Many interactions in the Narrative Community are online now and up for consumption by community members familiar, unfamiliar and interested in narrative practices. What are some of the some ethical guidelines for our online interactions? What does it mean to be a good Netizen? Here are some starters proposed by Webroot:
- Recognizing that the internet is not some new world in which anything goes, but rather a new dimension or extension of our existing society.
- Applying the same standards and values online as we are accustomed to applying in the rest of our lives. In simple terms this means that the values society has in place against such things as hate speech and bigotry, copyright violations and other forms of theft, child exploitation and child pornography, remain intact. As do the values around courtesy, kindness, openness, and treating others with the same respect we wish to receive.
- Accepting that the laws which are currently in place to protect the rights and dignity of citizens apply online, and that where needed, laws are updated to reflect these rights in the extended environment. Theft online is still theft, stalking, bullying, harassing, tormenting online is still abusive, and so on.
- Acknowledging that cultural differences remain, even when national boundaries no longer apply. This requires finding a way to accept that the social values and norms of some netizens will not be the social values and norms of all netizens.For companies, being a good netizen, applying online ethics, or using netiquette also includes:
– Respecting the rights to privacy assumed and possessed by citizens in their offline interactions.
– Maintaining transparency in their policies and actions so that consumers can easily and quickly understand how that company is using their information, protecting them from harm, and giving users a clear means of ownership and self-determination as to what is, and isn’t shared about them.
For further description, see Netiquette: Rules of behavior on the Internet by and M.D. Roblyer|A. H. Doering — Pearson Allyn Bacon Prentice Hall