The role of pragmatic arguments in computer ethics
The purpose of this paper is to stress the importance of pragmatic arguments if we are to reach overlapping consensuses across cultural and disciplinary borders. An analytical distinction is made between, on the one hand, arguments based on socio-political or philosophical presuppositions, and on the other hand, pragmatic arguments. The latter are (as far as possible) detached from culture-specific or disciplinary presuppositions. I will mainly focus on the issue of regulation and surveillance on the Internet, and put forward a selection of pragmatic arguments for why widespread regulation and surveillance ought to be avoided. These arguments are intended to reach the same conclusion as arguments that are based on socio-political and philosophical presuppositions, with the aim of creating overlapping consensuses.
Keywordscross-cultural e-commerce innovation Internet technology layers principle overlapping consensus pragmatic arguments regulations surveillance
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- T. Dinev, M. Bellotto, P. Hart, V. Russo, I. Serra, and C.␣Colautti. Internet Users’ Privacy Concerns and Beliefs About Government Surveillance – An Exploratory Study of Differences between Italy and the United States. Journal of Global Information Management, 14(4): 57–93, 2006Google Scholar
- K. Gorniak-Kocikowska (1996) The Computer Revolution and the Problem of Global Ethics. Science and Engineering Ethics 2:177–190Google Scholar
- L.P. Hartman. The Rights and Wrongs of Workplace Snooping. Journal of Business Strategy, 19: 16–20, 1998Google Scholar
- G. Huston (2000) The Future for TCP. The Internet Protocol Journal 3(3):2–26Google Scholar
- M. Levander. Singapore to Relax Censorship Laws as It Seeks to Expand Internet Access. Wall Street Journal, September 1: A18, 1996Google Scholar
- B.G. Norton (2000) The Cultural Approach to Conservation Biology. In: J. Benson (ed) Environmental Ethics: An Introduction with Readings. Routledge, New YorkGoogle Scholar
- J. Rawls (1996) Political Liberalism. Colombia University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
- L. Solum and M. Chung. The Layers Principle: Internet Architecture and the Law. Public Law and Legal Theory␣Research Paper 55, University of San Diego School of Law [Retrieved October 1, 2004, from http://www.ssrn.com/abstract=416263]Google Scholar
- C. Sunstein (2001) Republic.com. Princeton University Press, PrincetonGoogle Scholar
- The Congressional-Executive Commission on China. Freedom of Expression, Speech, and the Press [Retrieved September 10, 2005, from http://www.cecc.gov/pages/virtualAcad/exp/]Google Scholar
- J. Wang. The Internet and Ecommerce in China: Challenge of the WTO. In Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Advances in Infrastructure for e-Business, e-Education, e-Science, e-Medicine on the Internet, 2003 [Retrieved October 5, 2005, from http://galeb.etf.bg. ac.yu/∼vm/cd1/papers/93.pdf ]Google Scholar
- Wikipedia. Blocking of Wikipedia in Mainland China [Retrieved 19 November, 2005, from http://en.wikipedia. org/wiki/Blocking_of_Wikipedia_in_mainland_China]Google Scholar