June 2012

ONLINE COMMITTEE GROUP COUNCIL REPORT

1 JUNE 2012

 

This is an update since the article from the Online Communication Group appeared in the latest Newsletter. A few comments from that article are included here as a reminder of the focus of this group.

 

There is a gradual movement as an Association from face-to-face or paper-based communication, including this Newsletter, to an expanding range of alternatives. We’ve been doing this partly to enable members to find new and flexible ways to keep in touch with one another. Partly, too, it’s to keep abreast with technologies that many of us use on a daily basis. These include email, Facebook, Skype and website interaction, and finding ways to integrate some of these into the life of the Association. In particular, we have a strong desire for the NZAP Website to feel alive for our members. As an Online Communication Committee we are continuing to look for ways to extend communication amongst all members. We are exploring ways of introducing a forum within the website so that important issues of concern so that these can be debated and discussed by any member within a given timeframe.

 

We see online communication as an additional way we communicate with each other within our association. Communication will continue to take place in the usual ways: in Newsletters or information sent out to Regional Convenors to pass on to their local members. But these new initiatives are designed to increase the opportunities for us to communicate with each other in diverse and effective ways.

 

These are some of the activities that the Online Communication Group has been undertaking since the May Newsletter article:

  • Waka Oranga now has a section on the NZAP website with Resource material attached.
  • Our committee is organizing for communication between all NZAP committees to be through an easy, email software called Mailman. This enables all members of a group to communicate directly and to attach documents for the whole group. Walter Logeman has recently set this up for the Te Tiriti Committee. Other committees and Council are already using Mailman.
  • The Online Communication Committee would like all committees to use Online Groups. This is an online discussion forum which Council already uses.  Sean has said that it is working well. We hope to extend this to all committees. Through practice we will get more use to it and find it valuable.
  • We have introduced a comments area for groups and this has begun to work well. For instance, participants who attended the Pre-Conference Workshop added comments about their experience within the section of Becoming Bicultural Pre-Conference Workshop under Members’ Information. It is great to see this kind of online communication happening amongst participants.
  • A few more people that have joined the NZAP Facebook group. I remind Council that this is an experiment using social networking that has worked well for other professional groups. We are holding a space to see if it slowly develops.
  • NZAP Inform has recently been used by Grant to send out important information relevant to our members. This is a new initiative in the last 12 months.
  • We are in the process of developing guidelines for committees that want to add material onto their section under Members’ information.
  • We have begun to enable the use of sound files online. The MP3s for Donna Orange’s Keynote Speech and the Panel Discussion will be added soon into the section under ‘Past Conferences Wellington 2012’. Simon Gurnsey is looking at the best way to accomplish this. We will again include the keynote speeches from Michael Leunig and Jonathan Fay under the 2010 Nelson Conference. These talks then will be permanently available on the NZAP site.

 

Budget

We have regularly communicated as a committee by Skype this year. There is no cost for these sessions. We have found it invaluable to regularly talk together to move forward in our tasks. The major expenses have been for Simon Gurnsey’s payments and for website development.

 

Last year the budget of $2500 (gst incl) was overspent. The outgoings were $3320. I  have recently communicated  about past budgets for this committee with Walter Logeman. He wrote that in the past $3000 p.a. had been allocated and never fully spent. With professional services now being included it has risen above that. Simon Gurnsey  wrote the following “I went back through my invoicing. The two years to 31/1/12  for hosting, development and  support cost NZPA $4,285.94. The total billed since inception [20/01/10] has been $7,844.63. That includes the initial development and costs to build.” Possibly Sean might be able to elaborate on this in Council.

 

It is a pleasure to be part of such a dedicated group.

 

Burke Hunter