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Authors: Ulbricht, Samuel
Title: A Kantian response to the Gamer's Dilemma
Online publication date: 24-Aug-2023
Year of first publication: 2023
Language: english
Abstract: The Gamer’s Dilemma consists of three intuitively plausible but conficting assertions: (i) Virtual murder is morally permis sible. (ii) Virtual child molestation is morally forbidden. (iii) There is no relevant moral diference between virtual murder and virtual child molestation in computer games. Numerous attempts to resolve (or dissolve) the Gamer’s Dilemma line the feld of computer game ethics. Mostly, the phenomenon is approached using expressivist argumentation: Reprehensible virtual actions express something immoral in their performance but are not immoral by themselves. Consequentialists, on the other hand, claim that the immorality of virtual actions arises from their harmful consequences. I argue that both approaches have serious difculties meeting the moral challenge posed by the Gamer’s Dilemma. They tend to confuse the morality of in-game actions either with the morality of their real-world counterparts or with the morality of games as objects. Following this critical analysis, I will develop a Kantian argument and defend it against two objections. So far, deontological responses to the Gamer’s Dilemma have been sought in vain. Yet, with Kant, its moral challenge can be met by looking at the gamer’s reasons. From this perspective, the Gamer’s Dilemma is based on a false assumption: the moral status of gaming acts does not derive from a normative equation with their real-world counterparts but only from their justifcations.
DDC: 100 Philosophie
100 Philosophy
Institution: Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
Department: FB 05 Philosophie und Philologie
Place: Mainz
Version: Published version
Publication type: Zeitschriftenaufsatz
License: CC BY
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Journal: Ethics and information technology
Pages or article number: 39
Publisher: Springer Science + Business Media B.V
Publisher place: Dordrecht u.a.
Issue date: 2023
ISSN: 1388-1957
Publisher DOI: 10.1007/s10676-023-09710-0
Appears in collections:DFG-491381577-H

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