Is the Internet changing us and how can we adapt?

Is Google Making us Stupid?

Screen Shot 2014-01-21 at 10.09.05 PMWhile I have heard many times before that phones, computers, and TVs are affecting the focus of students today.  In this article, Carr attempts to explain the consequences of search engines.  I have yet to hear a convincing explanation or proof of this phenomenon.

Screen Shot 2014-01-21 at 10.09.18 PMIt is important to note the fact that the greatest blessing of the Internet, quick access to a plethora of information, is also one of the largest factors diminishing how we think and learn today.

Screen Shot 2014-01-21 at 10.09.31 PMBy having information at our fingertips about every topic imaginable, the work to find such information is almost completely reduced.  The thought process and reading that use to be necessary to discover similar quantities of information is simply no longer required.  That thought process has now been replaced by Google and other search engines.

Screen Shot 2014-01-21 at 10.09.38 PMHowever, the comparison of this process to our brains being reprogrammed is particularly interesting.  I agree that the patterns established during media use are affecting learning patterns outside of the Internet.  Pairing this idea with the term reprogrammed provides a nice visual to help understand how our brains are being trained to work when we employ search engines to find an answer or information on a topic.

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Do the benefits of constantly available mass information outweigh the potential consequences of search engines?

Do search engines deserve such blame for a loss in focus when the entire web is dominated by short, skim-friendly articles with potentially distracting hyperlinks?

Introduction: Electracy

Screen Shot 2014-01-21 at 10.09.05 PMPersonally, electracy is a new term.  To try and further understand the concept, I found the explanation, that electracy “is to digital media what literacy is to alphabetic writing” particularly helpful.  Essential, electracy refers to media’s form of literacy.

Screen Shot 2014-01-21 at 10.09.18 PMIt is interesting to consider, as the writer has, our roles in this budding media age in comparison to the role of the great writers of antiquity experiencing a similar revolution but with literacy and the academy.  The concept of media literacy has a growing importance in the professional and social world today.  The article warns individuals to be cognizant of the institutional forces at work in our own age and aware that “new media networked practices are transitional, hybrid forms and experiments.”

Screen Shot 2014-01-21 at 10.09.31 PMWe are the pioneers of the new media age, and still discovering the impacts and importance of media literacy.  While I agree with some of his ideas I am reluctant to compare media literacy with the invention of literacy and I am not completely convinced that the writer’s level of skepticism is necessary in regards to the development of the web age and media literacy.

Screen Shot 2014-01-21 at 10.09.38 PMDevelop and practice fluent electracy just as you would literacy to fully understand online content.

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Will electracy and media literacy become as essential as literacy in the coming years?Is it accurate to compare the pioneers such as Aristotle and Plato to the pioneers of media technology today? If not, what are the main differences?

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