Society

Make Me Tick: Voting – why even bother?

In the lead up to the election, comedians Melanie Bracewell and Angella Dravid take a journey through the voting process in Make Me Tick, The Spinoff’s four part video series with the Electoral Commission. Today, Melanie discovers the value of one vote. 

Whenever I talk about voting with my friends, they often say they can’t be bothered. I mean, it’s only one of the biggest decisions this country faces every three years. There’s even a hashtag, ‘#decision17’. That’s how you know it’s important! Though that’s slightly undermined by the stupid joke I’m doing at the moment where I say “#decision17” after every trivial decision I make. Should I drive or walk to work today? Hashtag Decision Seventeen.

I’ll admit, at the time of recording these videos, I hadn’t updated my enrolment despite changing address since the last election. I was out there running around trying to encourage people to vote and wasn’t even fully ready myself.

I’m an extremely lazy person. If you don’t believe me, see this letter my mum left me in the kitchen in 2014.

Mel’s mum is really chill

Case in point: I kept putting it off, because I figured it was just another errand. I knew I would eventually do it, I just wasn’t sure when. Then, in the middle of a game of Candy Crush (not trying to brag but I’m on level 376), I realised now was probably the time. I quite literally just googled the word ‘enrol’, and it was the first result. I printed out a sheet in terror, thinking I’d have to go all the way to the Post Shop and send it, until I realised you could just scan it and email it back. It was the lazy person’s dream!

In the early stages of development of these videos, Angella and I had a heart to heart chat about why people our age don’t get out there and vote. We went through all the reasons we’ve heard. Despite what some people might think, it’s not all about being lazy. It’s about feeling like your vote means something. It’s easy to think one vote doesn’t matter, but it’s not true. It does matter. This country’s future can’t be decided by a certain group of people who care – we need to all care.

We had a chat with Fatumata Bah for this video and she was extremely informative about how voting works in other parts of the world. We’re actually very lucky to have a choice in this country. Don’t know who to vote for? Having a look at online resources including Vote Compass, On The Fence and The Spinoff’s very own Policy, they can help a tonne.

Phew! Now there’s just one more episode left of our series. All this writing has made me hungry. What should I have? Hashtag Decision Seventeen.

Watch the previous episodes of Make Me Tick here and here.


The Make Me Tick series is brought to you by the Electoral Commission in collaboration with The Spinoff. Head here now to make sure you’re enrolled and ready to vote on September 23rd, and for any other questions you need answered.

The Spinoff Longform Fund is dedicated to facilitating investigative journalism. Our focus is on supporting in-depth reporting on important New Zealand stories. Your donation will help us sustain this most resource-intensive form of journalism, ensuring that the most complex and important stories still get told.