Shark Tank Tv Reality show|Legal and ethical issues

Shark Tank Tv Reality show|Legal and ethical issues

Watch any 5 or more episodes of a reality television show with a business focus. Examples are The Apprentice, Shark Tank, or Undercover Boss) and write a 5 page minimum paper with a very brief description of the task to introduce the legal and ethical issues. Students should use direct examples of legal or ethical conflicts from the show and should discuss legal and ethical issues that the participants should be thinking about given the task they are to complete. Students will not get points if they merely describe the episodes.


Business ethics are the contemporary standards that an organization should have when conducting business. These standards should have good moral and professional principles needed for the sustainability and development of responsible societies (Caudill,16). These legal issues have to be followed by each organization. These include ethics in top management, human resource, management, sales and marketing, production and following rules and regulations. There are legal consequences and fundamental issues that include concepts such as integrity, compliance and governance issues. These questions both legal and ethical issues in the society.

Shark Tank Tv Reality show

The Shark Tank is a television series in the United States that guides potential entrepreneurs. Budding entrepreneurs are given a chance to bring their breakthrough ideas to business and get their dreams valid in the reality show. They present their ideas in the program in an aim to look for investors who will turn their ideas into reality. The contestants can convince the investors to invest money through their ideas presented in the program. When more than one investor accepts to enter into the investment, a bidding war then erupts and drives up the price of the investment. Therefore, it is only the idea that can lead to the investors accepting to invest on the contestant.

At times the investors tend to invest in themselves if the business idea becomes so brilliant and realistic for better investments. However, some ideas are fully rejected by the investors.  The paper will access the legal and ethical issues that participants should be aware of when giving their ideas to the investors. This is because the investments made by the contestants have to be legal and accurate. Most entrepreneurs come with different ideas in the program and have to ensure that the investment is legal and does not violate any right.

Property right

The term property means something that is owned by an individual. The property rights are the theoretical and legal possession of a specific product. The property rights give the owner of the property to determine how that product can be used (Sonenshein,1032). Most countries have private property to rent, sell, hold, delegate and accumulate their product. The program by Shark Tank has potential investors that can claim the property rights of their new innovative products that can be offered in the market. Some of their products include the Breathalyser that is used in most smartphones. This can be used to plug directly into headphones jack pins.

Another contestant, Charles Yim invented this idea. In this case, the owner of this product can have property rights because this was a new concept in the market. Other investors such as Daymond, Mark Cuban, and John posses 30% of the shares in the company, but the owner has the property rights of the product. Lani Lazzaro founded another product after introducing simple sugar products that would be used as natural oils.

The natural oils will, therefore, be used as skin care products that are considered to b natural without any genetically modified sugars. One of the investors decided to invest 33% of equity at $100000. This, therefore, made Lani and the investor business partners hence both have the property rights of the product. Property rights have to be registered with the government to allow one to claim in the court of law in case there is an infringement. The Shark Tank program should continue ensuring that the property rights are upheld.


Intellectual property rights

Intellectual property is considered as the ownership of unique ideas, thoughts, information, and codes. Intellectual property rights are normally enforced by the trade agreements are closely related to property rights.  Shark Tank has had many potential investors with ideas that can change the world if implemented.  For instance, the Groove-Book is an example of intellectual property. Brian white man and Julie came up with this idea in season three of the reality TV show. The idea was a digital service that can produce high-resolution photos captured by smartphones.

After the photos were taken, they were posted on the digital book to enable the viewers to observe. O’Leary and Mark Cuban took 80% of the profit through paying $ 150000. The profits were then shared among the two investors and the people that came up with the idea. However, the intellectual property rights were still owned by Julie and Brain (Cofrancesco,1580). The Shark Tank should be ethical through ensuring that the intellectual property right is not interfered with and that they are adhered to. All the contestants should patent their information to secure their information not to be used by another person.

Ethics in sales and marketing

Sales and marketing ethics are the ideas, values, and principles which marketers need to follow to ensure moral responsibility. This mainly deals with the issues that arise when dangerous products and services are introduced in the market and the conflicts while sharing profits.  Business organizations need to be ethical and transparent and notify the public when there are environmental, financial, health and personal risks.  Since the reality TV show, Shark Tank has a program that introduces new business ideas in the market; it should ensure that sales ethics are put in place.

Investors should ensure that there is no skimming and price discrimination. This rule is applied to all the products and business ideas that are later used by the investors in the Shark Tank program. The program also entails delivery of services and products of high quality, and that is durable and efficient for sale for anyone willing to purchase all over the world (Miller, 68). For instance, the program has rejected some foods and drugs that have been used to replace food by investors because they have been considered to be harmful to the society. Other products like genetically modified food, nuclear energy and mobile technologies that have been considered to cause harmful environmental effects have been rejected and labeled that they can cause harm to the users.

Ethical issues in Human resource management

The human resource is considered as a function of management that is the concern with the recruitment, training, and selection of employees. All businesses are required to be ethical for maximum perfection for various functions.  Most of then participants in the Shark Tank have different ideas and still have employees that help them in their respective businesses. For instance, a product like Reade-rest that deals with making magnetic holders in the eye that can fasten glasses on the body. The investors of Reade-rest Hopper and Greiner should make sure that their employees are treated well. This includes paying them well and one time, training them, motivating them through giving them vacations and allowances.  This is also important to the company because the employees become loyal to the company when they are treated well.

Ethical issues in laws and regulations

Regulations and laws are drafted guidelines and statues that should be followed by business organizations. The rules and regulations vary depending on the state or country. When a business fails to follow the rules, they are sanctioned with fines, penalties, and termination of licenses and rights. As contestants bring their ideas to the program, they have to ensure that they follow the rules governing businesses organizations. These rules entail the quality production of goods that are environmentally friendly and payment of taxes. The businesses in the Shark Tank do not accept illicit dealings such as cocaine and heroin. All the entrepreneurs should follow the rules to avoid violations of rules and regulations.


All the potential entrepreneurs and investors should be conversant with the ethical and legal issues in the business world. This is because they are important in business practices to prevent the controversial issues both in the internal and external environment of the business. The reality TV show, Shark Tank has shown some legal and ethical issue associated with their investors and entrepreneurs in the program.  It is evident that the program has been associated with ethical and legal issues. This has been shown through ethics in intellectual property, property rights, laws and regulations, production, sales, and marketing.

The program has identified some episodes that have shown ethical practices in their business organization. The program has ensured that they incorporate the rules and regulations in their investments. For the program to continue being ethical and legal, they need to make rules and regulations that will govern the investors and their funders to ensure that their business practices are practical. This will ensure all the ideas generated from Shark Tank follow the rules and ensure that they have room for improvement. Business ethics, therefore, are important in ensuring that businesses are conducted ethically.



Work cited

Caudill, Eve M., and Patrick E. Murphy. “Consumer online privacy: Legal and ethical issues.” Journal of Public Policy & Marketing 19.1 (2000): 7-19.

Carroll, A., & Buchholtz, A. (2014). Business and Society: Ethics, sustainability, and stakeholder management. Nelson Education.

Sonenshein, Scott. “The role of construction, intuition, and justification in responding to ethical issues at work: The sensemaking-intuition model.” Academy of Management Review 32.4 (2007): 1022-1040.

Miller, Nancy J., and Terry L. Besser. “The importance of community values in small business strategy formation: Evidence from rural Iowa.” Journal of Small Business Management 38.1 (2000): 68.

Cofrancesco Jr, Joseph, et al. “Creating an “Education Shark Tank” to encourage and support educational scholarship and innovation.” Academic Medicine 92.11 (2017): 1578-1582.


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