Read the Farmville case study and lecture. Using ethical theories and principles learned in this course, especially option for the poor and conscience, analyze the moral worth of the decisions made in the case. Also discuss the various options open to the owners of Farmville and choose the one you think would have been the best. Justify the choice you make using resources from this course. 350 words.
Farmville case study:
Anyone who uses the Internet social-networking site Facebook on a regular basis probably has played, or knows someone who has played, the addictive role-playing game Farmville. In Farmville, players are cast in the role of farmers and are given some basic resources (the cyber equivalent of 40 acres and a mule). They spend their time on their virtual plot of land, sowing, plowing, harvesting, buying, and selling various crops and tending their sheep, cows, pigs, chickens, and other sundry beasts. As players grow and maintain their new virtual agribusiness enterprise, they meet other farmers and become each other’s neighbors and friends. Players are also regularly awarded with endless honors and ranks as they continue to pursue their dreams of pastoral utopia.
As players advance and decide to add to the farm or purchase special crops, they can gain access to special features by investing real money in the process rather than relying on the virtual coins produced by the sale of crops, fruit, and other produce on the farm. When farmers buy “Sweet Seeds for Haiti” to plant on their farms, half of those proceeds are donated to two nonprofit development organizations: fonkoze.org and fatem.org. Both organizations are involved in microfinance and grass-roots development projects in the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere, Haiti. Demonstrating the power of the Internet, Facebook, the gaming community, and the social entrepreneurial business model Zynga, the company that created the game, raised more than $580,000 in the first six weeks after launching Farmville.
The money that virtual farmers “donate” goes toward a variety of critical development projects, such as the school-meal program in Mirebalais that helps feed undernourished students. The funds also support a revolving-loan program for mothers under the age of 15 to help them start and sustain small businesses, which, in turn, feed their families and ensure they can finish school and receive basic health care. The creators of Farmville call their new model “social gaming,” because the game itself becomes a vehicle through which Facebook members meet and interact with one another. In the words of founder and CEO Mark Pincus, “We want Zynga to be a way that people connect with each other through games and fun, a way that is so meaningful to them and becomes such a daily behavior that they can’t imagine what life was like before.”
However, the term social gaming also applies to the way Farmville leverages the popularity and self-motivational elements of online gaming to achieve more than merely a good profit. For each dollar spent on certain items in Farmville, Zynga donates 50 cents to Fatem and Fonkoze, which is similar to the one-for-one concept pioneered by Mycoskie at TOMS Shoes. With more than 500 million estimated users on Facebook as of 2013, it is easy to see how Zynga can both make a profit and make a difference: “We are thrilled to be able to offer our players the opportunity to be part of change in a way that can represent positive contributions to human capacity.
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analyze the moral worth of the decisions made in the case. was first posted on July 23, 2019 at 10:00 am.
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