Week Six

This weeks reading –

Ethics in the Virtual World:
Chapter 5; The Cost and Benefit of Virtual Violence

What is Utilitarianism?

Utilitarianism is an ethical philosophy which states that a moral action is one that increases the total utility and happiness in the world. A moral action is something that will increase the amount of happiness in the world and an immoral action is something that will bring more pain that happiness. In Ethics In The Virtual World, Garry Young uses Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill’s example of Classical Utilitarianism. [page 51]

How does one decide which pleasure is preferred?

According to Mill, the pleasure that the majority of the people prefer, who are experienced in both pleasures (i.e. People who both drive cars and motorcycles). To me this is a difficult question to answer. If I personally was asked which pleasure was more desirable, I would think back through previous experiences and make a decision based upon the amount of happiness brought up by each experience. There is not much else that can help decide apart from the feelings and judgement of those who are experienced.

Young, Garry. Ethics In The Virtual World. Durham, UK: Acumen Publishing Ltd, 2013. Print.


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