Andrea Ceccherini (President of Osservatorio Permanente Giovani-Editori) promoted a meeting on tech-media literacy with The New York Times Director Joe Kahn and TIM CEO Pietro Labriola

All three speakers were the protagonists of a dialogue with 400 Italian and Spanish students present in the room.

Andrea Ceccherini (President of Osservatorio Permanente Giovani-Editori) promoted a meeting on tech-media literacy with The New York Times Director Joe Kahn and TIM CEO Pietro Labriola

The protagonists of the tech-media literacy meeting promoted by the Osservatorio Permanente Giovani-Editori were Joe Kahn, the director of The New York Times and the international guest, and Pietro Labriola, the CEO of Tim and the national guest. The event saw the participation of over 400 Italian students, with a representation of Spanish students involved in the tech-media literacy projects promoted by the organization, interacting with the two guests and the President of the Osservatorio Permanente Giovani-Editori, Andrea Ceccherini.

In his speech, Ceccherini stated: "Today is a truly special meeting. Our driving dream is to change the world to make it a better place. With this mindset, we try to defend the centrality of the person, especially in a time when changes threaten our ability to control it. The human person must be at the center, and technology must serve them, not the other way around, for any reason. You young people have much more time to make the world a better place, provided you have the educational tools to do so. How is it possible to develop critical thinking in 14-year-olds? Only by giving them the tools to use their own minds, making you more in control of yourselves. In a world dominated by artificial intelligence, your eyes and your mind are the assets you have. Today it is important to fight polarization and combat fake news."

Ceccherini then recalled the journey of the Osservatorio Permanente Giovani-Editori, from the origin of the 'Newspaper in the Classroom' project, through great personalities and entrepreneurial and editorial realities that passed through the Osservatorio, up to the project with Apple.

It was an interesting meeting divided into two parts. The first featured Tim's CEO, Pietro Labriola, who, after an initial interview by journalist Maria Latella, answered questions from the students. Tim's CEO, who, with his company, has been promoting a path of technological-digital literacy in Italian high schools for several years together with the Osservatorio, reiterated the importance of such projects during his interview, then focusing on a particular current issue like the limit on smartphone use among young people: "If our fear is that social media conveys wrong models, the problem is to establish correct models. The real issue is defining what the correct behaviors are. The discussion is not about blocking the tool or individual social media. I can block TikTok, Instagram, and even take away your phone. But if we don't define the right and wrong cultural models, we won't get anywhere. We need to help the new generations access the initial information, not the one processed for someone else's use and consumption."

After Labriola's questions, it was the turn of the intervention by The New York Times Director Joe Kahn, interviewed by the Director of Quotidiano Nazionale (La Nazione, Il Resto del Carlino, and Il Giorno) Agnese Pini. Joe Kahn's interview, director of the newspaper "flagship" of democracy in the world and member of the International Advisory Council of the Osservatorio Permanente Giovani-Editori, touched on various topics, including quality information in the era of Artificial Intelligence, the role of independent journalism in democracy, and the importance for young generations to be involved in tech-media literacy paths.

Joe Kahn said in his speech: "Looking at these young people makes me optimistic because it is a generation of high school students who came here to learn media literacy. There is no magic wand that will take away the polarization that exists in today's world or eliminate bad information, the fake news broadcast every day. The first step is to do what the young people here did today, which is to understand that they must master the sources of information to develop their own ideas and understand which information is reliable, develop a critical eye on the media, because no one will solve the problem for you. What makes me somewhat optimistic is that there are groups of people like the young people in this room and projects like the Osservatorio's that do something about how they consume information and invest in understanding it better: no one will solve the problem of democracy or good information, which is the supporting pillar of democracy if the citizen does not act personally. That's why I came here today because it's a very important project, and it's very important that you are interested in this topic and want to discuss it."

The NYT Director continued, saying: "No one can solve the marketing problems or correct information. The only way is to learn to develop your own ideas independently. Today, information comes to you continuously throughout the day. You have to be able to 'feel' what is happening in the world, inform yourself independently, not just read what is found at the first opportunity, but delve deeper and constantly seek quality information. Today, the quality information crisis is evident. At the NY Times, everything reported under the NY Times brand is evaluated and verified extremely carefully and meticulously."

An event where the students were the main protagonists with their questions and curiosities, making this meeting with Joe Kahn and Pietro Labriola a unique encounter that ended in a crowd and selfies for the speakers as they left the event hall.