Welcome to Day 5 of Indiana Digital Citizenship Week! Each day this week we will be celebrating by exploring a different topic related to being our best selves in the digital world. Each of these five posts will include a brief discussion of the day’s topic as well as resources and ideas for discussing these topics with your friends.

Day 5 – Digital Responsibility

Today’s topic is digital responsibility. In order to be responsible citizens in the digital world, we need to behave ethically and morally as we use our technology. We must hold ourselves to high standards of action, and we must help others to do the same. Digital tools often make it easy for us to take ethical shortcuts and to forget about the human consequences of our online choices. On the other hand, digital tools also amplify our ability to make meaningful change in the world, and to use our power for good.

Being digitally responsible can take many forms. We exercise our responsibility when we refuse to download copyrighted material illegally. We are also being responsible when we don’t let our technology distract us from our work. Other examples might be asking someone’s permission before posting pictures of them on social media, taking care of technology that has been provided to us or that we share with others, obeying the terms of service agreements of web tools, and not intentionally using hacks to get around web filtering. Positive examples of digital responsibility include using social media to combat bullying, using technology to crowdsource funds for people in need, and using creative commons to license your creative work for others to use.

Here are some resources to learn more about this topic:

Here are 5 actions that you can take today:

Discussion Starters to Use with Your Friends:

  • What does it mean to be responsible in a digital world?
  • What are ways that we could improve our online behavior to be more responsible to others?
  • What does technology enable us to do to make the world a better place?
  • How can we advocate for others to be digitally responsible?
  • What are 5 actions we could take today that would make us more responsible digital citizens?
  • What rules, laws, and expectations govern how we behave online? And how effective are they?
  • What are the consequences of not behaving responsibly with digital tools?