Here is an important article by Agence France-Presse (AFP) lifestyle editor Robert MacPherson about questions raised by Common Sense Media founder James P. Steyer concerning the effects of social media on kids. Jim Steyer’s guide is called Talking Back to Facebook (there is a video to check out on this page). These questions can be compared, contrasted, and evaluated alongside those of many longstanding debates about the effects of motion picture media, advertising, video and computer games, and other media on kids, grownups, and everybody else. The topics of this book offer strong discussion points when considering the use of social media in schools and the role of visual media in social and cognitive development.
For a rather striking illustration to accompany this post’s theme (I also recommend checking out Sponge Brain), check out the weekly online comics blog from Asaf Hanuka, the illustrator for the cover and splash pages of Moving Images. Hanuka lives in Israel, and The Realist, his weekly comic that explores the emotional, societal, and artistic travails of a nearing-forty artist and father, is exceptional. Earlier in these pages, when discussing Douglas Rushkoff’s A.D.D., I wrote “Graphic novels continue to be one of the most dynamic media around – one of the nice surprises that as the world goes digital, drawing continues to make a comeback in innovation and inspiration – and the relationship between comics and moving images offers boundless potential for visual storytellers and learning scenarios.” I think it would be hard to find a more pertinent or striking short-form, online example of this than in Hanuka’s The Realist visual blog.