Media Monitoring Africa Launches Critical Media Literacy Campaign

Media Monitoring Africa launches the CRITICAL campaign to empower citizens to combat mis- and disinformation ahead of the 2024 elections. The campaign focuses on fostering critical media and digital literacy skills among adults to promote informed decision-making.

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Nitish Verma
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Media Monitoring Africa Launches Critical Media Literacy Campaign

Media Monitoring Africa Launches Critical Media Literacy Campaign

Media Monitoring Africa (MMA) has launched the CRITICAL campaign, a movement aimed at empowering South African citizens to combat mis- and disinformation in the digital age, particularly ahead of the 2024 elections. The campaign focuses on fostering critical media and digital literacy skills among adults, recognizing the importance of upskilling citizens to navigate the digital landscape effectively.

Why this matters: As the spread of mis- and disinformation can have significant consequences on the democratic process, promotingmedia literacy is crucial in ensuring citizens make informed decisions at the polls. By empowering citizens to critically evaluate information, MMA's campaign can help mitigate the risks of election interference and manipulation.

MMA has been promoting media literacy for 26 years, initially focusing on children. However, with the increasing significance of digital literacy, the organization has shifted its approach to empower adults to champion combating mis- and disinformation. American journalist Linda Ellerbee emphasizes the critical nature of media literacy, stating, "Media literacy is not just important, it's absolutely critical." Kristin Lord and Katya Vogt, writing for the Stanford Social Innovation Review, argue that improving people's media and information literacy is essential to combat misinformation and its effects.

The CRITICAL campaign provides a set of practical tips to help people engage in a more considered, critical manner. The campaign will focus on a different skill each week, encouraging participants to test themselves and spot mis- or disinformation. MMA has worked with local experts to develop accessible and engaging content.

The CRITICAL campaign will be led by MMA and its supporters, with the goal of working with media partners and civil society to ensure the campaign is ongoing and adaptable to emerging needs. The focus is on empowering citizens to combat mis- and disinformation, particularly in the context of the 2024 elections. "Mis- and disinformation wants us not to think, not to pause, not to be critical," the author states.

As South Africa prepares for the 2024 elections, the CRITICAL campaign's mission to promote media literacy and combat the spread of mis- and disinformation is more crucial than ever. By equipping citizens with the skills to critically engage with media content, MMA aims to foster a more informed and resilient electorate.

Key Takeaways

  • Media Monitoring Africa launches CRITICAL campaign to combat mis- and disinformation.
  • Campaign focuses on fostering critical media and digital literacy skills among adults.
  • Media literacy is crucial to ensure informed decisions at the polls and mitigate election interference.
  • CRITICAL campaign provides practical tips to help people engage in a more critical manner.
  • Campaign aims to empower citizens to combat mis- and disinformation ahead of 2024 elections.