This paper provides a general philosophical groundwork for the theoretical and applied normative evaluation of information generally and digital information specifically in relation to the good life. The overall aim of the paper is to address the question of how Information Ethics and computer ethics more generally can be expanded to include more centrally the issue of how and to what extent information relates and contributes to the quality of life or the good life , for individuals and for society. (...) To answer that question, the paper explores and provides by way of a theoretical groundwork for further research, the concept of wisdom understood as a type of meta - knowledge as well as a type of meta - virtue , which can enable one to both know in principle what a good life is and how to successfully apply that knowledge in living such a life in practice. This answer will be based on the main argument presented in this paper that the notion of wisdom understood as being at once a meta - epistemological , meta - axiological and meta - eudemonic concept, provides the essential conceptual link between information on the one hand and the good life on the other. If, as we are told, this is the Age of Information, both the theoretical examination and analysis of the question of how information relates to the good life and the provision of an adequate answer to that question are essential for developing a deeper understanding of how to evaluate the theoretical and practical implications and ramifications of information for the good life, for individuals and societies generally. (shrink)
Using a general model of corruption that explains and accounts for corruption across different corporate and professional activities, the paper will examine how certain practices in the media, especially in areas where journalism, advertising and public relations regularly intersect and converge, can be construed as instances of corruption. By applying this general model of corruption the paper will then offer a taxonomy of media corruption by identifying most if not all the major types of media corruption. It will be argued (...) that such corruption is regular and systematic. (shrink)
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how some of the information and communication practices of the Tech Media and specifically of Facebook, constitute media corruption. The paper will examine what the professional role of Facebook is regarding its information/communication practices and then demonstrate that Facebook is essentially a media company and not merely a “platform,” therefore liable to the same normative responsibilities as other media companies. Design/methodology/approach Applying the dual obligation information theory, a normative information and communication (...) theory that applies generally to all media companies that disseminate and share information, the paper demonstrates that Facebook’s role of mediating and curating the information of its users places upon it a normative editing responsibility, to ensure both the preventive detection and corrective editing of fake news, as well as other forms of misinformation disseminated on its platform. Finally, applying a philosophical model of media corruption the paper will demonstrate that Facebook’s role in the Cambridge Analytica case was not only unethical but moreover, constituted media corruption. Findings The paper concludes that Facebook’s media corruption illustrated in the Cambridge Analytica case is not a one-off case but the result of a systemic and inherent conflict of interest between its business model of selling users’ information to advertisers and its normative media role rendering the conflict of interest between those two roles conducive to media corruption. Originality/value The paper's originality is twofold. It demonstrates that Facebook is a media company normatively accountable on the basis of an original theory the DOIT and moreover, on the basis of an original media corruption theory its actions in the Cambridge Analytica case constituted media corruption. (shrink)
The recent transnational wave of destruction that was caused by the earthquake-induced tsunamis in South East Asia has raised the issue of global justice in terms of the rights of victims to expect aid relief and the moral responsibility of the rest of the world to provide it. In this paper I will discuss the issue of global ethics in terms of positive rights that people have to assistance from others when they cannot provide such assistance themselves. The main object (...) of the paper is to demonstrate that positive rights are universal and global in scope and cannot therefore be restricted by any national, religious, cultural or other social boundaries. Such rights provide a rational and ethical foundation for global justice that is cosmopolitan. The argument for the position offered in the paper will be broadly based on the moral philosophy of Alan Gewirth.1. (shrink)
The essays in this book engage the original and controversial claims from Michael Boylan's A Just Society. Each essay discusses Boylan's claims from a particular chapter and offers a critical analysis of these claims. Boylan responds to the essays in his lengthy and philosophically rich reply.
Beginning with the initial premise that as the Internet has a global character, the paper will argue that the normative evaluation of digital information on the Internet necessitates an evaluative model that is itself universal and global in character. The paper will show that information has a dual normative structure that commits all disseminators of information to both epistemological and ethical norms that are in principle universal and thus global in application. Based on this dual normative characterization of information the (...) paper will seek to demonstrate: that information and internet information specifically, as a process and product of communication, has an inherent normative structure that commits its producers, disseminators, communicators and users, everyone in fact that deals with information, to certain mandatory epistemological and ethical commitments; and that the negligent or purposeful abuse of information in violation of the epistemological and ethical commitments to which its inherent normative structure gives rise is also a violation of universal rights to freedom and wellbeing to which all agents are entitled by virtue of being agents, and in particular informational agents. (shrink)
Good journalism is based—and to some extent thrives—on a diversity of perspectives from those who supply information and informed opinions to the public. New media journalism is a contemporary newsgathering and disseminating method with enormous communication potential because it is an online forum that can connect a great number of diverse contributors and audiences. Citizen journalism—performed on a global level through the Web—is a potential marvel because of its wide reach and range of diversity. This paper offers an examination and (...) philosophical analysis that shows which facets of new media information ethics and epistemology can be reconciled with universal ethical and epistemological principles and which, if any, cannot. To that end, we wish to provide groundwork for the description and critical evaluation of universal ethical and epistemic standards consistent with the phenomenon of new media journalism. (shrink)
This article explores the phenomenon of Internet addiction and its possible amelioration, from both Eastern and Western philosophical perspectives. Internet addiction is caused by the excessive use of the Internet and its resulting dependence, having negative effects on human well-being. The ideas of a key ancient Chinese Daoist thinker Zhuangzi 莊子 and his Western contemporaries, the Stoics, as viewed through the world, the things and beings in it, and their relationships, offer insights which may be used to alleviate these effects. (...) The application of and comparison between the two ancient philosophies in addressing the issue of Internet addiction can give us inspiration to confront the challenges of technological enslavement in general and Internet addiction in particular. This is no doubt a help in our pursuit of well-being. (shrink)
This paper aims to systematically explore and provide answers to the following key questions: When is government secrecy justified? In a conflict between government secrecy and the public's right to be informed on matters of public interest, which ought to take priority? Is Julian Assange a journalist and what justifies his role as a journalist? Even if Julian Assange is a journalist of the new media, was he justified in disseminating classified information to the public? Who decides what is in (...) "the public interest"? Is it only journalists of the Fourth Estate who decide that or also journalists of the Fifth Estate ? This paper will answer the aforementioned questions by arguing that the media in the form of both the Fourth and Fifth Estates should inform the public on matters of public interest truthfully and ethically, even if sometimes they have to breach government secrecy. (shrink)
This book provides an applied model of corruption to identify, analyse, and assess the ethics of major types of corruption in the media involving practices such as cash-for-comment, media release journalism, including video news releases, fake news, deep fakes, and staged news. The book starts with a conceptual philosophical analysis of corruption in general, followed by an in-depth analysis of media corruption, across its various transformations, from the legacy media of the 4th Estate to the digital media of the 5th (...) Estate to the Network Media of the 6th Estate, and provides key case studies as practical illustrations and contextualisation of those major types of media corruption. It explains how the conversion of the two forms of media communication, corporate and social digital communication, as expressed in the symbiotic relationship between the 4th Estate and the 5th Estate exposes and enables the reporting of corruption, signalling a major shift in the way the media itself can provide an effective means for anti-corruption measures against major practices of corruption that would have otherwise gone unnoticed. (shrink)
Spence develops and applies a normative model based on rationalist and virtue ethics as well as stoic philosophy to assess the impact of technology on wellbeing. Through developing this model, Spence offers a novel and important examination of the benefit of technology to our society as a whole.
The title refers to the question addressed in this paper, namely, to what degree if any technology, including nanotechnologies, in the form of products and processes, is capable of contributing to a good life. To answer that question, the paper will develop a meta-normative model whose primary purpose is to determine the essential conditions that any normative theory of the Good Life and Technology (T-GLAT) must adequately address in order to be able to account for, explain and evaluate the Contributive (...) Capability of Technology for a Good Life (CCT-GL). By CCT-GL understand the capability of any technological product or process in its design and/or its use to contribute in some way, if any, to the good life of individuals and society at large. In this paper, the all-embracing term “technology” will be used to refer to both the products and processes of different technologies. (shrink)
The paper will seek to demonstrate that information as communication has a dual inherent normative structure that commits its disseminators, especially the media, offline and online, to epistemological and ethical principles that are universally mandatory. With regard to the dissemination of information by the media, its business intelligence constituted by its commercial interests as a media market must always be congruent with moral intelligence on the basis of the epistemological and ethical universal principles that the dual normative structure of information (...) gives rise and to which the media itself is committed. When the media?s business intelligence comes into conflict with moral intelligence, the latter must always take precedent over the former. Moreover, the communication of information to the public by the media, offline and online, even if conceived merely as another market commodity, commits the media to ethical conduct regardless of any other commercial interests that may come into conflict with the media's ethical commitments to the public. (shrink)