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Webinar for Polish Teachers on Teaching about Disinformation

Screenshot 2023-04-27 at 12.36.11

On March 30, 2023, the second webinar in the series “How, what and why to teach about disinformation?” was organized by the Central European Digital Media Observatory (CEDMO) team in Poland. 

This time we focused on responding to disinformation messages in our environment.

Probably each of us, in private and professional situations – in a conversation with a cab driver, at a family meeting, in a classroom, in a teacher’s room – has encountered people who believe disinformation messages and conspiracy narratives.

Of course, we can ignore this. However, research shows that face-to-face communication is essential in countering such attitudes. Besides, in some instances, for example, in discussions with students, we simply – as educators – need to respond.

How do we do this – effectively, substantively, and in such a way that we do not expose ourselves to aggressive and pointless exchanges?

We went searching for answers in two areas:

  1. Simple online tools can help demonstrate that something is a disinformation message. How do you find the source of the message? Where did the photo come from? Who took it and when? We have uncomplicated but effective tools for this, also used by professional fact-checkers.
  2. Communication competence allows one to correctly interpret the different planes of communication of the conversation partner and respond adequately to this communication. We will present concrete examples of applying the recommendations of communication specialists and psychologists in practice.

This time the webinar included special guests:

  • Anna Mierzyńska, information analyst, author of the book The Destructive Effect: how disinformation affects our lives (Agora, 20022)
  • Adam Majchrzak, fact-checker from the Demagogue Association and the University of Gdansk
  • Dr. Jakub Kuś, psychologist from SWPS University

Tomasz Wołodźko from SWPS University moderated the conversation.

The webinar (in Polish) can be viewed here.

We also encourage you to watch the first webinar, which addressed the causes of the spread of disinformation. We also shared specific ideas on how to talk to young people about disinformation to arouse their interest and show the importance of the problem. What examples and tools to present to them? How to teach critical thinking with concrete examples?

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