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Respecting others online

Respect is what holds your relationships together. Learn different ways to be respectful and how to handle situations when someone isn't respectful toward you.

If you are 4-18 years old, this section is for you.


Why is respect so important?

When someone else respects you, it helps you to feel safe and allows you to express yourself.

Being respected by important people in our lives as we grow up teaches us how to be respectful toward others. When you respect someone, you are accepting who they are even when they're different from you or you don't agree with them. It helps build a feeling of trust, safety, and well-being.

What does respect look like?

How can you know if someone is respecting you and you are respecting others?

You feel safe being around each other

You don't control each other's choices

You feel comfortable expressing yourself around each other

You both talk openly about what you want and need

You listen to each other when you're arguing -- you are patient with them

You give each other space


You don't yell over each other

You can admit when you make a mistake

How to improve your relationships

Sometimes, you may feel disrespected by other people, including our family and friends. It is not always possible to make someone respect you, but here are some things you can try:

  • Be respectful to them -- lead by example and show them what respect looks like

  • Tell the person how you are feeling and put yourself in their shoes

  • If someone can't be respectful toward you and you feel unsafe, it is okay to end your friendship

  • It is best to surround yourself with people who make you feel safe

  • If you are being disrespected, talk to someone you trust (like a parent or a counselor)

  • Don't always discount someone immediately -- give them a chance to change their behavior toward you

You have to respect yourself, too!

It is important to respect yourself just as you respect others.

  • Remember that you are valued and YOU matter.

  • The way you feel is just as important as how someone else feels,

  • Ending a relationship that makes you feel unsafe and disrespected is a way of respecting yourself.

Respect matters! Watch this video to see why respect is so important, not just online, but in person too.

Six ways to show respect online

It's cool to show respect to others. Here are several ways you can do this on the Internet!


If someone says something you don't agree with, listen to their side and hear what they have to say.


It is easy to say things we don't mean when we don't have to say it to someone's face. If it is unkind, it is best not to say it at all.



If you think someone is being rude or mean, it may just be a misunderstanding. Tell them how you feel and see what their intentions were.


if you see someone being bullied online, stand up for them or tell a trusted adult.


If you disagree with someone, it is best to talk to them in person. Arguing online where everyone could see (or even over text) is never a good idea.


If someone tells you something in confidence (like a secret), do not share it with others, ESPECIALLY online. If it is online, it will live there forever.

Do you know your net? Click "Take Quiz Now" if you think you're ready to test your #NetKnowledge!



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