Taking Control of Your Information Environment

Program Description

In a world where most of us get our news from social media, and the term “fake news” has lost almost all meaning, what can we do to take control of our information environments?

Fake news isn’t something that happens to us. It happens with our participation. This is a practical, real-world series of programs geared towards an adult audience. It provides actionable tips on how to approach news – especially news we see on social media – so that we think critically about our role in the information ecosystem. Participants will come away with useful strategies and sources to help them swim against the tide of the information tsunami. Discussions will probe participants to think about whether they’re happy with being the product of social media, and what they can do about it.

Participants can choose any of the conversations from the menu below. Each is scheduled for roughly one hour.

  • Show Me the Money: Why Do We Have Fake News In The First Place?
  • Around the World In 30 Seconds: How Fake News Spreads (And How To Stop It)
  • I Know What I Believe And I Believe What I Know: Unpacking Cognitive Bias
  • This Video Will Make You SO MAD: Emotions And Fake News
  • “I Know You Are, But What Am I?”: Ad Hominem Attacks
  • Have a Donut: Sponsored Content in Social Media
  • You’re Doing It Wrong (But So Is Everyone Else): How Not to Read a Website
  • If 5000 Phones in China Like This, You Will Too: The Business of Bots and Likes
  • You Won’t Believe What Happens Next: Clickbait, Headlines, and Trusting the News
  • Sharks in the Streets: How to Spot a Fake Image

Presenter Bio

Julie Edwards brings 15 years’ experience as a librarian in public and academic libraries. She has an MS in Library & Information Science (University of Illinois, 2005) and has worked, published and presented internationally on issues related to librarianship and information. She is passionate about helping individuals think critically, even when – especially when – that’s unfashionable.


Julie Edwards