Michelle Brightwell's blog

The Filter Bubble

  • Posted on: 27 August 2020
  • By: Michelle Brightwell

“The algorithms that orchestrate our ads are starting to orchestrate our lives.”
-Eli Pariser, author of The Filter Bubble

When it comes to social and political issues, it’s easy to create a filter bubble on social media.

Introducing the HMCPL Podcast!

  • Posted on: 7 August 2020
  • By: Michelle Brightwell

Today launches the newest endeavor to bring you library life at home – our podcast, Two Librarians Walk into a Shelf!

Each episode will bring you a selection of media, both new and old, from our library’s collections, recommended by library staff members.

Your hosts, Michelle Brightwell and Rob Freese, both from the Madison Public Library, will bring recommendations, information about the library, and entertainment, right to your ears!

Not So Delicate - A Circe Book Club

  • Posted on: 30 July 2020
  • By: Michelle Brightwell

To ancient people, myths were not pieces of fiction used as allegory. Myths were the way they explained human nature, natural phenomenon, and how to overcome difficulties in time of strife. In the 4th century AD, the Roman philosopher Sallustius wrote that “myths were things that never happened, but always are”. He wrote about the use of mythology in an age where Roman popular thinking was moving away from mysticism and mythology and towards philosophy and science. Sallustius believed that mythology shouldn’t be left behind as a relic of a bygone era, but should be taught to all as a foundation of what he called “common conceptions”, or the body of knowledge that all Romans should know and be able to draw from.

Critical thinking in the age of social media: a reading list

  • Posted on: 9 June 2020
  • By: Michelle Brightwell

Hello. My name is Michelle, and if you know me at all, you know that media, digital, and information literacy is passion of mine. I would love to teach the world how to critically consume the media they choose, and to recognize bias and unfairness in what they consume. If just a small percentage of people who use social media would take the time to vet that tweet before it’s re-tweeted, or think twice before sharing a scathing image or meme on Facebook that vilifies someone they don’t agree with, we could fight back against the spread of misinformation. This is the epitome of “love your neighbor”. It is not helpful to spread conspiracy theories or random text-posts just because it’s “interesting to think about” or “food for thought”.

What actually is research?

  • Posted on: 5 June 2020
  • By: Michelle Brightwell

One of the many pitfalls in knowledge as result of the Internet is the watering down of the term “research”.

You can look at the comments of any Facebook post regarding COVID-19, protestors, vaccines, sunscreen, and it’s littered with calls to “do your own research!”

Research has a very specific meaning, and that does not mean “here’s information that backs up what I already believe”.

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