The J. Willard Marriott Library at the University of Utah will host an hour-long virtual panel discussion on media literacy beginning at noon on Thursday.
Reading Behind the Headlines will center on topics like identifying fake news, the nuances between misinformation and disinformation, the role of social media, among others.
“Being media literate isn’t just about recognizing fake news but being aware of how information is gathered and then shared,” stated panelist Marcie Young Cancio, assistant professor of journalism and digital media at Salt Lake Community College.
Young Cancio explained that something doesn’t have to be overtly false to be damaging.
“Information presented out of context or video in tidy little clips often keeps us from considering the bigger picture, which chips away at our ability to think critically and allows for us to settle into a very one-sided mindset. That’s where the real danger lies,” said Young Cancio, who is also the executive director of Amplify Utah, a media literacy and engagement non-profit she founded last summer.
Panelist Ana Luiza Ramos, former assistant editor at The Globe and current editor-in-chief at The Daily Utah Chronicle, said being able to recognize disinformation in media has become increasingly important.
“Now, more than ever, students need to figure out for themselves what legitimate news look like,” said Ramos, who transferred to the U from SLCC in 2019. “We have a responsibility to our schools to be as unbiased and fair as possible so our students can decide where they stand using the proper information.”
The event — which will be livestreamed via Facebook — will be moderated by Allyson Mower, the head of scholarly communication and copyright at the J. Willard Marriott Library. Additional speakers include Caroline Ballard, host of “All Things Considered” on KUER News; Eric Peterson, executive director of The Utah Investigative Journalism Project and chair of the Utah SPJ Headliners Chapter; and Sheena McFarland, director of marketing and communication at the David Eccles School of Business.
Visit the J. Willard Marriott Library Facebook page for more information.