The social Web is, in essence, a huge popularity context, Digital Natives blogger Sarah Zhang points out, with even Google search rankings based on how many people visit and link to the sites in your search results. We can't afford to assume "that what is popular is also most worthy" or we stand to miss a whole lot of quality material that hasn't yet hit the public radar. Sarah writes about how people and organizations try to game the system to appear to have widespread grassroots popularity ("astroturfing") – and also how Web users can often tell and be put off by said. But how can we and our children assess the quality of the information we're seeking? That's where media literacy comes in – why it's so important and why its top practitioners, librarians, are so important in the current and enduring information glut. But media literacy is not only about content we consume. It's also about intelligently handling communication and behavior via email, IM, phone texts, or one's profile) – what's going out as well as what's coming in. Constantly reworking the algorithms is great, but critical thinking is essential.
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NetFamilyNews – by Anne Collier
- What are we really seeing in the social media fishbowl?
- Spoiler alert: Kid loves teaching Twitter to Dad
- At the IGF: Youth participation = greater youth e-safety
- Enabling peer protection: Knowledge is empowerment
- Millennials’ changing social media use: Survey
- Heard of Twitch? Amazon has!
- Dealing with the nasties online
- Leadership in bullying prevention and so much more
Analysis & News – by Larry Magid
- High school kids show strong support for First Amendment
- UN bringing child rights into the digital age
- IGF attendees complain about censorship in Turkey while some advocate it for youth
- Internet Governance Forum topics include human rights, network neutrality and child protection
- Protecting children online needs to allow for their right to free speech
- It’s time for schools to upgrade both technology and pedagogy
- Why Google (and Facebook) should admit kids under 13
- As Ferguson struggles, Georgia teens create app to rate police departments