Don Rowe

Don Rowe (Ngāi Tahu) is a staff writer at The Spinoff. He was the 2015 Canon Media Awards student journalist of the year and the 2017 junior long form feature writer of the year. Email him on don@thespinoff.co.nz

Ātea
Sep 20, 2018

How Hinewehi Mohi made the Māori national anthem mainstream

When Hinewehi Mohi was asked to sing the anthem before New Zealand's 1999 quarter final versus England, she made a choice that would change the pregame ritual for good.

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Media
Jun 21, 2018

Are drug drivers really killing us by the droves?

For the first time drug driving deaths have eclipsed drink drivers. Or have they? Don Rowe looks at the media furore around an AA press release experts argue is unsubstantiated. 

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Business
Jun 13, 2018

Auckland Council wants you to help them buy new trains

Welcome to the Cheat Sheet, a clickable, shareable, bite-sized FAQ on the news of the moment. Today, Auckland Council wants you to help buy trains. What's the deal, and can they be trusted with your money?

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Media
Jun 12, 2018

A yuge and groundbreaking analysis of the Trump-Kim staredown in Singapore

The 'Nectarine Nero' meets Kim Jong-un in Singapore today to pursue the shared goals of peace in Korea and a lovely Nobel prize. Don Rowe breaks down the 30 seconds or so the pair spent with the press ahead of their talks today.

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Sports
Jun 8, 2018

Joseph Parker puts himself back in the title chase

In today's cheat sheet, Joseph Parker is heading back to the UK to rejoin the hunt for the heavyweight title. 

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Business
Jun 7, 2018

It’s a wrap on plastic bags

Welcome to the Cheat Sheet, a clickable, shareable, bite-sized FAQ on the news of the moment. Today, the latest on New Zealand's efforts to fight plastic pollution.

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Society
Jun 5, 2018

A brief history of Big Foot, New Zealand’s most ridiculous RTD

For a brief moment, New Zealand was home to Big Foot, a mythically potent RTD served in a giant bottle and apparently aimed squarely at teens. Don Rowe talks to the brain behind it.

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LIC
May 31, 2018

Semen Valley: the NZ agritech hub which milks the world’s finest bulls

Inside the cutting edge Waikato farm technology hub which makes our pastures greener and impregnates up to 80% of New Zealand’s dairy herd.

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Media
May 27, 2018

The best of The Spinoff this week

Bringing you the best weekly reading from your friendly local website. 

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Society
May 24, 2018

Minister pledges crackdown on offshore casinos that prey on Kiwi gamblers

The government promises to take action on JackpotCity-style operations, while urging the private sector and the public to step up, too. Don Rowe reports

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Society
May 22, 2018

‘Flip the bitch-switch’: self-defence gets real in Rodney

An intensive self-defence and empowerment workshop puts young women in stressful roleplays of power dynamics and attempted assault. Don Rowe visits the Stand Up program at Rodney College. 

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Science
May 17, 2018

Dancing with Atoms: the new documentary honouring the ‘Sir Ed of science’

This weekend marks the release of Dancing With Atoms, veteran filmmaker Shirley Horrock's tribute to physicist Sir Paul Callaghan. Don Rowe talks to Horrocks about his life and legacy.

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Society
May 15, 2018

How an online casino is exploiting a legal loophole to prey on Kiwi gambling addicts

Overseas gambling site JackpotCity is getting around legal restrictions to advertise on NZ television – then using aggressive sales tactics to keep vulnerable gamblers hooked.

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Society
May 10, 2018

Phones, trombones, placentas: the weird world of NZ transport lost property

You don't know what you've got until it's gone, unless that's a human placenta or a full sized cello. We present the most bizarre items left behind on public transport.

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Parents
May 3, 2018

March of the Midwives

Midwives around New Zealand marched today, protesting pay rates and working conditions across the industry. Don Rowe joined the march up Auckland's main street.

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Business
May 2, 2018

Bad Bugs: Ranking the creepy crawlies threatening our economy

Don Rowe takes a deep dive into the disgusting to rank the diseases and bugs currently plaguing our shores, threatening our agriculture and tourism industries.

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Society
Apr 30, 2018

The Spinoff Reviews NZ #62: Freezing your ass off with the Wim Hof Method

We review the entire country and culture of New Zealand, one thing at a time. Today, Don Rowe hops in an ice bath and gets introspective with the Wim Hof method. 

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Registered Master Builders
Apr 29, 2018

‘We’ve been under-building for a decade’: Registered Master Builders on the future of construction

Don Rowe spoke to Master Builders' David Kelly about the state of the New Zealand construction industry, and how the private sector will play an instrumental role in solving the housing crisis.

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Auckland
Apr 26, 2018

Something has to change: politicians pledge $30b to save Auckland commuters

This morning the government and Auckland Council announced a record $30b investment in solving Auckland's transport crisis. Don Rowe reports. 

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Society
Apr 26, 2018

Before I die I want to live: A visit to the dead bodies on display in Auckland’s CBD

There are a handful of dead bodies in the Auckland Hilton and Don Rowe has seen them all. The controversial Body Worlds Vital exhibition is a powerful meditation on mortality and death, he writes. 

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Science
Apr 23, 2018

‘When, not if’: Super-gonorrhoea is on its way to New Zealand

'Super-gonorrhoea' has been reported in Australia, and experts say we're next. How bad could it get?

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Gaming
Apr 21, 2018

God of War is a landmark achievement worthy of the myths that inspire it

An epic tale of Scandinavian myths and the father-son duo that fight them, God of War is a defining AAA game that pushes the boundaries graphically and thematically. Don Rowe reviews.

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Media
Apr 17, 2018

I got Instagram hacked by the fake Ray-Ban ads, and I’m mad as hell

Ads hawking bogus Ray-Ban sunglasses are springing up all over Instagram feeds. But where do they come from and who is to blame?

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Society
Apr 12, 2018

How Vector is turning the lights back on after Auckland’s worst storm in a decade

After hurricane force winds battered Auckland on Tuesday night, lines company Vector awoke to the task of rebuilding its severely damaged network. Minoru Frederiksens talks Don Rowe through the aftermath.

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Sports
Apr 1, 2018

The view from Cardiff: Joseph Parker is all class to the bitter end

Joseph Parker came up short in his bout against heavyweight superstar Anthony Joshua this evening, but in doing so he might have won a bigger victory yet – that of class over crass. Don Rowe reports from Cardiff. 

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Music
Apr 1, 2018

The new Dunedin Sound

Over the past two years a movement of Dunedin bands have played sold out gigs in all the major centres, riding a wave of hype unseen since the glory days of Flying Nun.

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Sports
Mar 31, 2018

‘He is absolutely massive, innit’: Parker and Joshua weigh in at Cardiff Arena

In the final event ahead of Sunday morning's historic heavyweight title fight, Joseph Parker and Anthony Joshua weighed in infront of 4000 drunken fans. Don Rowe reports from Cardiff. 

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