Society Law and Ethics 2

Digital Society and Netizen

These days, most of the tasks we do are done using digital technologies. We chat online, shop online, learn online, and so much more. As a result, we have quite the online presence. Therefore, in order to maintain a certain code of conduct as one would do so in regular life, there are certain net etiquettes or netiquettes that have been created to ensure that everyone is a responsible digital citizen (netizen).


1. Net Etiquettes


* Copyright Violation:
Do not use copyrighted information without proper license i.e. permission of the creator/owner. Creators such as this have put a lot of effort into sharing their content and hence one should respect these efforts and not use materials without proper authorization.

* Sharing Information:
With access to unlimited online resources, we should share useful information with others. However, make sure the information you share is accurate and from a reputable source. A lot of fake information is spread nowadays which can lead to consequences.


* Privacy:
Respect the privacy of your fellow netizens. Good digital citizens understand that everyone has the same rights and freedoms. If someone shares private information with you DO NOT send it to anyone else without the sender’s consent.

* Diversity:
Public forums and chat sites have great diversity in contributing members. Make sure you respect other people’s cultures and beliefs and expect that they do the same for you.


* Cyber Bullying:
Remember that anything you say online to someone has the same effect as if you say it to their face. Many people say offensive and hurtful things online thinking that they can’t be held accountable. However, remember that everything you say is part of your digital footprint and can be easily traced back to you. Therefore, be careful what you say on public forums as you can get in trouble, but also, most importantly, you can cause harm to others.

* Trolling:
Internet trolls are people who intentionally disrupt harmony on online platforms. They thrive on attention and hence you should not fuel them by supporting them or rebutting. Trolls can be like online bullies they have fun when they make someone react to their comments. The best thing you can do is ignore them.

2. Communication Etiquettes


* Time:
Everyone is busy and therefore we should not waste our valuable time on unnecessary emails and comments. Similarly, do not expect others to respond to you instantly as they are also preoccupied.

* Data Limits:
Avoid sending large files over the internet as they use a lot of data and bandwidth, which come with their respective costs. You should make it a habit to send compressed files or links, using various free services.


While talking to someone online in a synchronous/real-time or asynchronous format, be polite and non-aggressive. Do not use slurs or abuses even if you get worked up.


As discussed in a previous point, make sure whatever you write on the internet is accurate and fact-checked. Spreading false information leads to unnecessary confusion.

3. Social Media Etiquettes


* Passwords:
Choose strong passwords to safeguard against data leaks or hackers. Use a combination of numbers, alphabets, allowed symbols and cases to create a password which is tough to crack. Also, avoid sharing your account information with others.

* Friends:
Social networking sites allow us to talk to anyone else on the platform. Be wary, however, as not everyone is friendly. Some people may even have malicious intentions. Be careful of who you interact with online and only converse with those who you have met in real life

* Fake Information:
There is a lot of fake information on the internet. This information is easily spread via social networking sites. Therefore, when you see something, make sure it is accurate. Experienced users are able to distinguish fake news from real news. Those who don’t can verify information from reputed sources. Although platforms have algorithms to fact check, report any misleading information to avoid further spread.


When you are about to upload something to the internet, pause for a moment and think of the consequences your actions could have in the future. Once you are sure what you are posting is acceptable, do so. Remember, as discussed earlier, that even if you delete an upload, it will still be stored on the service’s servers.