“We want them to be effective media users so that they can tell their story and understand the true nature of the stories that others are telling them.”
– Jason Ohler, Digital Storytelling in the Classroom
Gone are the days of having a fraction of the population bombard you with messages for your consumption. Now everyone is capable of sharing their own message with the world. The number of media messages we are consuming has increased exponentially and so must our ability to understand, analyze, and evaluate the purpose and accuracy of each message. And we are no longer just consumers. Now we are able to be a part of the creating and sharing of our own messages with the world. Not only do we need a stronger b.s. meter for what we consume but we also need to understand how to create effective media to get our own messages across.
“Media literacy includes the ability to access, understand, analyze, evaluate and create media messages on television, the internet, cell phones, and other communications technologies.” (Cable in the Classroom) Frank Gallagher’s five core concepts and key questions help to analyze, understand, and evaluate media messages:
1. All media messages are constructed. Ask yourself who created the message?
2. Media is constructed with a creative message using its own rules. What creative techniques were used to attract my attention?
3. Different people experience the same media message differently. How might different people experience the message differently?
4. Media messages have embedded values and points of view. What values, lifestyles, and points of view have been represented or omitted from the message?
5. Most messages are created to gain profit, power, and/or attention. Why was the message created and sent?
I intend to use these concepts and questions to educate my children in media literacy however, I must also fine tune these skills for myself especially when it comes to videos. I am a skeptic and discern with a weary eye any spam or images that come my way however, I am way too open to suggestion when it comes to ads, videos, and television shows (can you say reality tv junkie?). I have some brushing up to do and am excited to start with these key questions and for once I can anticipating the next political season armed with PolitiFact.com. (Thanks Colin!)
Cable in the Classroom, Media Literacy 101: I. What is Media Literacy? Retrieved from http://www.ciconline.org/Resource/media-literacy-101-Section-I
Gallagher, F. Media Literacy & Digital Citizenship video. Retrieved from http://www.ciconline.org/resource/MOOC