-related issues; broadband, cyber-safety, copyright and the convergence of traditional and digital media channels.

For the most part, discussions in the areas of broadband, cybersafety and convergence involved little more than the re-iteration of existing policy or idealogy; David Cunliffe pitched the government’s recently released Digital Strategy and dissed National’s Fibreco concept at every opportunity, Rodney Hide talked a lot about “choice”, “competition” and “investment”, Maurice Williamson doubted that regulation would or could be effective in most areas, and Metiria Turei from the Green Party talked about protecting New Zealanders from foreign interests.The most interesting discussions were in the area of copyright, particularly in relation to the recently announced free trade talks with the US.

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