GRANDSTAND. “Mr. President, make media and information literacy a big national cause”

“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 this youth a “better world” and “protect it better”, in a more segregated society.

But these young people, who must face the great challenge of climate and breathe new life into our aging democracy, find themselves now disarmed in the face of the continuing flow of information, posts and messages, the reliability of which they are trying to check. .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 has affected the whole of society: no social class, no age group can be saved. Today, one in three French people subscribe to a 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.

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 loyal citizens are fighting to protect the quality of information and bitter 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 calls for raising media and information literacy to the level of a major national cause.

To do this, we ask you to create a “media and information literacy fund” without delay. This fund can be funded by the State and a fraction of the digital business tax. It may be possible to support actors in the field, 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? »

See the full list of signatories and support this call here

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