Initial Post Instructions
Some people believe that you can tell who a person is by what they do when no one is looking. Let’s look at the following case. John Doe, a nurse, has downloaded an application to her phone that allows him to download copyrighted textbooks for a nursing course (that Doe is going to take) without his Internet Service Provider knowing it. The application is called “Cloak” as in cloak of invisibility (a hooded coat one wears to make it so others cannot see you). The application disguises his phone and makes it so the information on it is inaccessible. John is aware that other people who are of a lower socio-economic status (like him) also use this software program for the same reason (and to save money). John Doe knows that his religion forbids him from using this application to download in this manner. John Doe is focused on his own economic situation and does not consider the publisher, author, and others involved in the books. Think about a course of social action; what social values should be used to address this moral issue and conflict.
Create a personal ethical philosophy and explain from which philosophy or philosophies (it must include at least one of the following: virtue ethics, Kantian ethics, utilitarianism, virtue ethics, or social contract ethics) you created it and why the contents are important and meaningful for you. List its precepts.
- Take your personal ethical philosophy statement and use it to work through John Doe’s case. What is moral and immoral per your theory?
- How would the veil of ignorance or a different theory of justice address John Doe’s case?
Follow-Up Post Instructions
Respond to at least one peer. When possible, respond to a peer who chose a different ethical theory than you did in your posting. Further the dialogue by providing more information and clarification:
Personal ethical philosophy: Set personal expectations for oneself, act with honest integrity, create personal goals to achieve without limitations. Acknowledge and learn from mistakes and respect others. Refrain from deception.
These precepts are important because I feel that when you set personal goals and expectations for yourself, you tend to work harder for the things you want to achieve. Being successful requires acknowledging, willing to learn and understanding. These precepts were derived from a utilitarianism and virtue of ethics approach.
Take your personal ethical philosophy statement and use it to work through John Doe’s case. What is moral and immoral per your theory?
Pursuant to my personal theory, morally I think that John Doe had the good intentions to want to do well and pass the course. However, the unethical aspect of it was that John Doe did not give credit to the publisher and its authors for the information that was copied. John Doe’s actions identifies untruthfulness and dishonesty.
How would the veil of ignorance or a different theory of justice address John Doe’s case?
John Doe disregards the moral theory of “utilitarianism” which implies that one should not engage in deception because it does not promote general happiness but rather more harm (Broome, 1991). Cheating would be wrong and people should not engage in this type of conduct.
According to the veil of ignorance, a right decision would allow for maximum freedom as long as we do not interfere with another person’s rights (Von Platz, 2017). However, with the difference theory it provides the opportunity for anyone to achieve something even while facing economic hardship. Due to John’s economic situation, the difference theory would enable him to download and copy the book to help him pass the course while saving money. John Doe is engaging in what is best for himself while realizing that it is ethically wrong.