B2B vs. B2C: Ethical, Legal and Regulatory Issues
The emergence of Internet technology has enabled vast improvement in communications, availability of data on a variety of subjects at our fingertips, globalization and the foundation of electronic commerce. Similar to its brick and mortar counterpart, there are certain issues or concerns that must be addressed and laws consumers and businesses must abide by. The following sections will discuss the various ethical, legal and regulatory issues involved specifically for business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) e-business environments.
Ethics is defined as "the compass for identifying appropriate behavior where conflicting rules may apply and principles to aspire to" (Hagedorn, n.d.). Defining ethics is straightforward; however, differentiating ethical actions or decisions may be quite challenging as ethics may be subjective and influenced by religion, education, upbringing etc.
Privacy is one of the biggest ethical concerns related to e-commerce and the use of Internet in general. According to Richardson (n.d.), "privacy concerns remain as one of the principal reasons consumers hesitate to purchase products through the web." He further adds "in B2B companies accept that the seller keep s as much detailed information about the customer as possible to facilitate reordering while with B2C customers, think detailed information on their previous product purchases and demographic information about them is an infringement and can be abused if the information is shared." Privacy is a serious ethical concern which needs to be seriously addressed; however, there is much debate on how to interpret the right of privacy and to what extent.
Invasion of privacy will likely result into identity theft, a serious global concern for consumers, businesses and governmental entities. The concern for privacy affects all parties; however, each has their own set of responsibilities in terms of protecting privacy and issues relating to it such as identity theft. Consumers must be cautious and not divulge too much personal and financial information online. Consumers must be responsible enough to give such data to only credible and reputable person or institutions. At the same token, businesses must take all measures to protect the privacy of its customers ...
Compare ethical, legal, and regulatory issues in the two sites