L02 - TEP1281 Ethics and Professional Conduct Session 2...

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Faculty of Information Technology & Faculty of Information Science and Technology , Multimedia University Malaysia TEP1281 Ethics and Professional Conduct Lecture 2: Ethical Concepts and Ethical Theories Session 2, 2011/2012
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Faculty of Information Technology & Faculty of Information Science and Technology , Multimedia University Malaysia Contents 1. Ethics and Morality 2. Discussion Stoppers as Roadblocks to Moral Discourse. 3. Why Do We Need Ethical Theories? 4. Consequence-Based Ethical Theories 5. Duty-Based Ethical Theories 6. Contract-Based Ethical Theories 7. Character-Based Ethical Theories
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Faculty of Information Technology & Faculty of Information Science and Technology , Multimedia University Malaysia Ethics and Morality • The term Ethics is derived from Ethos (Greek), and Morality from Mores (Latin). • Both terms translate roughly into notions affecting “custom,” ”habit,” and “behavior.” • Ethics is defined as the study of morality, which raises two questions: (a) What is morality ? (b) What is the study of morality ? 1
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Faculty of Information Technology & Faculty of Information Science and Technology , Multimedia University Malaysia What is Morality? Morality can be defined as: “a system of rules for guiding human conduct, and principles for evaluating those rules”. Two points are worth noting in this definition: (i) morality is a system; (ii) it is a system comprised of moral rules and principles . Moral rules can be understood as "rules of conduct," which are very similar to "policies." James Moor (2004) notes that policies can range from formal laws to informal, implicit guidelines for actions. Moor suggests that every act can be viewed as an instance of a policy. There are two kinds of rules of conduct: 1) Directives for guiding our conduct as individuals (at the micro-level) 2) Social Policies framed at the macro-level. 1
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Faculty of Information Technology & Faculty of Information Science and Technology , Multimedia University Malaysia Directives Directives are rules (of conduct) that guide our actions, and thus direct us to behave in certain ways. • Rules such as "Do not steal" and "Do not harm others" are both examples of rules of conduct that direct us in our individual moral choices at the "micro-ethical" level (i.e., the level of individual behavior). 1
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University Malaysia Social Policies • Some rules of conduct guide our actions at the "macro-ethical" level by helping us frame social policies . • Rules such as “Proprietary software should not be copied" or “Software that can be used to invade the privacy of users should not be developed" are examples of rules of conduct that arise out of our social policies. • There is a correlation between directives and
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L02 - TEP1281 Ethics and Professional Conduct Session 2...

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