Attention! Error 50…….. ugh, who cares?

Many can assume that information is power, in a positive way.  The UN has gone so far as to say that access to the Internet should be a basic human right.  While I doubt that is so people every where can suffer through mediocre food photography on Instagram, I do think that the access to different cultures is higher than ever before.  Access to this information is as marketable, I mean, greater than ever.  It is interesting then that we would care to take a closer look at who may provide us access to such information and at what cost.  We wonder if Google is making us dumb, or if we are using such crutches as writing and the Internet, but we are not thinking of who it is that provides us informational services.  (We in this case is the average consumer of information, not the engineers, developers, and marketers who actual pose and answer those very questions.)  I bring this up because our Information Age has been just as ushered in by the internet as it has been by mainstream news media channels.  News, as it occurs, is a huge business, and in an effort to maintain its own dominance and keep up with the internet, network new has gone to 24 hr formats that deliver whatever will fill the time.  Since our intuition is to listen to like minded voices we have seen a huge polarization in opinions carried by different networks.  This polarization in the US has led to a new type of ignorance that flies in the face of unhindered access.

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yeah yeah, refresh.

One of the things I have come across here at my second land grant institution, is the realization that one of the largest responsibilities that educators here have is to encourage, nurture, and require responsible consumption of information.  When we give assignments that ask for background sources, we need to embrace our student’s technologically advanced cultures and allow them to be the new centaurs that aren’t afraid to try new things.  I’m not saying Wikipedia is the answer, rather, with our guidance we can train and expose our students to the ways that allow them access to knowledge and realize what new faces of our digital economy are selling them what…  In our readings we saw that the young guns came in with consumer laptops and a defiant attitude and defeated their worthiest of opponents.  Maybe, our largest priority should be to give this newest breed of centaurs the guidance they need to be their own critics of information and credibility.  In my case I am most excited about the chance to work with them and let them learn about the popularization of science as I get to lead them through the very basics of the science that is in question.  I am talking about the bees.  You likely have heard that there is something going on with them, but what did you know before you were sold on that idea?

3 Responses to “Attention! Error 50…….. ugh, who cares?”

  • Jacob Metch says:

    I love the idea of “responsible consumption of information” as a responsibility of an educator. I think we have talked about this a couple times in this class. That it is important to embrace the technology era and all of its benefits, but help guide our students through its traps of one sided, bias soaked, sometimes false information.

  • Rafic El-Helou says:

    While I think that internet should actually be a basic human right, I agree with you that there are a lot of stuff out there that is wrong and misleading. It is our responsibility as educators to help the students filter this information responsibly and critically think what is and what is not credible.

  • i like your post. I definitely agreed with this statement “largest responsibilities that educators here have is to encourage, nurture, and require responsible consumption of information”. Professors need to embrace the the fact that students in todays society is somewhat technology dependent and that by honing that skill to more appropriate or creative uses within the classroom is very beneficial.

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