Keep Calm and Log On: Your Handbook for Surviving the Digital Revolution

Gillian “Gus” Andrews. MIT, $24.95 (408p) ISBN 978-0-262-53876-3
Though presented as a how-to manual on safe computer and smartphone use targeted to older, tech-phobic users, this essential crash course also has useful guidance on media literacy and critical thinking. Andrews, producer of the YouTube series The Media Show, believes that technological advances, combined with distrust in information and authorities, have overwhelmed users into a “learned helplessness” and made them more susceptible to manipulation. Discussing how to manage one’s exposure to digital media and to meaningfully evaluate information, she uses photos from the Great Depression, World Wars I and II, and other historical events as examples of times when communities had to pull together, as she believes everyone must do now in the face of technological change. There is practical, technical help in these pages about online privacy, with details on how to create strong passwords and interact with others safely online, as well as tools to help readers fact-check information encountered online and understand what kinds of intellectual authority professional qualifications do and don’t confer. This should be required reading for both admitted luddites and longtime digital denizens. (May)
Reviewed on : 02/21/2020
Release date: 04/01/2020
Genre: Nonfiction
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