Digital World

Digital Citizenship | Digital Footprint | Online Safety | Netiquette | Using Information Correctly

Digital Citizenship

usersWhat is a digital citizen? Would a digital citizen be like the Borg (Star Trek: The Next Generation)? The Borg are a collection of species that have been turned into cybernetic organisms functioning as drones of the Collective, or the hive. Or is a digital citizen like the Terminator (video character played by Arnold Schwarzenegger). A cyborg, short for "cybernetic organism", is a being with both organic and cybernetic parts. Or is a digital citizen someone like Ironman Tony Stark with is powered suit of armor? How would you define “digital citizenship?” How would you recognize a digital citizen of 2018?

People use technology to solve problems, achieve goals, or complete work as efficiently and effectively as possible. Technology can and has been applied in many communities for thousands of years. Today, people continue to adapt, advance, and apply technology in their offline and digital (online) communities using technology to connect to, work with, and form digital communities with others.


Citizenship brings with it rights and responsibilities. Digital citizenship is no different. If you are using the World Wide Web, you are a member of a large digital community. Within the overall arching digital community of the World Wide Web, there are smaller communities through our social networking sites. You are probably a member of many digital communities.

digital tribe
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digital citizenship

Our hyper-connected lives have been rewired for the digital age. As we expect more from technology, do we expect less from each other? Sherry Turkle studies how our devices and online personas are redefining human connection and communication — and asks us to think deeply about the new kinds of connection we want to have.

Our digital lives
Click on the picture, select the first video "Connected, but alone?" to watch the presentation

Assignment: Digital Citizenship Poster

Directions: Create your own Digital Citizenship poster for middle school students. Download the assignment here: Digital Citizenship Poster and upload to itsLearning.

Digital Footprint

digital footprintA digital footprint is the activity that a person does while they are online. This can include games that they play, things that they search on search engines, and anything that they choose to post on their personal social networking sites. This is information transmitted online, such as forum registration, e-mails and attachments, uploading videos or digital images and any other form of transmission of information — all of which leaves traces of personal information about yourself available to others online. A digital footprint cannot be destroyed; it is permanent and unchangeable.

What does your digital footprint say about you? Will your digital footprint be something that you are proud of when college admission representative or perspective employers search the World Wide Web about you before making decisions? You only have one chance to make a good first impression and your digital footprint may be the first and only impression of you.

You visit Google and you search for something. Have you noticed that the next time you visit your favorite social media site there are now ads for that product you were searching for? Here is a real example:


Do you know how websites such as Facebook can tell what you have been searching for on websites such as Amazon? Cookies! and not the chocolate or oatmeal raisin flavor either.

As web companies strive to tailor their services (including news and search results) to our personal tastes, there's a dangerous unintended consequence: We get trapped in a "filter bubble" and don't get exposed to information that could challenge or broaden our worldview. Eli Pariser argues powerfully that this will ultimately prove to be bad for us and bad for democracy.

Beware online filter bubbles
Click on the picture, select the third video "Beware online 'filter bubble'" to watch the presentation

Assignment: The Right to be Forgotten discussion board

Directions: “An argument asks "Do people have the right to remove damaging information about themselves on the Internet so the information can be forgotten?" The Internet has a long memory. But what if the pictures, data and personal information that it can pull up about you appear unfair, one-sided or just plain wrong? More and more people are claiming they have a "right to be forgotten" and are even trying to delete themselves from the web. The issue appears poised to generate legal, technological and moral wranglings for years to come. What do you think? Support your answer with a good argument for or against. Post your thoughts to the itsLearning discussion board. Be sure to read other posts for a better insight into the issue.

Online Safety

Introduction to Internet Safety

We all know we need to stay safe while using the Internet, but we may not know just how to do that. In the past, Internet safety was mostly about protecting your computer from viruses. But today, the Internet's vast reach, constantly changing technologies, and growing social nature have made users more vulnerable to identity theft, privacy violations, and even harassment.

Introduction to Internet Safety
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How much thought do you put into your passwords? For most of us, the number one priority is something that we can remember like our pet's name or our phone number. However, the weakest link in your security is generally your own password strategy. People choose really weak passwords out of laziness, or because they're easier to remember than good, hard-to-guess passwords.

Assignment: Internet Safety worksheet

Directions: Complete the worksheet in itsLearning.


What is netiquette? According to Wikipedia, netiquette "is a set of social conventions that facilitate interaction over networks, ranging from Usenet and mailing lists to blogs and forums." Think of netiquette simply as etiquette when online.

Online Netiquette Policy

It is important that all messages posted publicly to the classroom and privately to individual be phrased in a polite, friendly and respectful manner. You should practice in your online activities including this course.

Do not type in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS. Typing in all capital letters is the equivalent of SHOUTING at someone and is not appropriate in the classroom. Text typed in all caps is also difficult to read.

Only write what you would say face-to-face and be forgiving. Always be polite in your online communications. If someone writes something that sparks an emotion, either read it later before responding or ignore the communication. Do not start a flame war. If someone says something that you find offensive, mention this directly to the instructor. What you find offensive may have been unintended and can best be cleared up by the instructor.

Avoid humor, sarcasm, and strong language. Try to avoid humor and sarcasm. Without facial expresses and tone, it can be easily misinterpreted. Avoid the use of strong or offensive language and the excessive use of exclamation points.

thank you noteThink carefully before contributing. Your words reflect you. Everything that you write on-line is recorded and cannot be taken back. It is a good practice to compose and reread your comments in a word-processor before posting them.

Remember Your Place. A Web-based classroom is still a classroom, and comments that would be inappropriate in a regular classroom are likely to be inappropriate in a Web-based course as well. Treat your instructor and your fellow students with respect.

Stay on Topic. Contributions to a discussion should have a clear subject header and you need to stick to the subject of the discussion.

Be Clear. The subject line of an e-mail on discussion thread or title of a webpage should reflect the content.

Obey copyright laws and cite sources. Do not use images and content that belongs to others without their permission. Always cite sources.

Assignment: Question for Thought 2

Directions: What's the worst example of bad netiquette you've ever experienced? How did you react to it? Place your response (~50 words) in the itsLearning textbox. Do not attach a separate document and be sure to proofread.

Assignment:The Importance of Netiquette discussion board

Directions: Discuss the importance of netiquette in your professional communication (for example, the communication between you and your instructor or you and your classmates.) Next, explain three (3) possible repercussions of failing to use netiquette in your electronic communication. Respond to two (2) classmates to continue the discussion.

Assignment: Netiquette Infographic

Directions: Create an Infographic using the information that you learned about netiquette and additional information that you find on the Internet. Here is a free infographic maker (you can choose a different one if you want): You will have to register.

Using Information Correctly

Copyright wordle

Use Information Correctly
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Assignment: Question for Thought 3

Directions: Kim and Mike went to OfficeMax after school. Kim bought computer graphics software that would allow her to add cool effects to her pictures and to create sideshows. Mike really liked the software but didn't have any money to purchase the software. Mike asks Kim to burn him a copy of the installation discs. What should Kim do? (include your rationale). Type your responses (~50 words) in the textbox in itsLearning. Do not attach a separate document and be sure to proofread.

Assignment: Digital Citizenship Project

Directions: Select one of the topics listed in itsLearning to create an animated story for younger students (ages 8-12). Select a Web 2.0 tool such as ZooBurst (a 3D storytelling animation software) to tell and illustrate your story. Download your assignment here: Digital Citizenship Project and upload to itsLearning.


If you are having problems viewing this page, opening videos, or accessing the URLs, the direct links are posted below. All assignments are submitted in itsLearning. If you have having problems, contact Mrs. Rush through the itsLearning email client.

Digital Tribe & Filter Bubbles presentations:

Digital Footprint - Your New First Impression video:

The Right to Be Forgotten video:

Introduction to Internet Safety:

Your Password Sucks video:

How to Follow Proper Netiquette Rules:

Use Information Correctly:

Digital Citizenship Project:



World icon: Dryicons

Users icon: Dryicons

Thank you note icon: Dryicons

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