ELEMENTS OF DIGITAL CITIZENSHIP
Digital Access: We need to create awareness to technology users that not everyone has the same technological opportunities. Making sure all people have equal digital rights and have electronic access to is the starting point of digital citizenship. The goal of digital citizens should be to expand the use of technology.
Digital commerce: Technology users need to understand that a relatively large share of market economy is being done electronically. The buyer or seller must be aware of the issues associated with exchanging electronically. The mainstream availability of internet such as buying furniture, clothes, food etc. has become very common to many users. At the same time there are a lot of goods which are in conflict with laws of some countries such as pornography and gambling. Users need to learn how to be effective online.
Digital Communication: One of the most significant changes within the digital world is to be able to communicate with other people. Back in the 19th century, forms of communicate but today forms of communication offer a variety of choices such as email, cellular phones etc. The expanding digital communication forms have changed everything because it has made communicating with a lot easier, anywhere and anytime. However people have not being taught how to make appropriate decision with all these forms of communication.
Digital Literacy: Schools have made great progress in the area of technology but more need to be implemented, such as what technologies must be taught and how to use them. New technologies are being introduced to the workplace but are not taught in school such as videoconferencing, online sharing space such as wikis etc. Workers also need immediate information and this process needs sophisticated searching and processing skills. Learners must be taught how to learn anything online anywhere and anytime. Digital citizenship involves teaching people in a new way, such people need high degree of information literacy skills.
Digital Etiquette: When dealing with digital citizenship, etiquette is the most pressing problems. We recognise inappropriate behaviour when we see it, but people do not learn digital etiquette before using technology. Rules and regulations are usually made to prevent inappropriate behaviour but in some cases the technology is banned completely. Creating rules won’t be enough, people must be taught to be responsible in the digital world.
Digital Law: Digital citizens need to know the law and ethics of the digital world. Users must understand that stealing identity or damaging property online is a crime. All users of technology need to aware of all rules in the digital eras, examples of unethical behaviour would be hacking, downloading illegal music, plagiarising, creating viruses, sending spam etc.
Digital Rights & Responsibilities: Just as in the South African Constitution where there is a Bill of Rights, there are basics rights extended to every digital citizen. Technology users have the right to privacy, free speech, etc. Basic digital rights must be discussed and understood in the digital world, but with rights comes responsibilities. Users must define how technology is to be used in a proper manner.
Digital Health & Wellness: Eye safety, repetitive syndrome, and sound ergonomic practices are problems that need to be discussed in a new technological world. There are also psychological issues such as internet addiction. Users need to be taught about the dangers of technology and how to protect themselves.
Digital Security(self-protection): In all society there’s always someone who will steal or try to ruin one person’s reputation. That is also the same with the digital world. At the end of the day we have to be careful on who to trust. We need to use all sorts of protection to protect our digital community such as anti-virus software and/or backing up data. We should always be able to protect our information from all sorts of threats.
Impact of digital divide to social capital happens when other people can’t access or have limited access to certain social networks, also happens when other people avoid change to gain access to technology, not being exposed technology.
The ramifications thereof will lead to a person not being part of the digital economy. Lack of information and struggle to compete in the digital world.