Being a digital citizen is more than just accessing and using the Internet. Every time we post, share, like, research, stream a show, shop online, or play a connected game, we participate in the digital community. As digital citizens, we need to know how to be safe, kind, and positive contributors to our community.

The Internet is a great way to connect with people anywhere in the world. You can access news, podcasts, company websites to learn more about a topic or stay connected to the world. A variety of social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, can be used to keep in touch with friends, family or promote your business and reach potential customers. With the limitless possibilities of information you can access on the Internet, users must understand how they conduct themselves online in a way that protects their private information.  

Privacy on the Internet is essential. Anytime you are online, you create a digital footprint in what you share, everything you post, and every website you visit. When we put things such as our vacation photos, personal messages, or mail online, we want to be sure that only those intended can and should see them.

Vocabulary

  • Internet – An electronic communications network that connects computer networks and organizational computer facilities around the world
  • Wifi Network – A wireless technology that allows your laptop, cell phones, tablets, and other wireless devices to communicate without a direct ethernet cable, network cables, landlines, or other physical connections
  • Applications (Apps) – A program that performs a particular task or set of tasks
  • Digital Citizen – A person who develops the skills and knowledge to effectively use the Internet and other digital technology, especially to participate responsibly in social and civic activities
  • Digital Footprint – An expression used to describe a user’s activity online. When you are online, you create a digital footprint. There is a record of every website you have visited, social media post made, or comment made. Your online activity is building a digital footprint in everything you share, everything you post, and every website you visit.

Definition from Merriam Webster Dictionary

Viewing Activity

Watch Michelle Clark’s TED Talk on Digital Footprints (5 minutes), where she discusses the importance of being aware of what we post and how it can impact our lives.