xii Introduction In recent years, particularly as schools have gone 1:1 with devices, there’s been more of a student-centered approach to digital citizenship. Many have learned that simply saying, “No, that’s unsafe” is unhelpful in a world with the Internet and screens everywhere and a knowledge economy that re- quires and rewards technology skills. Increasingly there are conversations about embedding digital citizenship across multiple subjects and at earlier ages. Digital citizenship cannot just be a one-off conversation once in a while. The new approach and standards to digital citizenship understand that technology is not a once-a-week discussion, but an everyday occur- rence. School librarians are particularly vital to embedding digital citizen- ship across multiple classrooms, and strategies and practices will be shared in Chapters 5 to 7. What does digital citizenship look like in 5 to 10 years? That’s hard to an- swer, but there are broad technology trends that may influence the practice, like: Generational changes: Generation Z has used the Internet since they were young and are entering college and the workplace. The generation behind, the Alphas, has never existed in a world without social media and high-speed access, and in a few years, they will be the generation in middle school. Gaming: Online gaming has exploded in the last decade with a sep- arate digital and media ecosystem of streamers and new influencers. Parents of Gen Zs and Alphas have had games since they were children and are now raising new generations of gamers. Remote learning and work: The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the move to remote learning and work. There is more screen time than ever before. The techlash: The term “techlash” is a portmanteau of technology and backlash, and it’s found bipartisan support and growth in recent years. There are lawsuits against Google, Facebook, Apple, and more. Gov- ernment officials and other regulators have pushed back against Chi- nese tech companies. There is bipartisan support for more regulations around big technology companies. This techlash may influence laws, norms, privacy, and more in technology in future years. A certainty of the future is change. Norms and values around technology are shifting. Technology is more integrated into our day-to-day lives. Pro- cessing speeds, artificial intelligence (AI), and other tech developments pose promise and pitfalls. Digital citizenship must continue to change and adapt as the rest of the world does.
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