Media literacy that enables media stakeholders and audiences to be critical in accessing, analysing, evaluating and creating media in a variety of forms is a way forward to combat the spread of disinformation, particularly in new media, according to some speakers at the 16th Asia Media Summit.
“Media literacy initiatives should prioritise public school teachers rather than students”, said Mr Masato Kajimoto, Assistant Professor, Journalism and Media Studies Centre, University of Hongkong, during the Summit’s plenary session on “Disinformation and New Media” on 12 June 2019 in Cambodia.
Ms Anne Kruger, First Draft News Bureau Chief, Sydney, Australia, shared a similar sentiment, saying media literacy programmes should be set up in schools.
“Media literacy has become urgent as ‘societies are more divided than ever — along cultural, socio-economic, geographic, ethnic and religious lines’, and agents of disinformation are taking advantage of this environment”, she said.
Another speaker, Mr John Nery, Associate Editor and Opinion Columnist of the Philippines’ Daily Inquirer, recommended instead that any media literacy effort should start with a programme on critical thinking so that people understand how their minds and disinformation work.
Media literacy has been a core programme of AIBD in partnership with UNESCO and other organisations.