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At the Center

Capturing the lively discussions, presentations, and other events that make up the daily activities of the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University.

  •  Protecting Privacy and Society

    Wednesday, Apr. 24, 2013 3:00 PM

    Consumer and business data is increasingly moving to the "cloud," and people are clamoring for protection of that data. However, as Symantec's President, CEO, and Chairman of the Board Steve Bennett points out in this cliip, "maximum privacy" is really anonymity, and some people use anonymity as a shield for illegal and unethical behavior. How should cloud service providers deal with this dilemma?

    Bennett's remarks are part of the video series, Internet Ethics: Views From Silicon Valley. Responding is Robert Henry, Chief Information Security Officer, Santa Clara University. 

  •  Internet Access is a Privilege

    Wednesday, Apr. 24, 2013 10:22 AM

    A.C. "Mike" Markkula Jr., for whom the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics is named, considers ways to minimize some of the harms associated with the Internet, while fully appreciating its benefits, in the latest installment of the Center's video series "Internet Ethics: Views from Silicon Valley."


  •  Mickey Edwards Speaks on Partisanship

    Monday, Apr. 22, 2013 4:52 PM

     Former member of the Republican leadership in the House of Representatives Mickey Edwards spoke Friday on the influence of partisan politics on the US government.  Edwards, author of The Parties Versus the People, described how party loyalty is interfering with problem solving.  (Hear the talk)

    Edward's appearance was sponsored by the Center's Public Sector Roundtable and the Silicon Valley Chapter of the Commonwealth Club.

  •  White Lying to a Hiring Manager

    Friday, Apr. 12, 2013 1:00 PM

     A college junior must decide whether to tell a hiring manager that she is only available to work until September when she knows that the company is looking for a longer term hire.  This case study is the latest in the Center's Big Q project, an online dialog on everyday ethical issues for undergraduates.

  •  Digital Journalism in the Public Square

    Tuesday, Apr. 9, 2013 3:46 PM

    Representatives from news media outlets from the entrepreneurial to the massive are visiting Santa Clara University today for a Roundtable on Digital Journalism Ethics sponsored by the Ethics Center.  The focus of this third annual event is journalism in the public square. 

    Keynote speaker Todd Gitlin, political writer, sociologist, and cultural commentator from Columbia University, kicks off the procedings with his presentation, "Who Can Deliver the Journalism We Need in the Digital Public Square?” 

    Other participants include Sue Gardner, Executive Director, Wikimedia Foundation;Henry Holzman, Chief Knowledge Officer, MIT Media Lab; and Richard Gingras, Head, News & Social Products at Google.  


    Image by Mike Licht, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial license on Flickr.

  •  Accuracy Online

    Tuesday, Apr. 9, 2013 3:21 PM

     Charles Geschke, co-founder of Adobe, asks who is responsible for accuracy in the online world in this video, part of the series, Internet Ethics: Views From Silicon Valley.  Is it the user's responsibility to judge which sources to access on the Web, and how much to rely on them?  Is it the publishers of information who have a duty to strive to be accurate?

    Responding is Sally Lehrman,Knight Ridder/San Jose Mercury News Endowed Chair in Journalism and the Public Interest at Santa Clara University, and a Markkula Center for Applied Ethics Scholar.  Join the conversation.

  •  College Confessions

    Thursday, Apr. 4, 2013 4:51 PM

     The big question on The Big Q this week: What do you think of college confessions sites?  Websites where undergrads share secrets--theirs and others'--have proliferated recently, and the Ethics Center's Big Q project on everyday ethical dilemmas for undergraduates offer's a brief case study encouraging students to talk about their reaction to this phenomenon.   Best comment by an undergrad wins a $100 Amazon gift certificate.



  •  The Right to Be Forgotten

    Tuesday, Apr. 2, 2013 11:00 AM

    "Total interconnectedness," very cheap data storage, and powerful search technologies come together to create a new set of ethical questions. Do we have a right to access and correct the data in our profiles? Do we have a right to be "forgotten" by the Internet? In this brief video, part of the Center's series, "Internet Ethics: Views From Silicon Valley," co-founder Owen Tripp asks us to consider the impact of the Internet's long memory on those among us who are most vulnerable.

    Evan Selinger--Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy at the Rochester Institute of Technology--responds to Tripp's comments.  Visit the vlog to join the conversation.

  •  Privacy Tradeoffs Online

    Monday, Apr. 1, 2013 2:39 PM

    New technologies often bring both benefits and unintended consequences. The same is true of laws aimed at new technologies. In this brief clip from the Ethics Center's new video series, Internet Ethics: Views From Silicon Valley, NetApp's Executive Chairman Dan Warmenhoven discusses the development of GPS-tracking technology and the ethical issues associated with the aggregation of GPS data into large databases. He then argues that data protection efforts can go too far, leaving us with inefficient outcomes. How do we strike the right balance between benefits and harms?

    Patrick Lin, associate professor of philosophy at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo responds.  Visit the vlog to join the conversation


  •  Internet Ethics: The View From Silicon Valley

    Wednesday, Mar. 20, 2013 1:00 PM

     Silicon Valley pioneers and thought leaders discuss key ethical issues in the online world in a new video series from the Center's Internet Ethics Program.  Over the course of ten weeks, founders of such companies as Apple, Adobe, and, as well as CEOs of Symantec and Seagate will be among the people offering their assessment of the ethical challenges represented by the Web.

    The first video in the series is an introduction by Santa Clara University Associate Professor of Philosophy Shannon Vallor, who is currently working on a book called 21st Century Virtue: Toward an Ethical Framework for Living Well with Emerging Technologies.  Vallor argues that the people who devise Internet tools and services should think not only about meeting the user's immediate desires and needs, but also about doing that in a way that promotes a good life. 

    You can subscribe to the series either by RSS or by email here.