This month’s Organizational Partner Spotlight is focused on Weird Enough Productions, an organization dedicated to combatting media misrepresentation through original content production and media literacy education. Rachell Arteaga (RA) interviewed Tony Weaver (TW) of Weird Enough Productions, an organization dedicated to combatting media misrepresentation through original content production and media literacy education. Weird Enough Productions was started in 2014 after it’s founder won $500 dollars from a pitch competition and had a vision to use media to bring people together. Since then, Weird Enough has grown into a coalition of young artists working to change the world in a way that’s not normal, but just Weird Enough.
RA: When did your organization launch and why?
TW: We launched in 2014 because we recognized a systemic lack of diverse representation. The effects of media misrepresentation are well documented, and as young people of color, my team and I have experienced its effects firsthand. We realized that young people needed not only positive content, but a framework that would prevent them being negatively impacted by stereotypical content.
TW: Weird Enough is dedicated to combatting media misrepresentation through original content production and media literacy education. Our main program uses superheroes to teach kids about media literacy. Get Media L.I.T. is an educational program that boosts critical thinking, literacy levels, and test scores by teaching students media literacy, the ability to access, analyze, evaluate, and create media content. By using the media content that students engage with every day like videos, articles, comics, and Vlogs, Get Media L.I.T. gets students engaged in the classroom and teaches them how to use media to better themselves and their communities. Rather than separating students from media, our program teaches them how to healthily engage with it, how to take control of their own narrative, and how use media to promote positivity in their communities.
RA: What makes your organization stand out? What would you say is the most unique thing about your organization?
TW: The thing that makes Weird Enough unique is the fact that we’re Weird Enough. We’re uniquely positioned to create this program because our youth and diversity gives us a strong insight for the most effective ways to teach media literacy. We know the best way to teach students about media literacy because about four years ago, we were those students. Our diversity as a group allows us to develop a media literacy curriculum sensitive to the needs of minority students and communities because we’re products of those communities.
RA: What are recent projects or new resources that your organization would like to share with other NAMLE members?
TW: In accordance with our program, we’ve launched an online campaign where we use the heroes to share one media literacy tip daily. We’d love NAMLE members to support the campaign.
RA: Why is media literacy important to you?
TW: Media literacy is important to me because I think media is the most powerful communication tool in the history of mankind, and for it to reach its greatest potential. imperative that we teach how to have a healthy relationship with it.