Back to the office

For my wife, not me. She’s been working from home for months because of COVId, and then her work decided to renovate the office while everyone was away. That renovation is now done, and they’re inviting people back into the office, so she went in today at lunchtime to check it out.

I took Scully out for a walk and to get some fish & chips for lunch. It was a beautiful early autumn day, partly cloudy, with some blue sky and fluffy white cumulus clouds, and a pleasant temperature. I took the food to my usual eating spot, overlooking the harbour from high up on the hill. The harbour water is still very brown from all the rain runoff, but it’s still a great view from there.

This morning I wrote my next ethics class, on the topic of property. I’ve had the first class already, earlier this evening. We start with the question of who owns the moon. The kids generally agreed nobody owns it (as I expected). Then I suggest what if Elon Musk sent robotic miners there using SpaceX rockets, and they dug up some minerals, would Musk own them? The kids split 50/50 on this question. Then I asked what if the robots brought them back to Earth and Musk made Tesla cars with the moon minerals. Would he own those cars and be able to sell them? And they all said yes. So then I asked why does he now own something that nobody owned before?

It was an interesting introduction to the subject. Then we go on to other forms of property, including the concept of copyright for things like songs. Interestingly some kids thought the concept of “owning” a song was ridiculous, but they also said that if someone writes a song, then other artists should have to pay them if they want to record it and sell that recording. I think this will be a very interesting topic for the coming week.

New content today:

3 thoughts on “Back to the office”

  1. Did you tell them somebody did sell moon plots in the past? Also – it’s nice you can’t own the moon, how about the earth, or parts of it…
    Owning land is a topic all on its own. Considering what europeans did to other countries, and what is currently happening in Ukraine – it’s a very urgent question.

    1. I did tell them about selling plots of land on the moon! I asked them questions about it, and they all pretty much agreed it was a scam and had no legitimacy.

  2. The song comment brings up something one of your earlier ethics class posts made me think of. If I buy a CD, am I okay to rip it? Can I then listen to the file on my phone while my wife listens to the disc in the car? What if we both put copies of the files on our phones? What happens if I lose the CD or it gets destroyed? Should I delete the file in that case? What if I decide to sell the CD, but keep the files? Should that be allowed?

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