Response to Derek Broughton’s letter – March 31, 2004 – v12i13

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Response to Derek Broughton’s letter – March 31, 2004 – v12i13

Thanks, Derek, for your comments on my article. I will confess that I started out holding one opinion about the matter, then gradually swung over to the other side after hearing feedback like yours. I do apologize for the “low blow” against lawyers and accountants – you are correct in saying that this was “too easy”. I know better, and I’ll try not to make that mistake again.

In my article, I was trying to define the issue of responsibility; determining where we should draw the line for those of us who are expected to give advice in our jobs -and asking who takes responsibility for accepting that advice and acting upon it if it turns out to be bad? After reviewing the whole incident, I tend to think that the fault is equally shared between the college and the university – the student got caught in the middle and did the right thing by fighting back. But is the individual counsellor to blame when acting upon the best info available to them at the time?

My worry is how this could play out for other situations in the counselling/ advice-giving field. You say you are working towards a BScis. Do you see any implications for your profession if individuals make information systems decisions that turn out badly? What if you advise a client to use a virus-protection program that you believe in and have received positive reviews about, yet the client is attacked by a virus/worm and loses time/money/equipment? Who is ultimately responsible?

Debbie Jabbour

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