The Chief Archivist
Archives New Zealand Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga
10 Mulgrave Street
Tuesday, 22nd November 2022
Tēnā koe, Anahera,
I have been asked to write on behalf of the many members of ARANZ, as well as
users of your service in general, concerning the ongoing issues with the collection
search programme, and in particular its outages.
We are aware that there is a feeling of frustration and disappointment that a system,
once so useful and reliable, has over the past months changed and become
unstable. Our organisation, which includes members of your staff, does not seek to
blame or berate neither the staff nor the situation that Archives New Zealand is
currently in. We understand that your staff share the same feelings and do not
deserve to be the focus of annoyance for the lack of service.
While acknowledging our concern, we offer our support to your staff and ask you to
consider how we may assist as a community of users and professional colleagues.
Certainly, we can publicise any media release that you may prepare, so as wide as
possible an audience can be made aware of issues and when or how they are to be
rectified. ARANZ is part of a wide network of librarians, researchers, historians, and
allied professionals that can disseminate information far and wide. Knowledge of
issues and being kept up to date as to how they may be rectified, with attached
timelines, could assist with lessening the negative feelings of individuals who expect
the system to be operational at all times.
We also suggest that Archives New Zealand consider releasing a statement that the
system will be out of action for a length of time, however long, rather than a vague
‘sometime’. We feel that such a statement, made in the near future, would be
beneficial, especially for users who may be considering undertaking research during
the extended holiday period.
We applaud the assistance offered on your website regarding urgent inquiries.
However, we suggest that this needs to be more obvious (eg. larger font) within the
website, as presently it appears only for those who wish to use the Maori Land Court
As I stated before, these are only suggestions, and we look forward to assisting you
in any way during this difficult time for everyone.
Nāku iti noa, nā,