Is open source intelligence an ethical issue?

Government Secrecy

ISBN: 978-0-85724-389-8, eISBN: 978-0-85724-390-4

ISSN: 0196-1152

Publication date: 26 January 2011


This chapter configures resources from the fields of communication studies, intelligence ethics, and organization studies in order to explore whether the collection and analysis of open source information and subsequent production of open source intelligence constitute an ethical issue. Using an “ethics as practice” perspective, the author finds that tensions surrounding open source collection vis-à-vis U.S. Persons and the “outsourcing” of open source activities among commercial firms create ethical dilemmas and the space for moral agency.



Bean, H. (2011), "Is open source intelligence an ethical issue?", Maret, S. (Ed.) Government Secrecy (Research in Social Problems and Public Policy, Vol. 19), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 385-402.

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