Thursday, January 31, 2013

Fortnum & Mason, OFCOM local TV multiplex licence c/w # 46 Ethics

Fortnum and Mason visit today

The shop

Fortnum and Mason Coffee
London has some fantastic, iconic retail outlets- Selfridge's, Hamley's, Harrods and Liberty are all well and truly on the tourist map and I have been a customer at them all but today I realised I hadn't been to Fortnum & Mason and decided it was time to see what the fuss is all about. Some way down from the Ritz in the classy part of town it really is by appointment to the royal set. Although they've been a target of tax protestors (they're far too classy to have to pay taxes like other retailers do)  the  store retains the air of establishment calm you'd expect. I bought some fruit and coffee that was on  my shopping list and had a wander through the bits and pieces that the store has for sale - it's worth a visit but not much that you can't get in other shops and it is expensive. Unlike other posh shops it does seems to be (not overtly) keeping people out and feels less democratic than many other iconic establishments.

OFCOM moves forward with UK Local TV

 Ofcom have awarded the local TV multiplex licence  to new outfit  Canis Media Comux.
The comux company is described as a not-for-profit co-op of local TV licence holders and Ed Hall is the Chief Executive, they're said to be in talks with Arqiva  (another company that's  rumoured to be using tax avoidance strategies in the UK see FT here ) about a speedy roll out of the necessary technical infrastructure to support the local TV and 2 new quasi national channels.

Big Idea number 46 is Ethics

Ethics is a big one, it even has its own sub genré and Ethics permeates much of the talk around professionalism and societal behaviour. I've even got a book with the title Ethical Theory and Business on my tome laden shelves here at Bourne Towers.
As I trailed it yesterday Ethics is a genuinely important topic and is considered by many as a cornerstone of civilised living, Anita Roddick may have devalued some of its lustre with her Body Shop retailing concession but to declaim a doctor for behaving unethically is a slur that will cut them to the quick.

Ethics  also termed as moral philosophy is split into 3 areas namely Metaethics, Normative Ethics and Applied Ethics.

1) Metaethics is the  abstract area of moral philosophy. It deals with questions about the nature of morality, about what morality actually is and what moral language means.

2) Normative Ethics  is concerned with providing a moral framework that can be used in order to work out what kinds of action are good and bad, right and wrong. There are three main traditions in normative ethics:
a) Virtue Ethics - this emphasizes the role of one's character and the virtues that one's character embodies for determining or evaluating ethical behaviour
b) Deontology  (not to be confused with the early 60's singer Dion)- describes a methodology that judges the morality of an action based on the action's adherence to a rule or set of rules.
c) Consequentialism  is used for normative ethical theories holding that the consequences of one's conduct are the ultimate basis for any judgement about the rightness of that conduct

3) Applied Ethics is the most down to earth area of moral philosophy. Applied Ethics relates normative ethical theories to specific cases to help inform us what is right and what is wrong.

Kant with his famous Foundations for the Metaphysics of Morals is a dominant figure of Moral Philosophy.
The BBC's everyday ethics podcast for January 13th  is worthwhile for those who might like to consider further how Ethics impacts modern life- What do we think of Lance Armstrong's behaviour as one of the protagonists on the show points out 'he's not Hitler' but to be mentioned in such terms may mean the sporting superstar will remain apart from true sporting greats@