Washington State Senator Marko Liias was invited to speak in Jenny Gawronski’s Digital Media Literacy class at the University of Washington on May 28. The class session focused on ground-breaking pieces of media literacy legislation that have passed in Washington since 2016.
Senator Liias played a key role in the passage of this legislation, which has established Washington as a model for the nation. Action for Media Education (AME) board members were there to present Senator Liias with a Certificate of Appreciation for his leadership role in passing this legislation.
Media literacy advocates are currently celebrating Washington’s third piece of legislation which will, for the first time, allocate state funds for the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction to establish a K-12 media literacy grant program in 2019–2020. For more information, contact Dennis Small: firstname.lastname@example.org or (360) 725-6384.
Thank you Senator Liias, for your work in media literacy!
Exciting news! WA State Senate Bill 5594 provides funding for media literacy curriculum and professional development for teachers.
YOUR COMMENTS ARE NEEDED NOW. Please share this link with as many people as possible across the state. It’s easy! Just type in your zip code and with a few words you can let our lawmakers know your position.
This bill, sponsored and introduced by Senator Marko Liias, creates a grant process for developing new curriculum units that embed media literacy into content area lessons. The new curriculum units will be available for classrooms across the state. The bill also provides for two Media Literacy and Digital Citizenship professional development conferences for educators.
The proposed bill is a follow up to ESSB 5449 from 2017, which supported media literacy and digital citizenship. That bill called for reviewing and revising of district policies and procedures to better support digital citizenship, media literacy and internet safety, and the creation of a repository of best practices and resources. It also mandated an Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) survey that examined how digital citizenship and media literacy were being integrated into Washington’s schools’ curriculum.
Action for Media Literacy (AME) board members Marilyn Cohen, Michael Danielson, and Barbara Johnson met with Senator Liias to propose this new bill, SB 5594. He responded immediately with interest and took action. Thank you to Senator Marko Liias and the bill’s co-sponsors: Senators Judy Warnick, Claire Wilson, Lisa Wellman, Patty Kuderer, Joe Nguyen, Rebecca Saldaña, and Hans Zeiger.
The current political climate we find ourselves in could hardly be more divisive and confounding. One of the challenges for students and teachers in media literacy education is to evaluate this question: Has the media responded appropriately to the challenges of the Trump era? What do you think?
George Lakoff, a cognitive linguist and philosopher, is a leading expert on the framing of political ideas. In this article he offers concrete tools for the press to “evolve” in response to tactics that are being widely used.
His article from O Society:
Attacks on the free press, and constant lying by political leaders, aren’t just happening here in the United States. These tactics are also being used by authoritarian leaders in other countries who are taking power using the same tactics as Trump.
These leaders understand how the press works, and they use its own tendencies against it in their efforts to erode democracy and freedom. They lie, knowing the press will repeat the lies. They create distractions because they know the press will chase the distractions. They release bad news when they think no one is paying attention. Too often, these tactics succeed.
It’s time for the press to evolve. The press needs new rules, practices and guidelines to respond to the threat posed by lying authoritarians with no respect for truth, freedom, or democracy. These types of leaders attack the press because they see the truth as a threat. And it’s the job of the press to report the truth.
Here are some suggestions members of the press can follow to ProtectTheTruth:
— Ban the lie from the headline/tweet/chyron. Repeating lies only spreads them, and spreading lies is a disservice to the truth. It’s possible to write engaging headlines without serving the lie. Always start with the truth, and always repeat the truth more than the lie.
— Use Truth Sandwiches. When writing about lies, always start with the truth first. Then explain the lie. Then return to the truth. Sequence and repetition matter! Truth first! Always.
— Separate News from Distractions. George Orwell said it best: “Journalism is printing what someone else doesn’t want printed. Everything else is public relations.” Trump’s tweets have become a constant obsession for reporters. But his Twitter dramas generally just distract from the important news stories crucial to democracy. He issues crazy tweets, calls people names, and includes silly typos because he WANTS people to talk about his tweet. And those who give him what he wants need to remember Orwell’s quote. What was the big story in the news before the Twitter drama started? Keep a steely focus on things that matter.
— Limit Trump photos. Images are crucial. Today, it seems like nearly every news story features a large photo of Trump. It’s all Trump, all the time. It’s a Trump overload. Editors need to be aware of the overall effect and make an effort to use a range of images to tell the story of our times. Politics is not just about the actors. It’s about the millions of people who are affected by those actions.
— Outsmart the “Friday Dump.” Politicians and corporations tend to release bad or unflattering news late Fridays, and especially on three-day weekends. This is because people pay less attention to the news at this time. So, the use of the “Friday Dump” is a tactic for hiding the truth from people. Imagine if anyone who tried this was instead greeted with a big Sunday or Monday story that also told people they were trying to hide the truth by dumping it on Friday.
by George Lakoff Dec 19, 2018
Read more here
Podcast: FrameLab: How To Protect the Truth
A highlight of Media Literacy Week here at AME is the presentation of the Jessie McCanse Award, deemed the “Nobel Prize” of media literacy, to Marilyn Cohen, Saturday, Nov. 10. The National Telemedia Council (NTC) is recognizing Marilyn’s longtime contributions to media literacy, high principles and dedication. Four recipients this year include Henry Jenkins of Los Angeles, CA, Bill Siemering of Philadelphia, PA, and Carolyn Wilson of Ontario, Canada.
Marilyn was recently interviewed by the Consortium for Media Literacy newsletter, Connections. Here is part of that interview:
For the whole interview: Global Connections Newsletter
Copyright? Fair use? Creative Commons? This invaluable guide was just released October 25, 2018. You’ll want to save, bookmark, and keep for reference.
Introduction to the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Media Literacy Education
Preamble: No Easy Answers, but Guidance
Teachers who live and work in a world dominated by new media are asking many questions about literacy classroom practice:
- Can my students use copyrighted music, images, or video clips in their video projects?
- Can my students and I repurpose a copyrighted image as a meme?
- Can I show a movie via Netflix in school?
You might be hoping that a document about fair use will present you with answers to these kinds of difficult questions. Unfortunately, there are no easy answers—but there is guidance.
The Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Media Literacy Education (which was adopted by the NCTE Executive Committee in 2008) provides guidance but does not prescribe practice. As literacy educators, we each bear the responsibility to educate ourselves and our students about our relationship to existing media as learning tools. You can use this Code of Best Practices as a foundation to understanding the principles of fair use. Its continuing relevance is a testament to the importance of a shared understanding of these issues within a community of practice.
History of This Document
This Code of Best Practices developed from a grant awarded by the MacArthur Foundation in 2006. At the time there was fear about potential lawsuits in documentary filmmaking. When presented with challenges to copyright, judges look to creative communities for guidance on what is considered acceptable use of existing media, so the development of this Code was necessary to establish norms for a community of educators. Many stakeholders were included in its development with the overarching question: What is fair?
The document was reviewed by legal scholars and intellectual property attorneys. It represents a consensus of a knowledge/practice community, and co-signers included organizations that cross literacy fields. It presents normative practices in the field and focuses on the user’s rights. Its longevity is a strength if a copyright challenge comes forward.
Fair use is applied and understood differently in various contexts. The best practice model provides the guidance needed to navigate those contexts by offering a set of principles and clarifying common myths. Teachers continue to encounter such scenarios similar to those described above in the preamble; when deliberating about such situations, reading the Code can provide some guidance.
Read more at the National Council of Teachers of English
Originally adopted by the NCTE Executive Committee, November 2008, introduction added October 2018
By: National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE), Student Television Network (STN), Media Commission of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), Action Coalition for Media Education (ACME), and Visual Communication Division of the International Communication Association (ICA)
Teachers and parents can be at a loss on the topic of media literacy. We know it’s important—our young people are bombarded with messages constantly. How can we help them understand what they’re seeing, reading, and hearing? Let alone creating and sharing themselves! How can we help them evaluate the messenger as well as the message?
Click the image below to open it in a new window.This guide for teachers and parents has been created as part of Media Literacy Week by two AME board members, Ethan Delavan (high school IT director) and Janith Pewitt (high school classroom teacher). Michael Danielson, board chair (teacher and EdTech director) designed the publication.
Guess what, you’re already teaching media literacy!
For the first time, the State of Washington has issued a proclamation to raise awareness of Media Literacy Education and commemorate the 4th Annual Media Literacy Week, which is observed locally, nationally, and internationally.
Educators, students, parents, and adult advocates invite you to participate in a week of student activities, discussions, idea sharing, and celebration of work that promotes media literacy in communities around the world as an essential life skill for the 21st century.
Media Literacy Week is hosted by The National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE), with hundreds of organizations, schools, educators, partners, and supporters in the U.S. alone. See how you can participate!
Thank you to Governor Inslee and the Washington State Legislature for your continued support of media literacy education for students of all ages.
To download or view the proclamation, click on the image below or click here.
Media Literacy Week, 2018
How do social media algorithms determine what you see? How do people try to game the system? Cory Zanoni discusses.
from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, published October 18, 2018
Snopes CEO David Mikkelson says the fact-checking website really took off after Sept. 11. “Conspiracy theories were running rampant.” (Greg Gilbert / The Seattle Times)
Snopes, the country’s most popular hoax-debunking site, is run by its founder out of a 97-year-old house in Tacoma. And is it ever busy, with 47 of its “Hot 50” posts having something to do with politics.
Here, in a 97-year-old frame house in the city’s North End, is the headquarters of America’s most popular hoax-debunking website.
The command center for Snopes.com is an upstairs bedroom with shelving and a laptop placed atop some books and a cardboard box.
These are busy times.
All those viral hoaxes, spread by social media, have created a market for fact-checking sites, with Snopes, started in 1994, being the champ.
It gets 32 million visits a month on desktop and mobile, according to Similar.Web.com, an industry site that measures web traffic. Its closest competitors are The Straight Dope (4 million monthly visits) and FactCheck (3 million).
From his bedroom office, David Mikkelson, Snopes publisher and CEO, runs a site employing 16 people across the country, half of them fact-checkers and the rest on the business and web side.
Read more at The Seattle Times
By Eric Lacitis, Seattle Times staff reporter Oct. 10, 2018
The University of Washington public lecture series, BUNK: The Information Series, brings an impressive lineup of speakers to Seattle.
- Author and political scientist Cornell Clayton will speak October 9, “Off the Rails: Populism and Paranoia in American Politics.”
- Renee Hobbs, a leader in the field of media literacy education, will speak November 28, “Mind Over Media: Teaching About Propaganda.”
The lectures are free and open to the public, but reservations are required and you must act quickly to reserve a seat.
See the full schedule of speakers.
Media Literacy Week, November 5-9, 2018 — It’s less than a month away!
Media Literacy Week activities and events raise awareness about the importance of media literacy education for today’s students, and showcase the amazing work of educators, students, and organizations across the US. Now in its fourth year, Media Literacy Week is sponsored by the National Association of Media Literacy Education (NAMLE).
NAMLE has named Ethan Delavan, Action for Media Education (AME) board member, as Washington’s Media Literacy Week chair. AME is a NAMLE partner in this annual event.
From the website of the National Association for Media Literacy Education, NAMLE
Media Literacy Week is designed to bring attention and visibility to media literacy education in the United States. Inspired by Canada’s Media Literacy Week now in its 13th year, the National Association for Media Literacy Education leads the efforts to coordinate a media literacy week in the United States to showcase the work of amazing media literacy educators and organizations around the country.
The mission of Media Literacy Week is to highlight the power of media literacy education and its essential role in education today.
Whether you are an individual teacher, an employee at an organization, or a researcher, you can get involved with Media Literacy Week. Between November 5 and 9, plan your own Media Literacy Event for your community. It’s up to you to decide what you want to organize, but if you need help planning, feel free to reach out to email@example.com.
Some ideas to get you started:
- Gather teachers for a professional development workshop
- Organize a screening and panel discussion at your school or in your community
- Create a film festival of youth media projects developed in your classroom
- Take your students on a tour of a local television station
- Host a webinar about news literacy
- Partner with your local maker space and explore new forms of reading and writing with emergent technology
- Explore a community issue and have youth come up with civically-minded creative solutions
- Debate the ethical opportunities and challenges of what “free” or “private” means online
Share your plans with NAMLE and we will post your event on the Media Literacy Week website. Send us your logo and we will add you to the list of partners.
We hope you will be a part of the 4th Annual Media Literacy Week in the United States.
Professional journalists face more scrutiny in today’s crowded information marketplace because readers confuse them with bloggers and a cadre of online opinion scribes.
Journalism’s essence is a “discipline of verification,” according to Bill Kovach and Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute. This means that journalists pursue verification of facts as the first order of business. If the journalists do not follow these standards, their careers and reputations are on the line.
Readers should understand there are important differences between professional journalists and everyday bloggers. Journalists are held to higher standards. They are required to get specific training through journalism degrees and are held to employment standards that ensure they serve their audiences by providing relevant and reliable stories that matter to their communities.
Read more at The Free Press
By Kevin Krohn and Austin Moorhouse July 14, 2017
A new US study by Pearson has found that 60% of Gen Z kids prefer YouTube for learning over printed books, but still value “traditional” methods of instruction.
New field research by global education company Pearson has revealed that Gen Z kids in the US like learning from YouTube more than printed books.
Conducted for Pearson by New York-based global market research firm The Harris Poll, Beyond Millennials: The Next Generation of Learners surveyed 2,587 14- to 40-year-olds to examine the differences between Generation Z and Millennials in terms of their outlooks, values, education experiences and technology usage.
According to the study, nearly 60% of Gen Z respondents prefer YouTube for learning compared to 47% who prefer printed books. Millennials, meanwhile, prefer printed books (60%) over YouTube (55%).
Read more, with a link to the full version of the Pearson study at kidscreen
By Jeremy Dickson August 27, 2018
What’s the difference between propaganda and disinformation? Why is misinformation different from disinformation? Not completely sure?
Parents, teachers, and anyone interested in media literacy can sort out what’s coming at us in today’s news cycle with the help of this website from the Johns Hopkins Sheridan Libraries.
Two short videos, Evaluating Sources for Credibility, and Quick Check for your Sources: The TRAPP Method are a good place to start, and could generate lively classroom discussions.
Is someone trying to provoke you to a desired response, using information based in fact? Or is the information just wrong or mistaken? What if it’s a calculated, deliberate lie?
Find out now! Check out the guide from Johns Hopkins Sheridan Libraries
Increasingly, modern classrooms support group work and peer-to-peer collaboration. The science says that’s right on.
This video is part of the Edutopia Brain-Based Learning series on researcher Patricia Kuhl’s work around learning and the social brain.
Visit the website of the Institute of Learning and Brain Sciences (I-LABS) at the University of Washington for more information.
Video: George Lucas Educational Foundation
The crackdown on hate speech continues:
WordPress has taken down a handful alt-right blogs, according to several complaints from affected blog owners and readers who claim the sites were removed from WordPress.com, despite not being in violation of the company’s Terms of Service. Some site owners also said they were not notified of the shutdown in advance and have lost their work. The removals, we’ve learned, are in part due to a new policy WordPress has rolled out that now prohibits blogs from the “malicious publication of unauthorized, identifying images of minors.”
Yes, that’s right: the company has created a new rule to specifically handle the Sandy Hook conspiracists, and boot them from WordPress.com.
While some of the affected sites had already been flagged for other violations, many were hosting Sandy Hook conspiracy theories and other “false flag” content.
Read more at TechCrunch
By Sarah Perez August 16, 2018
Tom Steyer’s NextGen America organization is working to register 100,000 students in one month at college campuses across 11 states as part of its “Welcome Week” program launching this week.
Why it matters: This is the group’s biggest voter registration effort yet, focused specifically on the most crucial bloc of non-voters, and it’s happening just three months before the 2018 midterm election.
By Alexi McCammond August 14, 2018 Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
We finally have some answers on the alleged DDoS attack on the FCC’s commenting system
Net neutrality, but questions remain about how seriously the Federal Communications Commission considered comments from the public. The FCC’s system for submitting those comments was
Two million of the 22 million comments submitted, some for people who were dead, including actress Patty Duke, who died in 2016. Nearly 8 million comments used email domains associated with FakeMailGenerator.com. About half a million were sent from Russian email addresses. And of the emails that came from legitimate email addresses, the vast majority were form letters originating from the same pro- and anti-net neutrality groups.
Then there was the controversy over athat temporarily shut down the platform on exactly the same day thousands of net neutrality supporters responded to comedian John Oliver’s call to flood the agency with comments.
That supposed cyberattack, after more than a year of speculation,, as a statement from FCC Chairman Ajit Pai revealed on Monday.…
FCC officials declined to comment for this story.
So what does it mean for the controversial repeal of net neutrality? Could the tainted public record on net neutrality help in efforts to restore the rules? To help you understand what really happened and what it all means, CNET has put together this FAQ.
By Marguerite Reardon First published June 29, 2018 Update, Aug. 6, 2018
It’s no secret that public schools, despite getting baseline funding from the State of Washington, vary widely in the money they have to spend. In the ongoing struggle to provide equitable access for all students, school libraries play a critical, and often underfunded, part.
An article from the Seattle Times (May 7, 2016) made these points:
- Washington state school libraries are not guaranteed any money for books or materials.
- In 2016, for example, 75% of Seattle Public School library funding was provided by PTAs, book fairs, and grants.
- The rest came from Seattle’s district office, averaging $2.55 a year for each student (less than the cost of one magazine).
- The statewide average was from $1 – $10.
- The national average was $10.
- Seattle schools reported a range of $1.69 – $29.88 per student, per year.
But why such a difference? Wealthier schools have PTAs that raise money for their libraries. Other schools face difficult challenges, especially, of course, poverty: families working long hours for low pay, limited English and mobility, and the shocking reality of increasing numbers of homeless students.
Schools with inadequate funding, in fiscally challenged communities, may not have a PTA to pitch in and provide money for their libraries. They have to find the money for competing, substantial needs. These schools depend on grant money, or donations from partner school PTAs and book fairs. Underfunded school libraries with out-of-date books and materials are the rule, not the exception.
In 2016, teacher librarians requested equitable funding for all schools, with full-time librarians in every school. They asked the state to allocate $10 per student for library materials each year. Well, here it is, 2018. Did they get what they wanted?
Teacher Librarians get what they wish for. Almost.
Good news! After the passage of Senate Bill 6362, starting in fall 2018, each school district will be allocated $20 for each full-time student, per year, for school library materials.
With some school libraries spending $29.88 per student, while others scrimp by on $1.69, the chance of every library having $20 per student is a dream come true, right?
Not so fast. That amount isn’t mandated, so it’s up to each school district to decide whether or not they will comply.
Also, the 2018 Legislature didn’t actually make any new money available: since 2009 it’s been in the budget, under “other supplies.” But now the legislature has made it clear that this allocation is to be used specifically for library materials, and has provided reporting accountability.
What happens next?
- You can help! Speak to your local school principal and ask about library funding. Share your strong support for the school library and, especially, the state’s newly identified library allocation.
- Contact your local school board members to thank them for their service. Ask how the district will address this new legislative directive.
- Contact your state elected officials to thank them for the allocation. Explain that without the mandate to spend the money on library materials, you’re concerned that this money may not be spent as intended. Tell them you would appreciate stronger language that mandates the money identified in SB 6362 is spent on library materials.
- Spread the word to other interested parties and ask that they take action too.
Advocates in the school library community, like members of the Washington Library Association, are gearing up to ensure this opportunity isn’t lost in “other supplies.” They’re making lists of what they need to update obsolete print and electronic collections. They’re gathering data on the age of their collections and their sources of funding. They’ll be going to their school and district leaderships with clear and compelling written proposals.
School libraries are a precious resource and are critical to media literacy education. Our children deserve equitable support. Every district should have the means to build excellent library collections that reflect the diversity of their readers, offer a wide range of reading materials, and provide current, high-quality research tools.
Also, did you hug a teacher librarian today?
By Sue D. Cook Thank you to AME board members Shawn Sheller and Kathryn Egawa.
More teenagers are getting their information from so-called flop accounts.
…Luna, a 15-year-old admin on @Flops.R.us, said that she and other teens use flop accounts as a space, away from parents, teachers, or people who don’t take them seriously, to discuss issues and formulate ideas. “Flop accounts are your place where you can get your or other people’s opinions out,” she said.
“Teenagers want an outlet to express their opinions with the same kind of conviction that they generally might not be able to express at home or other parts of their life,” said Hal, a 17-year-old admin on @toomanyflops_.
“Liberal flop accounts point out problematic behavior or spread liberal opinions,” said Bea, a 16-year-old in Maryland who founded the account @hackflops. “Conservative accounts post about feminism and whether the movement is good or bad, whether you can be conservative and LGBT, or Black Lives Matter and whether it’s better or worse than All Lives Matter … I’ve formed my opinions largely based upon what I see in the flop community…
Siva Vaidhyanathan, a media-studies professor at the University of Virginia, said he thinks flop accounts are a good thing. “You have people engaging directly with claims about the world and arguing about truthfulness and relevance in the comments. It’s good that that’s happening,” he said. “If young people are getting more politically engaged because of it, all the better.”
By Taylor Lorenz, July 26, 2018 Read more at The Atlantic
Image courtesy of INSTAGRAM / THANH DO / THE ATLANTIC
According to reports by the New York Times and the Observer, a research firm called Cambridge Analytica collected millions of Facebook users’ personal information without their consent — and people are mad. Many don’t trust Facebook with their data anymore, and they’re threatening to delete their accounts.
But Facebook and its network of apps, including Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp, are important communication lines for a lot of people, so deleting your account might not be a realistic option. You can, however, dial back your use and reduce the amount of information you give the site. Here’s how.
Break your habit and limit your use of the platform.
Just by signing up for the service, you’ve agreed to let Facebook track your activity and constantly collect data about you. By reducing the time you spend on the site, interaction with posts, and content you upload, you are also reducing the amount of data Facebook is gathering from you. And remember, this data collection applies to Facebook — and everywhere you’ve signed in with Facebook, including Facebook-owned Instagram and WhatsApp, as well as, to a lesser extent, third-party websites like Spotify.
Log out of Facebook before browsing the web.
Any page that has a Facebook Like button installed most likely uses a Facebook pixel. Even pages that don’t have a Like button can have a pixel. This means it’s possible that Facebook knows most of your web browsing history.
You can prevent this tracking by logging out of Facebook and using Facebook only in “incognito” or “private” browsing mode in your web browser. Once you’ve logged out, be sure to clear your cookies. In Chrome, select Chrome from menu bar > Clear browsing data > Time range: All time (Note: This will sign you out of most websites).
By Nicole Nguyen, March 20, 2018 Read more at BuzzFeed News
Image courtesy of Chesnot / Getty Images
“The tide is turning. The pressure is mounting. The floodgates are open.”—Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.)
“The dam is breaking, as it should.” That’s how Faiz Shakir, the ACLU’s national political director, responded on Tuesday after Rep. Mike Coffman of Colorado became the first House Republican to sign a petition to force a vote on a measure that would reinstate net neutrality protections that the GOP-controlled Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rolled back in December.
“Rep. Coffman’s support to undo FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s repeal of net neutrality shows that public pressure is continuing to build on this issue and cannot be ignored this November,” Shakir added. “Other House members should take heed of Coffman’s direction and stand by the overwhelming majority of their constituents, not corporate interests.”