The Warehouse apologises for Māori place name spelling errors

Source: 1News

The Warehouse has issued an apology after it sold a poster of a map of Aotearoa which featured multiple Māori place names spelt incorrectly.

Mistakes on the map included Rotorua spelt Roturua, Paraparaumu as Paraparaumo and Wairoa as Weiroa.

A spokesperson for the company said packaging and products which include te reo Māori were normally translated or reviewed by an "accreditated translator", however due to teams working remotely this product hadn’t been identified

"We apologise to our customers for the incorrect spelling of place names in Aotearoa used in this map.

"We’re working hard to make sure that we respect and honour te reo Māori right across our business, including in packaging and labelling across our product ranges.

"This map was not identified correctly during our process – our teams have been working remotely and unfortunately this mistake occurred."

Since the company was made aware of the mistake and removed it from sale, it says it's been developing a training module for its merchandise and sourcing teams on what must be checked and why, from te reo Māori and tikanga perspectives.

The posters had been on sale for approximately two months.

A spokesperson for Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori, the Māori Language Commission, has welcomed the company’s acknowledgement of its mistakes.

The Commission is also encouraging any company or agency using te reo Māori to ensure there are quality checks involved.

"Just as companies and agencies will quality check the English language they use publicly, a quality check for the Māori language they use publicly is also necessary. Errors happen when quality checks aren’t followed or don’t exist.

“We welcome The Warehouse acknowledging the need for better processes and training.”

The Warehouse is offering a full refund to any customer who would like to return their map.