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Rights vs. Virtue

Discuss about the  Ethics in ICT Virtue Role and Directions.

This essay is about ethics in ICT. Virtue ethics has three directions: the ethics of care, agent-based theory and eudaimonism. This essay does a comparison between relativism and objectivism. It also critically discusses and does a comparison between consequentialism and deontology theories. Consequentialism has explored the idea of utilitarianism.  “Rule”, “duty”, and “obligation” are the part of deontology (Pve, & Warren, 2006).

Normative ethics has three major approaches, virtue ethics is one of them. Consequentialism and deontology are contrasted into normative ethics. Duty of rules is emphasized by deontology and consequentialism derives the act’s outcome by itself (Vaccara, & Madsen 2009). The dilemmas of moral are approached by the ways that describe the difference between the morality approaches in the conclusion of moral. When the negative consequentialists are produced the consequentialist argues that lying is wrong, and then consequentialist makes some foreseeable consequences to make an acceptable lying. Whenever the potential of lying comes “good” the deontology argues that the specified lying is wrong. 

The moral philosophy of virtue and role of character are emphasized in the theory of virtue ethics. The normal moral advice of a virtue ethicist is “In your situation, a virtuous person’s act will work.” Aristotle is taken as an inspiration in most theories of virtue ethics (Jung, 2008). ”The traits of an ideal person are found in a virtuous person”, this fact is declared by Aristotle. A natural internal tendency is the way to derive the traits into a virtuous person. Once the traits are established the person will become stable. According to the character of a virtuous person, he had come across from many situations in his life.

Three main directions are developed by virtue ethics since the twentieth century in its revival. These directions are the ethics of care, agent-based theory and Eudaimonism (Rauhala, & Topo 2003). Virtues of eudaimonism are based on human flourishing. The performance of functioning well by one’s distinctive is equated by flourishing. According to Aristotle, “Reasoning is our distinctive function in the case of humans”. According to an agent-based theory common sense intuitions are determined by the virtues. Admirable traits that a person observes and judges in other people, is called common sense intuitions. The feminist thinkers proposed the ethics of care predominantly. According to the third direction autonomy, justice should not be the focus point of ethics as it considers that nurturing and caring will be the focus point of ethics.     

Three Main Directions of Virtue Ethics

Virtue ethics has some common objectives. The self-centered conception of ethics is provided in its theories because “End in it” is the view of human flourishing and how the other people are affected by our action is not described in its theories (Collste, 2008). In its theories, there is no clear guideline for our actions like how we will act in some specific situations. Its theories give a self-seeking commencement of principles due to human prosperous is viewed as a finish in him and does not adequately judge the level to which our procedures affect other populace. 

States, whose ethical principles are valid, are viewed into relativism. But the states are differentiated by individuals and culture. Here individuals are defined as subjectivism and culture is defined as conventionalism (Nordkvelle, & Olson 2005). Ruth Benedict, a conventionalist, argues that as different principles are held by different culture, so it becomes difficult to judge them. Different moralities of different cultures are equally valid. For Benedict, morality means: “The habits that socially approved by a convenient term”. The end of relativism is subjectivism.

Many criticisms are raised for this argument by the judgment questions such as how the behavior of another person can be judged by one society or individually (Gyaniak- Kocikowsta 2007). In western culture, the terrorists are definitely aberrant but those terrorists are saint of their culture. Louis Pojman accuses the conventionalism towards subjectivism. He also argues that if the reformers of the society are not aberrant then they are also not immoral according to their culture. The reformers or the terrorists are not behaving correct according to other culture but are correct as per their culture, whether or not their acts are right?
These types of issues normally arise in conventionalist level, and these issues become more powerful in subjectivist level. Any law and court system becomes useless if the subjectivism is true. The subjectivist corrects all behavior, it can’t deplore terrorism and murder because these acts cannot be accepted in the situation of altruism and love (Cartson, & Stahl, 2011). Solipsism is a state of subjectivity in which every permissible action is taken as good as another.   

If these types of problems occur at the conventionalist stage, they are more influential at the subjectivist stage. If subjectivism keeps true, then any courtyard structure or regulation is ineffective, since the only level by which a male can be judged is he, and whether or not he upholds his values. Fundamentally, all actions are correct to the subjectivist. So, the subjectivist can’t even censure terrorism or murder since these activities are as acceptable and valid as altruism and love, so long as they are a element of the persons ethical values.

Common Objectives of Virtue Ethics

Someone’s thinking decides the view of the moral in which the specific person depends for right and wrong actions. Two states or levels arise for this: The thinking of a specific individual about his moral that what is right and what is wrong, which comes in subjectivism. These thinking facts can be changed by the situations or actions for that specific individual. Conventionalism is dependent on the society. The rules and regulation that the people follow in specific culture, are called moral of that culture, that moral comes in conventionalism.

What is wrong and right does not depend on an individual’s thinking that fact comes in objectivism. The concept of objectivism can be understood by two theories (Floridhi &Sanders, 2010). First is duty based theories and second is consequentialist theories. Duty based theory is also known as Deontological theory. According to this theory the decision of wrong and right is taken according to the rules of the act. Consequentialist theory is also known as teleological theory. It specifies the rules for acts according to the situation.            

“End justifies the means”, this fact is the idea of consequentialism. Terminology is put in for more eloquent, this means that determinative of action, morality is the consequence. According to John Stuart Mill’s work, there are many roots of consequentialism, the idea of utilitarianism is also espoused by it (Floridhi, 2002). According to Mill, if the actions promote happiness then its proportion is right and if the actions reverse the happiness then its proportion is wrong. This statement is qualified by the other statement of John Stuart Mill, the Statement is “the happiness is not only promoted for the agent even the happiness should be promoted to every person who is connected with that action”.

Consequentialism is typically related with deontological, in that deontology forms the wrongness or rightness of one's behavior from the nature of the behavior himself rather than the results of the demeanor. It is also related to the virtue ethics, which concentrates on the nature of the agent slightly than on the character or consequences of the activity himself, and ethics related to pragmatic which treats ethics like knowledge: advancing publicly above the path of many lifetimes, like any ethical principle is subject to amendment. Consequentialist theories fluctuate in how they describe ethical activities.    

Normative ethical position is called deontology or deontological ethics that judge the action morality according to the rules or a rule that is based on action’s adherence. Sometimes deontology is described as “rule”, “duty”, and “obligation”, these are based on ethics because duty “bind you to your rules” (Duquenoy, Mattens, & Patuignani, 2010). Consequentialism, pragmatic and virtue ethics are commonly contrasted to deontological ethics. In this terminology, consequence is less important than the action.

  1. D. Broad gives a specialized definition to deontology and the current was firstly described by the term “Deontological” in his book. To judge the conduct for its wrongness and rightness, the consequences use the ultimate basis of one’s conduct, for this normative ethical theory is held in a class of consequentialism. Thus, a good outcome will be produced by using a morally right act from a consequentialist stand point (Tavini, 2001).

Conclusion

Virtue ethics is a major approach of normative ethics. Consequentialism and deontology are contrast of each other. Relativism has many states according to the principle of actions. The rules and regulations of moral for a person are decided by the thought of the specific person. The society’s moral is decided by the people’s behavior of that society. Subjectivity is major end of relativism. The idea of consequentialism is “The mean of an action is justified at the end”.

References

Pye, G., & Warren, M. (2006). Striking a balance between ethics and ICT governance. Australasian Journal of Information Systems, 13(2).

Vaccaro, A., & Madsen, P. (2009). Corporate dynamic transparency: the new ICT-driven ethics?. Ethics and Information Technology, 11(2), p.113-122.

Jung, I. (2009). Ethical judgments and behaviors: Applying a multidimensional ethics scale to measuring ICT ethics of college students. Computers & Education, 53(3), p.940-949.

Rauhala, M., & Topo, P. (2003). Independent living, technology and ethics. Technology and Disability, 15(3), p.205-214.

Collste, G. (2008). Applied Ethics and ICT-systems in Healthcare. Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues in Medical Informatics, 29.

Nordkvelle, Y. T., & Olson, J. (2005). Visions for ICT, ethics and the practice of teachers. Education and Information Technologies, 10(1-2),p. 21-32.

G¾rniak-Kocikowska, K. (2007). From computer ethics to the ethics of global ICT society. Library Hi Tech, 25(1), p.47-57.

Carsten Stahl, B. (2011). IT for a better future: how to integrate ethics, politics and innovation. Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, 9(3), p.140-156

Floridi, L., & Sanders, J. W. (2002). Mapping the foundationalist debate in computer ethics. Ethics and information Technology, 4(1), p.1-9.

Floridi, L. (2002). Information Ethics. Philosophy in the Contemporary World, 9(1), p.39-45.

Duquenoy, P., Martens, B., & Patrignani, N. (2010). Embedding ethics in European information & communication technology curricula. The" backwards, forwards and sideways" changes of ICT, p.127-135.

Tavani, H. T. (2001). Information and communication technology (ICT) ethics: a bibliography of recent books. Ethics and Information Technology, 3(1), p.77-8

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