.nz bilingual Domain Name System
We live in a country with two official spoken languages. Our country is known by both its English and Māori names. Aotearoa/New Zealand. Our national mountains are known by their bilingual names. “Aoraki/Mt Cook”, Taranaki/Mt Egmont” and the list goes on.
NZ has bilingual sign posts, government departments, schools, early childhood facilities and much more that shows we are a bilingual country.
Anyone can appear in court and speak Māori and speak only Māori to the Police etc. My passport is bilingual.
Our New Zealand Rugby team the All Blacks perform a Haka prior to each game and when anyone says “Kia ora” we all know what it means. Our recent immigrants also know and use the words “Kia ora”.
When ever i am overseas everyone knows where Māori come from and all most always refer to the Haka or say “kia ora”!.
We have a bilingual version of Microsoft Windows and Office, Linux in the creation and Apple have considered bilingual software and Google have a Māori version almost completed. Yet, in a bilingual country such ours, we have a non bilingual Domain Name hierarchy.
We have .iwi.nz which was dreamed up by non Māori and did not adequately serve its community of interest for many years, and we have .maori.nz which we lobbyed, for several years and at great financial ex pence to one individual Ross Himona.
In the very least i would like to see InternetNZ and the DNC offer a bilingual system where the Māori version of a 2LD is forwarded to the English domain. If it attracts the masses then fully integrate the new bilingual name system.
Alas, i do not see any change in the foreseeable future with those dictating our Internet governance in NZ. We will hear arguments that it is racist, it will pollute the DNS and cause confusion, that they are not bound by statute or the treaty to offer such a gesture of a equality.
In the meantime we have Māori schools called Kura Kaupapa Māori utilising .school.nz as opposed to .kura.nz . Even their school buses have “Kura” on the external signs and not “School”.
Kōhanga Reo are utilising .org.nz as opposed to .kohanga . In the early days of Kōhanga they were even denied the right to use .org.nz as they were not an organisation in the eyes of the Internet governance people of the time.
The reality of the above ignorance which i know many call racism (a word i do not use lightly) is that we have Māori in New Zealand who have created an Alternative DNS which will support Māori language and culture on the Internet.
The alternative DNS, i am certain will pollute the .nz DNS and cause wide spread confusion and perhaps tarnish the international reputation of .nz . But this is a classical case of indigenous cyber protest of which no longer are Māori protesting on the streets, they are protesting on the Internet to obtain a birth right.