Employees and managers accessing private employee information for personal gain, improper data access to hose who are not privy to it and software copying were a few of the concerns discussed in the 30 year old article Computer Ethics: Questions Arise on Misuse in Business (Pollack, 1983). The social media boom of the last decade has brought with it additional questionable ethical violations In the workplace. Time stealing Is discussed in the New York Times online article Opting to Blow the Whistle or Choosing to Walk Away (Tugged, 2013).
It states, “According to the Ethics Resource Center, a nonprofit research organization, the No. Misconduct observed -? by a third of 4,800 respondents -? was misuse of company time” (Tugged, 2013 Para. 4). Eric Swenson discusses the stealing of time through excessive personal use of Internet streaming and social media in his video Business Ethics & Stealing Time, by Eric Swenson, Demand Media Video (Swenson, n. D. ). In the words of Eric Swenson, misuse of company time is time stealing. According to a study conducted by Eric Swenson, “The average employee in a white collar business spends 3. Hours daily on personal internet usage” (Swenson, n. D. ) However, he broaches the question does this matter? He calls the workers of the present and future, 2020 to be exact, “millennial employees who want to be connected and be Involved socially” (Swenson, n. D. ) Swenson states that employees now want to be online streaming videos, media, and music. Is this the way people work today? The consideration he gives Is that he Is more concerned about the productivity of the employee versus the exact method or use of time that it takes to get the work accomplished.
My conclusion is there is definitely an ethical line to be drawn in personal use of computers and Internet technology within the work place. I would ascertain that if privacy is violated for personal gain or technology or work product is stolen as stated in the first article, it is most definitely ethical violation. As far time stealing, where the line gets fuzzier, it should be Judged on whether the time spent on Internet or social media has any impact on the productivity of the employee or benefit to their specific Job.