A conceptual analysis of ethics codes.
Codes necessarily state standards of professional practice, but the term “standards” is itself ambiguous. “Standards of professional practice” can mean anything from minimal expectations for all practitioners to the perceived ideal for which practitioners should strive. Carefully articulated codes of ethics should recognize the differences between minimal standards and standard-as-ideal. They should also articulate group norms—largely unstated expectations of how all people within the group should or do perform. The process of producing a code of ethics is intellectually healthy because it constitutes critical analysis of the profession by its practitioners.
Elliott, D. (1985-86). A conceptual analysis of ethics codes. Journal of Mass Media Ethics. 1(1), 22-26.
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