Digital literacy is increasingly becoming a more talked of concept, but what is digital literacy? Some believe that it’s simply the ability to log onto a computer or talk to Siri on an IPhone. In reality, digital literacy is a very broad topic. To be digitally literate, you must have the ability to navigate and find information on a wide range of technological sources such as tablets, cell phones, computers, etc. Not only that, but in order to truly understand digital literacy, an understanding of privacy, copyright, and etiquette must be learned. With technology changing on what seems to be a daily basis, it can be extremely difficult to keep up to date on new technology, information, and rules.
A digitally literate person doesn’t simply have an understanding of how to use technological equipment. Digital literacy is also about sharing the information you find with others! This can include retweeting an article that you find interesting, teaching someone about copyright infringement, or showing someone how to run a piece of technology. Another important misconception that many seem to have is that everything found on the internet HAS to be true. Someone who is truly digitally literate has the ability to look at everything that is read with an objective mind. In addition, it’s important to compare different videos, websites, opinions, etc. before coming to an educated decision on a matter, or deciding to share something with others.
I can safely say that I am NOT a digitally literate person. Although I have a fairly good understanding of how to find my way around a tablet, computer, or phone, I still have much to learn. For example, this is only my second blog post EVER. Not just on this site, but ever. My knowledge of copyright infringement could also definitely be improved. Since being in college, this is my third class that revolves around technology, and yet, I feel I still have so much to learn!
In short, digital literacy has many components. Simply put, digital literacy is being able to navigate, find, decode, and share different information with others, appropriate and correctly, through the use of technology. In order to become digitally literate, a person must dedicate time and do the needed research to cover all that digital literacy has to offer. Check out the link below (Are You Digitally Literate) from Cornell to see their take on what it means to be digitally literate! Another website that I personally found helpful is also linked below at digitalliteracy.gov.