Digital Media Literacy: Portugal

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Part
01

Misinformation / DML Prevalence: Portugal

Research indicates that misinformation or disinformation events are rather uncommon in Portugal as compared to other European countries. The high-profile misinformation events have recently emerged in the country during the election period. Seven examples of misinformation or disinformation events in Portugal have been provided in the “1 — Misinfo/DML Prevalence” tab of the attached spreadsheet. These examples cover some of the disinformation events in the country and insights into the prevalence/awareness of disinformation.

Parliament to Debate Fake News

How Does a Fake News Network Works in Portugal

Italy, Spain, Portugal, and Possibly Even France Are in Line to Exit the EU

  • As part of the pro-Kremlin narrative around the EU's imminent collapse, Sonar2050 spread disinformation claiming Italy, Spain, Portugal, and France are also looking to exit the EU.
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DML Government Actions: Portugal

Details regarding which actions the Portugal government has taken over the past 5 years to respond to disinformation, with express focus on digital media literacy and empowering users, have been compiled in the "2 — DML Government Actions" tab of the attached spreadsheet. Google Translate was used to identify the most relevant Portuguese articles and government publications within the last five years.

DML government actions in Portugal

Government actions in Portugal within the last five years concerning a response to disinformation, with express focus on digital media literacy and empowering users include:
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DML Players, Part 1: Portugal

Key players in the digital media literacy market in Portugal are the Regulatory Entity for Media, Deco Proteste, the Data Protection Authority, the Fundacao para a Computacao Cientifica Nacional, and the Communication and Society Research Center. The list comprises two public authorities, one academia, and one civil society. Information on the goals, activities, target audience, and reach is in the attached spreadsheet.

Digital Media Literacy Players — Portugal

  • Established in 2005, the Regulatory Entity for Media oversees the regulating and supervising of all entities that pursue media activities in Portugal.
  • Deco Proteste is an independent, non-profit consumer protection agency. Established in 1974, it is one of the main partners in the Sitestar competition where students that are 14 to 18 years old compete by creating and editing websites.
  • Created in 2005, the Data Protection Authority in Portugal controls and supervises the processing of personal data.
  • The Fundacao para a Computacao Cientifica Nacional was created in 1987 and is a network for educational and research organizations. Its operates under five pillars of action: connectivity, computing, collaboration, knowledge, and security.
  • Created in 2001, the focus of the Communication and Society Research Center is on research, intervention, education, and publication. It is a partner to the Media Literacy Group Initiative, Seven Days with the Media.

Research Strategy

To source five key digital media literacy players in Portugal, the strategy the research team decided upon was to first consult the resources provided by the client in the spreadsheet, then search the government, civil society, and business websites of media organizations. If both those approaches were to fail, then the team would have done a general search for the requested criteria. The team began by consulting the Media Players Mapping document provided by the client. The document provided a list of key players in media literacy from page 1052 to 1055. A review of the list provided the five organizations identified in the brief that have an active role in digital media literacy in Portugal.
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DML Players, Part 2: Portugal

Associação dos Imigrantes dos Açores (AIPA), Conselho Nacional da Educação, Centro de Competência TIC, Cinemateca Portuguesa, and Porto Editora are additional key players in the digital media literacy space in Portugal. Below is an overview of the findings. Kindly refer to the rows 11-15 of the “3 - DML Players” tab of the attached spreadsheet for more information.
  • Associação dos Imigrantes dos Açores (AIPA) is a civil society established in 2003 and its core "mission is to contribute to the integration of immigrant communities into the Azorean society."
  • Conselho Nacional da Educação is a public authority established in 1982 and its core mission is to issue "opinions and recommendations on all matters relating to education, on its own initiative or in response to requests from the Assembly of the Republic and the Government."
  • Centro de Competência TIC is an academia established in 2010 and its core mission is to leverage ICT to promote positive changes in the classroom learning.
  • Cinemateca Portuguesa is a civil society established in 1948 to "collect, protect, preserve and disseminate heritage related to moving images, promoting knowledge of the history of cinema and the development of film and audiovisual culture."
  • Porto Editora is an audiovisual content provider established in 1944 that aims to "promote the educational, cultural and civilizational development of Portuguese-speaking speakers, by offering editorial products and services, from education to literature, in the most diverse physical and digital platforms."

RESEARCH STRATEGY

A report titled "Mapping of Media Literacy Practices and Actions in EU-28" provided a list of the "main media literacy stakeholders" in Portugal. This information is available from page 1052 to 1055. We have provided five players from the list that provide as much of the requested data as possible.
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DML Initiatives, Part 1: Portugal

Portugal has set up a regulatory body to supervise all media, including digital, activities in the country. MILOBS is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to creating and populating a resource center and supporting initiatives and projects in media literacy. Portugal is also operating under the Portugal 2030 National Strategy. Its goal is to increase Portugal's competitiveness in the digital world, which includes funding resource centers that include DML training. Full information is available here.

Regulatory Authority for the Media

  • To achieve its primary objective — the regulation and supervision of all entities that pursue media activities in Portugal — ERC was constituted in 2009 as a legal person governed by public law, endowed with administrative and financial autonomy and its assets, giving the nature of an independent administrative entity.
  • In organic terms, the ERC is constituted of four bodies: the Regulatory Council, responsible for the definition and implementation of the regulatory action; by the Executive Directorate, whose functions are the management of the services, as well as the administrative and financial management; the Advisory Board, the consultation and participation body in defining the ERC's guidelines; and by the Statutory Auditor, who controls the legality and efficiency of the financial and equity management of this entity.
  • In Q3, the organization passed six resolutions. It has publications available on its website on accessibility, electoral coverage, media consumption, diversity, and media literacy, to name a few."
  • This group is not a provider of DML information resources but a regulatory body whose responsibility includes the internet. One of the working groups is the "Informal Media Literacy Working Group." This structure helps the media literacy group work with the Media and Disability, Media and the Mind (mental health), and the Internal and External Pluralism in the Media groups to integrate those issues into DML.
  • Like any regulatory body, initiatives move slowly, and the consensus is required before anything is done.

MILOBS

  • MILOBS is a non-profit service that intends to play a prominent role in the Media Literacy field. It is a resource center and a network of initiatives and projects, nationally and internationally. It also launches initiatives and provides services — namely in consulting, training of educational agents, research projects and intervention, production of materials, and evaluation of policies.
  • MILOBS was created in 2018 "in partnership with the Portuguese Informal Group on Media Literacy (GILM), and it is part of the activities of the Network of the UNESCO-AOC UNITWIN Cooperation Program on Media and Information Literacy and Intercultural Dialogue, of which UM is an Associate Member."
  • This group is composed of seven different working groups that have offered three annual congresses and a national "7 Days with Media" initiative
  • The group was formed to work together informally: sharing information, organizing DML initiatives as a group and trying to make a connection work among actors in the field, while at the same time preserving each partner's autonomy.
  • Under this group, a set of activities have been developed, such as congresses and other types of initiatives. The initiatives that stand out the most are Seven Days with the Media operation, the Media Literacy Portal, and a study about Media Education in Portugal — Experiences, actors, and contexts.
  • The informality of the group is both a strength and a weakness. The group has no restrictive policies, but it also has no political power or official standing.
  • A new Observatory on Media, Information, and Literacy (MILOBS) was recently launched in Portugal and is the first Portuguese observatory exclusively dedicated to media and information literacy. This project began development in 2012 and has its roots in GILM — the Informal Group of Media Literacy, a Portuguese network of 11 public entities that have media literacy as their primary concern and which are the main partners of MILOBS, as well as part of its consulting board.

Portugal 2030 National Strategy

  • INCoDe.2030 is set in the international context. It aims to improve Portugal's position and competitiveness, working towards securing a prominent place in terms of digital competences in 2017 – 2030 period, through a set of actions and initiatives, namely a stronger participation in international scientific and technological networks, primarily in Europe and North America, but also with the Portuguese speaking countries and the Mediterranean nations of North Africa. Portugal must have a strong presence in the most relevant international arenas dealing with the shift to the digital society and economy, particularly in the EU, OECD, and UN.
  • Formed in 2017, it now has 25 resource centers, which provide support to 1047 students.
  • The Portugal INCoDe.2030 initiative is structured as an integrated program for Portugal, bringing together and encouraging collaboration between people with different experiences and knowledge as well as multiple public and private organizations.
  • An Observatory for Digital Competences has been set up by the Directorate-General for Statistics in Education and Science (DGEEC), which, in collaboration with the National Institute for Statistics (INE), will monitor and report on the program's development, taking into account the following indicators: access, human capital, use, and investment. Both the structure and the evaluation criteria are solid.
  • The initiative is relatively new, and so the success is yet to be assessed.
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DML Initiatives, Part 2: Portugal

Two initiatives are targeted to internet users. The Safer Internet Center Portugal promotes safe internet use through resources and helplines, while InternetSegura provides awareness and digital security lessons. Full information is available here.

Safer Internet Centre Portugal

  • "The Portuguese Safer Internet Centre exists to promote safer and better use of the internet and mobile technologies among children and young people."
  • "The objectives of the awareness center activities of the Portuguese Safer Internet Centre (PTSIC) are to implement dissemination activities, plan awareness campaigns, promote project results and ensure that all services are well-known by decision-makers, relevant stakeholders, and the general public."
  • "PTSIC assures the organization and development of the Safer Internet Day (SID) national celebration event and other initiatives at a national and local level. It also ensures online participation through websites and social networks, according to common European visual themes."
  • "PTSIC promotes hotline and helpline services through inventive and attention-grabbing marketing campaigns, awareness-raising sessions and relevant actors, such as industry, law enforcement authorities, child protection, and welfare organizations, parent organizations, and media partners."
  • "PTSIC participates in the most relevant events organized by third parties, such as youth-related national events (e.g., Summer Festivals)."
  • Since March 2015, the site has published 903 articles on awareness and provided 100 links to child-appropriate websites. The helpline received 9,671 calls in Q3 2019.
  • This site is one of the more accessible and valuable for the general public. It is well-designed, easy to read, and provides reliable and useful information. It provides hotlines, helplines, resources, a gallery of pictures, and videos.
  • A review of the site produced few apparent pitfalls. The information is clear and professionally presented. The only pitfall could be that someone with no digital media literacy could be overwhelmed by the options.

InternetSegura

  • "Seguranet is responsible for awareness and dissemination activities targeting the school community; training sessions for law enforcement authorities, Public Prosecutor's Office, Lisbon Civil Protection collaborators; awareness campaign for National Defence Day; developing new editions of MOOCs; participating in specific initiatives such as the eSafety Label and eTwinning, "Introduction to Coding in 1st grade" project, Digital Leaders and SeguraNet Challenges."
  • "The Safe Internet Project has the following strategic objectives: 1 — Fight against illegal content; 2 — Minimization of the effects of illegal and harmful content on citizens; 3 — Promotion of safe use of the Internet; 4 — Society's awareness of the risks associated with the use of the Internet. "
  • "To fulfill the strategic objectives of the Safe Internet project, the following operational objectives were identified: Creation of an Advisory Board, made up of relevant personalities and entities; Creation of an online service for reporting illegal content; Providing information on the dangers associated with using the Internet, taking into account different audiences and communication supports; Provision of informative content, interactive and relevant to the safe use of the Internet; Promoting private sector involvement in actions promoting the safe use of the Internet."
  • Started in 2011 and expanded over time to the current model, Seguranet has organized more than 300 awareness sessions in schools, plus 900 sessions about digital security (for young people aged 18) during National Defense Day, involving 130,000 youngsters.
  • "This project is the responsibility of a consortium coordinated by the Foundation for Science and Technology, which also involves the Directorate-General for Education of the Ministry of Education, the Portuguese Institute of Sport and Youth, the Portuguese Victim Support Association, the Portugual Telecom Foundation, and Microsoft Portugal."
  • Like most DML initiatives in Portugal, there are multiple organizations involved in collaborating to develop offerings. This diffuse responsibility can result in slowing down the process.

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Part
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The Future of DML, Part 1: Portugal

In order to meet the goals outlines in Portugal's 2030 Strategy, the country seems to be on the cusp of transitioning its Digital Media Literacy efforts to a Digital Citizen program. Detailed information is available here.

Future of Digital Media Literacy in Portugal
  • The Portugal 2030 strategy outlines the goals in Portugal for transitioning Portugal into a powerhouse in the digital and information world.
  • The next article takes a piece of the strategy around DML and presents a research paper on the theory behind the transition of teaching Digital Media Literacy to Digital Citizenship, tracing terminology and approaches from the history to the present through to the future of concepts and terminology.
  • Following that is a website that presents a framework on how the concept of Digital Citizenship can be operationalized.
  • A second framework in an article called "A Novel Civic IDEA Building the capacity of youth to critique and create media in digital culture" is then provided for comparative purposes.
  • Finally, a research paper that focuses on one topic in the framework and recommends a specific approach for dealing with the issue of Fake news is analyzed.
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Part
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The Future of DML, Part 2: Portugal

This second set of online articles around the future of DML in Portugal include a discussion on the gap between formal and informal learning strategies, the epidemic of misinformation, an app that has been developed to teach DML that combines sign language, braille, graphics and alphabet phonetics, using journalism as a tool for both DML and life long learning, and the value of a digital media literacy project not just for teachers and students, but also for researchers. Detailed findings are presented in this spreadsheet.

Future of Digital Literacy Media in Portugal




Sources
Sources

From Part 02