Media literacy

Most Latvian teenagers do not receive media education at school / Article

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1,000 children and adolescents aged 11 to 17 were interviewed in Latvia. In total, more than 5,000 teenagers from the Baltic States, Finland and Sweden took part in the study.

The survey results show that a third or 34% of children and young people in Latvia often encounter false information in the Internet environment. Nearly half, or 47% of respondents, say they are sometimes confronted with such information. Most often it is clickbait and in most cases gossip about famous people. 62% of respondents said they sometimes check information before sharing it, 28% do so often, while 10% said they never do.

Almost half of Latvian respondents (45%) said they trust Wikipedia as a reliable source of information, but only 39% said they trust news portals. By comparison, in Finland and Sweden, children trust news portals significantly more, while social media – significantly less than in Latvia.

Parents play a key role in combating misinformation, as 64% of children surveyed trust parental opinion, according to the results.

More than half, or 57% of children, say they were not taught at school how to check information on the Internet. This figure, among the countries studied, was only higher in Lithuania at 63%. For comparison, only 29% of respondents said they had not been taught about it at school in Sweden.

Half of the Latvians questioned (51%) think that their school teaches enough reliable information on the Internet, while 49% think the opposite.

The study was conducted in Latvia with the support of Telia Latvija.

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