On February 16 was held the “Changing media landscapes and young people as content creators” seminar, sixth episode of the “Critical thinking and media literacy” online seminars series, organised from January 12 to February 16, 2021 by the Finnish National Agency for Education in cooperation with SALTO-YOUTH* and funded by Erasmus +.
*Find out more about SALTO-YOUTH at the end of this post
As part of the Together Thursdays’ project we want to inform our members and rural youth about opportunites provided by the European Union to learn more about topics that are relevant to them. That is why our new communications manager, Caroline, attended the webinar to find out more about the recent changes in media landscapes and their impact on young people’s use of media and worldviews in general.
The main learning objectives of the seminar were:
- To better understand the changes that have happened in media landscapes in relation to young people and the ways young people are using media nowadays.
- To increase knowledge of young people as content creators and the empowering effect this can have on them.
- To acquire new ideas on how engaging young people in media content creation can have an impact on local contexts.
The seminar was the opportunity to listen to the inspiring contributions of two communication experts: Aram Aflatuni, CEO and Founder of Gutsy Go – Make Peace Visible and Alessandro Tommasi, CEO and Co-Founder of Will Media Italia.
It was first emphasized that young people are the problem-solvers of tomorrow’s crisis and the main actors of tomorrow’s communication. The constant presence of young people online and the constant flow of information circulating through communication platforms is fundamentally changing the way young people interact with media. Experts highlighted how this use of media by youth makes them proactive citizens connected with the world and creators of media content. Nowadays, traditional models of communication are revolutionised, and young people are becoming the main generators and regulators of communication flows.
Experts also gave concrete examples of how young people can impact their community at local, national and international levels. According to Aram Aflatuni:
“Even if about half of the youth in Finland do not believe into a positive future, there is still a potential for youth to change this narrative”.
In two videos produced by Gutsy Go in collaboration with youth from different towns in Finland, we were able to discover how young people denounce bullying or help the most disadvantaged by offering free sauna turns . The result of these two initiatives is really encouraging. On one hand, youth are perceived more positively by their local community and it increases trust between generations. On the other hand, young people feel more invested in their community and more motivated to change the narrative. Alessandro Tommasi also mentioned Greta Thunberg as an ambassador for the world youth and a pro-active citizen in the communication regarding climate change topic. The seminar ended with group discussions where participants could identify concrete lessons to be learned from the contributions of our two experts.
For more information about similar events and opportunities visit the SALTO-YOUTH webpage. SALTO-YOUTH is a network of seven Resource Centres working on European priority areas within the youth field. As part of the European Commission’s Training Strategy, SALTO-YOUTH provides non-formal learning resources for youth workers and youth leaders and organises training and contact-making activities to support organisations and National Agencies (NAs) within the frame of the European Commission’s Erasmus+ Youth programme, the European Solidarity Corps, and beyond.