The Influence of Media on Society – UN Youth Delegates for Ireland Side Event
Conference Room 11, United Nations Headquarters, NY 10017
Thursday, October 6th at 1:15 – 2:45pm
To register, or for further information, please email UNyouth@nyci.ie. If you need a UN Grounds Pass, please indicate this by 1pm on Tuesday, the 4th of October
Ms Samantha O’Brien O’Reilly and Mr Colm O’Rourke, United Nations Youth Delegates for Ireland
Follow #RethinkMedia, @Samanthaobor and @colmorourke1
According to a study by Pew Research Center, 62% of adults access their news through social media. This facilitates the curation of a supply of information that constantly reinforces our pre-existing beliefs. Additionally, due to many sites’ algorithms, the news we receive is decided by standards set without our input or consent. Intentionally, or unintentionally, we each exist in our own unique echo-chamber.
Will constant reinforcement of our beliefs lead to uncritical thinking?
How does this affect our democracy and our ability to have a rational debate?
Is integration becoming more difficult as we are exposed less and less to the opinions of those with whom we disagree?
Does the media sufficiently fact-check the information it reports?
How does this affect attitudes towards vulnerable groups?
Is the recent refugee and migrant situation being misreported and/or sensationalised?
In line with Sustainable Development Goal 4, Quality Education, this event will discuss practical steps we can take to proactively seek out and educate ourselves about opinions outside of our ideological comfort zones.
In line with Sustainable Development Goal 17, Partnerships, it will discuss how the media and civil society can co-operate to ensure reporting of vulnerable groups, such as refugees and migrants, is accurate and compassionate.
Challenging our beliefs is paramount if we are to emerge from our echo chambers into a more collaborative shared space. Therefore, each attendee will be asked to identify an opinion with which they currently disagree and to challenge themselves to understand why others believe it.
Ambassador David Donoghue, Permanent Representative of Ireland to the United Nations
Ms Samantha Barry, Senior Director of Social News, CNN
Ms Jenifer Fenton, Senior Press Information Officer, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
Ms Kathryn Mahoney, Public Information Officer (Social Media), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
Ms Manar Marouf, Researcher at Columbia University and the Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emergencies
With video contributions from:
PLURAL+ – introduced by Ms Olivia Headon, Associate Migration Officer, the International Organization for Migration