phone-kid

The Scout Law for the Facebook and Twitter set

Seventy-six years before Mark Zuckerberg was even born, the original Scout Law appeared in Baden-Powell’s Scouting for Boys.

No need for a new set of 12, though. Turns out those words — which the BSA adapted and adopted in 1911 — still apply as 2013 nears.

That’s why the Boy Scouts of America just released a new pledge called “The Scout Law and Cybersafety/Cyberbullying” to be signed by a Scout, his/her parent, and a leader.

Consider it a new interpretation of those 12 points for the generation growing up with (deep breath) Facebook, Google, Skype, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Foursquare, SMS, MMS, and OMGs.

Check it out: 

The Scout Law and Cybersafety/Cyberbullying

Trustworthy. Be truthful with others online, and be very careful of the information you share. Do the right thing when sharing other people’s words or pictures. Make sure you have the owner’s permission before sharing them.

Loyal. Share information about others only if you have their permission to share it. Uphold appropriate agreements you make with friends when you play games with them.

Helpful. Alert others to scams, cheats, and suspicious sites. Point them to reliable and accurate sources of information. Encourage people to report bad behavior online.

Friendly. Support others who are doing good things, like posting quality creative works. Support those who are bullied.

Courteous. Be polite and respectful. When you use other people’s work, be sure to ask permission, follow fair use standards, and give credit to the people who created and own the work.

Kind. Treat people with respect when you are on social networks, playing games, talking or texting, or in other digital activities.

Obedient. When using digital devices, follow the rules set by your parents/guardians, teachers, and Scout leaders. Abide by the rules established by sites, services, devices, and games.

Cheerful. Use games, messaging tools, and social forums to build your relationships with others while having fun.

Thrifty. Be a smart consumer. Know your voice, text, and data plans and use them wisely. Be sure to study digital devices and services you want. Before buying them, make sure you’re not overspending on functions and features you won’t need. Be careful not to run up charges on apps and sites.

Brave. Stand up for what is right. Do not participate in mocking and bullying others, even if your friends are doing it. Report suspected abuse to a trusted adult, like your parent or leader; call 911 as appropriate or call the Cyber Tip line at 1-800-843-5678. If the incident involves any part of the Scouting program, call your council Scout executive immediately or email youth.protection@scouting.org.

Clean. Use clean language and discuss only appropriate topics when using digital devices to communicate with others.

Reverent. Respect the feelings of other people. Do not use digital devices to spread irreverent ideas.

Print the Pledge

Download this PDF, and share it with your Scouts. Ask them to sign it, and notice the spot for a parent and a Scouter to leave their John Hancock.

What do you think?

How else can the Scout Law be applied to issues relevant to today’s teens?


Photo from Flickr.  Some rights reserved by MrPessimist

21 thoughts on “The Scout Law for the Facebook and Twitter set

  1. Under trustworthy or helpful, I wish it gave explicit instructions to check snopes.com before posting the latest piece of outrageous misinformation you have received.

  2. The Scout and his(her) parent need to sign this? The original 12 satrt with the premise “A Scout is Trustworthy..”

  3. All of the following sure sound pretty hypocritical in light of the BSA’s affirmation to continue its shameful embrace of bigotry:

    Friendly. Support others who are doing good things, like posting quality creative works. Support those who are bullied.

    Kind. Treat people with respect when you are on social networks, playing games, talking or texting, or in other digital activities.

    Reverent. Respect the feelings of other people.

    • Agreed! And let’s not forget:
      Brave. Stand up for what is right. Do not participate in mocking and bullying others, even if your friends are doing it.

      Ummm…

  4. Any word if National is making this pledge required or just something to present to the Scout & his parents to help raise awareness?   Regards, Ron Imel T285 SM Plano, TX

    ________________________________

  5. Perfect, I this this is terrific and will be sharing with my entire Troop!

  6. What represents an “irreverent idea”. What is irreverent to me, may be perfectly innocent, humorous or even reverent to another person. We shouldn’t be teaching our scouts that restricting freedom of restriction, particularly of ideas we don’t like, is ok.

  7. Pingback: The Scout Law for Social Networking – Scouting the Fox!

  8. I think it’s safe to say that we can identify an irreverent idea from a good suggestion and I still can’t make heads or tails of what Bill was saying. I’ll start incorporating this into my Trail to First Class Program for summer camp nice approach to the changing times!

  9. Being a person that has been a victim of slanderous cyber attacks on facebook I feel the BSA have done nothing to fix this issue. They do not address in anyway about adult leaders that cause issues for another person in the pack. Ex wife or an ex husband that post hurtful and embarrassing post on an open Facebook account to force a parent out of the pack.

Join the conversation

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s