URI Media Education Lab to offer media education event, July 23

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KINGSTON, R.I., July 18, 2017—Fake news is spreading on the Internet, leaving readers in a quandary: How to distinguish truth from fiction?

The University of Rhode Island aims to help people navigate the new media landscape during a free discussion July 23, from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m., at AS220’s Black Box Theater, 95 Empire St., Providence.

URI’s Media Education Lab is co-sponsor of the program, called Arresting Knowledge, a national project from the Los Angeles-based nonprofit Artists for Literacy. The program’s goal is to make information accessible to people from all backgrounds.

URI is well represented in the program. Yonty Friesem, a graduate of URI’s joint Ph.D. program with Rhode Island College in education, and Jillian Belanger, who received her doctorate in English from URI, will speak. Friesem is now an assistant professor of communication at Central Connecticut State University, and Belanger is the director of the Gateway to College program at Roger Williams University, where she also teaches writing courses. Also participating will be Renee Hobbs, a communication professor at URI’s Harrington School of Communication and Media.

The event will feature a fast-paced sequence of high-interest and playful activities to motivate and inspire people to become media literacy advocates in the Fake News Era, says Hobbs.

“It’s easy for many people to feel the need to take a break from watching the news during the summer,” says Hobbs. “But these URI graduates will be doing just the opposite by participating in this event, which is designed to demonstrate how media literacy tools and skills can spark new critical ways to think about everything from fake news and misleading ads to entertainment and social media content.”

The program also features Deborah Pardes, founder of Artists for Literacy and moderator of the Arresting Knowledge program; Jared Festler, founder of Tribeworthy.com, dedicated to connecting people to the most trusted and newsworthy online articles; and Steve Klamkin, an award-winning reporter, anchor and host for Providence’s news and talk radio station, WPRO 630 AM and 99.7 FM.

Also attending will be Jeannine L. Chartier, a multimedia artist and arts educator who was left disabled by a bout with childhood polio. Chartier, director of VSA art Rhode Island—a group dedicated to artists and disability—uses digital technology and mixed media fabrication to advocate for improved access, representation and inclusion of minority groups.

To register for the July 23 event, visit ArrestingKnowledge.com. For questions, contact Kris Ellenberg at 310-430-1772 or keprmrktg@gmail.com.