Unformatted text preview: on the rise. Table 1.1 shows, the
explosive growth of reported incidents of cyber attacks, most of
which are virus attacks. The Case for Computer Ethics
What is Computer Ethics
– According to James H. Moore, who is believed to have first
coined the phrase "computer ethics", computer ethics is the
analysis of the nature and social impact of computer technology
and the corresponding formulation and justification of policies for
the ethical use of such technology .
– Moore's definition focuses on the human actions that are routed
in computer technology or influenced by computer technology. In
other words, it is a study, an analysis of the values of human
actions influenced by computer technology. Computer influence
on human actions is widespread throughout the decision making
process preceding the action.
– We are looking for a way to deal with these problems, probably
through education. So the definition of computer ethics, as
outlines by Moore, gives us a starting point on this long journey. Why You Should Study Computer Ethics – Moore’s contention is that the central task of computer ethics, in
decision making processes that involve computer technology, should be
to “determine what should be done” whenever there is a policy vacuum.
Moore first observed that there are times when policy vacuums are
created in the decision making processes, especially those that involve
processes in which computer technology is ‘essentially involved’.
– It is difficult to fully explain the cause of these vacuums, but one can say
that they are mainly caused by the ‘confusion’ between the known
policies and what is presented.
– Moore tries to explain these muddles by a software example. Software
offers a multiplicities of choices to the decision maker by computer
technology, which can result in policy vacuums.
– Several other factors contribute to the creation of these muddles. It is
likely that computer users, especially computer professionals, may be
unprepared to deal effectively with the ethical issues that arise in their
places of work and everywhere else computers and computer related
technology is used.
– So naturally one would come to a conclusion that since we cannot stop
computer technology which causes these muddles, we need a plan of
action that will work with the changing computing technology and at the
same time deal with the ethical issues that do arise. We need computer
ethics education. – There are two schools of thought. One school,
believes in the study of computer ethics as remedial
– The other schools believes in computer ethics
education not as a moral education but as a field
worthy of study in its own right.
– But for it to exist as a separate independent field of
study, there must be a unique domain for computer
ethics distinct from the domain for moral education,
distinct even from the domains of oth...
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- Fall '12
- Science, World Wide Web