Reflection: June 16th

Today in EDUC331 we covered the broad and confusing topic of copyrights and Creative Commons as well as the literacy concept of the Digital Citizen.

Understanding how to use information from the internet is of crucial importance to students and adults alike.  The professional world requires a lot of its members and knowing how to legally obtain and cite information is a marketable skill to have.  In discussing the role of the internet in our lives, we must look at what it takes to be a responsible Digital Citizen.

A Digital Citizen is a member of the online community who is aware of the ethics and responsibility of participating in this grandiose community.  Digital Citizenry is comprised of 9 positions categorized into 3 groupings:

Respect for yourself and others

Educate yourself and to connect with others

Protect yourself and others

All components of Digital Citizenry are designed to make users aware of the scale of the community, the dangers and the legality of it.  Educators are instrumental in the propagation of this type of literacy.  Instructing students on the importance of the role of being an upstanding Digital Citizen lands on the teacher’s shoulders.  If the digital world is employed in a classroom setting (which it most certainly is) than the teacher takes the lead in this education (Mike Ribble, 2015).

Copyright and Creative Commons are protections allotted to data created and published on the internet. When a piece of media is created, its author may choose to copyright protect it. Other creators may add their work to the public domain for free use. Creative Commons refers to the allowance of media or data to be used but only if it meet certain criteria. This is where it gets complicated, but it can be determined by researching the works. Fair Use refers to the position of the secondary user of created data and whether or not they are able to defend their use of the data (

In discovering this information today, I have become more aware of this complicated but necessary world. Becoming aware of, and teaching Digital Citizenry will continue to further benefit the greater online community.

John Williams

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