Internet Party (New Zealand)
|Party Leader||Suzie Dawson|
|Party Secretary||Fred Look|
Internet freedom[disambiguation needed]
|MPs in the House of Representatives||
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The Internet Party, a political party in New Zealand, promotes Internet freedom and privacy. Founded in January 2014 with the support of Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom, the party contested the 2014 New Zealand elections as part of an electoral alliance with the Mana Movement but failed to win any seats in the House of Representatives of New Zealand.
Dotcom had founded the file-sharing website Megaupload in 2005. It was shut down in January 2012 by the US government and Dotcom was arrested by the New Zealand Police. In September 2013, Dotcom revealed an interest in setting up a political party. On 15 January 2014, Dotcom announced the name of the party and its logo. He intended to hold a launch party on 20 January, two years after the raid on his house and the day before his 40th birthday. He distributed 25,000 tickets but was forced to cancel for fear of breaching electoral law.
The Internet Party became a registered political party on 13 May 2014 having started to sign up members on 27 March 2014, the first to do so in New Zealand through the use of a phone app. Dotcom provided funding (NZ$3.5 million) to the party which was the largest personal contribution to a political party on record in New Zealand.
With the lead up to the 2014 election the party ran an idol-styled candidate search and appointed a leader, the former Alliance MP and Minister, Laila Harre. This appointment cemented an electoral alliance with the Mana Movement, a joint Internet Party and Mana Movement then contested the 2014 general election with the Internet Party supplying 15 candidates. Dotcom, who could not stand as a candidate himself still lent his celebrity pulling power and attended events across New Zealand throughout the campaign.
The Mana Movement who held a seat with its leader Hone Harawira were confident that they would win this seat again and return additional MPs to the House of Representatives of New Zealand. However, on election night the seat was lost and both parties failed to have any representation under the New Zealand proportional system winning only 1.42 per cent of the vote, far less than the five per cent threshold required. Dotcom said to reporters on election night that "I take full responsibility for this loss tonight, because the brand—the brand Kim Dotcom—was poison for what we were trying to achieve." Both parties have since gone their separate ways.
After the election
After the election, the party leader, Laila Harre, resigned and the party told its members that it is concentrating on efforts to build its internal structures to support its grass roots movement. In December 2016, Kim Dotcom posted a poll on Twitter asking if his followers wanted the Internet Party to stand in the 2017 election. The party remained leaderless until 16 June 2017, when the Internet Party appointed Suzie Dawson as the party's new leader for the 2017 election.
The party uses a consultative process to form policies with its membership using online platforms with policy writers following the forum in the background. They are available as a policy summary, or in full on Google docs.
- Provide unlimited high-speed internet to all New Zealanders, 50% cheaper than current prices
- Build another submarine communications cable connecting New Zealand to the world
- Create new high-tech jobs
- Restrict government surveillance
- Review the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement
- Copyright reform
- Encourage clean energy and green technology
- Reduce social inequality
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2 August 2015. Retrieved 5 August 2015.
- "Kim Dotcom to enter politics?". Fairfax New Zealand. 1 September 2013. Archived from the original on 1 September 2013.
- Patrice Dougan (15 January 2014). "Kim Dotcom reveals name of new political party". New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 15 January 2014.
- "Kim Dotcom unveils the Internet Party". 3 News. 15 January 2014. Retrieved 15 January 2014.
- Milne, Jonathan (23 March 2014). "Politicians of all stripes welcome at Kim's place". NZ Herald. Retrieved 23 March 2014.
- Davison, Isaac (16 January 2014). "Kim Dotcom cans Auckland party". NZ Herald. Retrieved 23 March 2014.
- "Registration of Internet Party and Logo". New Zealand Electoral Commission. 2014-05-13. Retrieved 2014-05-13.
- Bennett, Adam (27 March 2014). "Kim Dotcom launches Internet Party". NZ Herald. Retrieved 27 March 2014.
- Bennett, Adam (24 March 2014). "Dotcom's Internet Party app approved". NZ Herald. Retrieved 24 March 2014.
- Online Renegade, Wanted in U.S., Shakes Up New Zealand Election, The New York Times, 18 September 2014
- New Zealand's Ruling National Party Is Re-elected, The New York Times, 20 September 2014
- "Harré has officially resigned from the Internet Party". Your NZ. 2014-12-15. Retrieved 2017-04-02.
- Executive Committee By-election called, Internet Party, 1 February 2015
- "Kim Dotcom hints at return of the Internet Party". Radio NZ. Retrieved 5 January 2017.
- [http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11877476 New Zealand Herald, "Kim Dotcom's Internet Party names exiled citizen journalist Suzie Dawson as leader" 17 Jun, 2017 5:00am ]
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 13 January 2015. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
- "Internet Party Action Agenda". Internet Party. Retrieved 27 March 2014.