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Transcript of Business Ethics
"LET THE BUYER BEWARE"
How much regulation is necessary?
Why do we have to be the ones that "beware"?
Producers have to follow certain guidelines.
"is a form of applied ethics that examines ethical principles and moral or ethical problems that arise in a business environment. "
This principle puts consumers in the position of having to research purchases so they know what the heck they are buying before they take it home and it falls apart.
But the government doesn't oversee every minute detail of each product that comes to market.
We could spend billions of dollars on monitoring manufacturers alone!
If the government were too heavy-handed in protecting us from our own stupidity, it would be a pretty bad case of paternalism
The government does things to either benefit us or protect us from hurting ourselves.
How likely is the government will really know what is best for you and do a good job protecting you from bad things?
THEY KNOW NOTHING ABOUT YOU!
This doesn't mean that the state takes a totally "hands-off" approach.
There are different regulations for different products.
How much can an average consumer know before buying something?
Should certain things be kept off the market because they are dangerous for us?
Where is the manufacturer responsibility?
Caveat Emperor works in some areas of consumer life but not others
You can see what is wrong with a car or clothing, but you can't be aware if a new pill for your migraine is going to be helpful or dangerous.
Do businesses owe something to us as a society?
Some business ethicists claim their only responsibility is to makes lots of money
Because once we start requiring business to do more then we interfere with its profits.
But some corporations hire people at near-slave wages and are hugely profitable.
So those ethicists aren't factoring in all issues.
Businesses rely on societies to support them, so saying business only have moral obligation to make big bucks overlooks basic responsibilities that they owe to all of us.
We have to ask ourselves "what is worth to us"
Corporations won't make things we won't buy them!
What is Life Worth?
Cost-benefit analysis: in order to know if some product is worth it or not.
Pluses vs Minuses
Require us to put a price on human life.
Thinking about consequences
The Duty Thing: obligations
Ethics in advertising
Should advertising be done on the model of "no hold barred" or is it justified to have strict regulations surrounding what and how companies advertise?
Usually involves flashing images on the television or movie screen.
ADVERTISING NEEDS TO BE REGULATED
Protecting the vulnerable: CHILDREn
Playing with fears and uncertainties: ADULTS
Those who engage in puffery make exaggerated claims about their products: "IT'LL MAKE YOU ORGASM!" "IT IS A MIND-BLOWING EXPERIENCE!"
Remember caveat emptor!
Don't assume that ads must always tell the truth
Hold business to reasonable ethical standards
Know your limits as a consumer