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Do Good Business by Doing Good

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David Cox
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In 1970, economist Milton Friedman wrote a highly controversial article for The New York Times, “The Social Responsibility of Business is to Increase its Profits.”

"There is one and only one social responsibility of business," he wrote, "to use its resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits so long as it stays within the rules of the game, which is to say, engages in open and free competition without deception or fraud."

Friedman went so far as to label business executives with a corporate social-responsibility mission as socialists and hypocrites.

Related: Corporate Social Responsibility Done Right: 5 Ways to Help Your Company Shine

Friedman lived in a different world from today, whem after the Great Recession, Occupy Wall Street, record long-term unemployment and serious cutbacks of government support for social programs, the rules of the game have changed.

Through peer-to-peer reviews, instant video uploads and platforms such as WikiLeaks, businesses can no longer commit their resources entirely to the pursuit of profits.

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David Cox
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