List journal issues    
 
 
Home List journal issues Table of contents Subscribe to PAQ

Article

Volume 24 • Number 2

April 2010



 

 

Technology, Social Change, and Liberty: The Ethics of Regulating New Technologies


by Anton Petrenko and Dan McArthur


There is a wide body of literature that proposes we approach the subject of the ethics of technology with an extreme skepticism about the effects of new technology on people and society. While caution can be fairly uncontroversial in cases of technologies that threaten the health and safety of individuals or pose significant environmental damage, a large and growing literature urges severe limits on technological developments and exchange in order to further social and egalitarian goals. The purpose of this paper will be to categorize and identify general argumentative patterns in this literature and to formulate a response to this line of thinking on the basis of liberal philosophical principles. The first section of this paper will briefly outline some characteristic presentations of this techno-limiting view that we shall identify as the "levelling-down view" and identify common features of such positions permitting the identification of a general trend. The subsequent section will formulate a liberal critique of this position, relying on the argument that, despite appearances, freedoms


view PDF
 

 

 

 
Home | Issue Index
 
© 2010 by the Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois
Content in Public Affairs Quarterly is intended for personal, noncommercial use only. You may not reproduce, publish, distribute, transmit, participate in the transfer or sale of, modify, create derivative works from, display, or in any way exploit the Public Affairs Quarterly database in whole or in part without the written permission of the copyright holder.

ISSN: 2152-0542