Topic 4: Reflection

This week we were called to investigate one of the ethical issues raised by business or educational use of social media. I chose to go down the business path and talk about the ethical concern regarding users’ data. In order to include all my points, I created a powtoon video. I was extremely intrigued by all the research I did for this topic, and thoroughly enjoyed learning about the legislations which protect users’ data. I also enjoyed reading my colleagues’ blogs, as there was a variety of topics touched upon. In order to maintain consistency and to further my own train of thought, I focused more on the business-oriented posts.

Agnieszka’s comment, informed me that the General Data Protection Regulation I had mentioned in my video, was actually adopted 10 days ago. She also included this comprehensive infographic, which portrays the benefits of this legislation:


In addition, Azam’s comment made me speculate whether it is up to users to detect the fine print in order to be properly informed, or whether companies should take on the responsibility to inform them. I am still unsure about giving a definitive answer to this question, however as I mentioned in my reply: companies will inevitably try to make it as hard as possible to find this information, and users will always tick the “I have agreed with terms and conditions” without having actually read the conditions. I also found the video that Amaar included in his blog post rather interesting because it seemed as though the majority of students did not care about their data being mined.

Another valid point that Azam made was the importance of building trust in customer-supplier relationships. Obviously, companies do not wish to compromise their customers’ trust. This is why I found the utilitarianism and ethical egoism theory in Theo’s blog post, to be rather absolute.

Theo included an interesting image in her post, which prompted me to find out about the “social listening process”, which is basically a strategy which companies employ by monitoring digital media channels to better influence consumers.


Image 1

Last but not least, Stuart’s blog post reminded me that users’ data is not only analysed by advertisers, but also by employers. As we established in Topic 3, a vast amount of companies monitor their employees’ online activity. Thus, Stuart sparked an interesting debate on whether it’s ethical for companies to act upon employees social media data. This made me contemplate what I would do if I were an employer and came across a disturbing facebook status. I posed the same question to Stuart even though I myself, am still not sure of the answer.

What I did realise is that the topic of ethics is a grey area, and when combined with an uncontrolled environment such as the internet, the boundaries can become even hazier.



(2016). Retrieved 24 April 2016, from

(2016). Retrieved 24 April 2016, from

Infographics – data protection regulation – Consilium. (2016). Retrieved 24 April 2016, from

Social Listening Definition – at (2016). TrackMaven. Retrieved 24 April 2016, from

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