Skip to main content

Media Literacy Matters in Brussels and Beyond

Yonty Friesem and I went to Brussels for Media Literacy Matters, the largest media literacy gathering in Europe since before the pandemic. What a treat it was to hear from so many amazing researchers and practitioners! 

Working collaboratively with my colleague Bert Pieters, we offered a 20-minute keynote entitled, Media Literacy: What Works, where we addressed the need to restore the J-factor (the joy factor) to media literacy education.  You can hear the conversational podcast we created "live" during our short talk here: 


Among the many highlights of the conference were presentations from Ellen Pack, Pierre Fastrez, Julian McDougall, Devina Frau-Meigs, Nicoleta Fotiade, Igor Kanizaj, Maryna Dorosh, and others. Andy DeMeulenaere's leadership was evident in the strong structure of the 3-day program and his remarks concerning the past, present, and future of media literacy were most enlightening. 

I especially loved soliciting people's Media Literacy Awakening Stories, where we shared our first encounters with the "aha" moment that helped engage us with the delights and challenges of this topic. Stories from Ida Pottinger and Patrick Verniers made me realize how important it is to chronicle the personal histories at play in the building of this field.  

One huge highlight was getting to meet Dries Depoorter, whose amazing art installations comment on life in a networked surveillance society where clicks and likes are the new currency. Another highlight was the workshop by Edward De Vooght and Kris Rutten who beautifully modeled the practice of talking and learning about the dimensions of media literacy as the practice of critical thinking. 

Dinner with Hans Martens gave Yonty and I the chance to reflect on how much we have learned over the years from having Visiting Scholars join the Media Education Lab. We greatly missed Sally Reynolds but recognize her leadership in helping build a robust learning community for European media literacy educators.  We can't wait to keep learning with all of you!

Media Literacy Matters
Media Literacy Matters 2024



By Renee Hobbs,