Highlights of the Media Literacy Week in the Netherlands

  • Awareness
  • 16/12/2019
  • Dutch Safer Internet Centre

When do you choose to be "on" or "off"? It's with this question that the tenth edition of the Dutch Media Literacy Week kicked off, taking place from Friday, 8 to Friday, 15 November 2019. The Dutch Safer Internet Centre (SIC) looks back on a wonderful campaign with more than 200 activities all over the country and online.

On or off?

The 2020 theme of the Dutch Media Literacy was "Aan of uit?" (in English, "on or off?"). Indeed, in an increasingly digital world, we have to make choices all the time. A quick look at your WhatsApp messages, or an early night? Do you let your child use the tablet alone, or do you read a book together? Do you take care of your daily banking yourself, or do you let someone else do it for you?

The key message of the Media Literacy Week, for parents, children, grandfathers, grandmothers, friends, neighbours, educators, teachers, social organisations, companies and the government was the same: "let's learn from each other, and help each other". To be "on" wisely and participate in the world around us. And to opt for the "off" button every now and then, because your offline life also deserves your attention.

With over 200 activities on the map and handy materials to support the Media Literacy Week, the campaign website also offered extensive tips for young people, adults, parents and seniors around the theme. A 2020 novelty was #WvdM Live, a live blog through which all highlights were shared as they were happening, during the week.

Pictures of the Dutch Media Literacy Week

Photos: The Smallest Privacyshow of the Netherlands (photo by Lucas Kemper), Opening Youseum

From magic shows to virtual escape rooms

During the week, activities included exhibitions, festivals, debates with local mayors, a magic show, workshops for teachers, a reading about digital legacy, conferences, a dance performance, theatre for parents, a virtual escape room and courses for seniors – all related to media literacy.

The week was also marked by the launch of great initiatives and materials, such as a new platform for podcasts for children, an Emoji Voter to influence official emoji proposals, and the opening of the art experience "Youseum".

"Grey and Wise" Media Festival

With 400 attendees, the first edition of the "Grijs en Wijs Mediafestival" for seniors was a big success. Together with younger generations, they were able to dive into the world of digital media – which is needed, as recent research shows that this age group benefits the least from internet use, although they could benefit the most from it. You can watch the aftermovie below.

Special Media Awards & Media Literacy Manifest

Another big event during the Media Literacy Week was the Special Media Awards show. On this festive evening, prizes were awarded to the best media producers with a mental disability – as one of the winners put it, enrichment instead of disability.

Pictures of the SPecial Media Award in the Netherlands

Photos: Angela Jutte

Prior to the Award show, the Media Literacy Manifest "Young people with a mental disability have the right to a nice online life too", with more than 500 signatures, was handed to Rick Brink, the "Minister of Handicap Affairs". At the time of writing, the manifest has been signed over 800 times. You can watch the aftermovie of the Special Media Awards below.

MediaMasters: serious game for schools

A record 200,000 pupils aged 10-12 were registered for the national competition of the serious game MediaMasters. MediaMasters introduces primary school pupils to the opportunities and threats of (digital) media in a fun way. They get to work on media literacy themes such as social media, information skills, programming, privacy, cyberbullying, cybersecurity, creating vlogs and online behaviour (or "netiquette"). Working together as a team, the pupils complete assignments both in the classroom and at home, and must demonstrate their media savviness by taking quizzes and successfully completing certain tasks. In doing so, they are challenged to develop a critical outlook and a conscious attitude.

Two classes were named the "most media literate classes of the Netherlands".


Thank you!

The Dutch SIC and the Dutch Media Literacy Netwerk would like to thank all partners and contributors for a successful campaign. The next national Media Literacy Week (Week van de Mediawijsheid) will take place from Friday, 6 to Friday, 13 November 2020. If you have any questions or suggestions, please send an e-mail to info@mediawijzer.net.

For further information, read the Dutch Media Literacy Week report (in Dutch).

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 on the Better Internet for Kids (BIK) portal, or find similar information for Safer Internet Centres throughout Europe.

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  • Awareness
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  • Dutch Safer Internet Centre

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