“As computers become more and more ubiquitous and control increasingly significant and complex systems, people are exposed to increasing harms and risks. The issue of accountability arises when a community expects its agents to stand up for the quality of their work. Nissenbaum (1994) argues that responsibility in our computerized society is systematically undermined, and this is a disservice to the community. This concern has grown with the number of critical life services controlled by computer systems in the governmental, airline, and medical arenas.
According to Nissenbaum, there are four barriers to accountability: the problem of many hands, “bugs” in the system, the computer as a scapegoat, and ownership without liability. The problem of too many hands relates to the fact that many groups of people (programmers, engineers, etc.) at various levels of a company are typically involved in creation of a computer program and have input into the final product. When something goes wrong, there is no one individual who can be clearly held responsible. It is easy for each person involved to rationalize that he or she is not responsible for the final outcome, because of the small role played. “
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Consider a Technology that if misused would result in devastating personal harm. Provide an Introduction to this technology and the History of its use. Use the Writing template to frame your response. In your discussion, you should identify the relevant stakeholder(s) and potential impacts. Be sure to discuss the following concepts in your submission. (Suggested length: 2000-2500 words.)
Question to answer in essay includes:
1) According to the ACM Code of Ethics, what ethical responsibility do creators of software have for the adverse consequences that result from their flawed software?
2) What steps are creators of software morally required to take to minimize the risk that they will sell flawed software with dangerous consequences?
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