Archive for October 24th, 2012

Intro to philosophy   no comments

Posted at 2:38 pm in Uncategorized


Blog Post week 2

This week I have started reading a basic introductory Philosophy book. In the preface it outlines the different approaches to describing Philosophy, eventually settling with ‘Philosophy is what Philosophers do’. It seems Philosophy is a difficult thing to define, however it appears even more difficult to categorise. An argument is made for sectioning Philosophy chronologically, reflecting how Philosophers build on each other’s previous work. However the author decides a better method is to split in by topics, describing it by separating in to topics such as; religious philosophy, ethical philosophy etc. There are overlapping theories and theorists as Philosophers don’t tend to stick to a particular topic.

In particular interest to me was moral Philosophy, as I intend to apply theories from this in the attempt to explain digital piracy as a phenomenon. The point I want to look at is that most people would never consider stealing from a physical shop, however attitudes towards stealing digital content are vastly different; is there less of a moral dilemma when stealing a song from the internet than when stealing a CD from a shop? Immanuel Kant suggested that the action of stealing is not immoral in itself (as opposed to Christian ethics i.e. ten commandments), it is the thought process that leads to the action that must be judged. In the same way this can be applied to other seemingly immoral acts such as murder; the murder itself isn’t the immoral act it’s the reason why the murder is committed. Killing someone in the context of a just war may be different to killing someone because you dislike them.

Other ethical standpoints were mentioned, and over the next week I aim to investigate a number of different approaches to ethics/ethical systems and start thinking about how they can apply to the moral grey area of digital piracy.

Written by William Lawrence on October 24th, 2012