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New Zealand police using a wiki to draft laws October 2, 2007

Posted by Tim in Malaysia, Science/Tech, World.

For some reason, whenever Malaysia makes international headlines, it’s hardly for flattering reasons – last I checked, the first post on Google News under “Malaysia” is Beyonce cancelling her concert here because she’s too sexy for us.

In contrast, New Zealand recently turned heads for using wikis to gain feedback on the drafting of their new Police Act.

NZ Police Superintendent Hamish McCardle, the officer in charge of developing the new act, said the initiative had already been described as a “new frontier of democracy”.

“People are calling it ‘extreme democracy’ and perhaps it is,” he said.

“It’s a novel move but when it comes to the principles that go into policing, the person on the street has a good idea … as they are a customer,” he said.

“The wonderful thing about a wiki is we can open it up to people all around the world – other academics and constitutional commentators interested in legislation – and make the talent pool much wider,” he said.

This is exactly what a modern democracy should be like. The reference to the people as “customers” is just gold.

How about you? Can you think of any ways you would like to change our laws ? :)



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