Ethikos Weekly Editor’s Picks – February 25, 2014



Ethikos Weekly Editor’s Picks

Examining Business Ethics Since 1987

Editor’s Top Choice:

Ethics gets lots of talk, not much practice in PR

From O’Dwyer’s, “Ethics generates lots of talk in PR but little action on thorny subjects such as criticisms of J&J’s handling of the Tylenol murders, trade groups sitting on their tax returns, ‘secret societies’ like PR Seminar, reporters blocked and/or threatened with physical harm, etc.George Washington set the bar for truth-telling when as a six-year-old he tried out his new hatchet on various plants including taking a slice off the bark of a small cherry tree. That killed it.

His furious father demanded to know who killed his prize planting. Washington responded that he did. ‘I cannot tell a lie,’ he said. Washington’s father took his son tenderly in his arms and said, ‘Truth is worth more to me than a thousand trees!’

President Lincoln noted that much of the public can be misled for long periods of time, saying ‘You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.’” Read more

Other Featured Picks of the Week

Strengthen your work(place) ethic

From Associations Now, “New findings from the Ethics Resource Center suggest that overall workplace misconduct is on the decline, while other findings suggest there is room for improvement. Here are some tips for toning up your association’s ethical culture.” Read more

Hiring probe highlights failure of Asia’s business schools to teach ethics

From South China Morning post:

US authorities are investigating claims that JPMorgan Chase hired the children of well-connected Chinese nationals in order to win business from mainland companies. Now, the China Insurance Regulatory Commission chairman and JPMorgan chief executive Jamie Dimon may be implicated.

As the “sons and daughters” saga unfolds, public discourse is focusing on the high politics and ethics of corruption, conflicts of interest and abuse of power. However, we should not forget one important group of moral actors: the sons and daughters themselves. Read more

Pentagon cheating scandals: a breakdown in ethics or an outmoded system?

The Christian Science Monitor says, “The plot thickens in the cheating scandals involving nuclear officers in the US military, in which a senior enlisted sailor stepped forward to report an alleged cheating ring to higher authorities because the sailor ‘recognized that this was wrong.’

’To say that I’m disappointed would be an understatement,’ said Adm. Jonathan Greenert, chief of naval operations. ‘It affects the very basis of our ethos.’

The news comes on the heels of reports of Air Force cheating involving nearly one-quarter of its entire force of nuclear missileers.

So why now – why this sudden spate of cheating allegations within the nuclear forces? And what can the services learn from it?” Read more

Photoshop, Ethics and PR

Emmanuel Tchividjian of the Ruder Finn Ethics Blog writes, “Last week, Narciso Contreras, a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer was fired by Associated Press after he admitted to having altered a photo he had taken covering the Syrian civil war. AP published the photo, not knowing that it had been ‘Photoshoped.’

In photojournalism, photo editing is problematic, because viewers assume and expect the photographic or video representation of events to be accurate. The ethics code of the National Press Artists Association (NPPA) states that: ‘in documentary photojournalism, it is wrong to alter the content of a photograph in any way (electronically, or in the darkroom) that deceives the public.’

The issue of photo editing is probably as old as photography itself. In the early 1860s, a photo of Abraham Lincoln was altered to create a portrait which is the basis of the image of Lincoln on the current five-dollar bill.” Read more

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