Media surrounds us, from the books we read, to the music we listen to, to the films we watch. It entertains, organises public opinion, and keeps us informed about the world around us. Technology, however, has changed the way we consume and interact with media. No longer are we passive audiences; we now have the power to create content, and at the touch of only a few buttons. To say that social media has enabled this is an understatement. Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, the list goes on - they give billions the platforms to express themselves to the world, and for information to flow and be accessed seamlessly. This has paved the way for several new dangers. We create echo chambers by only seeking out content that we agree with; we rely less on credible gatekeepers to provide information, and fake news has become a mainstay. In GSP162 Contemporary Media Literacy, we will study the evolution of traditional media and the birth of social media, along with their strengths and pitfalls. We will also explore the emerging threat of fake news, and equip students with knowledge on how to identify fact from fiction. Beyond that, we look at how the advertising industry has had to rethink its strategies in response to the birth of digital media, and how companies are increasingly influencing the purchasing choices of consumers. Overall, this course will empower students with the skills to critically access, analyse, evaluate, and create media messages.
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: Every semester