Location

Room 1002

Type of Presentation

Workshop (1 hour and 15 minutes)

Target Audience

Higher Education

Abstract

Propaganda, media manipulation, and bias in the news is not, of course, a new issue. However, in today’s hyper accelerated digital and social information environment, there are novel and more powerful methods being intentionally employed to convince media consumers to place their attention on, click, read/watch and believe content that was created to serve a very specific pre-existing agenda. These actors who create this agenda based news—whether political, commercial, or otherwise—today leverage machine learning, big data, behavioral psychology, knowledge of algorithms, social media user behavior, and networking theory, to created what has come to be rather dramatically called “weaponized” information. Their goal is to get specific opinions, propaganda, hoaxes, and the now infamous “fake news” content into the minds of the news consumer, an increasing percentage of which now get most news from social media sites. The dramatic and powerful new ways that information is being created, disseminated and shared requires librarians and educators to relook and rethink how information literacy is best imparted to students and integrate new strategies from disciplines ranging from brain science to journalism.

There are a variety of lessons plans that can be deployed to educate, prepare and thereby “inoculate” students from falling prey to these kinds of agenda-driven information providers. This poster will graphically illustrate two different types of lessons that have been tried at the University of Rochester; and one new one that has not yet been tried. We encourage attendees to engage in a conversation to share their own lesson plans and strategies when reviewing this poster as well.

Presentation Description

In today’s hyper accelerated digital and social information environment, new powerful methods are being employed to convince us to click, view and believe content that serves a very narrow agenda, creating a need to rethink what it means to be information literate. This workshop will illustrate different lessons and events from the University of Rochester and elsewhere on how to identify and neutralize content creators with malevolent, misleading and narrow self serving agendas. We will encourage attendees to engage in brainstorming and a group conversation to share their own ideas for creating new lesson plans and strategies as well.

Session Goals

* Attendees will understand the reason why information literacy needs to be rethought

* Attendees will discover how libraries have created new lesson plans and strategies to teach new forms of information literacy

* Attendees will create new lesson and teaching plans to instruct their students, in a manner relevant to the goals and objectives of their university or organization

Session Objectives

* Attendees will be able to identify 3-5 new ways malevolent information is being created and disseminated that are not easily identified via standard information literacy tools and strategies

* Attendees will end session having at least two new lesson plans to address those gaps

* Attendees will learn how to create new modules for various classes and instructional sessions to help students in their own disciplines and areas to identify and neutralize "fake news" propaganda, and other intentionally crated inaccurate and misleading news

Keywords

Fake News, Social Media, Filter Bubbles, Informaiton Literacy, Algorithms, Propaganda, Lesson Plans, Weaponized Content

Publication Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

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Sep 28th, 2:45 PM Sep 28th, 4:00 PM

Inoculating Students Against Digital Media Manipulation in the Algorithmic Age

Room 1002

Propaganda, media manipulation, and bias in the news is not, of course, a new issue. However, in today’s hyper accelerated digital and social information environment, there are novel and more powerful methods being intentionally employed to convince media consumers to place their attention on, click, read/watch and believe content that was created to serve a very specific pre-existing agenda. These actors who create this agenda based news—whether political, commercial, or otherwise—today leverage machine learning, big data, behavioral psychology, knowledge of algorithms, social media user behavior, and networking theory, to created what has come to be rather dramatically called “weaponized” information. Their goal is to get specific opinions, propaganda, hoaxes, and the now infamous “fake news” content into the minds of the news consumer, an increasing percentage of which now get most news from social media sites. The dramatic and powerful new ways that information is being created, disseminated and shared requires librarians and educators to relook and rethink how information literacy is best imparted to students and integrate new strategies from disciplines ranging from brain science to journalism.

There are a variety of lessons plans that can be deployed to educate, prepare and thereby “inoculate” students from falling prey to these kinds of agenda-driven information providers. This poster will graphically illustrate two different types of lessons that have been tried at the University of Rochester; and one new one that has not yet been tried. We encourage attendees to engage in a conversation to share their own lesson plans and strategies when reviewing this poster as well.