Friday, December 25, 2009

Media Meltdown and the Value of Media Literacy for All

In my old school, they are teaching computers and programming languages from Class 6 - onwards. It is an elite school. That is expected of an elite school. Sadly, not elite enough to teach Media Literacy to a generation weaned on a media diet of aspirational, exploitative, and silly notions.

The kids need to catch the message behind the message. The kids need to identify the pervasive web of vested interests of big media companies. The kids need a book such as "Media Meltdown", a graphic novel about media literacy for kids, written by Liam O'Donnell and illustrated by Mike Deas.

BoingBoing explains the plot of the comic book,
(the book wants to) teach kids how to question the media they get, and to make their own. It follows the adventures of a group of kids who have discovered that the local monster-home developer is up to no good, and is getting away with it because he's a heavy advertiser with the town's only media company, which owns the newspaper, stadium, and TV station. Working together, they break the story on their own, using the Web, and along the way they learn to analyze the media they receive, to use that analysis in making their own media, and to work with others to get their message across.

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The enduring wisdom of Mahesh Murthy

Some entrepreneurs are born writers. Good writers. Mahesh Murthy is one such good writer/entrepreneur. I used to read his articles in Businessworld running in 2000 and abouts. Good writeups. Good inspiration. Good advice laced with honest, punchy strains. I saved some cuttings. They were that good.

Thus, one is glad to read him writing that kind of writing again. In the Wall Street Journal, he writes a piece on the value of being an entrepreneur and it gives me heart and makes me willing to go on with Bighow.

Mahesh writes,

(Why I am an entrepreneur)...there are perhaps a few million types of jobs out there. And there are seven billion of us. So there’s obviously a lot of us who are not in jobs tailor-made for us. Look around you – know anyone who isn’t deliriously happy in their current job? Know anyone who is?

The rest of us just can’t find a job that suits us. And we really don’t like ‘adjusting’. So we make a job for ourselves. Where we like our bosses - ourselves, the business - our own, the working hours – whenever we feel like, and the location – wherever we are. We don’t do it to take a risk – we do it to be safe.

And the world calls us entrepreneurs, heroes of some sort. But really, we’re just folks who didn’t find a job that suited us well enough.


Startup is hard in New Delhi

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