The internet plays a significant role in many people’s lives. We use it when we work, when we learn and when we play. With increased time spent online, it’s important to recognize that we all have a shared responsibility to ensure everyone has a safe and positive experience online.
In recognition of international Safer Internet Day 2017, Microsoft released our first Digital Civility Index and challenged people to treat each other with respect and dignity online. This year, a second study added more countries and evaluated more risks and was again released on Safer Internet Day.
Now, Microsoft’s Chief Online Safety Officer, Jacqueline Beauchere, has contributed the chapter “Encouraging Digital Civility: What Companies and Others Can Do” to the academic publication “The Changing Scope of Technoethics in Contemporary Society,” which became available in April.
The chapter discusses the benefits the internet has brought to society, along with the potential risks and anti-social behavior. It puts forth the point of view that prevention lies in promoting digital citizenship; that a collective focus is needed to raise awareness and change behavior; and that technology companies and government policymakers, as well as everyone who uses the internet, all have a vital role to play.
More on digital civility
Digital civility is Microsoft’s call to action for healthier online behaviors. We’re driven to grow a kinder, more empathetic and respectful online world and, in this quest, we partner with individuals and organizations and make numerous resources available. Our contribution to this publication, featuring our first year of research, is the latest such resource.