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Digital literacy workshop against disinformation in times of pandemic

UNESCO and the Public Defender of Audiovisual Communication Services in Argentina organize a three-day workshop where international experts, local public administrators, and non-governmental stakeholders from different fields will exchange knowledge to advance the digital empowerment of citizens.

In all its forms, access to information is a human right and a basic need that is jeopardized by disinformation. In the context of a pandemic, the viral spread of unchecked content increases significantly. This can even put people's lives at risk since they can make critical decisions based on false or misleading statements that no information professional has checked.

To contribute to mitigating the negative impact of disinformation, UNESCO and the Public Defender of Audiovisual Communication Services in Argentina are organizing a three-day workshop (June 8-10th, 2021), focusing on an interdisciplinary approach aimed at promoting digital literacy, reducing the harmful effect of disinformation—especially in the context of the pandemic—and advancing a shared commitment to information as a common good. You can watch it live here.

“Identifying the sources of information, unraveling the messages we interact with, and telling the difference between reliable information and manipulation have become difficult tasks. This requires a new learning process that we must expand to all of society through sustainable media and information literacy policies and strategies," said Rosa González, UNESCO's Regional Advisor for Communication and Information for Latin America and the Caribbean.

The Regional Advisor also stressed the need for "educational opportunities for all" for people to "be curious and understand the new digital environment," including the associated risks and challenges.

“Now more than ever, we need to foster a commitment to critical thinking and independent journalism. In this context of disinformation—mainly through social media—we have to defend information as a common good," she concluded.

Miriam Lewin, Public Defender of Audiovisual Communication Services in Argentina, explained that the pandemic has revealed how harmful the dissemination of false data and disinformation can be and pointed out that

“It is a broader battlefield, and an interdisciplinary approach is essential to tackle it.”

For three days, international and national experts, public administrators, and non-governmental stakeholders from different fields will exchange their views on this dynamic field that is evolving and expanding worldwide.

“The aim of this first digital literacy workshop, organized together with UNESCO, is to gather expertise and share experiences, to promote the ability we all have to process with a critical eye the information available in all types of media and to turn these resources into allies in the training and education processes," explained Lewin.

The workshop can be followed online on the YouTube channel of the Public Defender in Argentina here, on Tuesday, June 8th, 2021, at 10:30 a.m. Argentina time.