Media literacy

Government releases online media literacy strategy to tackle online disinformation – Media, Telecoms, IT, Entertainment

UK: Government releases online media literacy strategy to tackle online disinformation

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The government released the new strategy as part of its fight against the spread of disinformation and disinformation. The idea is to give people the skills to think critically about what they see and read online and to help children navigate the internet safely.

The government says that, according to Ofcom, 40% of adult internet users lack the skills to critically assess online content. Children up to the age of 15 are particularly vulnerable, with studies from the National Literacy Trust revealing that only 2% of children have the critical thinking skills necessary to distinguish fact from fiction online.

There has been an increase in misinformation and misinformation on social media and other online platforms during the pandemic, and the promotion of bogus COVID-19 treatments and lies about 5G has led to cell phone vandalism in a number of places.

The strategy includes an action plan of £ 340,000 to be spent in the first year (2021/22), with a focus on vulnerable internet users. This is the inaugural plan with progress updates to be released each year.

A new “Train the Trainer” program will provide government training for caregivers of disabled children and teachers. They will learn how to teach others to understand how the online environment works, including how online news articles and social media posts are generated and paid for, and how to critically analyze the content they consume.

The action plan also announces funding for the National Youth Agency to develop a module on media education, giving youth workers the opportunity to intervene quickly to prevent harm online.

The strategy will also provide a training program for frontline library workers who interact with members of the public on a daily basis to teach them information literacy.

The strategy will also explore working with social media influencers to promote key online media literacy skills and critical thinking, reaching out to groups that might otherwise be hard to reach.

An online media literacy working group will be established, comprised of technology platforms, civil society and academia, bringing together key stakeholders to take collective action to remove barriers to improving media education of people. An online portal will also provide a “one-stop-shop” for users to access resources on media literacy and online safety, and to help them acquire the key skills and knowledge to detect disinformation and make decisions. safe online. To read the full government press release and for a link to the new strategy, click here.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide on the subject. Specialist advice should be sought regarding your particular situation.

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