Digital Cleanup Week: five simple steps to clear out digital trash

This week, the Digital Cleanup Week takes place at the university. Its aim is to declutter one’s personal or the unit’s digital life, and move in small but effective steps towards a greener university. The Digital CleanUp Week ends on 29 January, the nationwide Digital Cleanup Day.

The university invites all its employees to take part in the Digital Cleanup Week on 25–29 January and register their participation by completing an online form. All participants are entered into a raffle for exciting experience prizes.

Why clean up digital trash?

The carbon footprint of the internet and the systems supporting it account for about 4 per cent of global greenhouse emissions. This amount is estimated to double by the year 2025 already. Therefore, deleting unnecessary digital content helps reduce our carbon footprint and preserve the environment.

How can you participate in the Digital Cleanup Week?

All members of the university can participate individually or as a team, and there are no time limits. So you may spend as much time on the digital cleanup as you need. Do not rush the cleanup – first you should carefully consider which documents, e-mails, files, etc. need to be deleted, to avoid losing any important information.

Where to start?

First, you should review what applications you have installed on the computer and on the phone. Do you really need all the apps that use the battery? Next, have a look at the recycle bins and the downloads folders on your devices. People at the university send and receive approximately 150,000 emails per day, so deleting the unnecessary emails and emptying the deleted items folder also helps to effectively declutter your digital life.

Get rid of external data devices

During the Digital Cleanup Week, special digital trash bins are placed in the university’s academic buildings, where you can put external data carriers you no longer need, such as memory sticks, floppy disks, CDs and DVDs, smart cards, cassettes and old audio and video tapes. The location of these bins can be found on wiki.

Tips for effective digital decluttering

To ensure that the digital cleanup runs smoothly, the IT Office has prepared various instructions, available on wiki. These give you information, for example, how to clear up space on your computer, phone or Microsoft 365 environment, and declutter the digital environments of Moodle, Panopto, BigBlueButton and Mahara.

Everyone’s contribution counts, so together we can move towards a more sustainable university.

Further information: Imre Lall, Head of Service Division, University of Tartu, 737 5381, imre.lall [ät]