Ms A. Patterson
RMIT - City campus
GPO Box 2476V Vic. 3001
60 Bridge Street
Northcote Vic 3070
22nd May 1998
Dear Ms Patterson,
Project 28/97 The Flight of Ducks - further concerns
Thank you for your email of the 21st May 1998 in which you provide details of further RMIT HRE Committee concerns. I am grateful for the opportunity to be able to reply to these before you meet on the 27th May. I am keen to provide the RMIT HREC with everything it might need to approve the project at this meeting. I hope there are no other matters outstanding.
My replies are as follows:
I would like him to clarify whether he did leave them (tjurunga) out.
There are no tjurunga (or their digital surrogates) accessible in my RMIT research project -`The Flight of Ducks'.
2. Secret/sacred material:
Mr Pockley's value judgement about that (secret/sacred material) is not good enough.
Acknowledged. That is why I sought and took the advice of Australia's most respected, experienced and qualified experts in this area. It was on their advice that tjurunga were defined as being restricted objects.
(What was) The definition or measure of secret or sacred that was used to enable Mr Pockley to assert no secret or restricted ceremonies were witnessed.
Referring to the ATSI protocols :
`a working definition of secret or sacred material must include consultation i.e. an item is secret or sacred if it contains information which is considered to be secret or sacred by the community to which it pertains.'
Consultation continues to be on-going. If notification (that there is secret/sacred material in the work) is received in any tangible form (phone, fax, email, letter, etc.) from any member of an Aboriginal community or their authorised representatives, then this material will be removed from access without dispute or delay.
Definitions now rest with the Aboriginal Communities concerned.
3. Designated Authority:
So far as I am concerned, it should be a prerequisite to approval that a procedure exists for a designated person, such as the webmaster to have requisite authority, whatever server is used.
Designated authority is, and will continue to be, vested in the location webmaster - whatever the location.
I hope these replies assist the Committee to allow me to submit my project for examination.