- December 26, 2022
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
Subject :Science and Technology
- Recently, it is been found that some Internet ¬based firms have been tricking users into agreeing to certain conditions or clicking a few links.
- Different Big Tech companies, like Apple, Amazon, Skype, Facebook, LinkedIn, Microsoft, and Google, employ dark patterns to downgrade the user experience for their own benefit.
About Dark Patterns:
- It is a user interface that has been crafted to trick or manipulate users into making choices that are detrimental to their interests.
- The term ‘Dark Patterns’ was coined by user experience designer Harry Brignull in 2010.
- Dark patterns endanger the experience of internet users and make them more vulnerable to financial and data exploitation by BigTech firms.
- Dark patterns confuse users, introduce online obstacles, make simple tasks time-consuming, have users sign up for unwanted services or products and force them to pay more money or share more personal information than they intended.
- In the U.S., the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has taken note of dark patterns and the risks they pose. In a report released in September, 2022, the regulatory body listed over 30 dark patterns.
- The FTC report outlined its legal action against Amazon in 2014, for a supposedly free children’s app that fooled its young users into making in-app purchases that their parents had to pay later for.
Types of dark patterns
- In India, The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) has recognised four dark patterns and these are the proposed areas of extension to the ASCI code on misleading ads.
- Drip pricing: It is a pattern when the total price is only revealed at the very end of the buying process.
- Bait and switch: It is a pattern that occurs when a user takes an action expecting one outcome, but instead is served an outcome they didn’t want.
- False urgency: It is a dark pattern that refers to misleading information on quantities of a particular product.
- Disguised advertising: It is a pattern when an advertisement mimics editorial content.
How do dark patterns affect user experience?
- Dark patterns jeopardise Internet users’ experiences and increase their susceptibility to data and financial exploitation by Big Tech companies.
- Dark patterns trick consumers, present online barriers, lengthen the completion of routine tasks, get them to sign up for undesirable services or products, and coerce them into paying more money or disclosing more personal information than they had originally meant.
- According to the FTC, dark patterns will likely follow augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) platforms and devices as they grow in usage.