The UN estimates that an indigenous language dies every two weeks. When speakers of minority languages cannot fully engage with technology, this further marginalises their language and reduces their ability to fully participate in society.
Te Hiku Media is committed to the revitalisation of tikanga and te reo Māori, and developed a Kaitiakitanga licence to express guardianship rather than ownership of the content and data of the 21 iwi radio stations in their network.
They wanted to establish an online repository to serve the communities and individuals who want to access Māori content and strengthen their connection to their language and their iwi, as well as serving the iwi stations and give them rights to their own sovereignty.
Whare Kōrero is an app that acts as a hub for iwi media. All users who have an interest in Māori media, ranging in location, fluency and age can listen to any of the 21 iwi radio channels around the motu, and watch all the latest kapa haka performances from the regions.
Only anonymous aggregated data is collected to ensure that iwi stations get the metrics they need to ensure they are meeting the requirements of funders and the demand of Māori audiences, but other than that, the privacy of Māori audiences is protected.
The app’s live streaming capability also broadens the accessibility and reach of iwi content creators to share high rating community events such as kapa haka and tangi - without being cut off by global big tech entities.
Whare Kōrero is the first indigenous media app of its kind, and since launch in May 2021 has had thousands of downloads and waves of positive feedback.
The iwi radio network produces the most indigenous language content in the world and everyone can now access all of it in one place, in one whare, for the protection and revitalisation of tikanga and te reo Māori.