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Trolls Launch Initiative to Ruin the Campaign for New Zealand’s New Flag

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Of all the sentences I’ve ever had to type, the above is easily one of the weirdest. Nowadays any kind of large scale online initiative, regardless of intent, is going to have to whether some sort of troll attack. Some are warranted, some are vulgar and many are trite and forgettable, but every now and again one comes along that you just can’t ignore. This is one of those.

New Zealand have decided that their flag needs a new design, something to steer them away from the colonial, commonwealth persona they share with Australia. A wise decision, I’d say. What might not have been so wise was to turn to crowdsourcing to find the new design. I’m sure that by the time the votes need to be cast in December a plethora of worthy entries will have surfaced but for the time being the contest is being dominated by a legion of trolls, all armed with MS paint.

The result of this is an utterly bizarre gallery of deliberately hopeless entries that look like they were designed by children that were raised on a diet of 4chan and 9gag (which I guess isn’t far from what it’s like at the moment). Some kiwi cultural paradigms remain in place (like, well like kiwis, for instance), intermingled with internet meme references young and old, from Nyan cat to Pepe. Those are just the more creative ones though, most of them are just wilfully crap.


The entry window closes on July 16th and there have already been plenty of legitimately well thought out designs submitted, so it’s unlikely to turn into any kind of national PR disaster. The Maori community also already have their own flag, separate to the standard national one, so there’s no risk of any insult to their culture. If you ask me, they should just use the All Blacks logo, or maybe the flag of Gondor. Got to play to your strengths. 

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Callum Davies

Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. Follow him @CallumAtSMF

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Trolls Launch Initiative to Ruin the Campaign for New Zealand’s New Flag Reviewed by Callum Davies on Friday, May 22, 2015 Rating: 5

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