Reboot in the News

A compilation of Reboot op-eds and citations of our research from around the web.

Our public square isn’t what it used to be. But, if schools lead the way, media literacy education can help us rebuild civic society.

If the damage to public discourse wasn’t clear already, the recent controversy over political advertising on social media platforms surely drove the point home. While Twitter’s Jack Dorsey announced a ban on such advertising, Mark Zuckerberg defended Facebook’s decision to keep hosting political ads without subjecting it to rigorous fact-checking.


My son, his best friend, Dave, and I were chatting over a pizza last weekend when Dave dropped some (absolutely incorrect) information: The elderly are forgoing nursing homes for cruise ships, because the room and board cost about the same, plus you get entertainment and travel.


When it comes to reasoning, kids can surprise us. They ask penetrating questions that seem to come out of thin air. But this kind of progress in reasoning doesn’t happen in a vacuum. 

To develop reasoning skills, children require the right kind of environment and support from schools, teachers, and parents, as well as the right kinds of challenges, discussions, and even arguments.


Fake news is back in the real news. A study released this month found that the 100 most widely shared fake news stories of the year had received an estimated 158.9 million Facebook views between January and October. The European Union recently scolded social media giants, demanding they do more to combat fabricated content, and Mark Zuckerberg admitted that Facebook has caught Russian and Iranian bot-nets aimed at interfering in the 2020 U.S. elections


Shamane Mills in WPR.org (Wisconsin Public Radio)

Schools in Wisconsin and across the country have invested a lot in technology, and new research is questioning how effective it is in teaching kids to read.

A study done by a think-tank that examines learning in a digital age found Wisconsin fourth graders who used tablets in most classes had reading scores nine points lower on a standardized test than those who didn’t use tablets in class.


My son, Joe, and his wife have three sons, ages 10, 8 and 5. Like many parents, they are trying to limit the time the boys spend staring at computer screens. Their California school system and the state are making that difficult.