Google and the Center for Art, New Ventures, and Sustainable Development (CANVAS) partnered to launch #YOUTHink, a local magazine that aims to help in the quest of ending misinformation through media literacy education.
Google provided funding support for the development, design, and publication of the magazine, which is being initially distributed for free to 5,000 youths in disadvantaged communities all over the country.
The tech company conceived the title of the magazine to put emphasis on two elements: “youth” which is a vital force in addressing misinformation, and “critical thinking,” which is necessary to exercise before believing, posting, or sharing any information online.
“We are hard at work to connect people to trusted information and reduce the spread of harmful content by constantly updating our policies and product features. As a result, from February to September 2020 alone, over 200,000 videos related to dangerous or misleading coronavirus information were removed on YouTube. Global watch time on authoritative news content on the video platform grew by more than 75% in the first three months of 2020 as well,” said Yves Gonzalez, Head of Government Affairs and Public Policy for Google Philippines.
Gonzalez added, “We believe that addressing misinformation is an ecosystem effort and founded on education, that is why we partnered with CANVAS to publish a material that can help tackle the issue and promote critical thinking.”
Filled with data and case studies, the 42-page magazine comes in a fun and creative zine-style format to engage young readers. It covers several topics such as the types of misinformation and their negative effects, why context matters, how to identify a fact from an opinion, and how to avoid falling for fake information. Fun, expressive stickers are also included with every copy of the magazine.
Contributing writers include the following: former COMELEC Commissioner Atty. Luie Guia; infectious diseases specialist Dr. Edsel Salvana; scientist and radio and TV speaker Dr. Reina Reyes; Ateneo de Manila University assistant professor of Philosophy Dr. Jacklyn Cleofas; and UP professor specializing in research on political communication and news media effects Dr. Clarissa David.
CANVAS Founder and Executive Director Gigo Alampay shared the importance of youth-oriented informative materials like #YOUTHink in the time of COVID-19. “#YOUTHink is important, especially in the middle of a pandemic, because we need to be connected to credible information to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe. The magazine can help in educating people on how to spot real from fake information. Now more than ever, we need the power of the youth to uphold digital responsibility and critical thinking, which is crucial in addressing the infodemic.”
For more details, visit this site. For every acquisition of the magazine, CANVAS will donate two books to children from the poor and disadvantaged communities in the Philippines through the One Million Books for One Million Filipino Children Campaign.