Media literacy programe
A new programme, which enables students and seniors to distinguish fake news and propaganda from truthful information, has been developed together with the Vilnius Institute of Political Analysis (VIPA). The methodology of lesson plans has been prepared and presented to schools, which will allow teachers to incorporate critical thinking into their curricula. Steps taken to strengthen the ability of citizens to critically evaluate and use the information provided in traditional and new media will develop their resilience to fake news. The developers of the programme worked with schoolchildren in upper grades studying in five minority schools in south-eastern Lithuania, students of the University of the Third Age, visitors of public libraries, and teachers in formal and non-formal education. There were two live broadcasts (on February 20, 2018 and March 6, 2018) for the students of the University of the Third Age and visitors of public libraries. They focused on how disinformation functions and what role the media plays in disseminating or disclosing it. VPAI experts Donatas Puslys, Simas Čelutka and Algirdas Davidavičius and cultural policy analyst Skaidra Trilupaityte participated in the live broadcasts. The broadcasts were watched in about 200 Lithuanian libraries. The Critical Thinking Index Test was prepared and presented at the discussion festival “Exactly!” The test was adapted for young people, uploaded online and presented in the form of a quiz where the users could receive the undergraduate or graduate degrees of a troll or an elf. The test received 10,867 views, and over 7,400 respondents completed the questionnaire. In addition, fake news is being constantly sought, deconstructed and, along with explanatory information, published on the Facebook account of the OLF partner VIPA at #MelųMaišelis (#APackOfLies). Since the launch of the project, 21 news items have been published, each time reaching from 1,000 to 23,000 Facebook users.