Ethical Issues in Working ONLINE


Whether you are an online worker or typical office worker, there will always be issues on work ETHICS. There will always be people who do things that violate the law or are not morally right. What can we do about this? What if you become a part of this dilemma?

If you are working in an office setting and you know that your boss is doing some illegal activities like not paying the right amount of tax, scamming customers or perhaps not giving what is due to the workers, will you report such to the authorities? Or will you just let it pass? Most people are afraid to do a step to correct the wrong doings simply because they are AFRAID. They are afraid that they might lose their jobs or that people might not believe them.   If they decide to be anonymous to help stop the wrong doings of the company, the ending will still have an impact to the workers. The company might close or they might retrench workers. Where will they go after this?  This is the main reason why some people just tolerate the wrong doings of a company.

Let’s now focus on ethical issues online. As a Virtual Assistant, I have also experienced some ethical issues between me and some of my clients. There was a time when I applied as a Virtual Assistant to upload eBooks on Health and Beauty topics but when I got hired, the employer gave me erotic eBooks.  It is not really against the law but the issue has now shifted to one’s morality. The next question for me is whether to pursue the job or not.  I needed money that time because I was just starting as a VA that’s why I decided to pursue it for a little time. I also have a friend, who was asked by his employer to send scam emails to prospective clients. He doesn’t want to do it of course that’s why he quit the job and decided to look for another one.

What I am trying to point out is that we all have choices. We just have to know when to draw the line. Some may take the work even if it’s against moral ethics because of monetary issues and some may stop the work immediately because their conscience is telling them to do so.  Everyone has different standards when it comes to ethics, what is wrong for you may be right for others. It’s really a matter of choice. As an online worker, we are lucky that we can just turn down projects that deemed unethical to us and we can always choose jobs which are reasonable  based on our standards, morality and ethics.

In every project, we must also consider our COMFORT ZONE. Even if the project is ethical, if you are not comfortable with it, then you still cannot give your 100% to that project and the output will not be QUALITY. The best thing to do is simply turn down the project in a polite way.

What about you? Have you ever had ethical issues online? Please don’t hesitate to share it with us.

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