back to article NZ unfurls proposed new flag

The days of New Zealand's flag bearing the Union Jack may be numbered after citizens voted in favour of a new design featuring the silver fern. The remodelled "black, white and blue" banner, by architect Kyle Lockwood, narrowly topped a poll offering five alternatives, according to the New Zealand Herald. The preliminary …

Anonymous Coward

What's the difference between a duck?

A change sounds like a good idea, if only to help people outside of New Zealand and Australia to recognise the difference between their two flags.

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Trollface

Typical

I'd only just got the hang of the differences between the Australian and New Zealand flags, following the recent rugby world cup. Now if they go and change it I'll no longer be able to show off my superior knowledge to my fellow northern hemisphereans.

(No need for a new Welsh flag. All English rugby fans know what that looks like, right?)

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TRT
Silver badge

Re: Typical

It's the one with the smug grinning beast on it. I could swear they suddenly got smugger.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Typical

Wife's cousin's husband is Welsh. He was a smug beggar before their team's recent rugby performance.

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Joke

Easy

The Home Nations flags are easy: you just have to think of the Union Flag. The red axis-aligned cross and its white border is from England; the blue background and diagonal white cross is from Scotland; the diagonal red cross is from Ireland; and the pole is from Wales.

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Silver badge

Re: Typical

No need for a new Welsh flag. All English rugby fans know what that looks like, right?

Well, any driver in Wales will conclude that this is the Welsh national flag.

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Windows

Re: Easy

I thought Poles were from Poland actually......

/ducks and runs

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Re: Typical

+1 for the word 'hemisphereans'

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Trollface

Re: Typical

Bah, humbug! "Earthicans" sounds just fine...

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Silver badge

No Welsh in the Union Jack / Flag

If we superimposed that Welsh dragon on the flag would at least stop idiots hanging / flying it upside down.

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Silver badge

Re: Easy - I thought Poles were from Poland actually.

This is not a joke, but isn't Polish now the second commonest first language in Wales?

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Silver badge

Re: No Welsh in the Union Jack / Flag

Don't be so sure of that. During one World Series game between Toronto and Atlanta, a US color guard marched out with the maple leaf upside down.

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Roll out any version of Fern

I think the Black Fern versions look great, with or without the Southern Cross, although it will be a nightmare for graphics people and manufacturers of flags.

I know there was kerfuffle over 'don't lose the old flag and the Union Jack, under which our troops served, this makes a mockery of our veterans' etc etc. Canada changed its flag in the 1960s and I don't think Canadian veterans had collective heart attacks.

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Silver badge

Re: Roll out any version of Fern

Yes, but the Maple Leaf was cleverly pushed through on an off day in Parliament by a very presumptuous Liberal government. We'll never know what a democratic process would have brought us. In any case the solution with the veterans et al actually was quite interesting. They adopted the Union Flag a month earlier as also being an official flag. Even though the Maple Leaf is the only national flag, Canada now does have two official flags.

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Re: Roll out any version of Fern

Yes, the two flags things was a nice fudge, wasn't it? A democratic process would have been a tricky one then -- we were still a bit 'colonial' and there would have been years of backing and forthing -- but perhaps we would have followed NZ's style now: a shortlist, a public vote, and then done-and-dusted.

I certainly like the Canadian national flag. Simple, clear, and also instantly identifiable. There are a few flags around the world that are like that: UK's, USA's, China's, a couple of others, and the rest are merely coloured bars. I hope to see the Black Fern adding itself to the cool countries' flags.

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Re: Roll out any version of Fern

"I think the Black Fern versions look great, with or without the Southern Cross"

Sounds like a good reason for another episode of "Fun With Flags"...

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Re: Roll out any version of Fern

"I hope to see the Black Fern adding itself to the cool countries' flags"

Does that include Mozambique? (Includes an AK47, as mentioned in "Lord of War")

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_of_Mozambique

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Roll out any version of Fern

I didn't know that background, but the maple leaf flag is now one of the most iconic brands in the world, so it's a good job they did.

Sometimes all this public participation is just an excuse for junkets and inability or unwillingness to make a decision. Just pick one of these (designed by an actual professional, not the PM's unemployed graphic artist cousin) and move on.

Notice how it's all the unimportant decisions that are mired in "public process" and drag on for years. There was never a voting process for invading Iraq was there?

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Childcatcher

Re: Roll out any version of Fern

Canada now does have two official flags.

At least the Canadians didn't go the route that Oregonians chose to follow: one flag with two sides*. Canadians may have the maple leaf, but Oregonians got the beaver.

* Yes, Paraguay has a two-sided flag, too, but it is completely devoid of beaver.

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Re: Roll out any version of Fern

Actually, the flag of the USA is rather similar to that of Liberia, IIRC.

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Anonymous Coward

Quite nice

I like the flags.

We will, however, have to send an armada of The Queen's warships to bring them back into line should they go ahead with it.

If we have any, that is.

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Re: Quite nice

We've still got the HMS Victory in drydock. She could probably be made seaworthy again without too much fuss.

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Re: Quite nice

Re the armada: could I cadge a lift please? I'd love to emigrate to NZ, amazing place.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Quite nice - cadge a lift

Might be a shortage of space I'm afraid, if all we have available is HMS Victory.

Perhaps if the Mary Rose can be repaired ...

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Re: Quite nice - cadge a lift

HMS Trincomalee, ready for service and I don't think HMS Warrior would take too much before she was ready.

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Re: Quite nice - cadge a lift

I don't see a problem. I seem to recall that we did a fairly good job of populating the West Island using only sea transport...

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Anonymous Coward

@Hellcat - Re: Quite nice - cadge a lift

Good, so that's three at least we can scrape up.

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Re: Quite nice - cadge a lift

I'm sure a quick refit would see HMS Belfast good to go, as well.

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Silver badge

Re: Quite nice

Not yet.

That was just the referendum for the alternative design. That is still _NOT_ the referendum for the actual replacement. That is the next vote (if El Graunidad is to be believed).

The fern ones are really cool though :)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Quite nice - cadge a lift

MTB102? Room for a couple on board.

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Unhappy

@Graham Dawson: Re: Quite nice

Alas the Victory is currently in rather a sorry state :-( (A young lady of my acquaintance is one of the Tour Guides at the Dockyard)

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MrT

Re: Quite nice - cadge a lift

Hang on - does that mean that all mothballed battleships are not kept fully armed and fuelled up, staffed by elderly ex-sailors, ready to go at a moment's notice? I feel somewhat misled by a documentary film reel I recently saw, presented by notable historians such as Dr 'Weps' Rhianna and someone called Sam...

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Re: Quite nice - cadge a lift

Can we send the SAS in first to put netting over major harbours so they don't throw our tea in? That was a bit traumatic last time.

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Re: Quite nice - cadge a lift

To be fair, from what I recall, that ship only had a few shells on board, and I believe they were magic ones anyway that could be fired without need of any propellant...

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Silver badge
Facepalm

Research

The Union Jack is what the Union Flag is called on a ship. If it's on land, it's called a Union Flag.

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Headmaster

Re: Research

Yes, research indeed.

While the full etymology of term "Union Jack" remains unknown, one possibility is from the small "jack" flag flown from the bowsprit of a ship, jack being an old term for "small".

A full size Union flag flown elsewhere on the ship would still be called a Union Flag, and there's nothing stopping a small flag (or Jack) being flown on land.

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Re: Research

http://www.flaginstitute.org/wp/british-flags/the-union-jack-or-the-union-flag/

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Silver badge

Re: Research

I think you will find that jacks fly from jackstays which are the ropes running up a mast, normally for the inner end of a yard or for the edge of a sail. Also used for raising flags for signalling or for 'jacks' to indicate status (OK that's a sub-set of signalling by how pedantic do I need to be here?).

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Re: Research

Yes, but it's not common or popular usage. I mean, do you really go around saying 'internet' when 'intertubes' is the common or popular commentard usage?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Research

jack being an old term for "small". So, how should we interpret jack off?

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Re: Research

Off can mean deactivated, functionally an equivalent of death. La petite mort?

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Re: Research

The irony of a commentard called wolfetone commenting on the UK flag...

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Re: Research

Such use was given Parliamentary approval in 1908 when it was stated that “the Union Jack should be regarded as the National flag”.

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Thumb Up

Yes please

Australia: you're next.

It's time we grew up some.

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Re: Yes please

Next can we do something about all those near-indistinguishable European flags that are variations on red, white and blue stripes (or black/blue, yellow and red ones; or green, white and orange/red ones).

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Thumb Down

Re: Yes please

Honouring your origins is not childish.

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Re: Yes please

"It's time we grew up some"

You want a bigger flag?

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Silver badge

Re: Yes please

Next can we do something about all those near-indistinguishable European flags

Ahh, but what happens when the Scots decide to secede and form the Scottish Soviet People's Democratic Republic?

The union flag would have to drop the saltire. Nobody really recognises the cross of St David anyway, but if we can get the Scots to shove off, then it'll make sense rebuilding Offa's dyke and giving the Welsh the perpetual single party state they want (and we in England will be better off because we won't be paying for these two public sector theme parks).

Then when thinking about boring European flags, is the cross of St George sufficiently distinguished on its own?

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Re: Yes please

Cross of St. David ?? Looks like you need educating on your own flag matey. It's the Cross of St. Patrick .. it's Irish. There is no Welsh component on the Union Flag.

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Joke

Re: Yes please

Ahh, but what happens when the Scots decide to secede and form the Scottish Soviet People's Democratic Republic?

Come that day, they won't be able to afford a flag!

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