Transliteracy is an emerging buzzword.
What is it, exactly? Well…
According to Transliteracy.com, “transliteracy is the ability to read, write and interact across a range of platforms, tools and media from signing and orality through handwriting, print, TV, radio and film, to digital social networks.”
Bobbi Newman has put together a slide show presentation that illustrates this meaning and the concept’s important relationship with librarianship:
My only problem with this, and the established concept of “information literacy” for that matter, is that each posit linear, positivist theories of how people should access, understand and use information. Both concepts are defined independent of cultural specificity and the idea that one does not simply become “literate” but rather must continue to accustom one’s self as the channels through which information travels change and transform.
With this criticism in mind, the term “fluency” has crept in attempting to compliment, or perhaps replace, “literacy.” 21st Century Fluencies have been defined in varying ways to describe proficiencies people use to interpret information across various media types.
Semantics aside, however, developing new means of helping library patrons find, use and understand information across the print and digital landscape is an important, exciting area for further investigation. And I’ve got some ideas of how to go about this. Stay tuned…