Here’s my problem (well, one of them at least…)…I want to look into all the interesting tweets that come through each day. Yesterday…boo…there were none. Today…way too many to handle! And to make matters worse, I can never just stop at the initial page/site/link given! I always find something even more interesting to follow within in each one and pretty soon I’m like Alice falling down the rabbit hole!
So, to be honest, I am not exactly sure how I ended up at the National Council for the Social Studies‘ Position Statement on Media Literacy (I don’t even LIKE social studies…seriously…my very LEAST favorite subject ever…) but that ‘s where I ended up. And in skimming the statement, which I think should be of interest to ALL educators and not JUST those teaching social studies, I came across this statement that literally made me say, “Whoa,” out loud (I guess that would be WOL)…
“Less than ten corporations own the majority of the world’s media, creating a small group of wealthy individuals with tremendous power to decide who and what will be represented and what lessons will be taught (McChesney, 2003). When a small group of people has the power to create and disseminate enormous amounts of information, the diversity of ideas shrinks as the potential for abuse increases.”
Now, setting aside the English teacher in me who wants to correct the word “less” which should be “fewer,” thinking about this statementjust blows me away. Think about what this is saying. Think about what this means for what our kids see, hear, witness, experience every day! The statement doesn’t go on to list what entities are behind these corporations or what their agendas might be, but consider who or what you would want controlling everything your student/child encounters through the media. Now, I’m not trying to imply that wealthy individuals would knowingly use their extensive resources and power to manipulate others to gain even more resources and power (cough, cough), but I think, as the NCSS stated, the potential is certainly there. So…one of their conclusion is: “Teaching students to think critically about the content and the form of mediated messages is an essential requirement for social studies education in this millennium.” A statement with which I must concur, but as I said above…I would argue that this shouldn’t be the goal of JUST social studies teachers, but of all educators and parents everywhere.
My apologies…I originally came across this link thanks to a post on Derek E. Baird’s blog: Barking Robot. Thanks Derek!!