Why are most hackers men? Why are most cyberstalkers men and most victims women? Using a novel approach combining feminist ethics, politics and legal theory, Alison Adam illuminates the gendered nature of these and other 'computer ethics' problems. Highlighting the pervasive technological determinism and liberalism in many accounts of social interaction through networked technologies, Alison Adam argues against the 'free market' approach to ethics on the Internet, which takes a shallow view of equality and ignores the politics of gender inequalities. The traditional private/public split of liberalism which keeps women in their place in the private world threatens to spill over onto the Internet where there is already evidence of sanctions against women who are willing to speak up and speak out. Only when we find ways of combining the message of care, emotions and relationships from feminist ethics can we find alternatives to the liberal ethics of the Internet, starkly evident in the 'hacker ethic' - a masculine, libertarian ethic which elevates freedom of speech over the rights of vulnerable members of society.

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