Cameron Slater

An outing at the High Court

Yesterday I spent the morning at the High Court.

I was all set to argue the point about my media status and all of a sudden things got a little strange.

Not to worry a new date has been set and the Judge is seeking counsel to assist. I am ok with the proceedings as they were today.

A Queen’s counsel will be asked to weigh in on Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s appeal over whether he is part of the media.

Slater’s appeal was adjourned today in the High Court in Auckland with Justice Raynor Asher saying the issue was “quite important”. It would require an interpretation of an aspect of Section 68 of the Evidence Act for the first time.

Slater and businessman Matthew Blomfield are representing themselves.

The judge said he wanted a defamation expert appointed as amicus curiae – an adviser to the court – to research the law and give him an impartial view before he made his decision.  Read more »

Southland Times editorial on Press Council changes

The Southland Times editorial is very good on the changes the Press Council is making to include bloggers.

Sometimes the news media need to grab their ankles for a health check.

This being the case, it’s a welcome development that bloggers and other digital media are being offered to partake in the process, by means of membership of the Press Council.

It’s a body that weighs up complaints against principles including accuracy, fairness, balance, privacy, confidentiality, discrimination, the use of subterfuge, the distinction of comment and fact, and conflicts of interest.

Inviting independent digital media to succumb to such extra scrutiny not only brings more accountability but, equally, credibility.

It doesn’t do any news or current affairs media any harm to be found out when they have seriously erred, nor to have their judgments independently endorsed, as occasionally happens too.

Nowhere is it written that those running their own websites must now form an orderly queue and join up. But the absence of a self-regulatory body has become an issue for those bloggers and sites that have become heavy hitters. And those who aspire to be. So they should be willing to join up.

[This is provided the yet-to-be-confirmed costs aren't disproportionately high compared with their income and that they are fairly represented on the complaints panel.]  Read more »

What is the relationship between Hone Harawira and Kim Dotcom?

David Rankin has issued a press release:

Mana Party leader Hone Harawira has been involved in negotiations with internet tycoon Kim Dotcom over funding for the Mana Party, and a possible role of Kim Dotcom in the Party.

This is according to Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin, who says he is frustrated after having repeatedly asked Harawira for the past week if there is any truth to the allegation.

“Everyone knows about the meetings.  Even Whale oil’s Cameron Slater has been informed and wants to break the story,” says Mr Rankin, “and my nephew Hone has suddenly gone quiet whenever I mention Kim Dotcom.”

Mr Rankin says that unless Harawira explicitly denies the allegation that he sought funding from Dotcom then the Mana Party is in trouble. “Mana will face a major credibility crisis,” says Rankin, “and the longer he keeps silence, the more suspicion grows.”

What David Rankin says is true.

My sources deep within the mansion have been telling me for weeks about an “arrangement” between Hone Harawira and his Mana party and the nascent and unlaunched Internet Party. There have been meetings held around the boardroom table at the mansion and serious discussions amongst those associated with Dotcom, some even suggesting this is wrong, only to be hectored and shouted at by Dotcom.

I also know that Mana party advisors and confidantes have been meeting extensively as recently as two weeks ago to discuss these details with some privately sharing with WOBH that they are concerned about the future of the party should this deal go ahead.

Their strategy from what the sources have told me is cunning, though I’m not sure voters will appreciate the subterfuge necessary for this scheme to work.

There is provision in the Electoral Act for component partiesRead more »

AMA: Whaleoil

Someone mentioned that I’m happy to be interviewed for newspaper, TV and other blogs, but I don’t actually make myself available to my readers.  Did I not think that odd?

I guess I just assumed you already know what you want to know.

But perhaps not?

So, in this AMA (Ask Me Anything) will go in two steps:

- Leave your questions in the comments of this post.  Perhaps indicate if you like a question by voting for it.

- I will select 10-20 of the most popular questions, including a couple of wacky ones, and answer them in a subsequent post.

I would suggest you don’t ask questions to which the answers are already well established in the public domain.  If you have those sorts of questions, perhaps other commenters can answer them in the comments.

Have fun – I hope you come up with some good one.


Sheesh, it’s not like I’m laundering donations for politicians

I see the media are on a witch-hunt to find out who talks to me or sends me information.

Cabinet Minister Paula Bennett is denying she’s passed information to political bloggers, but won’t release communication records from her office.

Newstalk ZB sought the records after the Prime Minister admitted last month he’d had contact with bloggers including, Whaleoil’s Cameron Slater.

Social Development Minister Paula Bennett is adamant she’s not passed on any information.

However she’s turned down an Official Information Act request covering such communications not because the information doesn’t exist, but because checking the records would involve too much work.

Ms Bennett says she hasn’t passed on any information, but isn’t making the same assurance about her staff.

“Well I’m confident that I haven’t but I’m not sure what every staff member does every day.

“It’s just so irrelevant to be honest.”  Read more »

I’m going to show you something that is RARELY seen in the wild

A genuinely happy Cameron Slater

via Netguide Facebook Page

via Netguide Facebook Page

Nice try Jono, but you got some things dreadfully wrong [UPDATED]

On Tuesday I spent a good portion of the afternoon with Jono Milne, so he could write an article about bloggers.

He had his recorder going the whole time so I am a little perplexed at this little manufactured bit near the end about a so-called Joyce/Collins battle.

National Party campaign chairman Steven Joyce says only that all politicians “talk to their own support base” to motivate them and get them helping out – but even Joyce, the Prime Minister’s right-hand man, rejects much of what is published on Whale Oil.

For instance, Slater has been backing Judith Collins over Joyce in the battle to succeed Key as leader – but, claims Joyce, there is no battle. “There’s an example of where he’s wrong. That’s a figment of Cameron’s fertile imagination.”

Joyce argues that just as the partisan bloggers laid down a challenge to the old model of news, they are now both being challenged by social media.

I never said there was a battle, and I never have. In fact while Jono was enjoying the glass of iced water at my house I specifically said to him that there was no battle, that it was a media invention. He should check the recording.

I also said that if there was a battle then I’d know about it because I’d be right in the middle carving it up, spreading the blood and guts around. I love a good donnybrook and unfortunately there are few to be had right now. There are certainly no leadership spats going on except in the minds of ill-informed, mischievous journalists.

So it appears that Jono Milne has made shit up with that little bit. Jono should check his recording. It is not my fertile imagination at question here, rather it is the media, and in this case Jono Milne’s.  Read more »

Let’s play Whaleoil Bingo

Let’s play Whaleoil Bingo…Annette King and Chris Hipkins were playing today.

Annette King went after me in parliament today, too gutless to speak to me in private, the land lady went troppo…even mentioning SOCKs and Silly First Name Syndrome (starts at 6:01)

I wonder what the police interviews with her say? We will find out soon enough.

Read more »

Bryce Edwards summary on Dotcom and his corruption of NZ politics

Bryce Edwards summarises just how bad it has become for kim Dotcom, the Green party, Russel Norman, Winston Peters and all the Labour MPs who have trotted out to sit on Kim Dotcom’s lap.

Political chickens are coming home to roost. Having Kim Dotcom on speed dial is now a political liability and career ending.

Allegations of ‘corruption’ and ‘dirty deals’ are being thrown around over the relationship between some of our political party leaders and wealthy internet businessman and wannabe politician Kim Dotcom. It all relates to the fact that various politicians have been courting Dotcom’s favour, while at the same time discussing whether they would intervene to help prevent Dotcom being extradited to the United States by fighting in government to overturn any judicial decision. According to some commentators there is, at the very least, an issue with the perception of inappropriate and opaque electoral deals being made.

The strongest condemnation of the potential links between party policy and support for Dotcom have come from rightwing blogger David Farrar, who claims that some politicians are ‘saying they will over-turn the courts in his favour at the same time as they meet him to discuss political strategy. That is pretty close to corruption’ – see: Would Labour and Greens over-rule the court for Kim Dotcom?

Farrar explains the problem, as he sees it: ‘Russel Norman has been out twice to meet Dotcom, and ask him to support the Greens instead of setting up his own political party. And in return he is offering that a Labour/Greens Government would basically corruptly over-turn the decision of the court in Dotcom’s favour. Cunliffe is not ruling out that he would also over-turn any court decision. We also learn Winston Peters has been out to meet DotCom multiple times’. Farrar warns that ‘We head towards corruption if people can buy themselves a different decision’.  Read more »

Waikato Times Editorial on Corruption

While convicted blackmailer, fraudster and serial litigant Graham McCready continues to cut a swathe through our judicial processes it should be noted that more and more politicians are breaking the law, especially electoral law.

While I cannot condone McCready’s use of the court for his own style of bullying there are many other who do the same thing, pretending to be litigants in person but costing their victims thousands.

With the failure of the Police though to action complaints against politicians it is time for something more robust that private prosecutions. In Australia we are witnessing what happens when regulators like the Independent Commission Against Corruption actually do what out Police have singularly failed to do you have to wonder why we don’t have such a body too.

The Waikato Times thinks the same.

Some legal experts have explained their doubts that Mr McCready will succeed in getting a private prosecution against Mr Brown. They say he will need witnesses to allege a link between the free hotel rooms at Sky and his support for SkyCity’s conference centre bid. Without that, there is no proof.  Read more »