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Ethics in Cyberspace - Essay Example

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The world is becoming smaller, and as a result, the boundary lines of communities have blurred.
The second is, as everybody knows, that information is expensive to produce in the first copy, but nearly costless in succeeding copies and the internet entails special powers of replication. This drives obvious problems in such areas as intellectual property. Of course it is to some extend the issue of legislation, as it is well known that the rate of software piracy varies enormously around the world. The ratio of pirated legitimately purchased software in the United Kingdom is about half percent while in Italy it is about eight percent, which is pretty high. In Thailand, estimates are that this figure rises to 97 percent, to 80 percent in Spain. As much as 40 percent of all software in use around the world may have been illegally copied, even in the United States (Donaldson 26).
The fourth reason driving new behaviors on the internet may be called "language lock." Of course reasonable people understand that the internet is a technological platform, not a form of American imperialism, says Gerhardt Schumayer, who heads the United States arm of a big German company, Siemens (Donaldson 20) but this often creates various disputes worldwide.
This is not an exhaustive list of problems brought up in connection with cyberspace today. The freedom of press is a constitutional right, the same as the right to information which means that citizens have the fundamental right to know what is happening around them. But on the other hand our constitution guarantees the right to privacy; every man has some zones of privacy, which cannot be infringed upon even by the State. This contradiction is to be resolved somehow also. As the number of children using the Internet increases, some other questions relating to ethics must be answered. Should children be allowed to roam cyberspace without restriction or supervision How should schools handle student Internet accounts What guidelines are reasonable for children and others.
Currently, there are many codes of ethics in the cyberspace. The Computer Ethics Institute has comprised a Computer ethics version of the Ten Commandments that presume that the users of the Internet shouldn't use a computer to harm others, interfere with other's work, steal, bear false witness, copy and use the software for which one has not paid, appropriate other people's intellectual output, snoop around in other people's files and some others (The Ten Commandments of Computer Ethics). The Council of Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) that adopted the ACM Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct on 16 October 1992 also claim that Internet users contribute to society and human well-being, be fair and take action not to discriminate and respect the privacy and confidentially of others in the cyberspace.
Some organizations have developed their own codes of ethics among them is Information Technology Association of America (TIAA).
But any of these codes contain all necessary rules. In spite of the fact that major principles have their reflection in the laws and international treaties it is essential to create a unified code, rules of which will cover all aspects of the problem of cyber ethics and that will be suitable for everyone. ...Show more
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Summary

What is ethics Ethics is the art of determining what is right or wrong. It can also be defined as a general pattern or way of life, a set of rules of conduct or moral code (Saunders 2). Ethics, not law, has proven time and time again to be a better arbiter of human behavior.
Ethics in Cyberspace
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