Over the character limit


This report from the UK think tank Demos looks at moral virtue online and in schools.

Over the Character Limit, supported by the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues at the University of Birmingham, found that the more moral virtue language is being used on Twitter, the more likely there is to be virtuous behaviour on the platform. For this project, Demos researchers built two statistical models, which predicted that for every ten more tweets sent by a user containing terms like ‘courage’, ‘empathy’ and ‘humility’, that account would send five more tweets expressing gratitude, and one more link to fundraising campaigns. The research also found that the number of tweets sent linked to a charitable campaign is positively related to the overall amount of money raised by that campaign. To help people develop a sense of virtue, and comfort with discussing virtue online, Over the Character Limit is calling for character building to accelerate as a priority for the Department for Education. The report also calls for the Department to reinstate funding cancelled in 2017 to promote character development in schools.

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