I expected Wesch’s presentation to revolve around technology and the impact of it around the global landscape. This is exactly what he talks about. Technology is something that most people still are not accustomed to completely but is a very influential and powerful source of all kinds of information.
Some of the questions that Wesch asks are is what is education about?How come students are not engaged? Why do students enjoy learning but not school? Wesch talks about how the world has changed, we have ubiquitous communication, learning. We can share, communicate and collaborate with anyone and almost at any time.
We need to teach students to be able apply knowledge and know how. Students of course are seeking meaning they want to know how they are, how they will fit into the future. etc. However, they are not linking their classes with providing answers to these questions.
He talks about a trip he took to New Guinea where he realized that media creates identity. He was defined by media. The books he read, the papers he wrote, the images he saw, all shaped his concept of himself. When he existed in a rural village without these things he struggled, he was less sure of who he was, what he could contribute.
Once people in the village began to write their life changed and not for the better. Powers and relationships changed. How people viewed themselves and others changed drastically. So, the media itself the tools and the how they mediate relationships shape not only our identity but our views of others.
How has media changed your views? Television and the news shape how I see each other, other countries and other cultures. In the past we got our information from television, newspapers, book, and our classroom. This linked us within topical information but did not give us a voice. It did not link us with others. There was no sharing no collaboration.
The new media today provides spaces for collaboration as well as information. Our country still struggles with race and violence. However, we have the opportunity to connect with others, to share opinions, and to learn from each other anytime, anywhere. The skills learned in this class are the building block for this know how. Blogging, creating media to express thoughts and ideas are skills that are desperately needed in the world today. We need to move beyond information to include sharing and collaboration so that we can connect and learn from one another.
This collaboration can be a way to improve our relationships and how we see ourselves and others. Every day we can see videos that bystanders have taken that show us how we interact with one another. Social media like twitter allows us to link with a large number of people to speak out and to change what we see as injustice.
Wesch notes a quote from Maregerate Meads where she states that small communities of people can come together to make large and dramatic changes. Being able to use media tools as a form of expression and connection can allow me to share my thoughts with others while opening up the possibility to work together. I hope to continue to learn how to not only access information but be able to create and use media to communicate, share, collaborate, and learn for others.