ONE OF A KIND ETHICAL COMPLICATIONS IN TECHNOLOGY By Walter Maner Department of Computer system Science Etambot Green State University Etambot Green, OH 43403 USA [email protected] bgsu. edu http://web.cs.bgsu.edu/maner В© 1995 Walter Maner В© mil novecentos e noventa e seis Opragen Journals This newspaper appeared in Science and Engineering Values, volume two, number 2 (April, 1996), pages 137-154. ABSTRACT

A distinction is made between moral indoctrination and training in ethics. It is argued that the genuine and significant field of computer values should not be permitted to become simple moral indoctirnation. Computer ethics is an academic discipline in its very own right with unique ethical issues that would not have been with us if software had not been made. Several case in point issues happen to be presented to illustrate this time. The failing to find acceptable non-computer analogie testifies towards the uniqueness of computer integrity. Lack of an effective analogy forces us to find out new moral values, make new meaning principles, develop new procedures, and find new ways to think about the difficulties presented to us. For all of these causes, the kind of issues presented should get to be dealt with separately by others that might at first show up similar. At a minimum, they have been thus transformed simply by computing technology that all their altered kind demands special attention. INTRODUCTION

One particular factor at the rear of the surge of computer system ethics is a lingering mistrust that laptop professionals may be unprepared to deal properly with the honest issues that come up in their office. Over the years, this kind of suspicion continues to be

Walter Maner, Unique Moral Problems in Information Technology

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reinforced simply by mostly anecdotal research that seems to show that computer system professionals merely do not understand when moral issues are present. Perhaps the earliest work on this kind was done by Donn Parker back in the 1970s at SRI International. 1 In 1977, Parker invited experienced professionals by various fields to evaluate the ethical content of 47 simple theoretical cases that he had developed based in portion on his professional knowledge of computer system abuse. Workshop participants focused on each actions or nonaction of each individual that played a role in these one-page scenarios. For each and every act that was performed or not performed, their particular set task was to decide whether the habit was unethical or not, or simply raised no integrity issue in any way. Parker found a surprising sum of left over disagreement amongst these professionals also after an exhaustive evaluation and discussion of all the problems each circumstance presented. Even more surprisingly, an important minority of execs held with their belief that no ethics issue was present actually in cases of apparent computer maltreatment. For example , in Scenario several. 1, a firm representative routinely receives copies of the digital arrest records for brand spanking new company employees. These records are provided as a benefit by a authorities file attendant who happens to have access to different local and federal sources containing lawbreaker justice data. Nine of the 33 those who analyzed the case thought disclosure of arrest histories raised no ethics issues whatsoever. Parker's research does not determine the professions represented by those who did not detect ethics issues, although most of the participants in this early study2 were computer professionals. This remaining casual viewers of Parker's Ethical Clashes in Pc Science and Technology liberal to identify computer professionals as the ones who was missing ethical sensitivity. If some of them could not also recognize when ethical problems were present, it is hard to imagine how they could ever hope to package responsibly with them. Relating to Parker, the problem might have been fostered simply by computer education and schooling programs that encouraged, or at least failed to criminalize, certain types of dishonest professional carry out. 3 This perception of professional inability is component to a typically hidden political agenda which includes...