Yazdani and Murad (2015) stated that ethical dilemma is termed as the condition in which two choices are made between the two Management options, where none of the options can resolve the situation. The paper is based on “Supreme Court sides with Samsung in Apple patent damages dispute”. There is an ethical dispute occurs when Apple sued Samsung meant for copying their designing features of their devices and copying of colorful grid of the application icons. This is an ethical dilemma in the case study.
This particular paper analyzes the case study of “Supreme Court sides with Samsung in Apple patent damages dispute”. Ethical theories are used to analyze the case properly such as utilitarianism, deontology, virtue and contract.
In the year 2011, there is a dispute among Apple as well as Samsung is that Apple sued that Samsung is copying their designing features for their devices and colorful grid of the application icons. Two of the lower courts are ruling in favor of Apple on this design-patent infringement. The lower court demands that Samsung should pay $399 million to Apple for purpose of infringing on design of the Apple’s iPhone. After that, Samsung is countered that this charge is just disproportionate. As per the South Korea giant, Apple is not entitling towards the total profits from entire phone, but taking the profit that infringe (Balakrishnan, 2017). There is a question that comes in front of the Supreme Court is that how to calculate the total amount that Samsung should pay for copying. Now days, Samsung is doing hard work so that they can made their iPhone as most innovative as well as beloved product.
Swanton (2016) demonstrated that utilitarianism is an ethical theory, which signifies the best action to be taken when any organization is facing any ethical issues, that increases its utility. The consequences of the actions are either right or wrong. In this particular case study, Samsung is accused for stealing of design of Apple. The court takes an action based on the case is that they asked Samsung to pay $399 million to Apple for purpose of infringing on design of the Apple’s iPhone (Balakrishnan, 2017). The amount is to be collected from the 11 Smartphone models of Samsung. This particular action is right as it helps to increase utility of actions. From this action, other organization can also learnt the penalty of stealing other’s design or works. Stealing or copying of other design is a crime and it is required to minimize this type of crime. As per the principles of utilitarianism, this ethical theory can hold moral right actions in case of any type of situation (Broad, 2014). It also produces maximum balance of profits over the harms for everybody exaggerated. This type of huge amount of penalty for Samsung gives them a lesson not to steal any of design from Apple or any other company.
Crossan, Mazutis and Seijts (2013) demonstrated that deontology is an Management ethical theory, which signifies on relationship between the duty as well as morality of the actions taken by the human. The action that is taken under this ethical theory is considered morally as good due to the action that is taken. In this particular case, the morality of the actions that are taken as that the court permits Samsung to pay $ 399 million for the crime the organization did. As per the court, this action taken is right, but on the other hand, Samsung is countered that this charge is just disproportionate (Balakrishnan, 2017). The court allows Samsung to pay the charge from their profits that they get from their diverse components that breach. If Apple receives total amount from the gain of Samsung, then it is considered as illegal as because providing entire gain to the organization means that Samsung has nothing to gain (Shafer-Landau, 2014). Samsung is penalized with a huge amount for copying their designing features for their devices as well as colorful grid of the application icons. Therefore, two of the lower court rules in favor of Apple on designing patent infringement.
LaFollette and Persson (2013) stated that virtue is an ethical theory that highlights role of the character as well as virtue within the morale philosophy rather than performing of one’s duty. In this particular case, the actions, the court has taken is considered as an ethical thinking. Due to features copying dispute between Apple as well as Samsung, the court takes the decision of paying $399 million to Apple for purpose of infringing on design of the Apple’s iPhone (Balakrishnan, 2017). The ethical thinking is innovative as Apple is not entitling towards the total profits from entire phone, but taking the profit that infringe. The penalty is based on the federal laws, which states that party copying as well as applying for patented design is liable to extend of their total profit (Russell, 2016). Therefore, the action that is taken by the court is ethical, as this will help to overcome with infringement issues.
Jayawickreme et al., (2014) stated that contract is an ethical theory that signifies the morality that includes of set of rules which is governing the behavior that the people should accept on any situation. This theory addresses questions regarding legitimacy of the establishment of the condition (Balakrishnan, 2017). Based on this theory, Samsung is penalized for their wring works. There is an ethical dispute occurs when Apple sued Samsung meant for copying their designing features of their devices and copying of colorful grid of the application icons. The organization, Samsung is to pay $ 399 million for the crime the organization did. In this case, there are questions in front of the Supreme Court is that how to Management calculate the total amount that Samsung should pay for copying (Hursthouse, 2013). Therefore, never do such a crime due to which an organization is penalized for their wrongful actions.
The following are the suggested recommendations, which help in mitigating the ethical issues that Apple is facing:
Implement of strict organizational policies: The organization should implement strict organizational policies in their organization so that it will reduce ethical issues.
Security measures: All the organizations should implement security as well as privacy measures for their products and services, so that no other third party organization can steal or copy their products.
Governmental rules: The government should implement a rule such that in case of any crime or privacy issues, the unauthorized organization should give a very strict punishment for their misconduct.
It is concluded that the penalized action of Samsung is right for them as no other organization can ever try to do it. As per the South Korea giant, Apple is not entitling towards the total profits from entire phone, but taking the profit that infringe. Even other organization can learn that stealing or copying other service or product is a crime. Based on the ethical theories, it is identified if the action that is taken by the court is right or wrong. Therefore, with help of the ethical theories right actions are taken.
Balakrishnan, A. (2017). Supreme Court sides with Samsung in Apple patent damages dispute. CNBC. Retrieved 5 May 2017, from https://www.cnbc.com/2016/12/06/supreme-court-rules-for-samsung-in-apple-patent-case.html
Broad, C. D. (2014). Five types of ethical theory (Vol. 2). Routledge.
Crossan, M., Mazutis, D., & Seijts, G. (2013). In search of virtue: The role of virtues, Management values and character strengths in ethical decision making. Journal of Business Ethics, 113(4), 567-581.
Hursthouse, R. (2013). Normative virtue ethics. ETHICA, 645.
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.
LaFollette, H., & Persson, I. (Eds.). (2013). The Blackwell guide to ethical theory. John Wiley & Sons.
Russell, B. (2016). Contractualism, Consequentialism and the Moral Landscape: A New Pro-Contractualist Picture of Ethical Theory.
Shafer-Landau, R. (2014). The fundamentals of ethics.
Swanton, C. (2016). A Virtue Ethical Theory of Role Ethics. The Journal of Value Inquiry, 50(4), 687-702.
Yazdani, N., & Murad, H. S. (2015). Toward an ethical theory of organizing. Journal of Business Ethics, 127(2), 399-417.
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