The “Be Better Club”

An informal ethics discussion group

Students, faculty, and staff interested interested in talking with us about contemporary ethical issues are welcome to participate in the bi-weekly “Be Better Club,” an informal but informed bi-weekly discussion group. Topics are chosen by community interest and driven by your thinking.

Discussions are held by Zoom and are open to everyone. Join us at
https://ucf.zoom.us/j/97217422451

Current Schedule

Download the Spring 2022 Schedule

The schedule of topics for the Spring 22 semester.


Previous Discussions

August 31, 2021

Vaccines, Variants, and Uncertainty

As we negotiate viral variants, what’s the right thing to do? How do we deal with ongoing uncertainty about a changing risk landscape?
FRAMING PODCAST: Baker and Maxmen. 04 June 2021. Coronapod: Uncertainty and COVID ‘lab-leak’ theory.

Review on YouTube https://youtu.be/ZYAloMFnlgI


September 14, 2021

Free Speech, Intellectual Diversity, and HB 233

What’s the relationship between intellectual diversity and free speech in academic contexts?
FRAMING PODCAST: Gladstone, B. 04 June 2021. There is No ‘Cancel Culture’. On The Media.

Review on YouTube https://youtu.be/phmqcB_6wbM


September 28, 2021

Intellectual Property, Ownership, and Theft

What are the ethical concerns around intellectual property? What are their implications in new FL legislation like FL HB 7017 and 1523?
FRAMING PODCAST: Aronczyk, A. 26 June 2020. Seed Spy. Planet Money. After Dinner Conversation.

Review on YouTube https://youtu.be/rvLWgwOLSA0


October 12, 2021

Online Learning, Choice, and Equity

Cameras on or off? Attending live or listening later? How do we balance engagement, privacy, and choice for students learning online?
FRAMING PODCAST: Stommel, J. July 29, 2020. How to Be Together in Learning Online. Teaching in Higher Ed.

Review on YouTube https://youtu.be/_qTwoEaDnGo


October 26, 2021

AI and Autonomous Vehicles

Autonomous systems challenge views of responsibility, blame, and agency. What should a future of ethical AI look like?
FRAMING PODCAST: Burnley, M. 01 April 2021. “A.I. in the Driver’s Seat.” A.I. Nation.

Review on YouTube https://youtu.be/KeeQTvwwYh0


November 9, 2021

Data Scraping and the IRB

What are the ethically relevant differences between data scraped from online social media and other human subjects data?
FRAMING PODCAST: Rodebaugh, T. and Leary, M. September 2014. More than meets the IRB – Social media research ethics: Considering the Facebook “emotional contagion” study. HRPO Podcasts.

Review on YouTube https://youtu.be/joGlW5V4DBc


February 14, 2022

Morally Neutral or Morally Neutered?

The volume is up in the critique against perceived political bias in higher education. What gives? What does the future look like?

FRAMING PODCAST: Coaston, J. 8 December 2021. Can a New University Really Fix Academia’s Free Speech Problem? The Argument.

Review on YouTube https://youtu.be/g0qEUnOw634


February 28, 2022

Rise of the Robots

As robotics become more advanced, robots play a bigger and bigger role in tasks that humans traditionally have done. What are the ethical limits, if any, to their rise?
FRAMING PODCAST: Beard, M. 25 December 2020. Should Robots Replace Humans? Short and Curly.

Review on YouTube https://youtu.be/joGlW5V4DBc


March 16, 2022

Facial Recognition, AI, and You

Like the old western, there’s good, bad, and ugly here. We’ll talk them through and see where you stand.
FRAMING PODCAST:MIT. 12 October 2021. How AI is Destroying Our Moral and Civil Efficacy. Bold Stories. Future Focused.


March 30, 2022

Baby Xenobots and Other Potential Horrors

So xenobots procreated. We’ll talk implications, both positive and negative, of the rise of artificial life.
FRAMING PODCAST: Levin, M. 12 October 2021. Synthetic Living Organisms. UCF’s Ethically Speaking.

Review on YouTube https://youtu.be/luoCdohmcnY