Fall 2013

Phil 285 Information Ethics

Is software piracy wrong, and, if so, why? What about spam and internet pornography? Do privacy and identity mean the same thing in the digital age as in the past? Do people have a right to express themselves however they want in cyberspace and to access any information they want?

These are among the questions we'll explore in this course on the ethical dimensions of computers and information technology. Readings will be drawn from the fifth edition of the comprehensive text Ethics for the Information Age. The primary aim of the course is to help students formulate their own views on the ethical issues, new and old, that new technologies force all of us to contemplate.

The course will be run as a seminar, with careful preparation and active discussion by all students essential to its success. There will be several short papers, several tests, and a final exam.