Local Voices


Influential and Sustainable? Lessons Learned from Research on Media Literacy Projects in Latvia

In Latvia, a number of media literacy projects are created each year with funding from the state budget and international partners. Initially, several years ago, the crucial aim was to fill the void in this field. However, how influential and sustainable are the media literacy projects created in the last three years, and what are their main shortcomings? This was clarified in the quantitative evaluation of the projects and the survey completed by their creators.

Baltic Centre for Media Excellence | 8 min read | Apr 4, 2024

How to optimize processes and save money: electronic signatures

Another message lands in the email with an attachment and a task: print, sign, scan and send back. Who wouldn't know this? Even though we live in the digital age, we still can't get rid of the paper shackles. Hardcopy solutions sometimes survive only because we don't know the technological options well enough and haven't tried them. One of the tools that can be of use to us in such cases is called an electronic signature. But not all electronic signatures are the same. Let us delve into this issue. We'll also take a peripheral look at how to share sensitive documents more securely.

Hive Mind | 5 min read | Apr 2, 2024

Cyber Security – Who Protects, What and Against Whom?

Although cyber security is not a new concept, discussed both publicly and in everyday life, its meaning has changed over time. Nowadays, the concept of cyber security covers an increasingly wide range of areas and is becoming more and more important, at a national and personal level. This is due to the rapid and all-encompassing development of new technologies, which are bringing many areas of life, including personal life, into the cyberspace.

Hive Mind | 5 min read | Mar 26, 2024

How to Solve the Equation: Elderly People + Social Media

The population across the European Union is ageing. This is a fact that is more often looked at as a problem, rather than an opportunity. However, it is time to reverse the perspective. One of the main problems especially in countries like Bulgaria, is that opportunities are not given and sought for the active inclusion of the elderly in public life. Due to the digitalization of the world a big part of social debates has migrated to the digital space. Elderly people want to participate and be heard.

Kristina Hristova | 8 min read | Feb 29, 2024

Digital Streams of Radicalization, Part I: How Radicalization and Disinformation Interact in the Online World

When we hear about radicalization, we often picture an Islamist, a football hooligan , or a person with extreme views who often commits acts of violence. The behavior of such people is blatant, it is easy to be outraged by them, but it is also easy to distance ourselves from them. In our minds, a radical is a person from another world, from another bubble, someone completely different from us.

Hive Mind | 8 min read | Feb 28, 2024

Cognitive Biases and Logic Pitfalls: Behind Reasoning and Decision-Making

Logical fallacies and cognitive bias go hand in hand. It takes critical thinking skills and positive self-doubt to avoid these traps that contribute to stereotyping, stigmatization, misrepresentation, and other negative outcomes of the lack of media literacy skills. This is the fourth article in the series produced together with the Baltic Media Centre of Excellence, where we explore the intricacies of the human mind and the potential traps in decision-making, while reminding you of 12 common cognitive biases and 10 logical fallacies that often shape our understanding of information.

Baltic Centre for Media Excellence | 6 min read | Feb 19, 2024

War in Gaza, Part II: Israel and the Hamas – How to Recognize Propaganda?

Here we are, in the center of one of the bloodiest conflicts of the century. How not to get crazy about it? How to recognize when we are manipulated? Forget about straightforward posters of World War II – most propaganda efforts nowadays are hard to recognize, hidden and, many times, spread with no intention or awareness. That is why we prepared nine simple rules to remember, which will help you to spot the propaganda.

Karol Wilczyński | 6 min read | Feb 8, 2024

How to manage passwords: how to create them, where to store them and how to automate their use

Did you know that the first password as we know it today was used over sixty years ago? Passwords are an essential security feature and are therefore often the target of various Internet fraudsters. Although passwords are a traditional part of cybersecurity training, many users don't take very good care of them. As a result, they may lose their accounts or finances. And since we carry bad habits into the work environment as well, when combined with poor security policies, sensitive client data or an organization's reputation can be at risk. In this article, we'll go over some tips on how to take care of your passwords so that you can feel more secure and simplify your work at the same time.

Petra Kudrna Sobková | 5 min read | Feb 5, 2024

The Information Warfare in the Republic of Moldova

Since 24 February 2022, when the Russian Federation started an aggressive and unjustified war against Ukraine, both the neighboring countries and the Republic of Moldova have been targets of propaganda and disinformation from the Kremlin. The waves of disinformation have forced the authorities in Chisinau to adopt various measures, including legislation, to protect Moldova's information space and its citizens from Kremlin propaganda transmitted through various channels. This article analyzes what can the authorities do to stop the spread of disinformation on the example of the Republic of Moldova.

Lilia Cravcenco-Zaharia | 5 min read | Jan 24, 2024

Crafting a Resilient Society against Disinformation. New World – Old Challenges

Disinformation is a custom-made approach designed to polarize society by instilling fear of others and undermining values, democracy, and human rights, as well as the structures that support them. Civil society has been actively working for years to counter these phenomena. We combat hate speech, work with vulnerable groups, educate society, conduct fact-checking and even OSINT research. However, the problems that society faces remain almost unchanged, while the social need to take action is growing. And we – as civil society – face both new and ongoing challenges in this fight.

Magdalena Wilczyńska | 10 min read | Jan 23, 2024

Romani people and disinformation: the fight for truth in the era of social media

Disinformation about Roma and among Roma has become a visible problem in Czech society, especially in the summer of 2023, when tensions arose between some Roma and Ukrainians. Historically, however, it was the Roma who were frequent victims of disinformation, such as a rumor regarding their free access to swimming pools.

Zdeněk Ryšavý | 10 min read | Jan 8, 2024

Disinformation about the war in Ukraine - reactions and narratives built on emotions

The events of the last 3 years have been a huge generator of emotions for each of us, but also an incubator for disinformation. It has taken over the media space and continues, in the presence of fear and intense emotions, to destabilize trust in factual information. Nearly two years after the invasion of Ukraine, we look at the evolution of false narratives online, and discuss how a war in the 21st century takes on some new nuances to what history has accustomed us to.

Ana Mocanu | 7 min read | Jan 2, 2024

How Not to Get Lost in the Digital Environment? Fundamentals of Media Literacy

We are living in times when there is much more information gathered, structured, created, and shared than ever before. Even the most cautious of us can fall for a fake ad. Today, technologies, social media and artificial intelligence tools can bring positive change to individuals and communities, but they can also destroy them. How can people protect themselves from misleading content? This series of four articles, produced in cooperation with the Baltic Media Centre of Excellence, will remind you of the basics of media literacy skills that you cannot do without in the digital environment.

Baltic Centre for Media Excellence | 6 min read | Dec 7, 2023

Unmasking disinformation in electoral campaigns - case studies from Poland and Slovakia

As the dust settles from the political storms related to elections that swept Poland and Slovakia in the fall of 2023, we dissect the disinformation tactics that played a crucial role in shaping the election outcomes. From attacking opponents with hoaxes to adopting anti-Ukrainian narratives, and even incorporating artificial intelligence to spread fabricated content, the playbook of political deception is evolving. What can we learn from that example?

Magdalena Wilczyńska | 13 min read | Nov 29, 2023

Local Elections in Moldova: New Poll, Old Narratives

In both rounds of the local elections in the Republic of Moldova, held in November 2023, the pro-Kremlin media used disinformation as a political tool. Old narratives, used in previous election campaigns, were recirculated, but also combined with pro-Kremlin narratives about the war in Ukraine, unachievable election promises and even using hate speech to denigrate the opponents.

Lilia Cravcenco-Zaharia | 7 min read | Nov 22, 2023

Addressing Anti-Western and Anti-NATO Narratives: Building a More Informed Perspective in Times of Uncertainty

Discussing anti-Western narratives is a hot topical issue nowadays, but not a new one - just as propaganda is not an expression of our times, but has a long history behind it. I will not talk about the general course of anti-Western propaganda in Eastern Europe and especially in Romania, but about my personal experience with this field and the sometimes arduous process of countering it with honest and transparent means.

Laura Burtan | 9 min read | Nov 14, 2023

Vulnerable Heroes: Cybersecurity in NGOs

Non-profit organizations certainly share a common denominator, but we can hardly generalize anything related to them. Especially when it comes to cybersecurity. NGOs vary one from another in their form, mission, area of responsibility, as well as budgets. And for a hacker, each of them plays its own role. When hearing the term “cyber attack” most people imagine a failure of all computer systems, loss of access to data and a ransom of staggering amounts. Of course, this sort of attacks happen too. However, there are also smaller-scale cyber attacks. They may not be as spectacular on the surface, but can also result in financial loss or leakage of important information. We are referring to social engineering attacks.

Petra Kudrna Sobková | 3 min read | Oct 25, 2023