5 things you can do to help make the internet a better place
October 20, 2017
Digital citizenship is about how you act online. It includes acting ethically by deciding whether certain actions are right or wrong. By thinking before we act, we can make better choices and be a part of a more enjoyable and safer online community.
When navigating the internet, it's important to ask yourself:
- Is it legal?
The availability of unauthorized, copyrighted content makes illegal downloading, digital cheating, and plagiarizing easy. That doesn't make it right. Understanding what content is safe to access or download is important to obeying the law and practicing good online behaviour. It also prevents risks such as copyright infringements, downloading malware, potential lawsuits, or criminal consequences. It's your responsibly to use a legitimate media source when you access and download content.
- Is it hurtful or embarrassing to someone else?
42% of youth say they have been bullied online. Cyberbullying can damage a young person's self-esteem, reputation, and mental health. Be aware of the ethical and legal implications of posting inappropriate pictures, saying mean things, doxxing (sharing someone else's personal info to invite harassment), and other acts of cyberbullying.
- Is it harmful to my or someone else's reputation?
It's also possible to cause harm unintentionally by oversharing your (or other people's) lives and private information. It's important to get consent before sharing someone's posts, photos, or other content. Everyone deserves to have a say in how and where their information is being shared.
- Does it put personal information at risk?
- Is the online me the authentic me?
Read our Digital Citizenship: Guide for Parents to learn more.
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