CS34 : Deep impact


We do not live in a world devoid of responsibility and computer technology has exposed both benefits and risks in the areas of individual (moral), social (ethical), legal and cultural responsibility. This topic explores these areas.

We are learning ...
  • Discuss the challenges facing individuals and society in the face of increasing dependence on digital systems.
So that we can ...
  • Write about the moral, social, ethical and cultural implications of the use of computer systems
    Codes of conduct
    - Computers in the workplace
    - Automated decision making
    - Artificial intelligence
    - Environmental effects
    - Censorship and the Internet
    - Monitoring behaviour
    - Invasive technology
    - Storing and analysing personal data
    - Piracy and offensive communications
    - Layout, colour paradigms and character sets
    - Use and overuse of data
    - Reliance on technology and the impact of globalisation
  • Write about the legal implications of the use of computer systems
    - The Data Protection Act
    - Health and safety (display screen equipment)
    - The Computer Misuse Act
    - The Copyrights, Designs and Patents Act
    - The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act

Activity 1 Moral, Ethical, Social and Cultural - what?

Before we look at the impacts of technology in these areas, it's important we understand what they mean. All four terms are subtly related. They naturally group into pairs ...
  • Morals and ethics
  • Culture and society
http://keydifferences.com/difference-between-morals-and-ethics.html
Click for a deeper comparison

http://keydifferences.com/difference-between-culture-and-society.html
Click for a deeper comparison


Task 1.1
 Getting it right

By using the definitions and the deeper explanations available from the web (available by clicking on the images), create a simple mindmap describing the difference between these 4 terms ...
  • Morals
  • Ethics
  • Culture
  • Society
For each term, try to give some description of how issues related to technology might be relevant.

OUTCOME : Hopefully, a clearer understanding of these terms. Oh, and a mindmap exploring the terms and giving some areas which are relevant (technology related).


Activity 2 Impact!


Can you consider the impact of technology in the following moral, ethical, social and cultural areas?
  • Codes of conduct
  • Computers in the workplace
  • Automated decision making
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Environmental effects
  • Censorship and the Internet
  • Monitoring behaviour
  • Invasive technology
  • Storing and analysing personal data
  • Piracy and offensive communications
  • Layout, colour paradigms and character sets
  • Use and overuse of data
  • Reliance on technology
  • The impact of globalisation

Task 2.1
 Flipped classroom

You will be allocated one / two sections each. Your mission is to produce a brief positive / negative analysis for delivery to the class.
  • You may wish to use the World Wide Web to help you - try typing "impact of technology on ..." and see what comes up. You can try normal search and image search.
  • Engage in discussion with me and your peers. 
  • Read the textbook references.
You're presentation will be used by other students to create a summary in written form.

OUTCOME : Personally, you will have one or two areas which you will have researched. As a group member, you should have a greater awareness of the effect of technology on the ways in which we live our lives.


Activity 3 Legislation

Again, though you do not need to know the specific detail of any of the legislation, you still need to be aware of the areas of impact that these 5 UK laws have on the ways in which technology is used.
  • 01. The Data Protection Act
  • 02. The Computer Misuse Act
  • 03. The Copyrights, Designs and Patents Act
  • 04. Health and safety (display screen equipment)
  • 05. The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act

Task 3.1
 Teach-ICT (and questions)

STAGE ONE

As the legislation section is so very ICT, Teach-ICT has loads of information on it.  Visit AS and A2 Index of Topics at Teach ICT and choose the relevant legislation.  You will be allocated a piece of legislation to research from the list above. Your task is to produce an infographic or a poster to explain what the legislation is concerned with. You will present your infographic / poster to the rest of the group.

To help you, I have put 5 help documents in the lesson resources which summarise the main points of each act of legislation listed above ...

These might help

STAGE TWO

In your notebooks : Give the name of the legislation under which the following scenarios could be prosecuted ...
  1. A person possesses unauthorised copies of software with a view to distributing, selling or hiring these to other people.
  2. An employee deliberately shut down the computer systems of a company he worked for, causing the company to lose thousands of pounds.
  3. A city council has kept information on former employees that was not correct or needed, and refused to show this information to an employee when a request was made.
  4. A company did not carry out a risk assessment or investigation when their employees complained that they were suffering headaches and backaches from using computers at work.
  5. An employer unlawfully intercepted and redirected the emails of another employee of his company in order to read what was in the messages.
OUTCOME : One poster you have made yourself and 4 from other students in the group plus answers to questions.



Activity 4 Codes of conduct A Level Only

Many organisations ask their students, employees or members to sign a code of conduct.  A code of conduct is not a law.  If you break an organisations code of conduct, you cannot be criminally convicted but the organisation may follow its own disciplinary procedures.  The British Computer Society (BCS) has a code of conduct and a code of good practice; all BSC members must abide by them.


Task 4.1
 Your code of conduct

In your notebooks : Answer the following questions in full sentences. You may need to collect documentation either from your school, your part time job or the BSC to complete the activities.
  1. What is the code of conduct that you signed when you started school? Which parts relate to use of computers? Did you sign an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP)?
  2. If you have a part time job, did you have to sign a Code of Conduct? What happens to you if you break any of the rules?
  3. Find the Code of Conduct from the BCS website (http://www.bcs.org/category/6030). What are the main points?

OUTCOME : One poster you have made yourself and 4 from other students in the group.



Extension Activities 

What about these?
  • Your own research

    You should carry out your own research on ethical issues relating to computers, to develop your own opinions and be able to articulate these.  A possible task could be for you to find a news story from archives from newspapers or websites (within the last two years would be most useful) which presents an ethical dilemma or highlights an ethical issue.

  • Protecting digital property

    The whole subject of Digital Rights Management has been a big area of heated discussion over the past few years. Download the document 06. Protecting Digital Property.docx from the lesson resources, read and complete the activity.

  • The 10 Commandments of Computer Ethics

    For more information on Computer Ethics, download 07. The 10 Commandments of Computer Ethics.docx which is available from the lesson resources.

What's next?

Before you hand your book in for checking, make sure you have completed all the work required and that your book is tidy and organised. Your book will be checked to make sure it is complete and you will be given a spicy grade for effort.

END OF TOPIC ASSESSMENT