Real, flawed Users
Digitally Lit #225 – 12/07/2019
Hi all, welcome to issue #225 of Digitally Literate, thanks for stopping by. Please subscribe if you would like this to show up in your email inbox.
This week my latest research piece was finally made available online from CITE. It is titled Educate, Empower, Advocate: Amplifying Marginalized Voices in a Digital Society.
I examine how activists use digital, social technologies for the purposes of amplifying marginalized voices & enacting social change. I considered whether (& how) these texts & practices may be used in the classroom.
This week I also was at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the Literacy Research Association (LRA) presenting talking about technology, education, and computational thinking. More to come soon.
As you start thinking about the end of the year…and possibly making some changes…think about adding to your life by subtracting.
Read more about the connections between simplicity and anxiety here.
An interesting, interactive piece by Annalee Newitz looking at the current and future reach of the Internet. Newitz unpacks whether it is possible to create a form of digital communication that promotes consensus-building and civil debate, rather than divisiveness and conspiracy theories.
The piece includes threads of an interview with sci-fi author John Scalzi.
The article examines the unintended consequences that flow from new discoveries. When we think about new technologies and their role in society, we need to consider the real, flawed people who will use it…not the idealized consumers in promotional videos.
Scalzi imagines a new wave of digital media companies that will serve the generations of people who have grown up online and know that digital information can’t be trusted. Scalzi hypothesizes this new generation will care about who is giving them the news, where it comes from, and why it’s believable.
They will not be internet optimists in the way that the current generation of tech billionaires wants,” he said with a laugh. They will not, he explained, believe the hype about how every new app makes the world a better place: “They’ll be internet pessimists and realists.”
TikTok Admits It Suppressed Videos by Disabled, Queer, & Fat Creators.
I’ve heard a lot about TikTok over the last couple of months in my communities. I’ve explored the possible use of this as a replacement for Vine and playing with content creation.
This story is another example of why it is important to understand code, data privacy, algorithms, & the ethics/ethos behind these technology companies.
Belshaw was asked to respond to whether or not we should continue to question the trustworthiness of digital information…and how much worse can it get.
I always enjoy materials from Doug’s presentations not only from the ideas he shares, the format in which he shares it. We can all learn a lot from the thought and transparency he bakes in to everything. The slides are available here…and also here on the Internet Archive.
Parents at a public school district in Maryland have won a major victory for student privacy. Tech companies that work with the school district now have to purge the data they have collected on students once a year.
Experts say the district’s “Data Deletion Week” may be the first of its kind in the country.
We have to wonder why this doesn’t happen elsewhere in Pre-K up through higher education.
The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) were one of the most ambitious education effort in U.S. history. This piece asks whether the initiative failed, or it just needs more time to work.
The article suggests that more time, and a more integrated intervention were needed. These include connections between textbooks, curricular materials, and teacher development.
There is also a need to focus on early childhood education, teacher training/development/pay, school integration, and poverty alleviation programs.
As we head to the end of 2019, and the start of 2020, perhaps you might want to re-examine your screentime.
You might want to sign up for the 2020 Digital Detox from Digital Learning and Inquiry (DLINQ) group at Middlebury College. The focus of this year’s initiative is Attention in the Attention Economy.
I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.
Digitally Literate is a synthesis of the important things I find as I surf, skim, & scan the Internet each week. I take notes of everything that piques my interest, and then pull together the important stuff here in a weekly digest.