Indiana University

News Release

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Last modified: Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Digital Information Literacy Competition tests Internet literacy and cognitive agility

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Sept. 17, 2008

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Undergraduate students will show off their reference and Internet literacy skills during the Digital Literacy Contest on Sept. 30 at Indiana University Bloomington's Herman B Wells Library.

The Indiana University Libraries, which is hosting the competition, is offering $100 as a first-place prize. Registration for the contest is free. Afterward, the library will provide food and lead a discussion about digital information literacy.

The Digital Literacy Contest was created in 2007 by former Purdue University student Daniel Poynter. Current participants include Purdue, IU Bloomington, Brown University and the University of Florida.

"This is the first competition in which people wield the Internet as a cognitive prosthetic," Poynter said. "It's a high-speed battle of Internet-enabled intelligence. The contest has three main objectives: to identify people who thrive in information overload, to disseminate their insights, and to create a discussion about what it means to be digitally literate.

"Our age is both unprecedented and pivotal," Poynter continued. "Unparalleled global access to information is accelerating technological and social change. Making sense of our increasingly complex world depends upon becoming better information filters through the help of libraries. This competition is one way to ease ourselves into this exciting future."

Contestants will be given 50 questions, 30 minutes and Internet access. Correct answers earn points and incorrect answers are penalized. The highest score wins.

The contest begins at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 30, in computer lab W302, Herman B Wells Library. Those interested in competing must register online at: Early registration is encouraged as space is limited. For more information, please e-mail

To speak with Poynter, please call 765-425-6033 or e-mail

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