2016: An Imperfect World
A History of Cheating
- What is cheating? How is it different from lying?
- Is cheating ever justified?
- What are the advantages and disadvantages cheating?
- How should cheaters be punished?
- Are we morally obligated to report any cheaters we encounter?
- Under what circumstances is cheating a crime?
- Is cheating simply about “breaking the rules”? Or is it about exploiting them?
- Should there be special sporting events for athletes who want to use performance-enhancing drugs?
- Is cheating more acceptable in some cultures than in others?
- Do men and women cheat at the same rate?
- Do certain institutions encourage cheating?
- Are people born with a sense of fairness?
- How can schools prevent cheating?
- Is it possible to cheat in war?
- What is the economic perspective on cheating?
- Should cheating disqualify a politician from winning elected office? How about lying?
- Have you ever cheated?
- False Advertising
- Corporate Espionage
- Tax Evasion
- Collusion and Price Fixing
- Cheating in Sales and Negotiation
- Insider Trading
- Resume Fraud
Not So Honest Abe: Cheating in Politics
- The Politics of Deception
- Message Manipulation
- Cheating Among States
- Gerrymandering: Strategy or Skullduggery?
- Performance Enhancing Drugs
- Match Fixing and the Ethics of Throwing a Game
- Video Games: Cheat Codes and Other Exploits
- Cheating and Gambling: Vice on Vice?
Art or Artifice?
- Counterfeiting and Forgeries
- Technological Shortcuts: Cheating the Process?
- Borrowing vs. Stealing in Music: Sampling in Hip Hop and Beyond
- Lip Syncing, Autotune, and the Limits of the Authentic
Additional Cases to Research (Examples)
- Academic Decathlon Cheating Scandal (Optional Film: Cheaters*)
- The Wolfgang Beltracchi Fake-Art Scam
- Korean SAT Cancellation
- The Chocolate Wars
- Russian Doping Scandal
- Lance Armstrong Doping Scandal
- Iran Nuclear Deal Enforcement Concerns
- FIFA World Cup: Chile vs. Brazil 1989
- Infamous Olympic Cheating Incidents
- Volkswagen Emissions Scandal
Additional Terms to Learn (Examples)
- Cost/Benefit Analysis | Tracing | Steroids
- Nootropics | Cosmetic neurology | Cosmetic infidelity
- Fudge Factor Theory | “Green Card Marriages”
- Double cross | Catfishing | Prisoner’s Dilemma
- Crib | Bunco | Hustle | Swindle | Smoke Screen
Additional Questions & Cases to Discuss (Examples)
- Watch Dan Ariely’s talk on “Our Buggy Moral Code” – or read this interview and excerpts from his blog. Does his work change your view of cheating?
- Explore some examples of corporate espionage. Should they be considered acts of cheating?
- Listen to Lin Miao-Ke lip-syncing at the opening of the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics and to Beyoncé doing the same at President Barack Obama’s Second Inauguration. What do these two performances have in common, and how are they different? Explore other notable lip-syncing incidents, and discuss with your team: why is the practice seen so unfavorably?
- Should card counting be illegal? Is it cheating? Research the case of the MIT students whose card counting techniques resulted in their being banned from Las Vegas casinos.
- Is tracing a form of cheating in art?
- When a referee misses an illegal play in a sporting event, as in “The Hand of God”, should the offending player report it?
- Is it cheating for an athlete to pretend he or she was fouled to draw a favorable call by a referee?
- Is it cheating to use a “disabled bathroom” if you are not disabled?
- What is the difference between lying on a college application and simply presenting yourself in the best possible light?
- Study the online practice known as catfishing. Does the Internet make it too easy to lie?
- Is concealing plastic surgery from romantic partners a form of cheating?
- Should students be tested for the use of brain-enhancing drugs before major exams?
- Can computers cheat?
- Is it ever justifiable for researchers to fake or “massage” data, as in this article published in Science?
- Consider the synonyms for cheating listed here. What conclusions can you draw from them about the social context in which they evolved?
- Film contains mature language and should only be watched with teacher consent and adult guidance.