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As technology becomes more powerful, intelligent, and autonomous, its usage also creates unintended consequences and ethical challenges for a vast array of stakeholders. The ethical implications of technology on society, for example, range from job losses (such as potential loss of truck driver jobs due to automation) to lying and deception about a product that may occur within a technology firm or on user-generated content platforms. The challenges around ethical technology design are so multifaceted that there is an essential need for each stakeholder to accept responsibility. Even policymakers who are charged with providing the appropriate regulatory framework and legislation about technologies have an obligation to learn about the pros and cons of proposed options.
Some of the significant features of our era include the design of large-scale systems; advances in medicine, manufacturing, and artificial intelligence (AI); the role of social media in influencing behavior and toppling governments; and the surge of online transactions that are replacing human face-to-face interactions. Most of these features have resulted from advances in technology. While spanning a variety of disciplines, these features also have two important aspects in common: the necessity for sound decision-making about the technology that is evolving, and the need to understand the ethical implications of these decisions to all stakeholders.
This chapter presents an interview with Vint Cerf, one of the fathers of the Internet. The chapter discusses his personal views on ethics, data and privacy, net neutrality, public policy, self-driving cars, genetic codes, and reflections on the future.
Many of the significant developments of our era have resulted from advances in technology, including the design of large-scale systems; advances in medicine, manufacturing, and artificial intelligence; the role of social media in influencing behaviour and toppling governments; and the surge of online transactions that are replacing human face-to-face interactions. These advances have given rise to new kinds of ethical concerns around the uses (and misuses) of technology. This collection of essays by prominent academics and technology leaders covers important ethical questions arising in modern industry, offering guidance on how to approach these dilemmas. Chapters discuss what we can learn from the ethical lapses of #MeToo, Volkswagen, and Cambridge Analytica, and highlight the common need across all applications for sound decision-making and understanding the implications for stakeholders. Technologists and general readers with no formal ethics training and specialists exploring technological applications to the field of ethics will benefit from this overview.