Media Literacy Learning Opportunities in Libraries Around Europe
30 November 2020
As part of a joint project within the EU ‘Preparatory Action on Media Literacy for All’, several libraires around Europe are offering unique Media Literacy learning opportunities for their communities.
Over the past months, questions and concerns around online mis- and dis-information, algorithmic biases and other challenges with online content delivery have been prominent. The ‘disinfodemic’ of unreliable information around COVID-19 vividly demonstrated the drastic impacts these challenges can have.
Alongside this, we saw concerning examples of misinformation around climate change or political processes, conspiracy theories, and social media platforms taking new steps to try to address these issues.
All this highlights the need for equitable, effective and sustainable measures to address the challenges of misinformation. In this context, many libraries around the world have been working to offer media and information literacy learning opportunities – an approach that puts user empowerment at the heart of the response.
As highlighted earlier this year, IFLA is working on a project coordinated and curated by a Berlin-based NGO Tactical Tech, within the framework of the EU ‘Preparatory Action on Media Literacy for All’.
Earlier in 2020, a group of librarians – from Ireland, Lithuania, Slovenia and the Netherlands – joined an online training and prepared to deliver media literacy interventions for their communities with the newly developed Tactical Tech Glass Room Misinformation Edition exhibition materials.
Over the part months, many of these libraries have launched (and some have already completed) their events and interventions. They have come up with creative ways to continue offering media literacy learning opportunities in different circumstances – from pre-recorded walkthroughs to QR-codes, online webinars and more!
Through their work, the host libraries are helping users take better decisions around online privacy and better understand the different types of misleading information, tailored content delivery, deepfakes and other elements of the online information environment.
Here are the events that have been launched so far – with more on the way!
In Lithuania, the Klaipeda I. SimonaitytÄs Public Library, Utena A. and M. Miskiniai Public Library, and the Martynas MaÅ¾vydas National Library of Lithuania all hosted hybrid in-person and online interventions in October. Physical exhibitions – including posters, video and book displays – were arranged in large spaces to ensure visitors’ safety; and virtual workshops and walkthroughs were available for the public over throughout the time of the exhibition.
To find out more about the exhibitions that took place in Lithuania, you can visit the National Library website!
In Slovenia, the SreÄko Vilhar Public Library in Koper is now hosting a virtual exhibition – including a pre-recorded walkthrough and opportunities to join livestreamed workshops and walkthroughs!
Want to find out more and explore the resources available in Slovene? Take a look at the SreÄko Vilhar Public Library website for more details.
In Ireland, the dlr LexIcon library in Dún Laoghaire has developed and launched an extensive video series, unveiling new exploratory and informative pieces on media literacy every week! With both pre-recorded pieces and opportunities to tune into a livestreamed workshop, there are many ways for users to get engaged.
You can find out more about upcoming virtual events and look back on the published videos on the library’s website, and explore a wide range of topics – from the specific case of COVID-19 disinformation to how online platforms work.
In the meantime, the Carrickmacross & Clones libraires in Monaghan County had employed a creative solution to adapt to the circumstances – putting up the poster exhibits in library windows, raising awareness around the challenges of misinformation even when the library doors are closed.
And in the Netherlands, the Rozet library in Arnhem has just launched their exhibition last week, with exciting learning opportunities available until the end of the year!
Dutch-speakers can find out more on the library’s website.
Want to find out more about online misinformation, privacy, and learn tips and tricks to support your digital wellbeing? Explore the online exhibition at https://www.theglassroom.org/misinformation/exhibition/ and join the conversation!