The case is about an independent commercial computer programmer who intends to purchase commonly known software. After purchasing the software package, he wants to design, write, test, debug, and come up with new source code from the known software (Steven, 1992). The author says that the programmer wants to study the known software and code a new program with greater capacity and more features using different programming languages such as visual basics, C++, R-Crane, Java, Python, and various scripting languages (Steven, 1992).
Production of a new product with similar screen formats and key codes is the ethical problem in the case study. The programmer changed features such as the product manual and style. It is clear from the case that the commercial programmer could not change the compatibility of the new product so as to attract users and minimize the time taken by users to adapt to his product.
There are several possible solutions to the unethical issue in the case included. First, the programmer should buy an unauthenticated software package to avoid violating the law and stand a chance to be recognized as an innovative programmer (Steven, 1992). Secondly, the programmer should come up with a new product with different codes and screen formats from those of the existing product. Lastly, he should have advertised its compatibility values without incorporating those of the existing product.
The importance of buying a software package that does not have anyone copyright is that it will encourage innovation in the field of programming. Innovation will lead to growth in programming skills and prevent reinventing the wheel. Secondly, coming up with different screen formats and codes, the programmer will acquire new skills and may end up coding programs for commercial purpose (Steven, 1992). Finally, in an effort to advertise compatibility of his new product differently from the existing one, he will widen the market by introducing a new product in the commercial market that will lead to high market competition hence improving the quality of products.
The sale of software packages will increase due to high demand for the unauthenticated software resulting in a significant increase in net profit hence improving people’s living standards. Moreover, as a result of a wide variety of programmer’s new products, the quality of these products will improve resulting in the improvement of peoples’ lives (Collins, 2011). The programmer will have good moral practice if he buys software packages without copyright leading to ethical business practice. Secondly, under the law, it is ethical to come with a new product rather than improve the existing one. Thus, the programmer should have ethical practices and good code of behavior. In addition, he will be inhuman by advertising his new product using the existing product’s compatibility (Collins, 2011). He would be violating the right and freedom of others’ copyright and authenticity. As a result of this advertisement, the new product will attract more customers and increase the volume of sale.
In order to observe the prescribed code of behavior and ethical principle, the programmer should respect other people’s rights as provided by the law. Programmer’s creativity will be the most important thing compared to the unhealthy competition that would emerge between his product and the existing one (Steven, 1992). The programmer’s coding skills and innovations are crucial compared to the advertisement strategies he utilizes.
The best decision for the programmer is to come up with his own advertisement strategy independent from that of the existing product. The decision will minimize the likelihood of the company to take criminal and legal action against the programmer (Collins, 2011). Therefore, the decision will tend to attract new customers rather than those of the existing company.
In conclusion, business ethics includes both wrong and best practices. Wrong or unethical code of behavior will lead to unfair market competition that may result in the rivalry between the existing company and the programmer’s new product (Collins, 2011). The Independent marketing strategy will create good moral and adherence to ethical principles that will take care of moral values and maintain the company’s image by avoiding violating legal rights.