London Kids Examine Media Literacy

Date: 31 October 2017

Country: UK, London

Media_Minded_1In order to learn more how to counter sensationalism, bias and misinformation in the media and on social networks, pupils from 7 high schools from London attended an event organised by Shout Out UK and the US Embassy – #MediaMinded.  The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) representative conducted one of the workshops dedicated to media literacy.  The aim of the event was to increase participants’ understanding of the importance of seeking information from a range of  reputable sources, particularly on complex issues, when forming political views.

GCSE and A-level students discussed headlines, articles, images and how trustworthy are the media. They were asked to identify bias in news sources and differentiate fact-based news from fabricated news and disinformation campaigns. A broad range of topics were covered, including GMOs, North Korea, Russia and the effects AI and automation might have upon our future lives.

Media_Minded_2The US Embassy in London’s Public Affairs Officer, Courtney Austrian, said: “In a world with so many competing narratives and increasing information overload, it’s important to champion intelligent consumption of information.”

Matteo Bergamini, Managing Director of Shout Out UK emphasised the role of the internet. “The internet has opened up so many possibilities and places to get information. It can often be overwhelming and create mistrust as we don’t know where to get our information from and what to believe. Workshops like this help young people analyse the media critically and explore what makes good journalism, ensuring they don’t box themselves in with mis-information. Breaking down the media, what it is and what it does, is a life skill everyone should have,” said Bergamini.

#MediaMinded event in the US Embassy emphasised the importance of youth being critically engaged with the world around them and vocal about what matters to them.

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