Microsoft is Encouraging People around the World to Embrace Digital Civility

The company has a responsibility to create online services and communities where people feel safe

We celebrated Safer Internet Day (SID) this month. Starting as an initiative of the EU SafeBorders project in 2004, Safer Internet Day has grown beyond its traditional geographic zone and is now celebrated in approximately 150 countries worldwide including Bulgaria.

Safer Internet Day is celebrated around the world in February of each year, with Safer Internet Centres, SID Committees and other supporters in each of the countries coming together to plan and organise events. From cyberbullying to social networking, each year Safer Internet Day aims to raise awareness of emerging online issues and chooses a topic reflecting current concerns. This year’s SID celebration took place on Tuesday, 11 February 2020 with the slogan “Together for a better internet”.

“We encourage everyone to be more civil online. This year we are launching a boardgame called Thumbs Up, Bug Down. It is designed to help teachers empower their students to get the most out of the internet, while staying safe online. The game is a part of Microsoft’s ongoing annual campaign to promote digital civility and online safety because online risks have real-world consequences,” said Gergana Ruseva, Education Industry Account Executive for Balkans, Microsoft.

As part of its commitment towards online safety, Microsoft released its 4th annual Digital Civility Index (DCI), which is based on a survey conducted this past summer in 25 countries examining people’s attitudes and perceptions about online behaviors and interactions. The survey polled teens (ages 13-17) and adults (18-74) asking about their experiences and encounters with 21 different online risks across four categories: behavioral, reputational, sexual and personal/intrusive. New countries in this year’s edition of the DCI include: Indonesia, The Netherlands, and Poland.

Microsoft will continue to push its Digital Civility Challenge encouraging people to post on social media about their commitment to the challenge tenets, originally released for Safer Internet Day 2017, using the hashtags #Challenge4Civility and #Im4DigitalCivility, and to share examples of how being more civil online has made a positive difference in their life and/or community.