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Digital Citizenship for Children and Youths

Seda Gökçe Turan

As an educator and researcher, I have tried to create awareness to pupils, teachers and families through seminars and workshops since 2012. I believe that Internet and social media are actually precious and useful. If individuals use digital environments consciously, they can even be counted as educational institutions. Unfortunately, most of the pupils, teachers and parents had great concerns regarding digital environments, which decreased after they obtained information about “digital citizenship”. So, I decided to write a book not only for teachers or parents who guided for safety at digital environments, but also for youths to understand digital citizenship.

The book is written in the hope that it would be helpful for anyone who hold concerns about digital environments.

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3. Digital Citizenship


3.Digital Citizenship

Internet and technological devices change the society in personal, educational and professional domains and social media as well. With this rapid change, digital citizenship is perceived as a coping and adaptation strategy at this fast-changing digital society’s challenges. Different from digital media literacy, digital citizenship is a more inclusive and extensive skill in order to survive and benefit in digital environment. Moreover, digital citizenship is generally characterized by users’ actions. Digital platform users are considered as active rather than passive individuals (Hintz et al., 2017) as media has a functional effect on construction of nation-states and laws through impact on individuals and society .

To participate in modern society needs not only consumed but also produced and created messages (Hobbs, 2010). For this reason, Hobbs (2010) stated the concept of “digital citizenship.” She claimed that USA citizens should be educated about multi-media, but it should be valid for whole people all over the world. With this multi-media education, individuals gain the skills about creating media messages by using language, visual design and audio effects. In particular, media and digital media literacy education in curriculum K12 provide equal opportunities in digital media for pupils (Hobbs, 2010).

While researchers are mostly discussing about risks and harms and dark sides of the Internet and social media, they also try to present a solution for these risks. Digital citizenship is evaluated as a protection method for children and youths due to these dark sides of digital environments...

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