Media and Information Literacies Foundations. What are the critical media and information literacies (MIL) and competencies needed in the world today.


Shannon & Weaver's Mathematical Theory of Communication (1945)

was studied as a very important milestone of the Theories of

Communication. The studies of Journalism have tackled technology

inventions, most of the times, a long time after the first steps of

that technology in the journalistic ecosystem would have been given.

This scenario has changed in the Twenty One century when data

journalism has emerged, but the speed of the adquisition of these

competences goes much slower than the speed of the discoveries in the

technology side.

This article propose to state a set of milestones in order to get
proper foundations for the media and information literacy:

  1. The Mathematical Theory of Communication is
    specially important in th e begining of Computer Science or Internet

  2. The first experiments with Computers in Journalism came from
    the nationaly broadcasted prediction of 1950 presidential elections
    in the USA. Later on was founded the IRE association (Investigative
    Reporters and Editors, 1975) and in 1989 was founded the NICAR
    (National Institute for Computer Assisted Reporting) which is
    extremely important until now.

  3. The Precision journalism, the use of social science
    techniques to investigative journalism was set by Philip Meyer in
    1967 and was very influent in the following Data Driven Journalism.

  4. Data Journalism (Data Driven Journalism and/or Database
    Journalism) was possible thank to the Open Data Rising, the web
    standards and the popularity of the open source software ecosystem.

  5. (Semantic) Web Environments: taxonomies, ontologies, linked
    data or knowledge graphs technologies from the Web.

  6. Finally, all about Data Science, from the early business
    analytics environments to big data, machine learning, natural
    language processing, data mining or artificial intelligence.

From our own experience as non-technical natives profiles in
non-formal education processes1,
participants in learning-by-doing projects2
or menthors in data visualisation, data journalism and/or data
science workshops 3
it is strongly important to have panoramic knowledge of these
technologies although it is not compulsory to be an expert in all of
them. However as long as the computer is the main there should be a
set of basic technologies to choose different paths.




This paper belongs to a research project. Principal investigators: Associate Professor Ana Serrano Tellería and Full Professor Javier Díaz Noci of the Spanish R+D+I calling ‘Challenges of Society’, subproject title: “News, Networks and Users in the Hybrid Media System (Newsnet). Transformation of News and Media Industry in the Post-Industrial Era”. Reference: RTI2018-095775-B-C43. Three years: April 2019-April 2022. Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities.