Is this right? .1

The article The code I’m still ashamed of, by Bill Sourour is one of the many scenario that have happened to code writers.  Even though I have never had this experience, it is good to know that in the future, this situation may be one that I may encounter.  Sometimes situations may fly by faster than we think, but then when we look back, we tend to realize that what we made was either a bad choice or a good choice.  In this situation, he felt like what he was doing was bad.  Sometimes we do things for the money and don’t realize what we are doing.  The code that Bill wrote reminds me that coding is not just a code.  There is something behind it that makes it a code.  Even though he tried to follow what the client wanted, he still felt uncomfortable writing out the code.  And if I was Bill, I would feel the same way too.  If something is out of place, then there must be something wrong.  This story is a good example of how to come across any situation like this.  If you are given something to do, don’t just go ahead and execute it, look it through and think about the moral behind it.

The code Bill wrote was a survey for teenage girls.  If gave the girls a drug result but it ended up being the same drug.  If didn’t matter what the girl had to say, unless that girl said she was allergic to any drug.  Bill had encountered a real life problem that could potentially affect many teenage girls if released.  It is true, the person who writes the code is the last line of defense.  We are the ones writing the code before released to the public.

Some people never thought lines of code could hurt anyone.  Sometimes we don’t think situations like these will even happen to us.  But learning how to deal with real life problems now can help students be more aware down their career paths.  Sometimes we don’t see the problem until it is too late.  Learning the problems now will definitely help strengthen our minds.  In Bill’s situation, he needed to think about the ethics behind the code for a while.  He had the choice to go through with the code or say I don’t feel comfortable writing this code.  Most people think that just because you don’t do something, means you will get fired.  But what we have to learn is that if you aren’t comfortable doing something, you have the right to say I will not do it.  Worst that can happen is you get fired or the client goes to someone else to write up the code.  But what is good about that decision, is that you are no longer accountable for the problem.

Learning ethical awareness is something all programmers need to have.  Situations like this may occur more than once.  We always feel the need to satisfy every client, but we also need to be aware of what that client really wants.  It is true, “As developers, we are often one of the last lines of defense against potentially dangerous and unethical practices.  By understanding the code project, programmers are able to think thoroughly and see the ethics behind it.



One thought on “Is this right? .1

  1. Yeah, I see your point, if programmers had a bigger understanding of what they are programming, they would be more aware of the implications that the software could potentially cause. Of course being a similar situation would be unfortunate, but it can happen, and like you mentioned, we should be able to acknowledge it and say no. Its sad, that although you might say no, someone else will, which means the unethical website is still going to be made and still going to potentially hurt someone. So, does that mean you didn’t have any fault in it? Just because you said no? But you knew about the unethical program or code that was to be made and you didn’t tell anyone, would that still make you guilty? I guess it comes down to personal opinion.

    Overall, I agree, programmers should have some knowledge in ethics, so when they are faced with situations like this one, they are able to respond maturely and wisely.


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