Are Business Ethics at a Low Ebb?

Probably most Silicon Valley entrepreneurs are familiar with Moore’s Law, the observation from Intel co-founder Gordon Moore that “the number of transistors incorporated in a chip will approximately double every 24 months.”

But there’s another, equally important idea that perhaps they should acquaint themselves with: concepts developed by the business thinker and LRN CEO Dov Seidman that I dub “Seidman’s Law.”

During my December meeting with Seidman, he quoted Scottish philosopher David Hume’s observation that “sympathy with persons remote from us [is] much fainter than that with persons near.”

Building off this observation, Seidman tells me, “Our moral imagination will increase as distance decreases.” In other words, the more technologically connected and closer people become, the more important values and principled behavior become.

In an age of perpetual technological disruption, doing the right thing matters more than ever in ways it never has before.

In the past, technology entrepreneurs created and sold devices, Seidman explains: “Today, they create and sell platforms for human behavior, which in turn raises real questions about the social and moral implications of the behavior — and their underlying values — on their platforms and about the responsibility that they have for these behaviors.”

In other words, technology is now in the behavior business.

via Are Business Ethics at a Low Ebb?.

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