HackingLawEthics - Hacking, the Law, and Ethics Mason Cash...

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Hacking, the Law, and Ethics © Mason Cash Dept. of Philosophy, UCF Moral disagreements: * Rational disagreement about priority of ethical principles and of basic goods? * “Culture clash”? * Differences in the basic conceptualization of the nature of an activity * Disagreements about computer hacking take the latter form * The metaphor “ hacker is burglar” has an interesting role in this debate. Features of Human Moral (Social) Psychology: * Conformism * The tendency to conform to the practices and beliefs shared by our community * Provincialism * The tendency to value the practices and beliefs of one’s community * Partisan mind-set * The tendency to favor beliefs and attitudes we already strongly hold * Identity * I construct my self concept, in part, as a person with particular beliefs and practices Implications of these features: Socialization is a powerful force •Especially by co-participants in activities Can be more powerful than explicit rules. * Teens respond well to peer socialization * Concerns in domains (like use of computers) where “older and wiser” can’t model appropriate behavior Features of computer mediated interactions: Abstraction from human effects of actions Perception of anonymity Perception of safety Perception of lax enforcement Insular “Communities of Agreement”
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•Create and maintain an alternate view of “normal” and of what is “appropriate”. Socialization On-line Paucity of feedback on appropriateness of actions. Absence of body-language, etc. Feedback via a “machine” is easier to not care about, dismiss or ignore. A general attitude of toleration of different perspectives and attitudes •Less challenges issued * Produces an on-line culture with a prevalent attitude of individualist relativism * This all means that the group that can often have the strongest influence on on-line actions is the on-line peer group. Hacker Socialization * It’s easiest to pay attention to the actions that get a lot of publicity (the really bad ones), about which there is: * usually tacit admiration (posting on “info-war”) and * often explicit admiration by at least someone. * Bolstered by the displayed attitudes of other peers to on- line actions * The attraction of hacking is reinforced by the perception that hacking is both * a form of “rebellion” and * that it is perceived as “cool” by one’s peers Features of Metaphor in Cognition a Most of human thought and language is fundamentally metaphorical Most metaphors are so “dead” (tacit, habitual) that we forget their metaphorical roots Up is good (things are looking up today) Similarity is closeness (it’s a close match) Important is big (today is a big day) Affection is warmth (a warm greeting) Metaphor: (Black 1955) * We use the metaphor subject (“burglar”) as a conceptual filter or lens to view the metaphor target (“hacker”) * Subject’s “system of implications” applied to target
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This note was uploaded on 07/04/2011 for the course CIS 3360 taught by Professor Guha during the Fall '06 term at University of Central Florida.

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HackingLawEthics - Hacking, the Law, and Ethics Mason Cash...

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