The term ethics refers to the accepted or prescribed code of conduct that contains the moral values the business should observe while in operation. Since businesses operate in societies that are structured around moral values, their key responsibility is providing the society with quality goods or services aimed at improving their living standards (Stanford and Chiozza 2001). This paper discusses the legal and ethical issues faced by JCPenney as it operates ecommerce business.
The ethical and legal issues involved in ecommerce are classified as intellectual property, privacy, taxation, free speech and consumer protection (Mc Graw-hill n.d). There are certain rules a business should follow while using internet marketing such as the copyright rules and protecting its consumers from low quality goods; the company should source goods from suppliers who are ethical. Suppliers who make substandard goods or encourage child labor should be avoided. Fair advertising is one of the ethical issues that JCPenney is likely to face while running its business.
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Pricing is another issue the company is likely to face. The company will want to adjust pricing in a way that it will attract customers especially during the current recession period. Recently, there has been criticism over the ads the company is using. This was reported in the Detroit Times where D’Innocenzio reports that shoppers were turned off by the unpredictable pricing the company has adopted (D'Innocenzo 2012) .
According to their website (jcp n.d), JCPenney indicates that it complies with legal demands. For instance, it ensures fair pay to workers; no worker receives less than the minimum wage, those who work overtime are given a well-calculated pay and computer reports or time cards are verified against payrolls to confirm that the pay is correct. Also, the company uses factories that are compliant with the labor laws and that all the companies producing the brand products are approved before they start production.
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