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News stats: Tracking Labour's housing policy announcement

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Matt Harman
Matt Harman

The team at Fuseworks spend a lot their time pouring over New Zealand political news. Of the thousands of news stories that stream into Fuseworks each day, between 10% and 20% are politics related.

When it comes to the political topics that people are most passionate about - health, education, crime and the economy - we’ve found that any news or announcement is immediately contextualised with a flood of different perspectives from our politicians and lobby groups seeking to amplify, dismiss or angle the story to their advantage.

Journalists then have the difficult job of filtering through the myriad of perspectives presented and selecting the most interesting, the most worthy and the most credible for presentation to their readers, viewers and listeners.

It’s a scenario that we watch play out in real-time each day - and it’s one that we thought would be interesting to gather some stats on.

We wanted to see: who are the MPs that are most successful at getting their views into the media? - and how the narrative around a story can change as different perspectives make their way onto our websites, newspapers and airwaves.

We used Fuseworks to examine the news stories that resulted from the Labour Party policy announcement in late July, which proposes placing restrictions on the sale of property to non-residents.

Any policy announcement tends to follow a similar pattern - we picked this one simply because it happened recently and it sparked a reasonable amount of debate.

Labour made its policy announcement on the 28th of July. We looked at the coverage between the 29th of July and the 15th of August.


The non-resident buyers policy followed a fairly typical pattern - as soon as it was released there was a flood of information and opinions released to the media - some in support of the policy, but mostly not.

This isn’t a Labour Party specific problem - we’ve found the same pattern with virtually any announcement made by any political party.

Head over to the Fuseworks blog to see the full sentiment tracking post including analysis of the MPs mentioned and the policy reponses that gained the most traction in the media.

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