Nine elements have been identified that together make up digital citizenship. These are:
Digital Access: full electronic participation in society.
Digital Commerce: the buying and selling of goods online.
Digital Communication: the electronic exchange of information.
Digital Literacy: the capability to use digital technology and knowing when and how to use it.
Digital Etiquette: the standards of conduct expected by other digital technology users.
Digital Law: the legal rights and restrictions governing technology use.
Digital Rights and Responsibilities: the privileges and freedoms extended to all digital technology users, and the behavioural expectations that come with them.
Digital Health and Wellness: the elements of physical and psychological well-being related to digital technology use.
Digital Security: the precautions that all technology users must take to guarantee their personal safety and the security of their network.
Technology need to be aware and support electronic access for everyone to create a foundation for Digital Citizenship. Digital exclusion of any kind does not enhance the growth of human beings in an electronic society. One gender should not have preferential treatment over another. Electronic access should not be determined by race, physical or mental challenges that prevent access to technology have to be overcome. Those in cities or towns with limited connectivity need to be addressed as well. To become productive citizens, we need to be committed to equal digital access.
Technology users need to understand that a large share of market economy is being done electronically. Legitimate and legal exchanges are occurring. The mainstream availability of Internet purchases of toys, clothing, cars, food, etc. has become commonplace. At the same time, an equal amount of illegal/immoral goods and services are surfacing such as pornography and gambling. Users need to learn about how to be effective consumers in a new digital economy.
One of the significant changes within the digital revolution is a person’s ability to communicate with other people. In the 19th century, forms of communication were limited. In the 21st century, communication options have exploded to offer a wide variety of choices (e.g., e-mail, cellular phones, instant messaging). The expanding digital communication options have changed everything because people are able to keep in constant communication with anyone else. Anyone is afforded the opportunity to access information anywhere and anytime. Unfortunately, many users have not been taught how to make appropriate decisions when faced so many different digital communication options.
Digital literacy is the ability to locate, organize, understand, evaluate, and create information using digital technology. It involves a working knowledge of current high-technology, and an understanding of how it can be used. Digitally literate people can communicate and work more efficiently, especially with those who possess the same knowledge and skills. Certifications are available to determine if a person is digitally literate.Digital literacy encompasses computer hardware, software (particularly those used most frequently by businesses), the Internet, cell phones, PDAs, and other digital devices.Thegoal of Digital Literacy is to teach and assess basic computer concepts and skills so that people can use computer technology in everyday life to develop new social and economic opportunities for themselves, their families, and their communities. Whether you are entirely new to computing or have some experience, this curriculum will help you develop a fundamental understanding of computers. From using the Internet, to sending e-mail, to creating a résumé, the Digital Literacy Curriculum helps you develop the essential skills you need to begin computing with confidence.
Schools are continually updating their curriculum for digital literacy to keep up with accelerating technological developments. This often includes computers in the classroom, the use of educational software to teach curriculum, and course materials being available to students, online. Some classrooms are designed to use smartboards and audience response systems. These techniques are most effective when the teacher is digitally literate, as well.Teachers often teach digital literacy skills to students who use computers for research. Such skills include verifying credible sources Online and how to cite Web sites.Educators are often required to be certified in digital literacy to teach certain software and, more prevalently, to prevent plagiarism amongst students.Libraries are using games increasingly such as the Digital Literacy Contest to raise awareness about digital literacy.
Technology users often see this area as one of the most pressing problems when dealing with Digital Citizenship. We recognize inappropriate behavior when we see it, but before people use technology they do not learn digital etiquette (i.e., appropriate conduct). Many people feel uncomfortable talking to others about their digital etiquette. Often rules and regulations are created or the technology is simply banned to stop inappropriate use. It is not enough to create rules and policy, we must teach everyone to become responsible digital citizens in this new society.
Digital Law is defined as the electronic responsibility for actions, deeds which is either ethical or unethical. Everybody should respect the law and abide by it. Not following the law can result in serious punishment.
Digital citizens have the right to privacy, free speech, etc. Basic digital rights must be addressed, discussed, and understood in the digital world. With these rights also come responsibilities as well. Users must help define how the technology is to be used in an appropriate manner. In a digital society these two areas must work together for everyone to be productive.
Free from digital danger and guaranteed digital physical and psychological well being. Eye safety, repetitive stress syndrome, and sound ergonomic practices deal with digital safety. In addition students need to be aware of threats from digital predators that they may come into contact with online. Students must me taught that there inherent dangers of technology. Digital citizenship includes a school culture where technology users are taught how to protect themselves through education and training .
Digital Security and Safety is an issue that relates to a person's well-being and safety on a computer. Safety and security are two topics that are closely related. Security is the condition of being protected against danger, loss, and criminals. Safety is the condition of being protected against non-desirable events. Some examples of unsafe sites are Flickr and Facebook.