Continuing my reflections on the webinar on online presence and digital literacies, I would first note that I don’t believe Cultural, Constructive, Creative and Comunicative skills are so distinct of digital modalities. Digital tools of course can enhance and accelerate the development of such skills to some extent (even to great extent), but I don’t believe these are definitive elements of digital literacies per se. I have the same take on the claim that Confident, Cognitive, Critical and Civic mindsets would be so directly connected to the digital era. Sure, if we consider that we need to be more aware of what we post as we reach huge communities so easily, these mindsets are maybe more important than in other modalities, so I can relate to that part. I just find it problematic how digital literacies are branded as something radically new. I can rather relate to the recycling/remaking idea which emphasizes that several literacy skills that we develop in different contexts are integrated and transformed into digital modalities, and of course digital literacy practices also influence ‘offline’ activities.

Another rather direct distinction in the suggested materials that hit me was the native vs. immigrant or resident vs. visitor dichotomy. Here again I have witnessed a rather unreflected celebration of native/resident communities. Native speakerism is a pretty problematic concept in linguistics as well so I don’t quite see the point why it is worth adapting to this context as well. Sure, the recommended materials to some extent have noted that literacies can be understood along a scale so being native doesn’t necessarily mean to be perfect. However, emphasizing nativism can discourage people with ‘non-native’ digital identities, suggesting that non-natives cannot really help so-called natives. Thinking about languages, I have experienced that I can help my native English speaker students in academic writing even though I am not a native speaker – but still, I have built some specific skills, and they can benefit from dialogue with me.

Just like the person in the scenario, I feel confused in this course. Not because I can’t handle devices or software nor because this would be my first online course (I’ve taken some already and also taught online). I simply find communication in this course chaotic and opaque. Quite often I feel I just simply quit because I don’t really need another layer of assignments in my life which then lead to frustration rather than a rewarding experience. Anyway, I don’t yet quit so let’s see what emerges from this mess.

Week 4 – digital literacies