On March 21st, The LAMP attended the Media Literacy Research Symposium at Fairfield University in Fairfield, Connecticut. LAMP co-founder Katherine Fry, LAMP Education Manager Alan Berry, and lead LAMP facilitator Jules Beesley presented a panel on The Chocolate Project, a six-week summer workshop with the New York Public Library to educate youths on the big business of marketing chocolate.
The symposium brought together many critical and cultural scholars of media literacy such as Tessa Jolls, President of the Center for Media Literacy; Neil Andersen, President of The Association for Media Literacy; and Renee Hobbs, Director of the Harrington School of Communication and Media at the University of Rhode Island.
Douglas Rushkoff, author of Present Shock was also a keynote speaker and gave a riveting presentation about the “present shock” of media usage and media literacy in a hypertechnological state. His book discussed the issues technology can present with a society that is designing itself not only to keep up with technological advancements, but that is now allowing itself to be dictated by such advancements.
The symposium also provided a great opportunity to see the visions of many other scholars and discuss key issues within the media literacy movement, such as a universalized vision of media literacy, implementation of media literacy policies, and impact of social technologies on an array of ages.
The LAMP’s panel, however, not only addressed the key issues of policies, technologies and visions but also illustrated the challenges of implementing free and easily accessible public programs in media literacy. The LAMP demonstrated what it is like out teaching in the field of media literacy, and creating a space where youths of all ages can “talk back” to media, one message at a time.
At the core of the Media Literacy Research Symposium, over 100 people gathered to share their vision of creating a league of peoples within society that will not only be empowered with the knowledge and will to talk back to media, but to take an active stand against some of their pervasive practices.
– Christin Gest is an intern at The LAMP. Follow her on Twitter: @shcoolchik69