Digital citizenship is defined by Ribble (2014) as the way in which people should behave when using technology. There are many elements of digital citizenship from digital access to digital security. The element I will focus on is digital etiquette. To be a digital citizen, technology users must know the digital etiquette of being online. Digital etiquette is a set of rules which everyone should follow online to ensure they are treating people the way they want to be treated.
The main digital etiquette rules for people to follow are be polite, read over the message you are about to send and use grammar. Many messages can be read by the receiver in the wrong way due to bad grammar or because the message has been sent in the ‘heat of the moment’. Sending an angry email or message for example, to your boss can have serious consequences.
I think children should be taught from a young age about digital etiquette. This may reduce the amount of cyberbullying there is on the internet. A survey taken by Digiteen (2014) involving teenagers showed that many know very little about digital etiquette and have been treated inappropriately online. Out of the teenagers surveyed 40% had never been taught about digital etiquette and the remaining 60% had only learned a very small amount. The same survey found 15% of the teenagers had been offended by either one or two posts online or emails. The remaining 85% had been offended more than three times in the same way. Today it is so easy for young people to see others acting in an inappropriate way on the internet and think they can do the same.
In my experience I do not remember ever being taught about digital etiquette when I was growing up, I picked it up as I was on the internet more and more regularly. When I was younger my Mum would help me when I was typing a professional letter or email to show me how I should address the person I am writing to and the language I should use. I think it is hard for parents to teach children digital etiquette as they have not grown up with this relatively new technology. This is why I think it is important for teachers to devote part of their I.C.T. lessons in school to the way their pupils should behave online throughout their lives. However even though I was never taught digital etiquette, I was taught manners and I think children should know that the manners they use face to face with people apply the same to talking to people over the internet.
- Digiteen,. (2014). digiteen – Digital Etiquette. Retrieved 13 November 2014, from https://digiteen.wikispaces.com/Digital+Etiquette
- Dunn, L. (2008). Laptop Keyboard. Retrieved from https://www.flickr.com/photos/liamdunn/2683642114/in/photolist-4wKD72-9p8hvA-5gnvWV-5acGNK-7ukTz-e8QYAm-58Ya7f-cEJrdJ-569niC-5Vi9nV-56Cbzq-oL2JH2-b88kg-5cvjP-6bXF19-9fWKNu-omVhYu-79bLD-FyqQx-4GoSfq-2MCgrk-5rEUMn-6qUUvG-i1ScTZ-32Dcmp-56Cbcf-cpneF-5hhXYf-AG1XJ-93TXrs-4tkYNd-4WCe9G-atqZco-4LViBq-LY3YS-7DjEN-vwuh6-7fAhvQ-uya1-8GRWw4-arP6SU-52Vd7o-6jZokA-Rckn-MLHsd-yiQFu-4W7dpa-4LVjjw-6o96my-hvJDX
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- Ribble, M. (2014). Nine Elements. digitalcitizenship. Retrieved 13 November 2014, from http://www.digitalcitizenship.net/Nine_Elements.html