Landing : Athabascau University

Week 2 Reflections


We make ethical decisions every day, whether consciously or subconsciously.  Ethical views differ from person to person. Although individuals with similar upbringing, growing up in the same environment might have similar ethical value, each individual has unique ways in which they view ethical situation.

 In the world of IT, I deal with some form of ethical decision or the other.  Some of the ethical decisions are simple with whatever action taken not having grave consequences. Other ethical decisions are more controversial with a greater degree of impact depending on what action is taken.

For me I work in the area of information technology that deals with having access to employee computers. I have come across several situations where either the content or the use of the computer system does not comply with company policy. In most cases it is an ethical dilemma. I have to find the best way to approach the situation while causing as little damage as possible.  Where the damage\infraction is minor, I usually correct the employee in question verbally reminding them of the policies that have been put in place. Where the damage, impact or repercussions are major, I have no choice but to report the employee to the appropriate authorities. My reasoning is simple. If I allow such actions to go unchecked, they could go on to cause more problems down the line which will weigh on my conscience knowing u could have prevented it.

One of the major factors that guide my ethical decision making, is the impact that taking or not taking such actions will have.  This is a consequentialist view which some have compared to the saying; “the end justifies the means”.  Although I take a consequentialist view in most cases, I still have strongly held moral principles which I will not easily violate. So I would say, although the end justifies the means, there are always exceptions to the rule. I have learnt that each ethical situation is unique and there is no “one size fits all” approach.