Watch This Video! That’s an Order!

Last week, I had the good fortune to talk to a gifted teacher at Brebeuf High School who teaches a course in digital literacy: not “how to” use or program a computer, but how to navigate the Internet–how to recognize “click bait,” how to understand and use social media, how to beware of confirmation bias….in short, critical thinking for a digital world.

During our discussion, he showed me this video. It’s a short four minutes. WATCH IT.


  1. Thankfully this interesting video was closed captioned; few are. If I followed the train of thought correctly, researching before forwarding is a form of vaccine to stop the spread of these “germs”? One recent example is the AOL news item headed, “Obama wants to force Americans to do this”; the article didn’t report force but a suggestion to require people to vote which is used successfully in other countries…no force or requirement refered to by President Obama. I research many positive as well as negative posts I receive; using numerous available web sites. Recently I mentioned spending four days researching an anti-Obama newsletter containing 24 complaints and accusations, almost every one was refutable and the few that were loosely based on fact were misleading and out of context and one was a quoted joke from an episode of “The Simpsons” posted as fact in an Obama speech. Putting aside the fact that it was anti-Obama; consider the fact that I found countless versions of the same list of 24 accusations in different formats, some very professional and coming from known organizations and others haphazardly posted. The fact is that it was a “germ” spread far and wide and simply forwarded without thinking or researching the sources item by item but spread like an uncovered sneeze through cyber space. We must think for ourselves and seek facts is the message I got from the video; please tell me if I misunderstood.

  2. I try to think of the internet/social media as a tool, nothing more. However, I know there are a lot of people who seem to have an almost romantic attraction to them. You see them fondling their phones in public and avoiding eye contact with other humans. My wife has a Facebook account; I do not. After I see the things other post on Facebook, I believe that I made the right decision.

  3. Most of us learn “social” through baby senses observing that others like us are at a minimum benign and most are helpful to a fault and also make us feel better about the scary world outside of the womb.

    Social media began long before Homo Sapiens did, about 500,000 years ago. We’ve had quite a while to improve it, and we have.

    Today’s social media is almost unlimited in range so that all thoughts have at least the potential of worldwide domination.

    But the power of media doesn’t, and never has, effect the quality of those thoughts. They are good and bad, smart and dumb, useful and destracting,

    So, as always, the recipients are left with the responsibility of sorting the wheat from the chaff. Just lots more of both today.

    Just as this video is cute and useful and informative others are terrible in all respects except for their attraction to broken minds. I understand ISIS exists as a primarily social media creation.

    So the situation we are in is like we brought about in the nuclear age when bombs became oh so more destructive that we had to become oh so more thoughtful about pulling their trigger.

    So no new skills are required today in the light of more powerful media, but we do have to sharpen them as the dull can easily become the crazy through the effects of ill considered media.

    It’s the story of civilization.

  4. Thanks for the video. I’ve already shared it with a friend who regularly receives the dreaded “forwarded emails”.

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