Speaking in Stalin’s gift to the Polish people,

we can now safely say that ours is the full loop of open content, open software & open hardware. I did not get into trouble, I do not risk anything in saying that.

The term mediawisdom was well received.


The 2005 Advisory Report: ‘Media Wisdom’

Council for Culture 2005 Advisory Report on Mediawijsheid .

Excerpts from the letter by the Council for Culture (Raad voor Cultuur), accompanying the 2005Advisory Report on Mediawijsheid (literary: ‘media wisdom’). The letter and report were submitted to the Minister of Education, Culture and Science (Dutch: OCW) and the Chairs of the Houses of Parliament. The Advisory Report was entitled Media Wisdom: The Development of New Citizenship (Mediawijsheid: De ontwikkeling van nieuw burgerschap).

“In the 2005 Advisory Report, the Council for Culture proposes to broaden the term Media Education into to term Media Wisdom. This shift in perspective is prompted by social and cultural changes, acknowledging that we see an increasing ‘mediatisation’ of society and culture. Media are affecting almost every corner of society. The media are becoming context, content and intermediaries of information knowledge and experiences. Media affect how people communicate, what about, what they value and the extent they feel connected. Media, whether old media or new, analogue or digital, play a significant part in all of those ways. Media have become our environment, rather than being just elements in our surroundings .

The growing influence of media also has an impact on democratic institutions and the meaning of modern citizenship. Citizens are becoming more responsible for themselves and the role they play in society. This is partly an autonomous process, which they choose themselves, and partly a process instigated by measures taken by a receding government. This is possible thanks to the media, and in particular the possibilities opened up by the internet.


To allow citizens to participate fully in a media-saturated society, it’s crucial that they are media-wise. Citizens who are not media competent will find themselves excluded from parts of society.

The council prefers the term ‘media wisdom’ to ‘media education’ because the latter focuses on everyday practice, in addition to the government exclusively acting on school education, children and adolescents, supply and protection.

The most significant consequences of the Council’s proposed change of focus are:

• ‘media wisdom’ goes beyond school education: because citizens need wisdom in the fields of health care, politics and safety
• ‘media wisdom’ does not exclusively concern children and adolescents: in order to function as well as possible in modern society, everyone needs to be media-wise
• the aim and necessity of media wisdom is not a matter solely of dealing with the media, but of being able to participate in society
‘Media Wisdom’ puts more emphasis on creating and producing media content and attitude as an aspect of media wisdom, i.e. citizens should be aware of how they use media and the effects of using it, both for themselves and for others.

The shift in perspective argued by the Council for Culture implies that wherever media are being produced or used, media wisdom should be promoted. This means that making people and society media wise is relevant for a wide range of social and policy domains – from health care to housing to politics, as well as education […]. The public media should play an important role: they should behave as an immaculate examplars. Their products should be a benchmark of reliability, pluriformity, accessibility, quality and transparency. Media professionals should offer their knowledge and skills more often to the new social middle segment, and supply citizens with the tools to play a more active role in society.

In terms of school education, the Council does not propose a separate discipline teaching ‘media education’ or ‘media wisdom’, but rather the implementation of certain aspects of media wisdom as part of ‘citizenship education’. It also pleads for appointing ‘media coaches’ within schools. They will guide and inspire the media educators in schools, safeguard continuity and develop projects with extra-curricular partners.

Cultural institutes involved in media education should focus more on production and attitude and – together with all other institutions that use media – focus more on sharing knowledge, cooperation and working on demand. Public libraries will play an important role in the promotion of ‘media wisdom’, because of their accessibility and range. They will however have to reconsider, and possibly adjust, their role.”

Polonia Palace, the only surving hotel of warsaw ww ii, a beautiful and friendly place.



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