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Dark Patterns

Presented by:

Nisreen Salka

Dark patterns are deliberate attempts to mislead users through design. Dark patterns are rather prevalent, from Facebook's emotional blackmail when users attempt to deactivate their account, to cable companies' intentional placement of the "cancel subscription" button on rarely visited pages. The truth of the matter is that dark patterns are terrible for the user but beneficial to the company's bottom line. During this talk, I would like to discuss the role of the designer in the battle between pleasing users and generating revenue. Drawing on personal stories and examples, I will make the argument that designers are uniquely positioned to influence key stakeholders in favor of designing for the user first, and profit second. I will outline key strategies for combatting this problem within our own organizations/teams. By drawing attention to the presence of dark patterns and how we can work together as designers to protect users from them, we can begin acting as a force of change in the design industry.


February 2018


30 min