Like so many others who have posted, it is hard for me to determine the exact beginnings of my current ethics and philosophy. I have to attribute the foundatoins of it to my wonderful parents who taught me in word and by example much of what I still believe and attempt to live. They always taught me to be kind, courteous, fair, and unoffensive. I remember lessons on honesty, vulgarity, and other such things, and the fixed punishments for misbehavior. They weren't abusive or controlling, but loving and supportive, giving me respect and freedom. Their disappointment was more motivating to me than any physical punishment. I wanted to live a good life to make them proud of me and become the type of people they were. As with most children, the "Golden Rule" was stressed heavily.
Other factors that contributed heavily to my ethical growth include: religeon, friends, teachers, and life experience. Religeon was stressed heavily in my early years, and since I have come to choose for myself and found it my own belief from which I base most of my ethical standpoint. I am LDS and try to live by the standards taught therein. I have lived in a predominantly LDS community most of my life, and therefore been influinced by many, many people of my own faith. My friends have not always been LDS but have often shared the same values and reinforced in me my convictions of what is ethical and what isn't. These influences have produced in me what I would mainly call pluralistic values.
The other main factor that contributes to my ethical standpoint is a utalitarian streak that I believe is the foundation of much of the United State's constitution. While I am a religeous person, I don't believe that those views should be forced on anybody. I believe that ethics, especially in the media, require a utalitarian view if they are to function properly. Not everybody will believe the same or feel the same; therefore, it is the responsiblility of the media, and even the government to do what is best for the greatest number of people. I will say that there is more to it than that, we shouldn't blatantly cause harm to another included party, but ovelrall, I think this is a utalitarian view.
I find it interesting to note that my ethical views are slightly different when in different circumstances. In a government position I believe in different ethics than I do on a personal level. Ethics, to me, are very circumstantial.