Senator Dodd Combats Fake News Epidemic with Media Literacy Bill

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(From Press Release) – California State Senator Bill Dodd (D-Napa) recently introduced a new bill to incorporate media literacy education into school curriculums. Media literacy is the ability to analyze and evaluate information consumed from various media outlets such as websites, social networking sites. television, and radio. Adolescents can spend up to nine hours a day absorbing media from these various sources.

“The rise of fake and misleading news is deeply concerning. Even more concerning is the lack of education provided to ensure people can distinguish what is fact and what’s not,” said Senator Bill Dodd. “Through new technology news has never been more readily available. However, the quality of that information varies widely. By giving students the proper tools to analyze the media they consume, we can empower them to make informed decisions.”

The prevalence of fake news garnered national attention in the recent election, where in the final months of the Presidential campaign, false and misleading stories from hoax websites outperformed actual news stories in terms of social media engagement. This flood of information can make it difficult for the public to differentiate between reputable news sources and false or misleading claims. The practice of advertisements masquerading as news has also seen an increase in recent years. A recent Stanford study found that 82 percent of middle school students struggled to distinguish advertisements from news stories.

Under Dodd’s legislation, the California Board of Education’s Instructional Quality Commission will be responsible for developing the framework for incorporating media literacy into school curriculums. The legislation will also see that media literacy training opportunities are made available for teachers in California. The bill should receive its first committee hearing within the next couple of months.

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6 thoughts on “Senator Dodd Combats Fake News Epidemic with Media Literacy Bill”

  1. Marina Kalugin

    And we are supposed to believe anything this man says or stands for?

    After the 6.3 million PLUS of independent expenditures by the likes of PGE and Chevron, and what numerous realtors in the Winters/ Solano/Napa/Sonoma counties have shared with me as to why those companies went all out for Dodd..

    Fake news is what is all over CNN and DV etc..  real news can be found in RT and AlJazeera, .though someone recently told me that AJZ was no longer. .. Anyone know?

    .oh and of course FB. .don’t forget FB….. for REAL news .  real friends all over this planet who are really there and in the know tend to share with me on FB..

    1. Jaroslaw Waszczuk

      Marina

      Please have some respect for  Senator Dodd. Maybe I was wrong stating  that his initiative is a waste of time and tax payers money.

      The article informed us :

      “The practice of advertisements masquerading as news has also seen an increase in recent years. A recent Stanford study found that 82 percent of middle school students struggled to distinguish advertisements from news stories.”

      Seems to me that kids must have some tool like the “Dodd, Dodd ! ” alarm on the computers and on  the smart phones to know what what to read and what  not to read .  I don’t believe that Governor Jerry  Brown will jump and  will sign this bill with  the out of the  respect to Senator Dodd and to Governor Brown.

    2. David Greenwald

      “And we are supposed to believe anything this man says or stands for?”

      Here’s an interesting question – has he ever actually said something untrue? I may not agree with him on some issues, but from what I’ve seen, he appears to be a rather straight shooter.

    3. Eric Gelber

      Marina – The fact that you would cite Facebook and Al Jazeera as credible news sources but CNN and the Vanguard as sources of fake news certainly suggests you would benefit from the curriculum the Dodd bill would require. Learning to think critically and recognize logical fallacies are important skills that should be part of a basic education. Dodd’s bill should be considered on its merits, not based solely on his funding sources. Although financial interest is a factor that is relevant to an analysis in many instances, I’m not sure how you believe that’s the case here.

      1. Jaroslaw Waszczuk

        FBI and NSA can’t determine today which news is fake and which is not . I think Senator Dodd should concentrate his knowledge and skill in more useful way like his  Consumer Protection Bill in Response to Wells Fargo Scandal.

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