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You think you want media literacy…do you?

This past week danah boyd presented the keynote at SXSW EDU 2018. The talk is quite nuanced, and I recommend taking the time to read it.

boyd talks about how critical thinking and media literacy efforts are backfiring. She surveys some media literacy programs and sees a simplistic set of assumptions about the way media could and should work in our world. She posits that if we head down this path, the future might look even more chaotic as we learn not to trust anything…even the media.

There has been a lot of great feedback and discussion on this piece since it first posted. I’ll have an upcoming response, but want to take the time to read danah’s time and let it gel. I’m also enjoying reading the incredible responses.

Did media literacy backfire? by Renee Hobbs indicates that “Media literacy educators, with their focus on evidence and reasoned argument, value expertise even as we point out that expertise is itself a social construction.” Benjamin Doxtdator responds that boyd is suggesting that we need to “inoculate” people, but this response fails to address power dynamics in society. Peter Levine pulls all of this together and explores our relationships with “truth” and “reality” as it relates to our information seeking behaviors. Finally, I’d recommend reviewing this response to the criticism from danah.

I know that it’s a lot of reading…but I’d be interested in knowing what you think. As I stated…I’ll have a response soon. 🙂