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“QLEVER online game launch for more resilient youth”

The QLEVER platform, which provides educational interactive games focused on building media literacy in Central Asia’s marginalised youth has been launched, available on Android Smartphones and on computer desktops. QLEVER focuses on building resilience to hate speech, disinformation and fake news, building the critical thinking skills and media literacy of Central Asian youth in Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. The games’ content is linked to media monitoring conducted in the four countries. Youth will be incentivized to learn though playing by earning points in each game, which they can they cash-in in exchange for prizes.

QLEVER has been created under the EU-funded Media and information literacy to build youth’ critical thinking in Central Asia (BRYCA project), which is run by a consortium of partners led by the French NGO IREX Europe, in partnership with Media Support Center Foundation (Kyrgyzstan), MediaNet International Centre for Journalism (Kazakhstan), Modern journalism development center (Uzbekistan), and Public Organization “Gurdofarid” (Tajikistan).

The goal of this new gaming experience is to help young people in Central Asian countries build crucial skills and methods needed to identify and resist misinformation and hate speech. Levels of media literacy are universally low in Central Asia, with the public having little awareness of the role or responsibilities of the media in a democratic society. As elsewhere in the world, youth in Central Asia mainly and increasingly rely on online media and social media for their information. Traditional media, increasingly not accessed, also do not provide an effective counter to the messages of hate and misinformation found online. The result is a population increasingly vulnerable to misinformation and hate speech.

The challenge however is how to engage youth, especially the most vulnerable in remote rural or poor urban communities in educational activities. Too often they are not able or willing to attend traditional education programmes, and they are generally completely unmotivated to access any online learning programmes offered.

The QLEVER game platform provides a potential solution, with innovative, interactive games and a reward-based incentivisation. The prizes available range from mobile phone credit to an actual smart phone. In this way we aim to reach thousands of vulnerable youth, and build their resilience to hate speech, propaganda and misinformation, particularly on social media.

QLEVER is available for free download on

Google Play Market for mobile devices [https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.irokez.qlever]

and accessible online with a computer https://qlever.asia/ru/region.

Contact details:

Alyona Koshkina, Manager of Media Literacy Program

MediaNet International Centre for Journalism

Email: a.o.koshkina@gmail.com / medianet.smm@gmail.com

Phone: +7 747 987 987 9

This initiative is funded by the European Union and implemented by IREX Europe, Media Support Center Foundation (Kyrgyzstan), MediaNet International Centre for Journalism (Kazakhstan), Modern Journalism Development Center (Uzbekistan), and Public Organization “Gurdofarid” (Tajikistan). The project promotes critical thinking and aims to strengthen the resilience of youth to misinformation and hate speech online as part of the global objective to promote support to civil society in protection and promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms worldwide.

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