Nothing going on here, move along…

Ethics and morals etc


Ethics are standards of conduct which are based on moral duties and virtues derived from principles of right and wrong. Ethics are your public beliefs.


Morals are your personal beliefs and ethics, your sense of right and wrong, they are principles based on your life experiences and values

Is and ought ethics

Is – Descriptive ethics, describes operational standards of behaviour

Ought – Prescriptive or normative ethics, discernment of and commitment to principles


Values are your core beliefs or desires that guide or motivate attitude and actions

Ethical values – Public values

Non-ethical values – Usually personal

Conflicting values –

Contradictory values – Do as I say not as I do


The six pillars of character

Trust worthiness – Honesty (but not all lies are unethical), integrity, reliability, loyal

Respect –

Responsibility – Accountability, pursuit of excellence, self-restraint

Fairness – Impartiality, equity

Caring –

Citizenship – Being part of a community

*Enemies of integrity include self-interest, self-protection, self-deception and self-righteousness


The process of ethical decision-making

Perceive and eliminate unethical options

Foresee possible consequences

Select the best ethical alternatives (you should always have more than one option, like a plan ‘b’)

Ethical decision-making requires

Ethical commitment

Ethical consciousness

Ethical competency

Kants Categorical Imperatives

The moral character of an action is determined by the principle upon which it is based – not upon the consequences it produces

No exceptions, no excuses


The golden rule

Don’t do things to others that you don’t want done to you

Five steps to principle reasoning


Determine what must be decided

Devise a full range of alternatives


Evaluate facts and assumptions

Distinguish facts from beliefs, theories and opinion


Make a judgement

Evaluate the viable alternatives

These three ‘ethic guidelines may help

the golden rule




Develop an implementation plan

Avoid a judgmental or self-righteous attitude

Monitor and modify

Monitor the effects of decisions

Revise a plan if necessary

It is inevitable that some decisions will be wrong

The ethics double standard

We judge ourselves by our best intentions, our most noble acts and most virtuous habits

We are judged by our last worst act

Ethical issues in IT

The assault on life

  • Social structure

– Citizenship

– City states

– Neighbourhoods

– Family units

  • Transportation

– Teleworker

The assault on reality

  • Fantasy theory analysis

– False realities

– Living fantasies

  • Virtual reality
  • Global village

The assault on education

  • Education distribution used to be based on local centres (physical location)
  • Virtual education

– The assault on institution

The assault on information

  • Information that was contained about ourselves use to be restricted to what we wanted other people to know
  • Electronic devices
  • Smart cards
  • Databases
  • Hacking
  • Information distribution

The assault on the individual

  • How information has disturbed our rights to individuality
  • Spam
  • Big brother

– Microsoft XP


– Listeners

  • Personal information

Freedom of speech

  • The reality

– We have the right (in NZ) to say what we want how we want

  • Books
  • The internet

Leave a Reply

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

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

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google 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 )

Connecting to %s

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: