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How the empirical evidence regarding the existence of broad traits saves virtue ethics from the situationist critique.

Orientation

Orientation

Ethics is the type of philosophy that deals with and analyses moral issues of situations by establishing concepts and judging whether a conduct is right or wrong (Dewey, 2016).

Ethics is an important aspect for the Information and Communications Technology professionals. They are responsible for the privacy and security of different organizations and their clients as they directly handle sensitive data. Thus, they must be honest and competent to challenge any improper or unethical use of technology.

Thesis

The ICT professionals handle sensitive data and they are responsible for ensuring that the net neutrality is maintained. Open Internet means that every website whether legal or illegal is available for access to the Internet users (Federal Communications Commission., 2015).

Arguments

This essay includes a case study on net neutrality in European countries where it was mandated by law that every European should have full access to the Internet and all the legal content provided by it (Open Internet, 2018).

The ethical theories that will be used to analyse the case study are Utilitarianism, Deontology, Virtue Ethics and Contract Ethics.

Some ISP professionals have over-stepped the boundaries of ethics by being partial towards some websites and Internet services by accepting monetary or other incentive. The authorities must oversee proper execution of the laws being passed favouring open internet needs.

The case study shows that net neutrality is a major issue in the European countries as the internet service providers (ISP) showed partiality towards internet traffic. They used to slow down, block and speed up traffic. Creating laws supporting open internet is thus ethical, as they would open up the Internet to the common people at low cost.

Figure 1: Net Neutrality in the EU

(Source: Open Internet, 2018)

The ethical issues related to ICT and net neutrality are regulation of the Internet and social inclusion. The Internet traffic is freely regulated by the ISPs and the society or rather the Internet users were not at all aware that their traffic was being controlled. The speed of their favourite websites were lowered and they had to pay extra money in order to get the speed that they actually deserved in the first place.

The ICT professionals who were involved in creating net neutrality presented the application of ethical values. The laws that were passed showed that the professionals were virtuous and had a high ethical conscious.

Point and detail

Thesis

Utilitarianism is applied to the case study as the outcome of the net neutrality laws gave immense pleasure to everyone who benefitted from open internet (Mulgan, 2014).

The theory of ethics that analyses the utility of the decisions taken is called Utilitarianism (Barrow, 2015). The main characteristics of Utilitarianism is that the benefits that human beings and other living animals that benefit as a result to the decisions taken.

Evidence

Utilitarianism supports that the decisions taken is right as long as utility is maximised for the involved parties is maximized (Open Internet, 2018). The Internet users were benefitted from the open internet initiative as the laws and regulations asserts that the ISPs provide impartial service to the users and that they would not regulate any traffic. Any special service provided by them would not include any of the basic access that the users are entitled.

Analysis

Utilitarianism is helpful in providing an understanding of the case study as it describes that the decisions taken by the ICT professionals to execute net neutrality is in fact in accordance to the utility concerns of the internet users.

Recommendations would include the involvement of special services like faster and safer internet to the users who would be charged a very small amount for receiving such a service. Usually the security of the users depends on themselves but with this extension of services, the some of the security services would be provided by the network providers.

Point and detail

Deontology is applied to the case study as the laws and regulations supporting net neutrality were passed irrespective of considering the people that were going to be affected.

Deontology is a type of ethical theory where the actions are considered right as long as the people would do the same thing to themselves as they did to others (Bentham, 2014). The main characteristics would thus include that even if the consequence were considered bad and harmful to someone or the society in general, the actions would still be ethical.

Evidence

Deontology is not shown in the case study, as it is unclear that whether the ICT professionals who decided to implement the net neutrality would still support the laws if they were the ISPs instead (Open Internet, 2018).

Analysis

Deontology is not helpful in understanding the case study, as it is unclear that whether the ICT professionals would support the decisions on net neutrality. The ISPs make a huge amount of money every year by prioritizing some traffic and denying others. Thus, the decision taken by the ICTs cannot be judged as good or bad in terms of Deontology.

Arguments

Recommendation would include that the ISPs are told to show some reasons as to why they were manipulating Internet traffic.

Point and detail

Virtue Ethics is applied in this case study as it signifies that the ICT professionals were of virtuous mind and character

Virtue Ethics can be defined as the type of ethics that focuses on the virtues of character and mind (Van Hooft, 2014). The main characteristics of this ethics would be that it portrays the thinking capabilities of the decision-makers and that whether the decision they have taken is right or wrong.

Evidence

The virtues of the mind is focussed here and the decision-makers thought that net neutrality is one of the basic rights in this digital age. People must be able to visit any site they want without being charged extra money (Open Internet, 2018).

Analysis

Virtue Ethics establishes the fact that the law makers of the net neutrality initiative is of virtuous mind and high moral standards (Jayawickreme et al., 2014). They could have focussed on some other issues that would benefit them directly, but they chose to resolve the issues about open internet instead.  

It is recommended that the professionals responsible for the successful implementation of net neutrality should respond to every single social issue with the same resolve in the future. This would prevent people from questioning their motives in the net neutrality case.

Point and detail

Contract Ethics is applied to this case study as the contractual agreement between the political agendas and the society is highlighted in this case study.

Contract Ethics signifies there exists a contractual agreement or bond between different sections of the society and the political entities that promotes survival (Mizzoni, 2017). The main characteristics includes the untold understanding between the people of the society and the different laws and agendas that are applied by the political bodies of the society. These political entities provides administration and ensures that the society does not degrade and survives as a whole

Evidence

The main characteristics of contract ethics highlights the fact that there is an untold understanding between the political entities and the society. In this case study, it is seen that the political entities fulfil that duty by supporting net neutrality before the situation goes out of control. There are evidences of people not taking the agenda’s against open internet lightly (Open Internet, 2018).

Analysis

Contract Ethics is very helpful in giving an overview of the scenario on net neutrality by showing that the political agendas have fulfil the necessities of the society.

It is recommended that the different political entities of on nation unite to form better policies for supporting the society. Cases similar to net neutrality might become obsolete if that happens.

Conclusion

Thus, it can be concluded that the Internet users have the right to access to any website they want without being barred by any external entity. Utilitarianism has been applied by showing that the decision for open Internet has maximum utility and low downsides. Deontology has been applied by showing that the ICTs might not support net neutrality if they were the ISPs instead. Virtue ethics has been implemented as the decision-makers were of virtuous mind and contract ethics shows the bond between society and political entities. This essay will conclude with a final recommendation that ethics should be judged from different frames of perspectives and only then can an optimum solution be achieved.

Reference List

Barrow, R. (2015). Utilitarianism: A contemporary statement. Routledge.

Bentham, J. (2014). Deontology; or, The Science of Morality.: In two volumes. Adegi Graphics LLC.

Dewey, J. (2016). Ethics. Read Books Ltd.

Federal Communications Commission. (2015). The Open Internet. FCC. gov.

Jayawickreme, E., Meindl, P., Helzer, E. G., Furr, R. M., & Fleeson, W. (2014). Virtuous states and virtuous traits: How the empirical evidence regarding the existence of broad traits saves virtue ethics from the situationist critique. School Field, 12(3), 283-308.

Lehr, W., Kenneally, E., & Bauer, S. (2015). The Road to an Open Internet is Paved with Pragmatic Disclosure & Transparency Policies.

Mizzoni, J. (2017). Ethics: the basics. John Wiley & Sons.

Mulgan, T. (2014). Understanding utilitarianism. Routledge.

Open Internet. (2018). Digital Single Market. Retrieved 9 January 2018, from https://ec.europa.eu/digital-single-market/en/policies/open-internet-net-neutrality

Van Hooft, S. (2014). Understanding virtue ethics. Routledge.

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"The Importance Of Virtue Ethics In Preserving Net Neutrality." My Assignment Help, 2020, https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/comp528-open-internet-net-neutrality.

My Assignment Help (2020) The Importance Of Virtue Ethics In Preserving Net Neutrality [Online]. Available from: https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/comp528-open-internet-net-neutrality
[Accessed 15 June 2024].

My Assignment Help. 'The Importance Of Virtue Ethics In Preserving Net Neutrality' (My Assignment Help, 2020) <https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/comp528-open-internet-net-neutrality> accessed 15 June 2024.

My Assignment Help. The Importance Of Virtue Ethics In Preserving Net Neutrality [Internet]. My Assignment Help. 2020 [cited 15 June 2024]. Available from: https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/comp528-open-internet-net-neutrality.

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