Social and Ethical Issues in Technology

This site contains information about social and ethical issues in technology including an in depth look at copyright, digital equity, and intellectual property. Here you will find specific information and thought provoking questions about 11 social and ethical issues with regard to Information Technology use today. Happy Reading!


The Merriam Webster Dictionary defines copyright as: the exclusive legal right to reproduce, publish, sell, or distribute the matter and form of something (as a literary, musical, or artistic work.)
In order to understand copyright, educators and students may use these links to help define copyright and also gain information about the fair use policies that apply to education.

Digital Equity

Equity is about fairness or equal opportunity. Digital Equity happens when all people have equal access to information and equipment, regardless of where they live, socio-economic status, age, race, and even gender. It is about accessing information in the real world, work and school settings. There is a great "Digital Divide" going on everywhere. It is happening within individual schools and classrooms, varies from school district to school district, happens from city to city, state to state, and even country to country. With the rate in which technology changes, the divide keeps getting wider...finding the balance is an ongoing battle.

Intellectual Property Rights

Wikipedia defines IP as legal property rights of a creation from the mind, both artistic and commercial. They grant exclusive rights/ownership over a creation. Copyright laws cover the artistic works like books, music, software and artworks. The holder has control over the reproduction and adaptation to the works through a period of time. Patents and trademarks are industrial properties created for commercial uses. Trade Secret is the formula of a product. In technology, if an IP is licensed, the owner of the technology has the right to share it or not.