Site health – comments and posts

Written By: - Date published: 4:31 pm, February 12th, 2012 - 36 comments
Categories: admin, The Standard - Tags:

vto made a comment that he thought that the number of comments was diminishing at kiwiblog. Now I have no idea because I usually avoid the sewer that is the comments section there. However it did remind me that I should have a look at the last year or so here. It feels like it has been getting more popular, but intuition is a poor substitute for actually looking at the numbers.

So I ran some SQL against the comments table pulling out the numbers of approved comments and the number of posts with approved comments*, tossed it into LibreOffice Calc and pulled out some numbers.

So looking at the yearly picture for full years, our comments are rising in the last few years and our posts remain pretty constant, so our comments per post has been rising.

The Standard – yearly comments and posts 
Year Comments Posts Comments per Post
2008 64218 2199 29.20
2009 64594 2687 24.04
2010 94558 2888 32.74
2011 131249 2595 50.58

We have been keeping the numbers of posts limited because we’re not really that interested in burning out authors. We all have lives outside of the blogs, don’t want to spend our lives writing posts, and don’t really want to become some kind of news clipping service. You can see the election year effect in 2008 and 2011.

The question for this site in 2012 is if we keep similar numbers of the readers and commentators, and their page views and comments post election year.

You can see the post election slump in December 2008 and Jan 2009 had a virtual reprise of the December 2010 and 2012, albeit from a much higher base and for much the same reasons. The effects of the very short election season in 2011 shows in our comments which actually decreased while the world cup was on in September and the first part of October and then went through the roof after the final game.

But there has been healthy growth throughout the year and the numbers for the latter part of Jan and early Feb point to the comments on the site remaining pretty healthy, but unlikely to repeat the November numbers for a while. Probably in the post-winter commenting boosts. But of course commentators don’t just come to argue with each other. They come for the posts as well.

And then we look at the numbers of posts. There you can see the usual post election slump adding to the usual reduction in authors writing. But overall we maintaining the numbers of posts with spiking going on in times of interest. However what we are seeing is a change upwards in the number of comments per post.

 The spike in later 2007 and early 2008 shows exactly what happens when there is no moderation. You get a considerable increase in trash commenting as the trolls pile in. The average size of the comments goes down (if I get time I’ll put a post up on that) and you notice the lousy commentators drowning out anyone that looks interesting – the sewer provides a good example. When the moderation kicks in and becomes effective the number of comments slumps but the size of the comments, their quality increases, and you see interesting commentators return.

But since early 2010 we have had a steady increase both in the number of comments and crucially in the number of commentators.  We’re also seeing that interesting effect that even when the authors are taking their hard earned rest and the numbers of posts decrease, the commnets carry on as people make their own fun. The threaded nature of the comments sections makes it feasible to do.

Not everyone is particularly happy with the style of moderation on this site or even the style of the site. But it works and I’m more than happy with what we’re doing together.

* Code:

SELECT
YEAR(comment_date) as year,
MONTH(comment_date) as month,
COUNT(*) as comments,
COUNT(DISTINCT comment_post_id) as posts
FROM wp_comments
WHERE comment_approved=1
GROUP BY YEAR(comment_date), MONTH(comment_date)
ORDER BY YEAR(comment_date), MONTH(comment_date)

This particular query eliminates the small number of posts that have no comments (mostly from 2007) and includes the few image pages that have comments that were never moved.  It is close enough for my purposes.

36 comments on “Site health – comments and posts”

  1. G 1

    Whle you are talking about site health… can you please restore the RSS feed to the entire post? For some of us, work tracks what we look at, but they are too dumb (to be fair, their programme is too dumb) to realise that reader.google.com is Google Reader and not Google Search (which could be work-related). So I read blogs through RSS feeds only.

    • Lanthanide 1.1

      There was a problem where posts that were edited/updated did not have those edits reflected in the RSS feed. Sometimes posts are put up with chunks missing or error that are later corrected, but people reading the RSS feed didn’t see the updates.

      I think turning the RSS off was the short-term workaround for this problem.

    • lprent 1.2

      Plus the overseas traffic running on the RSS feed. The spam bots have been reading the RSS feed to look for new posts, which they then try to spam. Since there are literally thousands of the little buggers and I have no easy way to determine that they are spam there is no easy way to discriminate. I wish I could get at google analytics spambot discriminators. I’d use them on the reader and RSS reader side.

      The RSS feed got dropped from full to excerpt on about the 10th of last month. Since then we have dropped a lot of overseas traffic Gb compared to December. That costs $3 + GST per Gb.

      Of course the actual solution around NZ’s crazy costs for overseas traffic (when are we getting some competition for the southern cross?) is to bounce an up to date replication to a US server and let the rest of the world read their 45GB/month from there while NZ read their local ~300GB/month per month of it. However it costs about 50GB of overseas traffic to maintain a replication on a site that is this active.

      Of course I could fix everything by moving everything back to a US server. Of course it I did that then the actual traffic over the southern would increase to the full 300GB and the response times would slow.

      I have been playing with a astrill VPN setup at present. Hopefully that will push the replication costs elsewhere out of my budget. But I am finding it hard to get it to restart the connections reliably when I put in failures.

      Next one I am going to try is to change the RSS feeder to discriminate between known ‘good’ aggregation sites (like Google reader and feedburner) and everyone else. To be precise only allow a couple of feeders to use the RSS feeds.

      • infused 1.2.1

        Use a better provider. DTS don;t charge for outbound, which is what most of your traffic is.

        • lprent 1.2.1.1

          If it is the provider I just looked at then they don’t do dedicated servers. They do have collocation rackspace, but in Wellington and Christchurch. But I really don’t have time to chase around with hardware anyway. Their GB rates for the racks look ruinous for our volumes. http://dts.net.nz/hosting/co-location/ $6 + GST per 5Gb per month. We move at least 300GB per month.

          Unless there is something I am not seeing?

  2. Gruntie 3

    I mostly read the standard on my iphone 4s – (no I’m not a rich prick) but find The Standard blog the most buggy if all blogs – very slow and crashes a lot – have given up writing comments lately ( also coincided with my depression following 26 Nov 2011)
    Does anyone else have same issue with iOS on iPhone?

    • McFlock 3.1

      I got a similarissue on my android – but then it was the only blog I looked at that 100+ comments in a thread, so figured it was just that.
      Bloody stupid trying to go through all those with a 4″ screen 🙂

    • lprent 3.2

      I will have a look at it. We’re using the wpPhone ‘theme’ for phones. I have to confess that I haven’t tested it for a while.

      I should probably look at finding or even writing a barebones themes for the smart phones. Most of the ones I’ve looked at appear to be too sluggish when there are large numbers of comments with our 3G data. They need to paginate them.

    • Trowlie 3.3

      I’m the same on my iPhone. The page takes an age to load and will then crash as soon as I start to scroll down.

    • SHG 3.4

      Agreed – The Standard is a dog with the mobile theme enabled.

      • lprent 3.4.1

        Looking around for another theme. Tried it out on the my old iphone 3G yesterday and it was sluggish on wifi! It was interesting because the theme wasn’t nearly as bad last time I used it.

  3. Congrats Lprent.  Good to see the Standard is going from strength to strength.

    One thing I am interested in.  Did the 2011 post election dip occur before or after the Labour leadership campaign?  My impression is that the campaign caused considerable interest but it may be that it was amongst the Labour members rather than your readership as a whole.

    • lprent 4.1

      After. We had a hell of a spike for the leadership campaign. The December figures look like they dropped a lot, but the reality is that they are higher than almost every month.

      When it hit Dec 25 the page views dropped to about 5k per day and stayed there until the Ports of Auckland dispute.resurfaced in Jan. Comments had the same effect.

  4. Tangled up in blue 5

    vto made a comment that he thought that the number of comments was diminishing at kiwiblog.

    Imo “lefties” should stay away from Kiwiblog completely. I mean don’t even go there for a laugh to see what those clowns are up to. Giving it traffic is unnecessary and indirectly supports the site. It used to be that a left voice on there was helpful to show up the usual biased tripe but lately (since about a month before last election) it’s gotten so hard-right and hateful that people are realising it’s just a place for angry 1% Act supporters to rage. Stay away and let Kiwiblog fade into obscurity.

    • Populuxe1 5.1

      Really? Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. I like to know what the bastards are saying, otherwise you’re just reinforcing the stereotype that the Left lives in an ivory tower.

      • McFlock 5.1.1

        Much as I tend to agree with the sentiment, if they’re saying anything much more tory than kk, james3 or so on I probably wouldn’t want to burn my eyeballs.

  5. Anne 6

    Imo “lefties” should stay away from Kiwiblog completely.

    Absolutely. Don’t give Farrablog the traffic. He holds it up as evidence of his supposed political insight and importance. The MSM are too thick – or lazy – to investigate the reality.

  6. Blue 7

    @Anne – “Imo “lefties” should stay away from Kiwiblog completely.’,Absolutely”

    Ah yes, ‘we can’t debate, so lets run away’, Why am I not surprised that you’re not prepared to listen to an opposing view. Ever wonder why the National Party handed you your asses again? Its this sort of head in the sand thinking that costs you your support. Mindless stuff.

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      Why should anyone be prepared to listen to shite? You know like how selling off our country is good for us, how kicking the poor a bit harder will be “motivational” or how SOEs don’t need to respect Treaty obligations after being sold off.

      Ever wonder why the National Party handed you your asses again?

      You must be talking about the National led coalition which came in 4 seats down on 2008.

    • McFlock 7.2

      “Opposing view” is one thing.
      Calling people “parasites” is another thing entirely.
      One will never persuade people who freely use that (and similar language) to recognise that society extends beyond their personal chequebook, and their pretensions to logic are futile at best. “Debating” with them on their territory lends them a legitimacy they don’t deserve.
         
      Let KB become a mad corner of the internet, the NZ equivalent of militias and supremacists. After a while even the corporate media will have to admit that “newsworthy” story needs to be based on something more than the fanciful masturbations of a national party tool.

    • Gosman 7.3

      Interestingly I’d hazzard a guess that the posts with the mosts comments are the ones that have the most right wing comments on them. So to make a big deal about this stat you also have to acknowedge that opposing comment viewpoints make the blog more popular. You just need to lookat what has happened to Tumeke since Martyn Bradbury elbowed aside Tim Selwyn and implemented his Stalinist moderation policy. I believe the blog averages in the low single digits now per post.

      • Draco T Bastard 7.3.1

        And here’s me thinking that it was Tumeke’s layout and general user unfriendliness that did it.

        • Gosman 7.3.1.1

          How has that changed over the past couple of years?

        • just saying 7.3.1.2

          I’ve tried to comment at Tumeke and been unable to navigate the system.

          While it’s true posts that generate large numbers of comments are often those that generate debate and or argument (often over several days) it is just as likely (if not more) to be between differing views within the left. I think the overwhelming majority of regular commenters here come here to read the posts, follow some links, and exchange ideas with other left-wingers, and even those willing to engage the regular trolls do so mostly as a side-sport.

  7. Rich 9

    I actually think you can have too many comments (though maybe not from a revenue point of view).

    I tend to have this site down my list because of the number of Tories that comment on it (along with the Grauniad). If I wanted to know what RWS think, I’d read the mass media or listen to talkback.

    If there was a Tory-free politics site with reasonable traffic, I’d read it a lot.

    • lprent 9.1

      Yeah, well there is always that. But in their defence, the RWS that survive here tend to be somewhat “smarter” than those who frequent the mass media or talkback or the sewer. I feel it is healthy for the left to engage with the right, partially for the cross-fertilisation, but also because left activists tend to start arguing over minutiae of dogma that few voters care about if they are only talking to the like minded.

      The filter mechanism is simple. We are interested in people who can and will argue. We tend to turf the commentators that don’t appear to have a brain and simply repeat statements over and over again like some kind of dumbarse parrot – in other words the talkback crowd. Cameron Slater is pretty good example of the genre.

      In the usual link between stupidity, short-term thinking, arrogance, and conservative, the bulk of the right get winnowed here because they simply can’t help themselves. They drop into repetitive or troll behaviours, attack the authors, or pick up one of the other site’s Darwin awards that we will moderate for and ban on.

      There are some on the left with the similar dogmatic ways, but I generally find them either indignantly dropping off the site or changing their behaviour when they get a warning.

      Obviously I like the balance. It covers a pretty wide range of the political spectrum, it is pretty well limited to people who can and do argue mostly without too much rancour and aren’t too thin-skinned. And with the exception of the prohibitions about our losing authors allows a lot of freedom in what can be commented about.

      Tory-free politics site with reasonable traffic

      I have seen a few over the years – there were several interesting ones in the usenet days and you can find some quite doctrinaire ones in various places. I haven’t been that impressed. The further they seem to get from having to actually win votes in general elections, the less rational they seem to be.

      In my opinion their comments sections usually look distinctly like the bullying behaviour in the sewer. Fortunately they seldom seem to last that long as being busy with comments either.

    • lprent 9.2

      Oh and comments don’t seem to have that much of a correlation with page views, unique visitors or what data I have on clickthru. Those are what attracts advertisers and what the site gets paid for on the advertising.

      The best overall correlation for those things is with what is happening in the political world and what is not getting reported. We get enormous numbers of hits when the media start missing a story or trying to spin it. The Ports of Auckland dispute is the most recent example (26k page views in a day), with the Crafar farms one less so. I’ve been intrigued with this for a while because it tends to indicate that people bullshit meters go off the scale then and they come and see what we are saying.

  8. Same issue. Goes crazy once the comments get to about 50.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Ports of Auckland decision a win for workers and the environment
    Ports of Auckland’s decision to no longer release the toxic fumigant methyl bromide into the atmosphere is a win for their workers and for the environment, says Labour’s Spokesperson for Biosecurity Damien O’Connor.   “The intention to move to a ...
    57 mins ago
  • Single Child Tax hidden in Budget
    Buried in National’s so-called family Budget is a Single Child Tax that will hit medium to low income families, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. ...
    4 hours ago
  • Commerce Commission investigates Ron Hoy Fong
    The decision by the Commerce Commission to investigate Ron Hoy Fong and his questionable advice to property investors to use fake names and target ‘dummies’ is good news, Labour’s spokesperson on Consumer Affairs Michael Wood says.  “I am pleased that ...
    2 days ago
  • National running out of excuses on Pike
    The latest Pike River revelations further erode National's position of blocking a manned re-entry of the Pike River Mine drift, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    2 days ago
  • Nats’ Budget locks in housing crisis
    National’s ninth Budget forecasts house prices will rise at three times the rate of wages, locking in the housing crisis for years to come, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “After nine years, all National can offer is a ...
    3 days ago
  • Small change that is sorely needed
    The big headline of the Government’s Budget yesterday was its Family Incomes Package – a range of measures including changes to income tax thresholds and the Family Tax Credit. Overall the Budget is a huge disappointment and a missed opportunity ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    3 days ago
  • Kids bear the brunt of Budget
    Future generations are the ones bearing the brunt of National’s failure to provide education services the funding they need to make ends meet, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “For nine years in a row the Government has told our ...
    3 days ago
  • The real costs of National’s election bribe
    The cost of National’s poorly-targeted election year budget bribe is that there’s nothing to fix the housing crisis, health funding is cut, and funding for schools is cut, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “As the dust begins to settle ...
    3 days ago
  • Health running on empty
    Get ready for more cuts to health at a local level, affecting all New Zealanders, after a Budget that failed to deliver even enough for health services to stand still, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. “District Health Boards this ...
    3 days ago
  • Nats’ budget a double-crewed ambulance parked at the bottom of the cliff
    National’s election year Budget shows that there’s no coincidence Finance Minister Steven Joyce doubles as National’s campaign manager, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The 2017 Budget reveals a lack of vision, and is simply an election year budget with ...
    4 days ago
  • After nine years, it’s the One Dollar Bill Budget
    National’s Budget 2017 is an irresponsible election bribe which after nine years exposes a government that’s run out of energy and ideas to tackle the big issues facing New Zealand,” says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “This is simply cynical electioneering ...
    4 days ago
  • Alfred Ngaro might be sorry – but to whom?
    The fact that the number of people classified as homeless on the Social Housing Register has doubled over the past year alone should be the real reason for Alfred Ngaro’s recent apologies, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. “As ...
    5 days ago
  • Government’s data-for-funding backdown embarrassing
    The Government’s U-turn on their shambolic attempt to collect private client data from social services is an embarrassment for a senior Minister, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. “After months of criticism and mismanagement, the Government has finally cut ...
    5 days ago
  • Overloaded hospitals reach crisis point
      The country’s hospitals have reached breaking point with some hospitals discharging patients to free up bed space and patients with serious injuries having to wait hours to be seen by a doctor, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark.   ...
    5 days ago
  • National fails on critical school building needs
    Students are paying the price of the Government’s failure to invest fast enough in school buildings to keep pace with Auckland’s increasing population, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “Parents should lay the blame for their children having to put up ...
    5 days ago
  • Tipping culture is not welcome in NZ
    Deputy Prime Minister Paula Bennett’s comments about tipping have been in the news and have sparked off a series of furious discussions about tipping in Aotearoa. From our point of view, tipping every time you’re provided a service is a ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    6 days ago
  • Mental Health a huge cost for Police
      The cost of dealing with mental health incidents for our police was a staggering $36.7 million which shows just why we need Labour’s fresh approach on Mental Health, says the Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little.   “Police now ...
    6 days ago
  • Grant Robertson: Speech to Otago-Southland Employers Association
    Thanks to the Otago Southland Employers Association and Virginia for hosting me this evening.  It is always a pleasure to come back to the city and region that shaped who I am as a person. I believe that growing up ...
    7 days ago
  • Renting a home in the Wild West
    It can be tough renting a place to live, and it could be about to get tougher. Radio NZ is reporting that the American Rentberry app wants to start operating in New Zealand. Rentberry allows landlords to play perspective tenants ...
    GreensBy Metiria Turei
    7 days ago
  • Free West Papua leader in Aotearoa
    Last week I hosted Free West Papua leader Benny Wenda at Parliament and travelled with him to a number of important events. Benny is spokesperson for the United Liberation Movement for West Papua and lives in exile in England. 14 ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Nats unprepared for record immigration
    National’s under-investment in housing, public services, and infrastructure means New Zealand is literally running out of beds for the record number of new migrants, says Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour opposes Ports of Auckland sale
    Labour would strongly oppose the sell-off of the Ports of Auckland to fix a short term cash crisis caused by the Government blocking the city’s requests for new ways to fund infrastructure, says Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford. “National ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Workers pay the price of Silver Fern’s Fairton closure
    The threatened closure of Silver Fern Farms’ Fairton Plant in Ashburton raises serious questions about the Government’s support of the sale of half of the company to a foreign company, when it appears this outcome may have been inevitable, says ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National’s answer to the housing crisis: One new affordable house per 100 new Aucklanders
    National’s fudge of a housing plan will make Auckland even more of a speculators’ paradise, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government can’t be trusted with private data
    The independent review of the Ministry of Social Development’s data breach in April has shown, once again, that the Ministry cannot be trusted with private client information, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. “The investigation by former Deloitte chairman ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Another crisis, another half-baked National plan
    The National Party may have finally woken up to the teacher supply crisis facing our schools but their latest half-baked, rushed announcement falls well short of the mark in terms of what’s required, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nats: Don’t bite the hand that feeds you
    Alfred Ngaro’s recent comments have exposed the Government’s ‘don’t bite the hand that feeds you’ approach, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Breaking news – National admits there’s a housing crisis
    National finally admits there’s a housing crisis, but today’s belated announcement is simply not a credible response to the problem it’s been in denial about for so long, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “National can’t now credibly claim ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nats lay the ground for housing bust
    Goldman Sachs’ warning that New Zealand has the developed world’s most over-priced housing market, with a 40 per cent chance of a bust within two years, shows the consequences of National’s nine years of housing neglect, says Labour Housing spokesperson ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Well they would say that, wouldn’t they?
    Property investors’ lobby groups have been up in arms this week about Labour and Green parties’ plans to close tax loopholes and fix the housing market. That’s probably a good thing. Like an investor in any other sector, they expect ...
    GreensBy James Shaw
    2 weeks ago
  • Alfred Ngaro reflects National’s culture of silencing debate
    Image from Getty Images Community groups must be free to advocate for the people they serve. It’s these people who see first-hand if ideas dreamt up in Wellington actually work on the ground. It’s essential that they can speak freely ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill English must reassure community organisations
    The Prime Minister must do more to reassure community organisations after Cabinet Minister Alfred Ngaro's apparent threats to their funding if they criticise government policy which has left a born-to-rule perception amongst many, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “Alfred Ngaro ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Extremism and its discontents
    Another scar on global democracy appeared recently, this time in Germany.It seems that the number of soldiers on duty with extremist political leanings has become a concern to the military leadership in that country. Soldiers were found openly possessing ...
    GreensBy Kennedy Graham
    2 weeks ago
  • Government’s suicide approach disappoints
    Mike King’s sudden departure from the Government’s suicide prevention panel, amid claims the Government’s approach is ‘deeply flawed’, is further evidence National is failing on mental health, says Labour’s Deputy Leader Jacinda Ardern. “Mental health is reaching crisis point in ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National backs speculators, fails first home buyers
    National is showing its true colours and backing speculators who are driving first home buyers out of the market, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “By defending a $150m a year hand-out to property speculators, Bill English is turning his back ...
    2 weeks ago
  • More oversight by Children’s Commissioner needed
    More funding and more independence is required for the Children’s Commissioner to function more effectively in the best interests of Kiwi kids in State care, says Labour’s spokesperson for children Jacinda Ardern. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour to end tax breaks for speculators; invest in warm, healthy homes
    Labour will shut down tax breaks for speculators and use the savings to help make 600,000 homes warmer and healthier over the next ten years, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “It’s time for fresh thinking to tackle the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Health of young people a priority for Labour
    Labour will ensure all young people have access to a range of health care services on-site at their local secondary school, says Labour’s deputy leader Jacinda Ardern. “Our policy will see School Based Health Services extended to all public secondary ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ratifying the TPPA makes no sense
    The recent high-fiving between the government and agricultural exporters over ratification of the TPPA (Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement) is empty gesture politics in an election year. Ratification by New Zealand means nothing. New Zealand law changes are not implemented unless the ...
    GreensBy Barry Coates
    2 weeks ago
  • NIWA report proves National’s trickery re swimmable rivers
    National have a slacker standard for swimmable rivers than was the case prior to their recent so-called Clean Water amendment to the National Policy Statement (NPS), says Labour’s Water spokesperson David Parker. “The table 11 on page 25 of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • MPS shows new approach needed on housing
    The Reserve Bank’s latest Monetary Policy Statement provides further evidence that only a change in government will start to fix the housing crisis, says Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “It is more evident than ever that only a Labour-led government ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Fresh approach on mental health
    Labour will introduce a pilot scheme of specialist mental health teams across the country in government to ensure swifter and more effective treatment for those who need urgent help, says Labour’s Leader Andrew Little. “Mental health is in crisis. It ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Sallies back Labour’s plan for affordable homes
    The country’s most respected social agency has endorsed Labour’s KiwiBuild plan to build homes that families can afford to buy, and delivered a withering assessment of the National Government’s housing record, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Education is for everyone, not just the elite
    Proposals by the National Party to ration access to higher education will once again make it a privilege only available to the elite, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Speaking at the Education Select Committee, Maurice Williamson let the National ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Cancer support changes far too little, certainly late
    Anne Tolley’s belated backtrack to finally allow Jobseeker clients suffering from cancer to submit only one medical certificate to prove their illness fails to adequately provide temporary support for people too sick to work, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Kids must come first in enrolment debate
    The best interests of children should be the major driver of any change to policies around initial school enrolments, not cost cutting or administrative simplicity, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.   “The introduction of school cohort entry is ...
    3 weeks ago