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News and Media: 3. What is media and media literacy?


What is media?

A definition of media is the main means of mass communication using platforms such as broadcasting, publishing, and the internet. In its simplest form, media is a means of communication, as radio and television, newspapers, magazines, and the internet, that reach or influence people widely.

So what is media literacy?

Here is a definition of media literacy taken from the book Media Literacies: a critical introduction (link to ebook below) :

"Media Literacy is a set of competencies that enable us to interpret media texts and institutions, to make media of our own, and to recognize and engage with the social and political influence of media in everyday life. ”

(Hoechsmann & Poyntz, 2012, 1).

Media Literacy - without the jargon

What does media literacy mean to me?

Media literacy is the ability to...

  • access
  • analyze
  • evaluate
  • create and act using all forms of communication.

It's an essential life skill that enables you to become a critical thinker and an effective communicator. Having this skill empowers you to think critically about the content you find when accessing a media outlet.

In it's simplest form, media literacy is having the...

  • knowledge
  • understanding
  • and the ability to use various types of media