In todays media world, we have the ability to access innumerable amounts of information. Such accessibility provides a positive impact on our lives, but at the same time leaves us vulnerable in conforming to information that is not trustworthy and false. We must not be passive when we are subjected to the various types of media, we must be active. Meaning we must analyze the information at hand and use our reason to come to a conclusion as to whether or not the information is factual.
As I began reading Chapter 1 in Mediactive by Dan Gillmor, I was presented with an email that informed me of a discussion between Lt. Col. Oliver North and senator A1 Gore. I found myself in acceptance with the information the email provided. I was so intrigued over the fact that Osama Bin Laden had been a threat to Americans since 1987. As I continued reading the material I came to find out that the email was Just a form of propaganda. I was so surprised when I found out this email was fiction, and ust not trust any information unless it’s backed up by a verifiable source.
Don’t waste your time!
Order your assignment!
This made me think back to when I was in my good old Middle School days. I would trust information presented to me by my friends, never questioning if the information was trustworthy or not. Since there is an abundance of information present in the world, as I previously noted, we must be active participants in order to manage this abundance of information. It is also important to make informed Judgments when subjected to information overflow. One must question whether or not the information derived from the specific media at hand is trustworthy.
I found it interesting that “it has taken millennia for humanity to produce democratized media. ” The fact that the moveable type and printing press, way back when, is where this all started intrigues me. I never would have thought to look at those inventions as the first profound democratization of media. Chapter two, Becoming an Active User: Principles, emphasizes the fact that in todays media world we do not do enough critical hinking. We must all be critical thinkers when it comes to media.
The first principle is that we must be skeptical at all times with information we read or hear and must thoroughly check to see if it is trustworthy or not; due diligence. Journalists make errors in their researched articles and because of this we must critically think when reading or hearing in order to avoid untrustworthy information. From the Journalists’ point of view, they must be very thorough in their research so that they don’t report any false information. Having mistakes in their research makes their work not credible.
This in turn will leave the reader with doubt about every assertion not backed up by unassailable evidence. This used to happen to me with my paper assignments. I would forget to cite some of my sources and the teacher would mark me for not doing so; noting that this is not cited, and therefore l, the teacher, do not know if it’s credible or not. As a Journalist you must provide balance in your reports. One must not be biased, for they will be accused of being in favor of one side, rather han presenting the information in equal fashion and without being bias.
When read information that is in compliance with their beliefs is a hindrance in acquiring new information. You should want to be informed of many things outside of your beliefs, which is what makes one expand their knowledge. In doing so will offer new perspectives and challenge one’s assumptions and is easier to do than ever before with the great amounts of news and analysis available on the Internet. I myself enjoy acquiring new information outside of my own beliefs.
It gives me a whole new perspective on something that I would have never thought to think this way. I surf the web, read the newspaper, and other forms of information in order to expand my mind and be able to question information that conflicts with my beliefs. Chapter three, Tools and Techniques for the Mediactive Consumer, entails the ways in which we can put the former principles into practice. In todays day and age we have the ability to view all information via Internet. But obviously, this is too much information to consume on a day-to-day basis.
So we must filter out the information that does not interest us and aggregate the ones that appeal to us, through computer-assisted aggregation and/or human aggregation. During my Junior and senior year of high school in preparation for college, one website I would use was Brobile. com. This website was useful in the sense that it aggregated tips for incoming freshman as to what to bring and what not to bring, what to expect, what to do and what not to do, as well as many other helpful recommendations for incoming freshman.
A way in which e can keep track of everything we aggregate is through the use of RSS, Really Simple Syndication. This allows one to manage their interests online by programming your computer to automatically retrieve the content you care about, as well as provide publishers with an easy way to help readers retrieve it. In order to be sure of a websites credibility, one must consider four applications. The website must tell you who runs it and must note the person responsible for what’s published. The advertisements on the site should be in accordance with the content of the website.
Look up the site in the Internet Archive to find out if the website has had alterations over the years. Finally, look at the source code in order to become aware of any unusual or suspicious activity. I remember when I would be doing research for an assignment; I would click on any site that pertained to my research. I was unaware of the former applications, therefore not aware if the website was a credible source for my research. Now being informed of these applications, I am able to determine whether or not the website is reliable or Just another untrustworthy source of information.