Dutch Media Literacy Week 2018: the highlights

From 16-23 November 2018, the ninth edition of the national Media Literacy Week (Week van de Mediawijsheid) took place in the Netherlands. On this occasion, many activities were organised.

2018-12-11 Dutch Safer Internet Centre

This year's theme was: "Heb jij het onder de duim?" (in English, "Do you have it under the thumb/under control?"). With the rise of the smartphone, the thumb has become a powerful instrument. Whether we use it to scroll, swipe or click, the possibilities are endless. But not every thumb is the same, and not everyone uses it in an appropriate way. That is a growing problem. During the campaign, the Dutch Safer Internet Centre (SIC) aimed at both young and old. The popular TV presenter Lucas van de Meerendonk (NOS Jeugdjournaal, a news programme for children) was this year's campaign ambassador. He said defending the cause of media literacy was "a big honour".

How about your media literacy knowledge?
To celebrate the ninth MLW, a quizz on media literacy, the "Mediawijsheidtest" (in English, "Media literacy test") was organised on national television. BNNVARA (a Dutch public broadcaster) presenters Filemon Wesselink and Sahil Amar Aïssa tested the knowledge of viewers, the audience and seven Dutch celebrities. Singer Sabrina Starke, ice skater Irene Schouten, rapper Pepijn Lanen, socialite Koen Kardashian, actress Anouk Maas and YouTubers Marije Zuurveld and Qucee put their phones aside and competed with each other.

The broadcast can be viewed on the NPO3 website (for viewers in the Netherlands only). An online version of the test is also available.

You can also do the quiz: Heb jij het onder de duim? on the campaign website and receive tips. The quiz is based on the media literacy competence model.

Lots of research: the findings summarised

Digital inequality
How do people in different population groups use the internet and what positive and negative effects do they experience from this? The report "Digital inequality in the Netherlands in 2018" shows that the part of the population that could potentially benefit most from internet use, does so the least at this moment.

A majority of youngsters have not mastered media use
Nearly two thirds of Dutch youngsters have not mastered media use. Many youngsters do not fully understand the commercial and political interests that come with media. Furthermore, the way they make use of the possibilities of the media is limited. Read more on the Mediawijzer website.

There was also a small-scale piece of research carried out among the age group 10-12, which showed the urgency of working on media literacy. Despite about half of youngsters aged 10-12 getting a satisfactory "grade" when it comes to media literacy, 40-45 per cent of these youngsters do not recognise a distinct fake news item and fake profiles.

Youngsters with mild intellectual disability extra vulnerable online by lack of guidance in media literacy
Many care institutions do not have policy to guide youngsters with mild intellectual disability in their media use, while this group is over-represented as victim and offender when it comes to wrongdoings online. Organisations and professionals are invited to sign the Media Literacy Manifest for better guidance of these youngsters.

With more than 120 activities on the map, this year's theme "Heb jij het onder de duim?" was the point of focus in many schools, libraries and other organisations. Among the activities were workshops, podcasts, a Fortnite tournament, a media literacy debate, a pop-up lecture about privacy, trainings, an exhibition about the professions of the future, festivals, and an AppLab. There were also documentaries and radio shows about media literacy themes on national channels, as well as a "Privacytest". Find more highlights and impressions on the Mediawijzer website.

Serious game MediaMasters
With the start of the Media Literacy Week, more than 180,000 pupils were ready for the start of the yearly national competition of MediaMasters, a serious game about media literacy. Read all about the winners on the Mediawijzer website.

The "Week van de Mediawijsheid" was also covered by many national media outlets. For more information and impressions, find the elaborate report on the Mediawijzer website (in Dutch).

Mediawijzer.net would like to thank network partners and all others involved. If you have any questions or would like to contribute to the next campaign week, send an e-mail to info@mediawijzer.net. For more information about the campaign: www.weekvandemediawijsheid.nl.

Find out more information about the work of the Dutch Safer Internet Centre (SIC) generally, including its awareness raising, helpline, hotline and youth participation services, or find similar information for Safer Internet Centres throughout Europe.

Photo credit: Estera Marysia

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