Reading Week Report
Xiaotan Zhu 02/11/2018
1 Introduction 3
2 What is Ethics 3
3 Ethical Framework Investigated 3
3.1 MakeProductstoHighestStandards……………. 3 3.2 EnvironmentallyFriendlyPrograms ……………. 3 3.3 HealthandSafety …………………….. 3 3.4 BusinessIntegrity……………………… 4 3.5 AppledidnotFollowTheirCodeofConduct . . . . . . . . . . . 4
4 Analysis of the Case Study 4
4.1 Quality ………………………….. 4 4.2 Integrity………………………….. 4 4.3 Safety …………………………… 5 4.4 Conclusion ………………………… 5
5 Comparison of Ethical Frameworks 5
5.1 Similarities ………………………… 5 5.2 Differences…………………………. 5 5.3 Conclusion ………………………… 5
This paper has a description of the ethical framework I investigated, an analysis of the killer robot case study and a comparison of my ethical framework with the other ethical framework discussed by the group.
2 What is Ethics
According to Brown University, ethics is a set of rules that provide a sense of how and why we should act in situations, even if the ethical decision we made has conflicts with the law or religion (Brown.edu, 2018).
3 Ethical Framework Investigated
I chose Apple as the company to study their ethical framework mentioned in Apple’s code of conduct.
3.1 Make Products to Highest Standards
Apple’s code of conduct points out ‘Apple expects the highest standards of ethical conduct in all of our endeavour. Supplier shall always be ethical in every aspect of its business, including relationships, practices, sourcing, and operations.’ (Apple.com, 2018).
3.2 Environmentally Friendly Programs
Apple started a program called Zero Waste Program with their suppliers, Apple provides tools and guidance to help the suppliers recycles waste from the landfills that could be used in the production of new products (Apple (United Kingdom), 2018). According to Apple, all of their final assembly facilities managed to divert 100% waste from landfill with 10% used in energy production in 2017 (Apple (United Kingdom), 2018). Besides from the Zero Waste Program, Apple has a few other environmentally friendly programs, such as the Clean Water Program which achieved a 37% waste-water reuse rate in China (Apple (United Kingdom), 2018).
3.3 Health and Safety
As Apples Apple supplier code of conduct suggested, the supplier should maintain a safe environment for the workers, including sound health and safety management (Apple.com, 2018). Workers could report unsafe working conditions and they do not need to work in an unhealthy environment (Apple.com, 2018). Suppliers should identify the danger and eliminate the hazard (Apple.com, 2018). To minimise potential harm to workers, suppliers should produce emergency plans (Apple.com, 2018). Workers are required to receive safety training in their primary language (Apple.com, 2018).
3.4 Business Integrity
Apple’s employees should not be involved in any sort of bribery, blackmail or embezzlement to gain an unfair or improper advantage over their rivals (Apple.com, 2018). The company shall follow the anti-corruption laws in all countries the company operate (Apple.com, 2018).
3.5 Apple did not Follow Their Code of Conduct
Apple has not always been able to follow their code of conduct. In 2003, Apple was being blamed for hiring child labour and forcing workers to work overtime (Topics, Sample Papers ; Articles Online for Free, 2018). There are many copyright lawsuits against Apple, indicating the company copied the design from other tech companies.
4 Analysis of the Case Study
This section uses examples to show the case study does not follow my ethical framework.
• The employees in the case study were under pressure to complete the project which had fallen half a year behind schedule. The top-level manager implies to fire employees if they did not meet the deadline. As a result, the workers would need to cut corners (Syllabus.cs.manchester.ac.uk, 2018).
• 20 new employees were hired to speed up the process, these workers do not know how the robot works and might write faulty codes that cause the robot action that killed Matthews (Syllabus.cs.manchester.ac.uk, 2018).
• In Ray Johnson’s ‘Ivory Snow Theory’ software does not need and cannot be perfect (Syllabus.cs.manchester.ac.uk, 2018).
These actions do not follow ‘make products to the highest standards’ in my ethical framework.
• Jan Anderson who as a programmer and analyst was fired since she opposed the use of waterfall model which is suggested by a manager rather than an expert in the technology (Syllabus.cs.manchester.ac.uk, 2018).
• The internal E-mail message shows Cindy Yardley was told by Ray Johnson to fake the testing results. Even though these two people know the program was modified to pass the test, they said the operator is safe to use the robot (Syllabus.cs.manchester.ac.uk, 2018).
Employees in the case study were encouraged to fake data and being punished by being honest. This does not obey the ‘business integrity’ in my ethical framework.
The bloody fingerprints on the NUM pad Bart Matthews was trying to shut down the robot. When the robot was not acting properly, the message ‘ROBOT DYNAMICS INTEGRITY ERROR – 45’ was outputted to the screen. However, Matthews has not been given enough training on how to deal with this situation which leads to his death (Syllabus.cs.manchester.ac.uk, 2018). This means the company Matthews works for did not follow the ‘health and safety’ rule.
Both employees in the company that produce the robot and the company that use the robot fails to follow the ethical framework which leads to the death of Bart Matthews.
5 Comparison of Ethical Frameworks
Our group members searched for ethical frameworks on Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Apple, CD project red, Bloomberg and the CS organisation. This section shows the similarities and differences in the rules.
• One of the rules that all of the companies have is employees should respect each other and listen to others idea.
• Another rule is discrimination or harassment is allowed.
• To protect the companies intellectual property, employees are not allowed
to leak the company’s data to others.
• Another rule in common is the employees should think for the consumer and try to produce goods to the highest standard.
Some companies have more strict rules on privacy, these company will ask for consumers’ consent before collecting the data and will encrypt the data to protect consumers’ privacy, while other companies also value consumers’ privacy, but has less harsh rules on collecting data which could be used in optimising users’ experience.
Although companies have a slightly different set of rules for ethics due to different goals of the companies, all of the rules are aimed to give the employees a better working environment and deliver better products to consumers.
Apple (United Kingdom). (2018). Supplier Responsibility. online Available at: https://www.apple.com/uk/supplier-responsibility/
Accessed 1 Nov. 2018.
Apple.com. (2018). Apple Supplier Code of Conduct. online Available at: https://www.apple.com/supplier-responsibility/pdf/ Apple-Supplier-Code-of-Conduct-January.pdf
Accessed 1 Nov. 2018.
Brown.edu. (2018). A Framework for Making Ethical Decisions — Science and Technology Studies. online Available at: https: //www.brown.edu/academics/science-and-technology-studies/ framework-making-ethical-decisions
Accessed 1 Nov. 2018.
Danielsethics.mgt.unm.edu. (2018). Apple Inc.s Ethical Success and Challenges. online Available at: https://danielsethics.mgt.unm.edu/ pdf/apple%20case.pdf
Accessed 1 Nov. 2018.
Topics, Sample Papers ; Articles Online for Free. (2018). Ethical conduct and the work environment -Apple Inc. online Available at: https://studymoose. com/ethical-conduct-and-the-work-environment-apple-inc-essay Accessed 1 Nov. 2018.
Syllabus.cs.manchester.ac.uk. (2018). The Case
of the Killer Robot. online Available at: http://syllabus.cs.manchester.ac.uk/ugt/2018/COMP10120/AbridgedKillerRobot.html Accessed 1 Nov. 2018.