Ronnie Corbett’s Blackberry is not working

Here’s a little Christmas cheer before we break for the holidays.

Ronnie Corbett brings us this hilarious clip on technology from his new show on Christmas Day – The One Ronnie.

As many of you will have guessed it appears to be an update of the Two Ronnie’s classic ‘Four Candles’ sketch.

(Thanks to @Marthalanefox for tweeting)

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

An Internet Masterclass by Terry Wogan

Terry Wogan is spearheading BBC Radio 2’s ‘Get Connected‘ campaign to encourage people to go online.

Watch a video of Terry talking to Declan Curry about getting online and the new Get Connected website.  The website has information about getting started with the internet and  includes articles on Blogs, Podcasts and Twitter.  Terry has also listed his Top 10 Tips on using the internet.

This is another good example of an organisation helping to promote and raise awareness of Digital Inclusion in the spirit of the Digital Britain report.

Digital Storytelling

If you’re interested in digital storytelling, BBC Wales have created a great ‘How to’ guide.  It basically includes everything you need to know:

A Guide to Digital Storytelling

Ofcom – Annual Communications Market Review 2008

Ofcom’s fourth annual review on Northern Ireland’s communications market was released last week.

Introduction: Communications Market Report: Northern Ireland

Report: The Communications Market 2009: Nations & Regions – Northern Ireland (pdf)

Here are some highlights from the report:

“A third of households in Northern Ireland have watched TV or video online…”

This includes catchup TV services such as BBC iPlayer and uplayer (utv),  user generated content on video sharing sites such as YouTube and video embedded in social networking sites.

“Radio listening through mobile phone, and MP3 ownership highest in N Ireland”

15% have said they have listened to radio through their mobile and 46% own a mp3 player/ipod.

“One in four households in Northern Ireland use social networking sites”

These are websites such as facebook, myspace and bebo which enable users to upload content and communicate with friends.

“…people in Northern Ireland spent 11% less time watching television than people in the rest of the UK”

This seems to match a wider trend where people are spending less time watching television and more on other devices including accessing the internet.

“Mobile take-up in Northern Ireland was the highest in the UK at 93% in Quarter 1 2009, up eight percentage points year-on-year”

Mobiles are now becoming the primary means of communications for many people (BBC News Article)

Other points:

1. A Media Literacy Network was established for Northern Ireland in February 2009.  Its purpose is to:

“… provide a forum for the sharing of expertise, information and best practice on the development of media literacy … [and to] … act as a vehicle for the development of strategic thinking and co-ordinated activity with a view to achieving greater media literacy in Northern Ireland.”

The network steering partnership includes Ofcom, BBC NI, Northern Ireland Screen, EGSA and Department of Finance and Personnel NI.  Membership is open to others who have similar interests.

2. New online learning portal launched for Northern Ireland, mylearningni, during Adult Learners’ Week

“The facility is designed to help adults access information and support about learning and careers choices, learn more about media literacy and share and communicate ideas with other users online.”

The mylearningni portal is being developed by Educational Guidance Service for Adults (EGSA), in partnership with the Department of Finance & Personnel, Ufi Learndirect and MMC Consulting.  It will go live to the general public later this year.

3. Ofcom NI have supported a pilot project that allows volunteers from Business in the Community to help residents of the Cedar Foundation to obtain internet and digital literacy skills.

“Business volunteers were recruited and trained to deliver one-to-one sessions. A special training manual was developed to take the participants and volunteers through the basics of using computers to accessing the internet and sending emails.”

The Communications Market report for Northern Ireland is 123 pages and can be downloaded as a pdf from the Ofcom website.

The conscientious objectors

When we think of people’s media literacy and use of the internet , we think of those who are digitally included and excluded.  However, it appears the latter group can be divided into those who are willing but face barriers to digital inclusion such as cost, training etc and those who have no interest at all in the digital revolution.

The BBC News Magazine has an interesting article discussing this issue titled The internet’s conscientious objectors.

It’s estimated that as many as 17 million people in Britain aged over 15 are not using the internet.

Ellen Helsper, researcher from the Oxford Internet Institute, believes there is a rise in the number of people saying they are just not interested in being online; reasons include:

  • the impersonal nature of communication
  • the many privacy concerns
  • the desire to keep life simple

The article points out that if this situation persists it will create challenges for the government as it continues to drive services online.  This will be something the government’s new digital inclusion champion, Martha Lane Fox, will have to consider for the future.  She is quoted as saying:

I don’t think you can be a proper citizen of our society in the future if you are not engaged online

Technology – a spending priority

According to Ofcom’s Communications Market Report 2009 we value technology above that of holidays and meals out and have adjusted our spending to reflect this in the current economic climate.

When consumers were asked where they would cut back on spending:

  • 47% said meals out
  • 41% said DIY
  • 41% said holidays
  • Only 10% would cut back on broadband services

Peter Phillips from Ofcom said:

Despite the recession, people are spending more time watching TV, using their mobile phone or accessing the internet.

They would rather do without meals out or holidays than give up their phone, broadband or pay TV package.

Within this internet use, social networking sites were becoming very popular.

19 million (50 per cent) of internet users now visit Facebook

Learn more by:

Technology ‘priority for Britons’

The Cost of Media Literacy

This week BBC Newsline are running a feature on the cost of technology entitled ‘The cost of keeping in touch’

Part one interviews a family who have the usual technology in place: broadband, computers and mobiles.  The family have clearly realised the benefits it brings to their household as both a source of information for learning and work and as a means of communication.

The family, like many others, are on the media literacy road but  also have to demonstrate financial literacy to stay on that road.

Part two features two girls who gave up their mobiles for the weekend.  This resulted in less communication with friends and family and a realisation of the potential for social exclusion, as a consequence of digital exclusion.

Technology is embedding quickly into our lives and social structures as the Digital Britain interim report 09 notes:

Digital technology has led to a quiet revolution over the past decade in our lives at work, at home and at leisure.

Those unable to participate because of financial or media literacy reasons may find themselves increasingly socially excluded from many activities within this quiet revolution.

[Other parts of this series will be included as they are broadcast]

Technology is at the core of media literacy in terms of the ability to access, analyse and evaluate the content we distribute through traditional and new media.  Like most other activities there is a cost, as well as benefits, to using technology and being media literate.  To manage that cost, especially in todays economic climate, often requires another form of literacy – financial.