What are dark patterns?

Do you really know?

0:00
00:03:55
10
10

What are dark patterns?

Do you really know?

What are dark patterns?

A dark pattern is an online interface which has been designed to trick visitors into performing certain actions against their will. The term was coined by British UX specialist Harry Brignull in 2010. Ecommerce industries were booming and the general public weren’t necessarily aware of dark patterns.

Researchers at Princeton University carried out a study of 11,000 e-commerce sites to collect data on the phenomenon. Their algorithm found examples of dark patterns on 1,267 of the sites, equivalent to around 11%. The experts noted that the most popular sites just happened to be the ones which used the most dark patterns. 

Almost certainly yes! Some kinds of dark pattern seek to make the visitor feel guilty. 160 of the Princeton study sites used Confirm-shaming, a technique which aims to steer the user towards going ahead with a purchase, despite the user’s intention being to refuse it or leave the site. For example, when turning down a discount offer, they might be forced to click on a button saying “No thanks! I’d rather pay more for my product”.

One of the most used dark patterns on e-commerce sites are messages about a product’s rareness in order to increase its desirability. These kinds of alerts show that there is only a limited quantity available or that the product is in high demand.

The Princeton researchers are hoping their study and dark-pattern-detecting algorithm will be used by government regulators. The idea is to help them better understand these techniques, which are sometimes intentionally deceptive.

 

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Episodes
Date
Duration
Recommended episodes :

What is the Electoral College?

Do you really know?

What is synthetic DNA?

Do you really know?

What is tax evasion?

Do you really know?

The podcast Do you really know? has been added to your home screen.

What are dark patterns?

A dark pattern is an online interface which has been designed to trick visitors into performing certain actions against their will. The term was coined by British UX specialist Harry Brignull in 2010. Ecommerce industries were booming and the general public weren’t necessarily aware of dark patterns.

Researchers at Princeton University carried out a study of 11,000 e-commerce sites to collect data on the phenomenon. Their algorithm found examples of dark patterns on 1,267 of the sites, equivalent to around 11%. The experts noted that the most popular sites just happened to be the ones which used the most dark patterns. 

Almost certainly yes! Some kinds of dark pattern seek to make the visitor feel guilty. 160 of the Princeton study sites used Confirm-shaming, a technique which aims to steer the user towards going ahead with a purchase, despite the user’s intention being to refuse it or leave the site. For example, when turning down a discount offer, they might be forced to click on a button saying “No thanks! I’d rather pay more for my product”.

One of the most used dark patterns on e-commerce sites are messages about a product’s rareness in order to increase its desirability. These kinds of alerts show that there is only a limited quantity available or that the product is in high demand.

The Princeton researchers are hoping their study and dark-pattern-detecting algorithm will be used by government regulators. The idea is to help them better understand these techniques, which are sometimes intentionally deceptive.

 

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Subscribe Install Share
Do you really know?

Thank you for your subscription

For a better experience, also consider installing the application.

Install