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Media Literacy Unit: Theory in Practice

Media Persona Activity

For this activity, you will be taking on personas to find digital objects or pieces of information to construct a narrative.

Part 1: Find your assigned persona group and read the prompt:

  • Group 1: You are an internet troll, find a pro anti-vaccination meme you’ll use to spam on twitter. 
  • Group 2: You are a 35 year old American male, although you don’t have children of your own, you’re sick of the government interfering in your medical decisions. Find an anti-vaccination blog that agrees with you.  
  • Group 3: You are the mother of a vaccine injured child, find a news source that discusses a similar situation to yours.  
  • Group 4: You are a college student who keeps hearing about this anti-vaccination movement, find out where this whole conversation started. Was there a study? 
  • Group 5: You’re a grandma and your daughter just had a sweet baby boy. You’ve been hearing on Facebook a lot about vaccines and autism. Although you don’t know much about it, find her information about vaccines to send via email.  
  • Group 6: You’re a millennial that is super into alternative medicines. Salt crystals everywhere. Find a source that proves that alternative medicines are better than vaccines.  

Part 2: Put all of the pieces of information together, whether on a digital board or printed out on a table. Examine each object as they relate to the topic and to each other. 

Part 3: Discuss the following prompts.

  • What story or narrative do all of these objects tell individually and as a whole?
  • If these artifacts (articles, pictures, memes, etc.) were the only pieces of information that someone had about the subject, what effect might that have on their view of the subject?
  • How much influence do you think friend/family/social media have on someone's perception of a topic or issue?

TedTalk: Andreas Ekström

TedTalk: Safiya Umoja Noble