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Business Ethics: Example Problem

1. Does the desire to buy the lowest price product ever create any ethical dilemmas for a consumer? Why or why not?
2. Explain how and when a consumer might be considered "vulnerable" to advertisers. Should the ethics of marketing to the vulnerable be considered in allowing advertisements? Why or why not?
3. In a local or national newspaper, find an article about a topic related to business ethics. Read the article. Then, write 3-5 paragraphs that answer one of the following questions:

- Explain what the article is about. Discuss how the company described in the article developed a "cutting edge" marketing campaign. Is there any part of this campaign that you would consider deceptive or unfair to any consumers? If so, how? How might such an advertising campaign be changed going forward to alleviate some of your concerns?

OR

- Explain what the article is about. Identify how the manufacturer in the article may have harmed the end user in the article. To what extent should manufacturers be held liable for harms caused by their products? When should the concept of "let the buyer beware" come into play in such a situation?

Solution Preview

1) Yes the lowest price can sometimes cause ethical dilemmas for consumers. In the case of meat, one sale priced meat can be from a "factory" type of farm setting and the more expensive priced meat can be a free range or better -for-the-animals type of farm. Clothing produced in sweatshops and cost less than clothing that is not, but is more expensive can create a dilemma. Many products are made in foreign countries and people who feel the moving of factories overseas are taking jobs from Americans. This creates a dilemma for those who believe those jobs should be here and that NAFTA and other treaties are unfair.
2) The most obvious times for people to be vulnerable to advertising is when they are sick or lonely. ...

Solution Summary

This solution provides assistance with the business ethics problem.

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