Net Neutrality, News, Places, Take Action

FCC should listen to tech-savvy Seattle and preserve open Internet

This article is relevant now as the FCC considers repealing Net Neutrality laws. It first appeared in the last big discussion on Net Neutrality, back in August 2014.

Well, Seattle residents have spoken. Many of them, anyway, in favor of preserving net neutrality and against creating a two-lane Internet highway in which Internet providers could charge some users more for faster access and connectivity.

The Federal Communications Commission recently released about 1.1 million comments from its first comment period.  TechCrunch’s initial analysis found the most-used word by citizens was “Comcast” followed by “Verizon” — and the bulk of what they had to say was not very nice. A second comment period ends on Sept. 10, so go to this FCC link to make your voice heard.

As The Seattle Times editorial board wrote on July 19, May 16, May 11, April 27 and Jan. 15, the open Internet should be preserved and providers should be reclassified as “common carriers” like most other public telecommunication services.

On Wednesday, Reuters reported U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy called on the FCC to leave its echo chamber in the Beltway and hold public meetings around the country. “Most of (those who had commented on the proposed rules online) will not be able to come to Washington to participate in the roundtables that have been scheduled, but their voices are more important than industry lobbyists and members of Congress,” Leahy reportedly wrote in a letter to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler.

Great idea. FCC, please come to Seattle.

Read more in this great piece at The Seattle Times, a big supporter of keeping net neutrality and a strong voice about this issue.

Take action! We can save net neutrality. Contact Congress today to keep the internet available to all!

Visit www.battleforthenet.com to make your voice heard.

Education, News, Places, Social Media, Technology

How Silicon Valley plans to conquer the classroom

00BIGED2-superJumboThey call it the “Church Lane Hug.”

That is how educators at Church Lane Elementary Technology, a public school here, describe the protective two-armed way they teach students to carry their school-issued laptops.

Administrators at Baltimore County Public Schools, the 25th-largest public school system in the United States, have embraced the laptops as well, as part of one of the nation’s most ambitious classroom technology makeovers. In 2014, the district committed more than $200 million for HP laptops, and it is spending millions of dollars on math, science and language software. Its vendors visit classrooms. Some schoolchildren have been featured in tech-company promotional videos.

And Silicon Valley has embraced the school district right back.

HP has promoted the district as a model to follow in places as diverse as New York City and Rwanda. Daly Computers, which supplied the HP laptops, donated $30,000 this year to the district’s education foundation. Baltimore County schools’ top officials have traveled widely to industry-funded education events, with travel sometimes paid for by industry-sponsored groups.

Read more at The New York Times.

Image courtesy of The New York Times.

Events, News, Places

AME gets a refresh

We have decided after many years to begin a needed refresh on our logo and overall design elements. We’d like to debut our new logo then to kickoff this process.

Below is the newest face of AME. A beautiful nod to cameras and photography, this logo will now be on all our materials going forward, and will replace our older logos, also below.

Thank you to everyone for your continued support. We look forward to this refresh of logos and colors while continuing to unify all of you in efforts to promote, educate and advocate for media literacy in Washington State.

 

Education, News, Places

Global Media and Information Literacy Week 2017, Oct 25 – Nov 1

UNESCO is hosting its sixth annual Global Media and Information Literacy Week October 25 through November 1. Activities and the feature conference are important opportunities for stakeholders globally to celebrate the progress achieved towards the process of “MIL for all”. Global MIL Week also enables connections and sharing of creative projects, the latest research, new ideas, and information across countries and stakeholders involved in MIL, and in print, screen-based and digital media.

The Global MIL Week 2017 highlights include local and regional activities around the world as well as its feature event, namely the Seventh Media and Information Literacy and Intercultural Dialogue (MILID) Conference. The feature conference will be hosted by the University of the West Indies, and will take place from 24 to 27 October, 2017 in Kingston, Jamaica.

Learn more at the UNESCO MIL website.

Image courtesy of UNESCO.

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Fake News, News, Places

Fake news fills information void in Las Vegas shooting

As law enforcement and news organizations raced to piece together what happened during the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history Sunday night in Las Vegas, web denizens less wedded to the truth rushed in to provide details of their own—which quickly went viral.

Links to the 4chan website that falsely identified the shooter and called him a leftist and Democratic supporter were showing up on the top of Google search results, according to tweets by Buzzfeed News reporter Ryan Broderick.

Read more at Ad Age.

Image courtesy of Ad Age.

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Education, News, Places

Google extends digital literacy training to teachers

Digital citizenship has stepped into the forefront of a modern-day education. Experts indicate that as schools roll out tech, they also need to be rolling out digital citizenship education.

Tech giant Google heeded that call and partnered with experts to launch Be Internet Awesome, an interactive campaign that educates students on how best to act on the internet.

One part of this Google campaign is Interland, a game that has students travel an imaginary world where they need to fight hackers, phishers, oversharers and bullies with digital citizenship skills. While game-based learning can be effective, educators also need to be armed with skills to teach their students to be citizens of the web.

This month, Google extended its Be Internet Awesome program to include a free online training course to help educators establish foundational skills needed to teach their students to have a safe and positive experience online.

Read more at Ed Tech.

 

News, Places, Technology

Tracey the robot helps passengers through Sea-Tac Airport security

A robot named Tracey is greeting passengers at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, providing tips to get them smoothly through security checkpoints.

The red-and-white human-sized robot carries a large electronic sign and can speak to passengers in six different languages.

Airport officials say the robot isn’t designed to replace human workers, but to allow them to spend more time on critical security work.

Tracey was created by Advanced Robot Solutions. CEO Paul McManus says it is a demonstration model, but future versions could recognize when a traveler is wearing sunglasses or a hat and ask them to take it off before the security checkpoint.

The robot is temporarily on duty at the Seattle airport as it hosts a meeting of airport executives from around the country.

Article courtesy of KOMO News.

Image courtesy of KOMO News.

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Education, Health, News, Places

Can a MediaWise campaign help kids see through the advertising world?

Saying that your eight-year-old knows more about technology than you do is one of those humblebrags that’s rarely true – but it at least reflects the reality that children are growing up in a media-saturated world. And while they have no cash, they have something nearly as valuable – pester power – which is why they’ve been in the crosshairs of marketing budgets for decades.

The Irish Heart Foundation pulls no punches in its current “Stop Junk Brands Targeting Kids” campaign, saying that brands “use underhand and unregulated marketing tactics. Their influence has spread into children’s homes, digital devices and even their schools.”

It urges visitors to its site – where cleverly engaging content explains how advertisers sell to children – to sign a petition. The campaign, set against a backdrop of one-in-four Irish children being overweight or obese, is hoping to get 30,000 sign-ups to back its call for Government intervention to protect children’s health through strict controls on digital marketing.

“It is really worrying that seven- to 16-year-olds are spending about three hours a day online, vulnerable to slick marketing that’s pushing foods and drinks that are causing obesity,” said the Irish Heart Foundation’s head of advocacy Chris Macey.

Read more at The Irish Times.

Image courtesy of The Irish Times.

News, Places, Technology

An agoraphobic photographer’s virtual travels, on Google Street View

Last year, amid the stress of shutting down a company she’d co-founded nearly ten years before, Jacqui Kenny, a New Zealander living in London, began exploring the world on Google Street View. At first, she would pick locales more or less at random, poking around the streets of faraway towns and taking screenshots whenever she stumbled upon a striking image. After a while, she began seeking out certain kinds of views: arid regions with clear horizons; latitudes where she found that the sunlight fell at a dramatic slant. She was soon spending many hours on the project, which became a kind of retreat.

“I really didn’t know what I was going to do with my life,” she told me. “I wasn’t in the mood to face the world yet, and this absorbed a lot of my focus.” When she looked back after a year of taking screenshots, she had accumulated an archive of around twenty-six thousand photos.

Kenny now posts photos from the collection on an Instagram account called Agoraphobic Traveller, a reference to another impetus behind the project: Kenny, who is friendly and witty in conversation, suffers from anxiety that, on a bad day, can make it difficult to leave the house. Contrary to a common misconception, agoraphobia is often less a fear of open spaces than it is a fear of losing control.

Read more from The New Yorker.

Image courtesy of The New Yorker.

Education, News, Places

Shoutout to our media literacy partners down under! Australian updates

Australian updatesHere are just a few of the programs being held by our media literacy partners down in Australia, the Australian Children’s Television Foundation.

New Education Package: Indigenous Perspectives ​Ahead of 2017 NAIDOC Week, the ACTF has compiled a range of engaging educational content and support materials which represent the diverse experiences of Indigenous Australian children. Read more.

Jeffrey Walker Webinar: Child Actor to International Director In our latest webinar for upper primary and secondary schools, students had the opportunity to ask Australian director Jeffrey Walker about his inspirational career. Read more.

Comedy Scriptwriting Workshops Update Presented in partnership with the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), our entertaining series of virtual comedy scriptwriting workshops for Year 5 and 6 students wrapped up this week. ​​Read more.

Little Lunch App Competition: Start Planning for Term 3! Following the success of last year’s competition, we will be running our Little Lunch App Competition again in Term 3 this year. Entries can be submitted between 4 September – 27 October 2017. Read more.

Visit the ACTF website for more information, or sign up for their newsletter!

Education, News, Places

Come for the computers, stay for the books

Traci Chun, a teacher-librarian at Skyview High School in Vancouver, Washington, is all done with shushing. “When my library is quiet, that’s a red flag,” said Chun. In fact, the busier it is, the better—whether it’s kids experimenting with the Makey Makey circuitry or uploading designs to a 3-D printer, or a class learning media literacy, or a student seeking advice on a video she’s editing at one of the computer workstations.

Chun’s district is at the forefront of a national movement to turn K–12 librarians into indispensable digital mavens who can help classroom teachers craft tech-savvy lesson plans, teach kids to think critically about online research, and remake libraries into lively, high-tech hubs of collaborative learning—while still helping kids get books.

The stereotypical library can seem like a vestige, making it an easy target when budgets are tight, according to Mark Ray, Vancouver’s director of innovation and library services, “but we want libraries to be the lynchpin of education transformation.” Ray heads up Future Ready Librarians, part of Future Ready Schools—a network for sharing education technology solutions, which is sponsored by the Alliance for Excellent Education, a Washington, D.C.–based education advocacy group.

Read more at Slate.

Image courtesy of Slate.

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News, Places, Social Media

Bellevue, WA girl bullied at school asks for help, Facebook post goes viral

Bellevue fourth grader says she has been bullied since school started in September. After months of telling teachers, administrators and the district, she was feeling desperate and posted a video on Facebook to get help for herself and other students who are bullied.

The video was shared more than 17,500 times and reached more than 670,000 people.

Nasir Andrews, 9, is finishing fourth grade at Ardmore Elementary School in the Bellevue School District.

Andrews, who is black, said other students have called her “Nutella” and “servant”.

Read more at KOMO News or watch the video below.

Video courtesy of KOMO News.

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Education, News, Places

Crinkling News lives: Crowdfunding and Senate appearance save kids’ paper

Australia’s only children’s newspaper attracts the $200,000 it needs to survive after its editor warns of need to ‘develop media literacy in Australia’

An 11th-hour appearance at a Senate select committee into public interest journalism and a whirlwind of publicity have helped the children’s newspaper Crinkling News to stay in print after a fundraising goal of $200,000 was reached.

Crinkling News’s editor, Saffron Howden – along with a bigger player in the media industry, the Fairfax Media chief executive, Greg Hywood – was invited to give evidence at the Senate committee’s first public hearing in Sydney on Wednesday.

“To address the creeping influence of fake news, so-called alternative facts, clickbait and the selection by social media platforms of the information to which we are exposed, we need to start educating children at a young age,” Howden told the senators. “In short, we need to develop media literacy in Australia.

Read more at The Guardian.

Image courtesy of The Guardian.

crinkling news

News, Places, Social Media

AME and members in King 5 news

A recent King 5 article highlights how our recent statewide leglislation on media literacy sets a national precedent:

Washington lawmakers recently approved new digital citizenship legislation that’s among the first of its kind in the country.

The bill focuses on a new problem in the digital age: teaching kids what constitutes appropriate and responsible use of technology.  That includes knowing what to post on social media as well as how to protect yourself online.

“Our students need to be prepared for this online era we’re in.  The pluses and minuses or it,” said Senator Marko Liias, D-Edmonds. 

Read more and view a video here at King 5.

The recent sexual assault cases in the Seattle area on local teenagers and the role social media and technology is playing in them has prompted local news outlet King 5 to reach out to several AME members for their input and experiences:

AME member Claire Beach was interviewed on King 5 News concerning the recent sexual assault cases that highlight concerns of social media use among teens.  She mentions Action for Media Education.

“We need to talk about it.  People don’t like to talk about these things with kids, but we have to,” said Claire Beach.

See her interview and read more here at King 5.

AME President Michael Danielson and his freshman class at Seattle Preparatory School were also interviewed on the challenges and pitfalls of sharing images on a phone or other mobile device.

“It’s hard to keep up with, and literally every week there’s something new to talk about,” said Michael Danielson.

See the interview and read more here at King 5.

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Education, Fake News, News, Places

Newseum ED pilots fake news class at Palo Alto High School

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Palo Alto High School

NewseumED curriculum developers will be at Palo Alto High School in California on Tuesay, May 16, to pilot their newest media literacy class, “Fighting Fake News: How to Outsmart Trolls and Troublemakers.” The class was launched at the Newseum in March in response to the “fake news” phenomenon that garnered national attention during the 2016 presidential election, and continues to be a major global concern.

Students of Esther Wojcicki, a journalism teacher at Palo Alto, provided input to NewseumED staff as they developed the class as well as a flow chart helping students determine whether a story is worth sharing by text, tweet or email.

Read more at www.Newseum.org.

Image courtesy of Newseum.

News, Places, Social Media

Think before you tweet in the wake of an attack

Monday night, a suicide bomber took the lives of at least 22 people—including an 8-year-old girl—at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England. Almost instantly, images and video of the devastating attack overtook Twitter timelines and Facebook News Feeds. As natural and understandable a response to horrific events as that might be, it also threatens to amplify the chaos that terrorists intend.

Terrorists have always sought attention, and the age of social media has enabled them to find it with unprecedented breadth. They use social networks to recruit, to inspire, and to connect, but they also rely on social media bystanders—everyday, regular people—to spread the impacts of their terror further than they could themselves, and to confuse authorities with misinformation. That amplification encourages more terrorism, inspires copycats, and turns the perpetrators into martyrs. It also traumatizes the families of the murdered victims, as well as the public at large.

“In the last few years, this problem has become more acute and more complicated technically, practically, and ethically, with the acceleration of the news cycle and the advent of social media,” London School of Economics professor Charlie Beckett wrote for the Columbia Journalism Review last year, analyzing how social media and journalism amplify terrorist messaging.

Read more at Wired.

Image courtesy of Wired.

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Education, Events, Fake News, News, Places

Local librarians to lead workshop on media literacy

Media Literacy, a free two-hour workshop, is set at the Port Angeles Library at 6 p.m. Thursday.

Librarians Danielle Gayman and Sarah Morrison at the Port Angeles Library of the North Olympic Library System will present the workshop at the library at 2210 S. Peabody St.

“Today’s media landscape and technologies mean that misinformation or disinformation can be widely shared and disseminated, accidentally or purposefully, regardless of the facts,” according to a news release issued by the library system.

Read more in the Peninsula Daily News.

To attend, here are the workshop details

Title: Media Literacy: Thinking Critically about News & Other Resources

Date/Time: Thursday, May 18, 2017 from 6 to 8 p.m.

Location: The Carver Room at Port Angeles Library, 2210 S. Peabody Street, Port Angeles, WA 98362

Description: NOLS Librarians Danielle Gayman and Sarah Morrison will present an introductory session on Media Literacy, including types of journalism, identifying perspective, and determining bias.  Find out about “Truthiness” and learn how to identify “Fake” or “Fabricated” news.

For more information, visit the North Olympic Library website.

Image courtesy of The Peninsula Daily News.

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North Olympic Library System librarians Danielle Gayman and Sarah Morrison will offer a workshop about Media Literacy on Thursday night.
Bill Update, News, Places, Politics, Privacy

House Bill 2200: A bill to create internet privacy protections

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Washington State is trying to pass a bill that would create internet privacy protections.

Check out this bill here!

The bill would create new internet privacy protections enforceable under the Washington Consumer Protection Act, including:

  • Compelling transparency by making ISP privacy policies available to customers so they know what to expect.
  • Protecting privacy by prohibiting ISPs from selling or using private information (such as a person’s browsing history) without consent.
  • Requiring ISPs to report to customers when they have been hacked and personal data has been breached so customers can protect themselves.
Please consider supporting this bill. It is important that consumers should have the option to keep their personal browser history private!
Fake News, News, Places, Politics

California fake news bill

A legislative proposal aimed at outlawing “fake news” websites was sidelined in the California State Legislature at the eleventh hour Tuesday upon drawing fire from free speech advocates over its certain implications on the First Amendment.

California Assemblyman Ed Chau, Monterey Park Democrat, abruptly canceled plans Tuesday to hold a hearing dedicated to A.B. 1104, a bill that would have made it illegal to publish false or deceptive statements on the internet about a political candidate or ballot measure.

Also known as the California Political Cyberfraud Abatement Act, Mr. Chau’s office previously called the proposal “an important step forward in the fight against ‘fake news’ and deceptive campaign tactics.”

Read more at The Washington Times.

Image courtesy of The Washington Times.

Advertising, Education, News, People, Places

Students taking on new skills, challenging authority

Here are two pieces from local and national papers highlighting students using media literacy tools to impact their communities.

This piece from the Kitsap Sun features elementary school students here in Washington tackling a popular advertising campaign.

Students in Heather Wilson’s library class frowned as they watched the time-lapse video of an ordinary woman transformed into a super-model. Bad enough the layering on of make-up, the teasing of hair. A few of the kids made gross-out faces, as the video showed the woman’s neck in a photo digitally lengthened before her image was slapped on a billboard.

The video, part of Dove’s “Real Beauty” campaign, has been around for a decade, but it was new to these fourth-graders, and it had the desired effect. The students learned — or had reinforced — the fact that images on the Internet can be digitally altered. Wilson asked them to think about an advertiser’s purpose in taking such liberties.

Read more at the Kitsap Sun.

Meanwhile these Kansas high school students began looking into their new principal’s past and discovered several discrepancies, causing her to resign. Their story of investigative journalism has since gone viral.

Connor Balthazor, 17, was in the middle of study hall when he was called into a meeting with his high school newspaper adviser.

A group of reporters and editors from the student newspaper, the Booster Redux at Pittsburg High School in southeastern Kansas, had gathered to talk about Amy Robertson, who was hired as the high school’s head principal on March 6.

The student journalists had begun researching Robertson, and quickly found some discrepancies in her education credentials.

Read more at The Washington Post.

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News, Places, Technology

Cyborgs at work: Employees getting implanted with microchips

The syringe slides in between the thumb and index finger. Then, with a click, a microchip is injected in the employee’s hand. Another “cyborg” is created.

What could pass for a dystopian vision of the workplace is almost routine at the Swedish startup hub Epicenter. The company offers to implant its workers and startup members with microchips the size of grains of rice that function as swipe cards: to open doors, operate printers, or buy smoothies with a wave of the hand.

The injections have become so popular that workers at Epicenter hold parties for those willing to get implanted.

“The biggest benefit I think is convenience,” said Patrick Mesterton, co-founder and CEO of Epicenter. As a demonstration, he unlocks a door by merely waving near it. “It basically replaces a lot of things you have, other communication devices, whether it be credit cards or keys.”

Read more at The Associated Press.

Image courtesy of The Associated Press.

News, Places, Politics

“America First” causing concern and comedy amongst European countries

U.S. President Donald Trump said it loud and clear in his inauguration speech: “From this day forward, it’s going to be only America first.”

This has raised the question on the European scene, then who’s going to be second?

Comedians in Europe are having a field day with the notion of America First. Watch a few of the videos they’ve been creating here at Eugene Weekly. Another more in-depth article can be found here at Market Watch.

The video “The Netherlands welcomes Trump in his own words” has been one of the most noticeable so far. Watch it below.

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News, Places, Politics

Rhode Island media bill

There is big news from the Media Literacy Now movement in Rhode Island. Media literacy advocates including Michael Troffi, Rhode Island’s Media Literacy Now chapter president and Renee Hobbs, University of Rhode Island professor, author and researcher, have been leading the charge to pass legislation that would require incorporating media literacy education into the basic education program in their state. The Rhode Island Department of Education would be required to work with state and national organizations to implement this legislation if the bill passes.

The bill has now passed the Rhode Island Senate is on its way to the House. Good luck Rhode Island! We’re all supporting you out here in Washington.