Issues Of Computer Usage At Workplace Commerce Essay

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Prolonged computer use without a break can result in eyestrain and serious problems from repetitive strain injury (Jackson and Harris 2003) due to constant use of the same muscles in manipulating the mouse. Also, back problems are increasingly common in the workplace as individuals maintain constant, inappropriate positions while sitting at a desk to use a computer. Although, ergonomic solutions to these problems are available, not widely used. Due to the speed of technological updates causes in very short life cycle time of computers as two or three years old computers are discarded as being out of date therefore using computers could be environmentally unfriendly.

Furthermore, some suggest that communicating through computer working reduced need for face-to-face interaction might have negative psychological effects on individuals, who experience isolation and the loss of 'social glue'. In addition to that, particularly on e-mail that has caused the nature of human relationships in terms of no natural space for casual conversation. Interestingly, an ex-CEO of Matalan, Angus Monro, banned internal e-mails within Matalan. He stated that "People have got to talk to each other!"(The Guardian 2001)

Computer impact on society

As I mentioned above, using computer advantages varies. Nowadays, people have done their money transactions through internet instead of going to post offices and banks. However, somehow those procedures have their own downside for people. For instance, in Amsterdam, Holland, in 1991 the body of an old man who had died 6 before was found in his apartment by a caretaker who had been concerned about a huge pile of mail for him. The man had been something of a recluse but due to his rent, gas and electricity bills were paid automatically by electronic transaction, "he was not missed". His pension also had been transferred into his bank account every month, therefore, his all the relevant authorities assumed that he was still alive (Forester and Morrison 1999). We always say that, using computers will reduce the operations costs which are unarguably true. However, the above facts prove that someone who had been left alone or being quarantined from their colleagues due to the result of latest technology advantages.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) vs. Human beings

Artificial intelligence (AI) has generated a number of technical, legal and ethical problems that have yet to be solved. 'AI' critics are had been asking serious ethical questions such as "Is an AI proper goal for humanity? Do we really need to change people in many everyday jobs when there is so much joblessness? Recently in the UK unemployment reached as high as 2.4 million due to recession (The Guardian 2010). At the same time, major supermarkets stores already had installed "self-check-out" tills in their stories. For example, on Daily Mail newspaper "Tesco sounded the death knell for checkout workers today after opening Britain's first entirely self-service shop, those 5 self-scans tills overseen by a single staff". But critics warn that the move marks the end basic 'human interaction' during weekly shopping trips and could eventually cost thousands of jobs (Daily Mail 2009). In addition, Brown M, director of ActSmart stated "This sounds like a natural extension for Tesco. Once you have driven down prices, the next step to find savings and efficiencies is to get rid of people".

In order to apply an above example into theory, the case seems to be a perfect example of consequentialist theories. From the perspective of checkout workers of Tesco, an example seems to be "Egoist" decision due to desire of reducing operations cost. In other word, Tesco ignored its workers' job security. However, Friedman (2002) argued that the social responsibility of business (the ethical obligation of business managers) is to seek profits for shareholders either by reducing costs or increasing sales.

On the other hand, from the perspective of "Tesco" management the decision was based on reducing the cost by using latest technology in order to increase the profit and satisfy the shareholders. Moreover by installing automated check-out machines Tesco satisfied its customers through reducing the queue line at check out for customers. According to Crane and Matten (2004) they defined utilitarianism as "an action is morally right if it results in the greatest amount of good for the greatest amount of people affected by the action" therefore in that case decision of the Tesco seems to be utilitarianism by benefiting its majority of stakeholders.

Ethical dilemmas in marketing

Without marketing campaign any organisation would fail to attract the attention of public in order to "alert" their new service and good, in return companies could increase profit margin as high as marketing was efficient . However, marketing has been the target of much criticism. Some of this criticism is justified, much is not. Social critics claim that certain marketing practices hurt individual consumers, society as a whole and other business firms (Kotler and Armstrong 2008). In addition, many critics charge that marketing practices raise the cost of goods and cause to be higher than consumers or customers would have received.

There are some numbers unethical practices such as misleading information of goods and services, fake and giving wrong information advertising claims, high-pressure sales tactics and so on. One of the well known examples is the 'McLibel' campaign.

Advertising against Reality

In 1990 the McDonald's was criticized by falsely advertises its food and not providing a 'balanced menu' that provides insufficient nutritional information and guidance which actively encourages consumers particularly children to make "unhealthy" choices (Andrew and Dirk 2007). The concern of critics was, if children start eating fast food at age of 8-12 years, there is high possibility of consuming the 'junk' food for rest of their live. Again that is an ethical issue whether it is right or wrong to encourage children and targeting them to consume fast food. Eventually, McDonald's lost a case on this particular issue of targeting children in their advertising campaign in the court room. Some observers stated that decision was based on ethical considerations, rather than in term of law.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

According to Anne and James (2005) that CSR defined as "That a corporation should be held accountable for any of its actions that affect people, their communities and their environment". Furthermore, social responsibility requires the balance of between costs of achieving benefits must be gained against to benefits. Although majority of people believe that both business and society expand when organisations attempt to be socially responsible, there are some people who believe that social tasks weakens firm's competitive strength as well profit margins. As Milton Friedman (1970) argued that the sole responsibility of commercial organisation is "seeking profit", even mentioned CSR is a threat to economic growth. In other words, business institution has an only one social responsibility which is to maximise profits its shareholders. Business is expected to provide taxes, jobs, and economic investment (Andrew and Dirk 2007). However, as things have changed, the contemporary society demands much more things than simply making profits. One of those demands is unarguably environmental issues.


Environment green groups demand organisations to converse woodland and buildings, decrease toxic emissions, traffic and noise layers and so on.


The acceptability of bribery varies widely from culture to culture. Even though the fact that virtually all cultures officially criticize bribery, there are many societies in which bribery is an unofficially accepted due to their traditional ways to deal with business (Larmer 2002). It is critical evaluate difference between gift and bribe. However, in contemporary society most corruptions have been done as gifts through "under-table-payment" In addition, a study Larmer (2002) of noticed that although the exchange of gifts in business transactions is well accepted in Chinese culture, there are moral limits within the culture that distinguish appropriate gifts from bribes.

On the hand Fisher and Lovell (2009) argued that