The Rise of Computer Ethics: From Professionalism to Legislative Failures
In this chapter I give an overview of the discipline of computer ethics, its development, its major preoccupations and its potential strengths and deficiencies, especially in relation to the concerns of this book. Much of the chapter focuses on the distinct discipline that has coalesced into the domain of computer ethics, its roots, philosophical stance and relationship to professionalism. However, I also want to consider the wider issue of how computer ethics problems are viewed in contemporary Western societies, through analysing a number of cases where there was a failure in application of an area of ICT law. By means of these cases I hope to substantiate the claim that we need to develop a more sophisticated understanding of computer ethics problems both within the academy and at a wider societal level. This signals that computer ethics is not (just) an esoteric academic domain, rather it is an area of much wider concern to us as we develop ICTs which permit us to hold and analyse huge amounts of data.
KeywordsPersonal Data Emergent Property Technology Ethic Moral Progress Computer Ethic
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