Debating the Future of Europe and Challenging Euroscepticism : a journey into media literacy to fight Eurosceptic narratives
Our EU open democratic societies depend on the ability of citizens to access a variety of verifiable information so that they can form a view on different political issues. In this way, citizens can participate in an informed way in public debates and express their will through free and fair political processes. These democratic processes are increasingly challenged by the deliberate, large-scale and systematic spreading of disinformation. Euroscepticism has moved towards mainstream political and popular culture. Eurosceptic movement gain more traction on people with emotional and simplified rhetoric rather than the rational, complex and facts-based reasoning that we – civil society – tend to provide. In recent years, Eurosceptic movement have obtained more public support, threatening the legitimacy and popularity of the European process of integration. People with high levels of media literacy have a better understanding of the EU, adopt a position, make their own conclusions, discerns truth from fake news, not follow trends, and can have a better opinion and judgments on achievements of the EU and benefits. On the other hand, people with low levels of media literacy are vulnerable, affected, impressed, and have conflict facing Eurosceptic narratives. To fight against these issues, EU Defence Network aims to find ways to promote good media literacy training practices. The main focus is the improvement of media literacy levels among young people through the development of a pool of media literacy experts working with youth in schools and in non-formal contexts. Focusing on the detection and exposure of trending narratives, disinformation channels and disinformation techniques, the ambitious aim of this project is to try to channel criticism of the EU into positive driver for the European integration in the long run and to help the EU to come closer to its citizen and to increase their resilience.