Recently, a study titled “Civility, Safety, and Interactions Online – 2020” was unveiled by the popular tech giant Microsoft. Even the study from the company’s 2020 Digital Civility Index (DCI) was also made public. Results from both the studies have shown that Australia has continued to perform better than its Asian counterpart when it comes to online civility in 2020. Australia’s score was 62 when compared to Asia-Pacific’s 66. However, we must note that Australia’s score has become worse from its former best of 55. This shows that people in Australia are experiencing negative online interactions or they are prone to risks. Back in 2017, the index number was considerably low, and the recent study has shown that there has been a 13 percent rise in hate speech and a 29 percent increase in frauds.
Discrimination and scams also increased by 16 percent and 8 percent, respectively. More than 16,000 respondents participated in the survey. Regional Digital Safety Lead, Asia-Pacific of Microsoft, Liz Thomas, has stated that the company’s study is very important for understanding the current situation and raising the necessary awareness among people about positive online interactions. In the digital age we live in, society is dependent on technologies more than ever, so we must create a safe environment.