Congressional Task Force on Digital Citizenship

The Congressional Task Force on Digital Citizenship was created in order to better equip Americans with tools and resources to use technology and engage online responsibly in an increasingly digital world.

What is Digital Citizenship?

Digital citizenship is the responsible use of technology and applies to anyone who uses computers, the internet, mobile phones, or other digital devices to engage with society. With technology and online engagement becoming increasingly integrated in Americans’ daily lives, so has the need to develop the skills and knowledge to navigate the digital world.

The task force is focused on promoting policies that encourage good digital citizenship, while providing a forum to offer resources for families and conduct discussions on healthy and responsible online behavior. The task force brings together policy makers, non-profits, and businesses that are focused on the subject of digital citizenship to share resources and collaborate on best practices. It also facilitates discussions with state and local education agencies, as well as educators, parents, and students, about integrating digital citizenship into classrooms.

Topics of interest for the task force include identifying misinformation and disinformation online and on social media, finding a healthy balance between being online and offline, understanding online threats and scams, combatting online extremism, teaching children ways to stay safe from online predators, and other topics related to digital footprint, cyberbullying, privacy, and well-being.

Task Force Members:

Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-VA)*
Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA)*
Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI)*
Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY)*
Rep. Bill Foster (D-IL)*
Rep. Bill Keating (D-MA)*
Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA)*
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD)
Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI)
Rep. Lori Trahan (D-MA)
Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL)
Rep. Kathy Castor (D-FL)
Rep. Sean Casten (D-IL)

*indicates founding member

Upcoming Task Force Events:

The task force will host roundtables and other collaborative events that bring together stakeholders and community members to discuss the various aspects of digital citizenship.

Sign up for Congresswoman Wexton’s newsletter here to receive updates about other upcoming events!

Previous Events:

Countering Truth Decay - A Briefing on the Diminishing Role of Facts and Analysis in American Public Life

The Congressional Task Force on Digital Citizenship hosted a briefing for Members and staffers on the growing challenges of misinformation, disinformation, conspiracy theories, and false information in American discourse featuring a presentation from the nonpartisan, nonprofit RAND Corporation. Watch the full discussion here.

Rep. Wexton hosts a roundtable on the spread and danger of disinformation and misinformation related to COVID-19

"During a public health emergency, people need trusted information from accurate sources. The COVID-19 pandemic has been labeled an 'infodemic' because of the unprecedented amount of misinformation and disinformation surrounding the virus."

Watch the full discussion here

Reps. Wexton and Raskin host a discussion on screen time and online behaviors

"We live in a technology era where access to electronic devices is at the touch of our fingertips, however Wexton focuses on technology screen addiction and the pressured felt by many to be part of virtual communities, especially children and young adults."

Watch the full discussion here

Rep. Wexton hosts a virtual roundtable to discuss good digital citizenship during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Adults and parents are being encouraged to interpret online information appropriately as the coronavirus continues to spread. The advice comes as more people are leaning on social media platforms during the pandemic. New platforms can be filled with news, data, opinions and some misinformation.”

Watch the full roundtable here

Digital Citizenship in the News:

Task Force on Digital Citizenship Leaders Applaud Measure to Combat Foreign Disinformation Campaigns Included in NDAA

Washington, DC -- 
Representative Jennifer Wexton (D-VA) and members of the Congressional Task Force on Digital Citizenship released the following statement as the House of Representatives approved the bipartisan Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which includes an amendment requiring U.S. Intelligence agencies to review and report on foreign disinformation campaigns targeting federal elections. Read more.

House Democrats Propose Roadmap for Biden Administration on Fighting Disinformation

Washington, DC -- 
Members of the Congressional Task Force on Digital Citizenship sent a letter to President-elect Joe Biden proposing a roadmap for how his administration can confront the threat of disinformation and misinformation and work to counter the danger they pose to our democracy. The letter was led by U.S. Representatives Jennifer Wexton (D-VA), Don Beyer (D-VA), and David Cicilline (D-RI). Read more.

Wexton Applauds Efforts Led by Members of Task Force on Digital Citizenship to Combat Disinformation in NDAA

Washington, DC -- 
Congresswoman Jennifer Wexton (D-VA), founder of the Congressional Task Force on Digital Citizenship, applauded amendments included in the Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to confront the national security threat posed by disinformation, including her own which would require a new standing report on foreign campaigns to spread disinformation and undermine federal elections. Read more.

Congressional Task Force on Digital Citizenship Hosts Briefing on Safeguarding Digital Democracy with the German Marshall Fund
Washington, DC -- The Congressional Task Force on Digital Citizenship hosted a briefing for Members and staff featuring a presentation from the German Marshall Fund to discuss their recent report, “Safeguarding Digital Democracy: Digital Innovation and Democracy Initiative Roadmap.” The presentation was led by two authors of the report, Karen Kornbluh and Ellen P. GoodmanRead more.

Wexton Report to Study COVID-19 Disinformation and Misinformation Included in Heroes Act

Washington, DC -- The House voted to pass the Heroes Act, sweeping COVID-19 relief legislation which includes a provision led by Congresswoman Jennifer Wexton (D-VA) directing a scientific study of the spread of COVID-19 related disinformation and misinformation online and on social media. Read more.

Digital Citizenship and COVID-19:

As the COVID-19 pandemic forces all of us to spend more time at home and online, here are some helpful tips and resources for practicing good digital citizenship during this crisis.

Think critically about what you see online and learn to spot misinformation:

Misinformation is even more dangerous in times of crisis, like the COVID-19 pandemic we’re facing. Learn how to fact check the information you find online and on social media with these useful tips.

How to manage your screen time:

We’re all spending a lot more time online as we work and learn from home, so it’s important to take steps to limit your screen time. Take breaks, schedule offline time, and pay attention to how you’re feeling to manage your mental and physical health while you’re online.

Effective distance learning practices:

Learning from home has been stressful for students AND parents! Sticking to a routine and understanding that being positive and supportive—even if you’re not perfect—is the best way to support students during remote learning.