GRANDSTAND. Make media and information literacy a major national cause

The signatories to this call are particularly asking for the creation of a “media and information education fund”. (© actu.fr)

50 associations and 100 personalities involved inmedia education alarmed by the growing prevalence of fake news. They challenged the President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron and calls for the creation without delay of a “media and information education fund”. Here is their platform.

“Mr. President,

On April 24, from the first minutes of your re-election, you chose to walk in a crowd of people surrounded by children, sending a powerful message to all your citizens: your new five-year term is youth. You want to offer these young people a “better world” and “protect it better”, in a divided society.

But these young people, who have to face the huge challenge of climate and breathe new life into our aging democracy, find themselves now disarmed in the face of the constant flow of information. , posts and messages, which they struggle with. evaluation of reliability and relevance. Not all young French people have the tools to form a informed and healthy opinion, they are attracted to dangerous spirals, which can lead to isolation and radicalization.

This plague will affect the whole society : no social class, no age group survived. Today, one in three French people subscribe to one conspiracy theory. Beliefs take precedence over rationality. Many of our fellow citizens are turning away from medicine and science. Confidence in the media and institutions is at an all -time low, directly endangering our democracy.

We, journalists, educators, educators, researchers, trainers, celebrities, working in the field, interact with the public who are in turmoil every day. And we were very worried.

At school, millions of students have left their establishment without acquiring skills essential to applying their citizenship in the digital age. Not all teachers benefit from adequate training to stimulate students ’critical thinking. Often, media and information literacy, which is included in the curriculum but no dedicated time, is solely the responsibility of individual initiatives. The lack of means and resources it allocates is obvious.

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Outside of school, despite investment in some ministries, support for actors in the field remains irregular and incomplete. Dozens of associations, areas of knowledge and culture, businesses and honest citizens are fighting to protect the quality of information and sharpening the critical spirit of the French. But this commitment is not evenly distributed throughout the territory, to the point that information sharing now exacerbates the existing social and economic divide.

Mr. President, the failure of the State on the subject has a cost: the platforms, especially responsible for the problem, rush into this niche, damaging the independence and plurality of the media, with no other quality guarantee than their self -behavior.

We, actors and artisans in media and information literacy on a daily basis, are now forming a rich, diverse and inclusive coalition. We want to establish a coordinated and effective action throughout the territory.

Mr. President, the situation is necessaryto elevate media and information literacy to the rank of a major national cause.

To translate this into practice, we ask you to do without delay an “media and information literacy fund”. This fund can be funded by the State and a fraction of the digital business tax. It can support actors in the field, in direct contact with public authorities and elected officials, at the national and local levels.

Building a real media and information literacy policy can only be achieved at this price. This investment is a huge opportunity for France. A great hope for these young people who are so dear to our hearts. Together, we will put France ahead in the fight against online disinformation and manipulation and we will shape true citizenship in the digital age, anywhere and for everyone.

Mr. President, France is lucky to have countless actors on the ground mobilized to make our country an enlightened and united nation. There must be political will. The challenge is enormous.

Are you ready to get it? »

First signed : The Education League, Association for Media Education, Libraries Without Borders, Albert London Prize Association, SCAM, Savoir*Devenir, Fake Off Association, Léo Lagrange Federation, Delphine Minoui, senior reporter, Jérôme Bouvier, the Assises du Journalisme, David André, director , Albert Moukheiber, doctor of Cognitive Neurosciences, Between lines, Reporters Without Borders, Live Magazine, Philippe Merieu, honorary professor, Les Francas, Rose-Marie Farinella, teacher, Romain Badouard, researcher of information science and communication …

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