2017年11月9日 星期四

In Italian Schools, Reading, Writing and Recognizing Fake News數位時代的新十誡 義大利教導學生辨認假新聞

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2017/11/17 第192期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份
紐時周報精選 In Italian Schools, Reading, Writing and Recognizing Fake News數位時代的新十誡 義大利教導學生辨認假新聞
In Amish Country, the Future Is Calling「不用汽車讓我們凝聚」 但未來正在召喚艾美許
In Italian Schools, Reading, Writing and Recognizing Fake News數位時代的新十誡 義大利教導學生辨認假新聞
文/Jason Horowitz

Italian students will soon tackle work sheets with a list of what amounts to a new set of Ten Commandments for the digital age.

Among them: Thou shalt not share unverified news; thou shall ask for sources and evidence; thou shall remember that the internet and social networks can be manipulated.



The lessons, prepared by reporters from the national broadcaster RAI, are part of an extraordinary experiment by the Italian government, in cooperation with leading digital companies including Facebook, to train a generation of students steeped in social media how to recognize fake news and conspiracy theories online.

"Fake news drips drops of poison into our daily web diet and we end up infected without even realizing it," said Laura Boldrini, the president of the Italian lower house of Parliament, who has spearheaded the project with the Italian Ministry of Education.



"It's only right to give these kids the possibility to defend themselves from lies," said Boldrini, who is left-leaning but not affiliated with any political party. The initiative will be rolled out in 8,000 high schools across the country starting on Oct. 31.

Italy, of course, is not alone in trying to find a way to grapple with the global proliferation of propaganda that has sown public confusion and undermined the credibility of powerful institutions.



Pope Francis recently announced that he would dedicate his 2018 World Communications Day address to the topic of fake news, and the U.S. Congress is investigating how Russian agents manipulated Facebook and Twitter to spread false stories and stoke conspiracy theories to sway the 2016 presidential election.

But before crucial Italian elections early next year, the country has become an especially fertile ground for digital deceit. Frustrated by economic woes, upset by a migrant crisis and fed a steady diet of partisan media, many Italians subscribe to all kinds of conspiracy theories.

Boldrini, sponsor of the new student curriculum, asserts the government must teach the next generation of Italian voters how to defend themselves against falsehoods and conspiracy theories.






本文一開頭就搬出聖經當中的十誡(the Ten Commandments),並模仿其語法,thou shalt是古英文的用法,現代則用you shall,thou的對應中文可用「汝」。聖經還有Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.的記載(汝當愛鄰如己)

義大利的學校從新學期開始要教學生辨識網路上的假新聞(fake news)跟陰謀論(conspiracy theories)。Fake有以假亂真、魚目混珠的意思(fake fur/pearls/leather)。詐騙集團猖獗跟真假難辨有關:It's no wonder scammers do so well when it's so hard to tell the real from the fake.

不僅新聞,連死亡都可以造假,faked one's own death是詐死或者皮笑肉不笑(a fake smile)。警察合唱團(The Police)1983年的冠軍金曲Every Breath You Take(妳的一顰一笑)唱道:Every smile you fake...

Conspiracy theory通譯為「陰謀論」,意指相信某一群人暗中圖謀傷害某人或做某事,會用這個詞通常表示說話者並不相信此類講法。1963年美國總統甘迺迪遇刺案(JFK assassination)最後一批檔案剛解密,紐約時報用the granddaddy of all conspiracy theories形容本案(所有陰謀論的開山祖師),應不為過。況且,There will always be conspiracy theorists and liars in public life.

In Amish Country, the Future Is Calling「不用汽車讓我們凝聚」 但未來正在召喚艾美許
文/Kevin Granville and Ashley G

A young woman, wearing a traditional full-length Amish dress and white bonnet, stepped away from a farmers market, opened her palm and revealed a smartphone. She began to scroll through screens, seemingly oblivious to the activity around her.

Not far away, a man in his late 60s with a silvery beard, wide-brimmed straw hat and suspenders adjusted the settings on a computer-driven crosscut saw. He was soon cutting pieces for gazebos that are sold online and delivered around the country.



The Amish have not given up on horse-drawn buggies. Their rigid abstinence from many kinds of technology has left parts of their lifestyle frozen since the 19th century: no cars, TVs or connections to electric utilities, for example.

But computers and cellphones are making their way into some Amish communities, pushing them — sometimes willingly, often not — into the 21st century.



New technology has created fresh opportunities for prosperity among the Amish, just as it has for people in the rest of the world. A contractor can call a customer from a job site. A store owner's software can make quick work of payroll and inventory tasks. A bakery can take credit cards.

But for people bound by a separation from much of the outside world, new tech devices have brought fears about the consequence of internet access. There are worries about pornography; about whether social networks will lead sons and daughters to date non-Amish friends; and about connecting to a world of seemingly limitless possibilities.



"Amish life is about recognizing the value of agreed-upon limits," said Erik Wesner, an author who runs a blog, Amish America, "and the spirit of the internet cuts against the idea of limits."

John, who works a computerized saw at Amish Country Gazebos near Lancaster, Pennsylvania, likened it to the prohibition on automobiles.



"Not using cars is a way of keeping us together," he said. (Like most of the people interviewed for this article, he declined to give his surname, out of an Amish sense of humility; many refrained from having their faces photographed for the same reason.)

"There's always a concern about what would lead our young folk out of the church and into the world," John added.

The internet also threatens another Amish bonding agent: For a society in which formal education ends after eighth grade, youngsters learn a trade or craft alongside a relative or other member of the community.




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