When Beyoncé dropped her recent single “Formation,” she received notable praise for her integration of black pride into mainstream music. However, she also received criticism from natives of New Orleans, who were appalled at watching their trauma from Hurricane Katrina unfold in a 5-minute video. There are stories, histories, narratives, that cannot be told in minutes – pain that cannot be adequately addressed in a short video.
Each episode of AMC’s Breaking Bad spinoff/prequel Better Call Saul features the main character involved in some sort of murky legal and ethical situations. After noticing that other podcasts and blogs that discuss the show had not yet adequately addressed the legal ethics issues that arise in each episode, New York-based ethics lawyer and Fordham University School of Law graduate Nicole Hyland decided to fill that void.
A new study using Facebook data to study “emotional contagion,” and the ensuingbacklash of its publication offers the opportunity to examine several ethical principles in research. One of the pillars of ethically conducted research is balancing the risks to the individual participants against the potential benefits to society or scientific knowledge. While the study’s effects were quite small, the authors argue that “given the massive scale of social networks such as Facebook, even small effects can have large aggregated consequences.” However, participants were not allowed to give informed consent, which constitutes a risk of the research and the major source of the backlash.