Facebook wants to teach people how to live in a digital world with a new programme launched in Singapore

Clair Deevy, Facebook’s director of community affairs in Asia Pacific, at the launch of We Think Digital in Singapore.

What does it mean to be a digital citizen? Living in a digital world can be confusing, even if you consider yourself digitally savvy.

A new programme launched in Singapore on Tuesday (Mar 5) by tech giant Facebook aims to equip people with necessary skills in four areas: privacy, safety, security and digital discourse.

Called We Think Digital, the online portal will provide interactive tutorials designed to teach Internet users how to use digital technology safely. It also trains them to think critically and exercise empathy in the online world.

Facebook said in a statement that the programme was developed with input from experts such as academics and NGO or civil society representatives across the region.

In Singapore, the programme’s launch is supported by The People’s Association.

After Singapore, the programme will be rolled out in different languages in the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam and Taiwan. Facebook said it aims for the programme to “train” 1 million people in the Asia Pacific region by 2020.

The company will also be forming a regional “Steering Committee” to advise on how the programme can bring the most value to communities across Asia Pacific. The committee’s first two members are Dr. Vu Minh Khuong, associate professor at Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, and Dr. Pijitra Tsukamoto, associate professor at Thailand’s Chulalongkorn University.

“We Think Digital builds on our work developing safety resources over the past decade, including our Safety Center, Bullying Prevention Hub, Parents Portal, and Youth Portal,” Clair Deevy, Facebook’s director of community affairs in Asia Pacific, said.

“It responds to the evolution of the concept of digital literacy: from the skills needed to search for information online to connecting and engaging with a global community not defined by geography or by shared cultural understanding,” she added.