Technology and Morality
Morality is a personal set of beliefs, and you could say that it’s the core of who we are as individuals. Ethics is expressed in terms of the expectations and the sanctions that are defined and enforced by a certain culture and society.
What’s completely confounding today is that the world has never been so interconnected, but what we forget is that the ethical positions or decisions or expectations occur within a given period of time in a certain cultural silo. That is why many of us are completely disconcerted by what we think is so obviously right and wrong when other people don’t believe that. Quite honestly, the book that I’ve written was the result of living in China for a period of time…and they are simply operating with a different set of moral values.
Theperspectiveisnotonefrom a Judeo-Christian sense of rightandwrong.They’refarmore philosophical and don’t believe that there’s any one way of beingright, and there are very few ways of being wrong.… A business contract becomes extremelyvagueandamorphouseven after you’ve signed it because there’s a belief that it’s a continuation of a dialogue and not the culmination of one.
Thisledmetocontemplatewhether my own values were at all germane or applicable any longer in the US, as an American. I explored that question with a variety of other people in terms of the moral choices they’ve made. Some of them have upheld the moral status quo, others have been defiant.
From “Technology and the Decline of Morality”