Curated by: Luigi Canali De Rossi

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Media Literacy: Making Sense Of New Technologies And Media by George Siemens - May 23 09

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Media literacy builds an understanding of the role of media in society as well as essential skills of inquiry and self-expression necessary for citizens of a democracy. (Source: Center for Media Literacy)

Photo credit: Kristina D.C. Hoeppner

Inside this Media Literacy Digest:

  • CCK08: Socialization As Information Object - overview of the CCk08
  • The Social Data Revolution(s) - Our generation suffers more under abundant information than previous generations.
  • Videos of Recent Presentations - Videos of two recent presentations
  • Public Engagement. Public Empowerment - Open tools will produce open conversations and open thinking
  • Social Media In The Enterprise - 35+ examples of corporate social media presents a brief overview of how various organizations are beginning to use social media
  • Technology Trends - Techcrunch reviews conference discussions of technologies trends for 2009
  • Course to Dis/Course Recordings - From Courses to Dis/Course recordings are now available
  • News and Content - The news industry continues to suffer under the impact of freely available content

If you're looking for a more critical approach to making sense of how new technologies and media are affecting the way we learn, study and work, this weekly digest may help you recognize the forest from the trees.


eLearning Resources and News

learning, networks, knowledge, technology, trends

by George Siemens


CCK08: Socialization As Information Object


I finally got around to capturing a few thoughts on CCK08.

I've posted an overview of the course (as well as an earlier rudimentary attempt from 2002) on my connectivism blog: Socialization as information objects.

Now, to get ready for CCK09...


The Social Data Revolution(s)


The Social Data Revolution(s):

"In 2009, more data will be generated by individuals than in the entire history of mankind through 2008...

The second data revolution brought about a new dimension to data creation: users started to actively contribute explicit data such as information about themselves, their friends, or about the items they purchased. These data went far beyond the click-and-search data that characterized the first decade of the web."

The discussion of social data and expectations of consumers / end users resonates with my experiences. I no longer seek information for information itself.

Whether looking for a hotel or purchasing a product online, I seek social information such as ratings, comments, or event communities. However, I doubt the opening throw-away statement of more data being generated in 2009 than in all previous history.

Journal of the History of Ideas (access likely restricted) has an issue on on early information explosion that challenges assumptions that our generation suffers more under abundant information than previous generations.


Videos of Recent Presentations


Videos of two presentations I recently delivered in Iowa and New York:

  • Iowa State University's ComETS symposium: The impact of connectivism and networked learning

  • Empire State College's CDL conference: Social and Connected Learning


Public Engagement. Public Empowerment


Talk of technology quickly turns into talk of power. Who has it (power)? By what means did they attain it? By what means do they hold it? What are they attempting to do with it?

Technology embodies ideologies, and the choices made by its designers influence what its users will be able to do (or not do).

Learning management systems (LMS) - in contrast with personal learning environments / webs / networks - enable certain approaches to learning while discouraging others. An LMS also supports and fosters a certain relationship between the educator and the learner.

The ability to open or close a discussion forum or to grant and deny course access is fundamentally imbued with power. It is little surprise, therefore, that governance and public engagement are influenced by technology.

Open tools will produce open conversations and open thinking.

Public Engagement. Public Empowerment addresses the relationship between tools / technology, ideology / governance, and power:

Direct engagement in politics has been the purview of an educated and powerful few until recent times. Indeed, the role of the politician, and the executive that serves him or her has largely been to tell us, the sheep-like masses, what is good for us and to expect us to blithely follow along.

We change our minds only in the face of corruption and excess, and exercise our democratic rights to switch to a lesser evil at times of election. But oh, my! How the world has changed.

...In a hyperconnected world, our ability to readopt these denser forms of association, made sustainable by tools such as social networks, become reality.

We become the true global village, as much the neighbor to the bloke next door as some geographically remote but by association, close, neighbor with whom we share an interest.

The article occasionally moves into the Land of Happy Hype, but the central message of increased engagement in civic discourse enabled by participatory technologies is important to share.


Social Media In The Enterprise


I have a few weeks of travel coming up (first to Senegal for workshops as part of a Soros Foundation grant & elearning Africa, back to Winnipeg for a library conference, and then to Italy for the Enterprise 2.0 forum).

In preparation for the enterprise 2.0 event, I've been reviewing resources on how organizations are using social media.

35+ examples of corporate social media presents a (very) brief overview of how various organizations are beginning to use social media. Details are limited on the effectiveness of the projects, but it's starting to feel like the mid-90's when companies were proclaiming "we now have a web site!".

Underneath the hype of unrealistic expectations and attention grabbing headlines, the web developed into an indispensable part of our interaction with information.

The hype of "we're doing social media!" will likely also yield to foundational changes in how we interact with each other.


Technology Trends


Techcrunch reviews conference discussions of technologies trends for 2009.

Trends presented are fairly obvious (which is to be expected when the analysis cycle is as short as a year): next generation technology users, mobile devices, digital displays, etc.

The focus on unstructured data (they suggest within five years, 80% of enterprise data will be unstructured) and distributed webs (social networks) are important for educators to consider.


Course to Dis/Course Recordings


Last week, Martin Weller and I hosted an online conference to discuss the future of courses: From Courses to Dis/Course.

The recordings are now available.

At this stage, they are long, unedited Elluminate recordings. Which means you have to advance the recording until you get to the presentation you would like.

As much as I love Elluminate, the inability to get individual recordings is a challenge. If I suddenly inherit time, I'll chunk the recordings with Camtasia. Or if someone else is eager to do so... :)


News and Content


Education's sibling - the news industry - continues to suffer under the impact of freely available content and increased end user control permitted by the web. But it is not a field that is going away quickly or quietly. Consider the suggestion that the internet is killing news:

But, content is not necessarily news. News is the verifiable facts that trained, responsible journalists... often spend hundreds of hours tracking down and sifting through and verifying to get to the truth.

Real reporting is time-consuming and expensive. It requires a level of investment that many traditional print and broadcast news organizations can no longer afford in the face of the tsunami of free content that is the web.

The real problem is not that we have free content (as the article goes on to suggest, while classifying instances of effective amateur journalism as rare).

The real issue is that free content contrasts with the existing infrastructure of newspapers and journalism. Quality "control", vetting, and rigorous research can (and will) be a part of open content. The models will be created over time.

The newspaper industry did not emerge wholly as we know it today. It evolved in response to needs of readers and members of society. Those who lament the decline of newspapers overlook the likelihood of a similar prospect for world of open content.

Originally written by George Siemens for elearnspace and first published on May 21st 2009 in his newsletter eLearning Resources and News.

About the author


To learn more about George Siemens and to access extensive information and resources on elearning check out Explore also George Siemens connectivism site for resources on the changing nature of learning and check out his new book "Knowing Knowledge".

Photo credits:
CCK08: Socialization As Information Object - ndul
The Social Data Revolution(s) - ndul
Videos of Recent Presentations - Antonio Balaguer Soler
Public Engagement. Public Empowerment - derocz
Social Media In The Enterprise - grki
Technology Trends - Dawn Hudson
Course to Dis/Course Recordings - picpics
News and Content - lunchschen

George Siemens -
Reference: Electronic Frontier Foundation [ Read more ]
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posted by Daniele Bazzano on Saturday, May 23 2009, updated on Tuesday, May 5 2015

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