8 (10) Taranaki iwi, of 37,000 with whakapapa connections more than half live outside the Taranaki rohe.
“Ko au te maunga, ko te maunga ko au” (I am the mountain, the mountain is me)
Waananga –a-iwi – example of the way letters and maps catalogued for TPR and digitally repatriated to Taranaki are being applied in waananga, reo classes.
Digital repatriationNgāti Mutunga receiving Hēni Te Rau’s scroll, ownership, access, use as a catalyst for and source of stories.Hēni Te RauSpin off of Ngāti Mutunga iwi archive project as part of Te Pūtē Routiriata, oral history, and Puke Ariki exhibition
Example of repatriation and authorshipIn the Mutunga exhibition, Hēni Te Rau’s whakapapa scroll identified as part of Te Pūtē Routiriata sits alongside her photograph, her petitions to parliament, her biography, whanau connections
Tonga Awhikau recordings, by contrast, where ownership lies with and institution.Honiana – ownership, process for obtaining and consents for use.
Major concerns about the limitations of the Kete software platform were expressed by multiple stakeholders (Participant 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 12). The software was developed as part of an earlier Community Partnership Fund project, and emerged as the platform of choice for TPR. At the time the original funding application was prepared, expert technical advice was sought as to what could be achieved through the use of Kete software, and assurances given as to its ability to be tailored to suit the needs of both TPR and He Pūranga Tākupu. However, over time it became apparent that that advice had been overly optimistic (Participant 12). Kete, an open-source software package, is in many ways highly compatible with a community focused project. The low initial financial outlay required for Kete makes it accessible, and in many cases the basic package suits the needs of community groups. However, TRoT’s needs (both in terms of functionality and security of an online archive) are more complex, and TRoT has invested a substantial sum of TPR funding into technical optimisations to create lockable baskets, a reo Māori user interface (incomplete) and to enable bulk imports of archival material (Participant 4). Kete software has been in use for more than five years, but still lacks many of the features and benefits of free or propriety applications that have emerged over this time, that in most cases are also easier to navigate. In comparison to social media which TPR users are familiar with, Kete appears dated and cumbersome. For the end user there were problems with the low level of intuitive design with the interface and this has put users off accessing TPR via Kete (Participant 5, 9, 10). Backend functions that are command based (rather than using a graphical user interface) also proved to be difficult and a cause of frustration for project team members. Features such as rich media streaming to end users are not possible as those facilities have not been developed for Kete (Participant 4, 7). The lack of capacity to put audio recordings online has been a major difficulty, as Māori communities need audio recordings to fully engage with the archive. There were also difficulties in getting photos into a format that would enable them to be easily uploaded. These types of problems contrast with the relative certainty of features being provided ‘off the shelf’ and ongoing development. Even minor changes to the software tended to require external IT expertise. For example, the Kete software requires a relatively advanced level of technical expertise to create a collection or add an item/word/comment to Pūranga Tākupu. These types of functions are very easily executed via widely used social media platforms such as Facebook (Te Reo o Taranaki, 2010a). The cost and time lag involved in contracting software developers to improve this software is a major impediment to the project. (Participant 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 12). Upload speeds have also been a limiting factor for Kete (Participant 4). As well, there has been a noticeable drop off in development funding by new groups joining the Kete Community Network, and the Kete National Governance Group has not met in over a year and appears to have disbanded (Te Reo o Taranaki, 2010a).
Digital initiatives in Maori communities :: Honiana Love and Claire Hall, Te Reo o Taranaki Charitable Trust
Ka puta, ka ora:Digital archving and the revitalisation of Taranaki reo Te Reo o Taranaki Charitable Trust
“Ko au te mounga, ko te mounga ko au” (I am the mountain, the mountain is me)