As I learned it way back in my “ethics” class (and refreshed my memory on wikipedia), utilitarianism is an ethical philosophy in which “good” is defined as “whatever yields the greatest utility,” and one should strive to do good. I personally subscribe more to a variety of utilitarianism in which you might define “wrong” as “whatever yields the greatest displeasure,” and one should avoid doing wrong (the difference is subtle, but, I think, important).
Is there a name for my system of ethics? I can’t seem to find anything in the utilitarianism articles I can find online, so I can’t find a reference to someone whose writing I should read. I somehow doubt that nobody has written on such a system. I guess it’s possible… but I figure if anyone would know, it’d be the Dopers