education, technology, and everything else

thinking about digital citizenship

Posted by Miranda on December 27, 2007

As I was browsing around in my aggregator last night I ran across a link to a post of Vicki Davis’ on digital citizenship, written quite a while ago. She breaks digital citizenship into four parts: literacy, safety,learning strategies and etiquette. I would change etiquette to ethics, myself. The main point of her post as I see it is that students are not being taught how to be digital citizens, in all these areas. I have to say I agree.
But how can they be? The teachers I encounter in my daily life are unprepared themselves. Most know nothing of basic search techniques, any sort of self-publishing. They know that one should cite sources for material gathered on the Internet, yet rarely, if ever, do so. Safety, to them, means just don’t. Don’t self-publish, don’t use social networking sites, just don’t.
The community of educators who write about this sort of thing, the “edu-blogging community” is completely foreign to them as far as I can tell.

And the students….

Most students I encounter use Facebook. That is as far as their technical expertise goes. Most can upload funny photos of themselves. Ask them if they use a blog and they’ll give you a blank look. Social bookmarking? What’s that? RSS? Never heard of it. Copyright? But nobody cares, they’ll tell you (so will a lot of faculty).

They aren’t “creating digital content”. They are consumers when it comes to the Internet and not discriminating consumers either. The Internet isn’t an Information Superhighway to them. It’s a giant mall.
They hang out, and buy stuff they don’t need. They eat junk food and think it tofu.

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