Positive Communication 101

On May 22 and 23, the contactZINE’s editorial board received training on media literacy, cyber security and gender-sensitive communication. These workshops invited the participants to acquire the competences to critically access, use and create messages, while communicating in a way that does not reinforce prevalent stereotypes. Additionally, a cyber security training with the expert Gvantsa Grigolia increased the participants‘ awareness of potential threats in cyber space and equipped them with some tools to improve the safety of their personal data.

This is what one of the participants has to say about the trainings:

“Hey! I want to briefly share the gist of each of the topics, as well as explaining what was new to me and which conclusions I drew from the trainings. 

The topic of media literacy showed how important it is in our time to be able to work with various kinds of information, analyze, evaluate and create it. It seems to me that one of the main tasks of media literacy is to help people to better understand potential manipulation, and making people more aware of the role of the media in shaping the perceptions of reality. 

The workshop on cybersecurity showed how important it is to be careful when working with your personal data and what consequences can occur if certain precautions are not followed. According to statistics, more and more information leakages are observed every year, most often resulting from criminal actions. This topic is very far-reaching and should be given due attention. 

The topic of gender-sensitive communication is an acute social issue today. The norms, attitudes and values represented by society very often do not take into account the real needs and desires of women and men, and perpetuate inequality. For example, in many CIS countries it is assumed that men should not publicly show their emotions or be physically close to other men (hug, sit close or touch each other), and women must not realize themselves outside the household, because they should devote themselves children. Some of the main problems include gender stereotypes and discrimination. During the trainings, we learned about language appropriate for gender-sensitive communication. It serves to convey to society that all people, regardless of their sex and gender identity, have equal social significance and equal rights, responsibilities and opportunities in all spheres of life. 

For myself, I was able to pick up a lot of new things, rethink some points, especially on the topic of gender and media literacy. Our teachers presented the information in great detail, which made it relatable and easily understandable. There are many more informative topics that await us, which I look forward to with great enthusiasm. Additionally, I hope that writing and creating the contactZINE will encourage our communities to explore the topics of our zine more. Let’s make the world a better place!”