I recently had a conversation with someone on Facebook who was persuaded that students can be expected to learn for themselves how to discern good information from bad on the internet, and that their instincts will serve them well without their needing to worry about whether the sources they turn to reflect the work of credentialed experts or anonymous individuals.
I disagreed, and still do.
Here is a link to a recent article in Haaretz about what students are liable to end up believing when left at the mercy of those who have learned how to make their bogus claims seem persuasive to poorly-informed perusers of the web.Holocaust denial, antievolutionary stances, Jesus mythicism – you name it. Whatever the form of denialism – and some are far more heinous than others – they all thrive because of an absence of information literacy.
Educators desperately need to make sure these skills are integrated into their curriculum.