A good digital citizen protects their personal information, uses good judgment and treats others with respect. Whether you’re posting on social media, sending an email or commenting on an online discussion, practicing good digital citizenship makes our online world a more welcoming place for everyone.

Examine Your Digital Footprint

Have you ever Googled yourself? You might be surprised by the search results. Your digital footprint is the record left by everything you’ve done online — social media activity, info on a personal or work website, browsing history, online subscriptions and any photo galleries and videos you’ve uploaded — essentially, anything online with your name on it that can be found and tracked by others.

What does that mean exactly? You should probably think twice before doing or posting anything online that you do not want the entire world to know about you.

Roughly 75% of the U.S. public uses more than one social media platform

Protect Your Privacy

Don’t overshare online. Assume everything you post can be seen and shared by others. Learn more in Privacy & Safety.

Respect Others

Treat others the way you’d want to be treated online. Also, respect their personal information and privacy. Get permission to download or share other people’s information, photos or work. Avoid spreading misinformation. Check the facts before posting.

23% of adults said they had shared fabricated political stories

Using the Rapid Principle


Treat every moment like a job interview or networking opportunity.
Eighty percent of employers “Google” candidates and 35 percent of them don’t make offers because of what they find. Be professional and respectful.


Each task is a chance to show pride and who/what you represent.
Your digital footprint is also your brand, personally and professionally. Your content reflects upon you and your family.


The Internet may be the longest relationship you ever have.
The Library of Congress began archiving all tweets in 2010. Only post what you are willing to commit to forever.


Social media puts the world at your fingertips; leverage that power.
Listen. Learn. Engage.


Be platform specific.
Curate what you share specifically to your network and audience.


Be Internet Awesome. A program that includes a fun and free web-based game called Interland and an educational curriculum to teach kids how to be safe and responsible explorers of the online world.

Connect Safely. A variety of resources for learning good online behavior and managing your digital footprint.

EdTechReview. Interesting Facts on Digital Footprint and Reputation

Family Online Safety Institute. An organization dedicated to making the online world safer for kids and families.

Internet Citizen from Mozilla. Resources to help everyone be a better digital citizen.

Medium: Know Your Social Media Rights

Social Media Tips for a Positive Impression. For parents and families – You can share these tips with your student to help them put their best foot forward on social media.


Mining Social Media for Community Health. New Research from the Health Informatics Program at the School of Public Health.