Combating Misinformation through Media Literacy

Nowadays, the spreading of misinformation as “alternative facts” poses major societal threats and risks that infiltrate every aspect of our life. Fake news and misleading narratives are challenges that require constant monitoring, supervision and it is high time we took steps to address this topic, raise awareness and provoke reflection and action on misinformation and media literacy issues

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Combating Misinformation through Media Literacy grants

The Department of Communication and Internet Studies at the Cyprus University of Technology, the Horizon 2020 European project Co-Inform, the Cyprus Pedagogical Institute of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sport and Youth, and the U.S. Embassy in Cyprus, announced a funding program to promote a multilateral approach in addressing the problem of misinformation, as a follow-up action of the 2019 Combating Misinformation through Media Literacy conference.

As a result of the competition, the Evaluation Committee chose the following two proposals for funding: “Antibodies to MisInformation” (Open University Cyprus) and “Co-creating Media Literate Youth” (Cyprus Youth Council).

Antibodies to MisInformation

Open University Cyprus

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In the “Antibodies to MisInformation” project we design, develop and apply to pilot schools a model experiential program for media education against MisInformation.

The main goal is to develop the metacognitive attitudes and skill of adolescent students of critically coping with information in digital media. We use climate change as an exemplary case study for digital misinformation, since it is a (literally and figuratively) hot subject on which a lot of both information and misinformation is available. The educational program is being designed and applied by the participating students themselves, members of the CyberSafety Youth Panel in cooperation and guidance by journalists, educators and policy makers.

This project is funded by through the Cyprus University of Technology under the “Combating Misinformation through Media Literacy” grants, by the Embassy of the United States of America to the Republic of Cyprus. The “Combating Misinformation through Media Literacy” grant is also supported by the Cyprus Pedagogical Institute of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sport and Youth, and the Horizon 2020 Co-Inform project (#770302), the Open University of Cyprus, and other partners.

Visit the Antibodies to Misinformation project webpage and Facebook page.

Co-creating Media Literate Youth

Cyprus Youth Council 

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Cyprus Youth Council is managing the project “Co-Creating Media Literate Youth”.  The aim of this project is to introduce young people of Cyprus, as well as the general public, to media literacy concepts, tools, and skills, such as verification tools and structural issues in media that lead to the rise of misinformation. The project also aims to develop awareness on how misinformation affects democratic processes and leads to the rise of extremism, racism, sexism and other kinds of hate speech as well as to address examples where stereotypes in certain subjects such as gender equality, climate change, LGBTQI+ rights, are wrongly promoted.

The project is financed by the Cyprus University of Technology, under a partnership with the U.S. Embassy Cyprus, the Cyprus Pedagogical Institute of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports of Cyprus and the E.U.’s Horizon 2020 Co-Inform project.

As part of the project “Co-Creating Media Literate Youth”, the Cyprus Youth Council is organising 10 online workshops on media literacy, between December 2020-January 2021, open to youth and the general public, with subjects related to misinformation and fake news. Moreover, the project aims to draft a toolkit to address misinformation and promote verification tools (February 2021) as well as to draft a Policy Paper (March 2021), which will be used by the Cyprus Youth Council and will be promoted to decision making structures of Cyprus. Lastly, a big conference where the results of the project will be presented to officials, technocrats, experts, the academia, youth and to the wider public, will be organised in May 2021.

For more information regarding the project “Co-Creating Media Literate Youth” please contact Cyprus Youth Council at info@cyc.org.cy or by phone at 22878316.

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