President of Latvia and Latvian Youth Panel discuss the impact of disinformation on the general perceptions about Latvia

The Chancery of the President of Latvia, in cooperation with the Latvian Safer Internet Centre (SIC) and the global development and education organisation "IREX" within the Global Media and Information Literacy Week 2022 organised the discussion "The image of my Latvia. How to distinguish true information from disinformation?" at the Latvian Presidential Palace.  

The discussion was organised to raise awareness about the issue of of disinformation, misinformation, fake news, and propaganda, all of which have become vastly widespread and common on the internet since the beginning of war in Ukraine.   

The President of Latvia Egils Levits and young people from the Latvian SIC’s Youth Panel shared and exchanged their experiences, opinions and views highlighting the importance to strengthen media and information literacy skills now more than ever. During a conversation with the President, the young people stated that such skills must be taught both at school and home to develop children’s critical thinking, as well as their ability to fact-checking and analyse information. During the discussions, the young panellists were giving examples of different perspectives from their experience from school studies, family approaches to this topic and in communication with friends and relatives. The youth focused on examples of deception and conspiratorial thinking, which are some of the forms of misinformation. They drew attention to the fact that, oftentimes, disinformation disseminators use negative thinking and statements to negatively influence the image of Latvia.

The President equally highlighted the importance of media literacy as a mean of personal enrichment and growth in education.  

The audience attending the event, as well as media literacy experts and several policy makers, could actively participate in the discussion by commenting and asking questions to the panellists. The discussion was also broadcasted live on the internet. 

At the end of the discussion, presentations were given by various industry experts informing the participants about each organisation’s educative resources available for children and young people on media literacy. A presentation was also given by experts of the Latvian Safer Internet Centre.  

Read more information about the discussions here.

Find more information about the work of the Latvian Safer Internet Centre, including their awareness raising, helpline, hotline, and youth participation services – or find similar information for Safer Internet Centres throughout Europe.   

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