Ethics has often been a touchy subject, as it is almost completely based upon one’s opinions. This blog does not necessarily deal with all questions of ethics. For our purposes, we will simply be talking about moral and immoral decisions on the part of corporations and, to a lesser extent, those of the consumer.
A company, in the context of this blog, is categorised as ethical or unethical based upon their treatment of their employees those who are paid to make parts of whatever product they might sell and of the environment.
Many companies will attempt to portray an environmentally sound and economically prudent façade, as well as that of a friendly working situation. They may do this through the use of commercials, being locally and globally “active” to help the environment or those in need, or any other number of devious means of advertisement. However, that is not always the case, and this sort of propaganda is usually spread to make the companies look good, endorse the product, or generally encourage people to buy the product.. The majority of these companies pay their workers minimum wage, and pay the people who provide them with the means to make their products even less. The company will hire someone to find the cheapest way to make a certain portion of their product, and often that means paying someone in a foreign country less than a dollar a day to make hundreds or thousands of the same things for nine or more hours a day. These people, along with the continental employees, are often subjected to poor and unsanitary working environments, and are provided few (if any) benefits to help them keep up with bills and the general costs of daily life on these low salaries. The toll that these companies are taking on the environment is not much better. Rainforests are destroyed, factories spew out massive amounts of smog and other pollutants into our air, and small homes, local businesses, natural reservoirs, etc. are taken over, just so that the corporations may have a little more room to expand business and make more products, so that they may continue to make a huge profit by spending as little as they can on labour and the people whom they employ.
It would be hard to consider anyone who engaged in such activities to be “ethical.” And that is why, for the sake of this blog, that is the standard definition of an unethical company.
By: Jennifer Reese