Are Your Teens Media Literate?
If you’re reading this text, you’re literate. But are you media literate? Can you read TV, ads, music, and Facebook posts beyond the texts and images shown to deduce meaning, point of view, and goal of any form of information you are exposed to?
The Media is regarded as any communication channels through which news, entertainment, education, data, or promotional messages are disseminated. In Nigeria alone, according to research, as of January 2021, there are 104.4 million internet users in Nigeria, accessing different contents.
When you learn to read the messages, the media sends and how they send them, it’s called media literacy
Media has become an inseparable part of the everyday life of the vast majority of this age, without exception to any age group. From the clock radio that wakes us up in the morning until we fall asleep watching the late-night talk show, we are exposed to hundreds–- even thousands–- of opinions, images, and ideas not only from television but now also from social networks, newspaper headlines, magazine covers, movies, websites, video games, billboards, etc.
Teens of this generation spend most of their time daily, consuming media content from various channels as newspapers, magazines, TV, radio, billboards, direct mail, Smartphones, SMS, and the internet.
When considered objectively, the media has the potential to impact consumers both positively and negatively.
Creating and sharing media in a digital environment has become an increasingly important feature of how young people communicate and engage with each other and with the wider world. Young people are actively manipulating media to take part in social and cultural life, to pursue their interests, and to express themselves. In the same way, they are as well been affected negatively when they lack the required skills to access the media.
Becoming Media literate, one must first understand the fact that the main goal of the media is to pass across/convey certain messages to the public/target audience, and those messages are constructed strategically to meet a certain objective. Another basic knowledge needed by the teen to begin the journey to becoming media literate is that “Not all the messages passed are a true representation of what they convey”. So when you are reading media content, be able to differentiate real from reconstructed information and the reason for any change in forms.
Above all, you are to have the fact that you have the right to believe or disregard any messages you see or read in your mind because no one can hold you from making a decision at any point.
Finally, Because you will need information in fulfilling your purpose in life, and most of them are contained in the form of text, images, and sound, you have to beware of false information that can derail, distract or destroy your innocent intention of using the media; and this can be attained when you have sound knowledge of the way the media operates and influences our decision, habit, and behavior daily.
On this note, I want to welcome you to a journey to becoming a wise media user as a teenager and young adult for your destiny fulfillment. Remember to visit this site next time for the continuation of this article.