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HomeDigital MarketingThe FTC is looking at how Online User Interfaces manipulate users.

The FTC is looking at how Online User Interfaces manipulate users.

Prism Digital Marketing a Digital Marketing agency in Dubai that is an expert in ORM Services as well learned about a workshop hosted by the US Trade Commission on April 29, 2021 will investigate dark trends in online commerce.


The agenda for a Workshop on Dark Patterns has been released by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The result of this workshop may show how far the US government is willing to go in terms of regulating tech companies' privacy and online sales. More laws are needed to avoid market fraud, according to research presented at the workshop.


This event is significant for everyone who conducts business online because it could lead to new legislation in the next few years, if not sooner.


This workshop is the first step in a multi-step plan to determine how companies could be hurting customers and to explore potential solutions.


The number of possible solutions will be debated, from raising awareness to drafting new legislation.The outcomes of this meeting may provide insight into possible disruptions in how consumers make online purchases.


Dark Patterns


Dark Patterns is a user interface design technique that seeks to persuade users to do something that isn't always in their best interests.


That may range from being persuaded to purchase items they don't need to exploiting a cognitive bias by persuading a consumer to give up long-term privacy control in return for a short-term benefit.


FTC Workshop to Discuss Research Paper


The research paper that will be discussed at the workshop will provide an indication of the FTC's position.


Shining a Light on Dark Patterns is the title of the article, which was published in March 2021. Researchers conducted a scientific experiment with a control group to see whether dark patterns would actually influence users.


Mild dark patterns were found to be able to manipulate users twice as much as the control group, and more powerful dark patterns were found to be able to manipulate users four times as much. They found that violent dark patterns elicited a negative reaction from customers, while mild dark patterns did not.


Researchers make a compelling case for Legal Intervention.


The researchers came to the conclusion that there was sufficient evidence to support laws prohibiting mild dark patterns.


The following is an excerpt from the researchers' abstract summary:


“First, while violent dark patterns elicited a strong reaction from customers, mild dark patterns did not, implying that businesses that use them benefit handsomely.


Second, subjects with lower levels of education were substantially more vulnerable to mild dark trends than those with higher levels of education.


Both results indicate that there is a compelling argument for legal action to limit the use of mild dark patterns.”


Discussion Points


The following five panels are on the agenda:


“Panel 1:What Are Dark Patterns and Why Do People Use Them?


This panel will address the features of dark patterns, as well as the various forms of dark patterns, the causes and rewards that lead to dark patterns, and the similarities and differences between dark patterns and comparable sales strategies in the brick-and-mortar environment.”


A number of scholars, as well as a Spotify product designer and Harry Brignull, the person who coined the word Dark Patterns and publishes the website, will speak at the above forum.


Panel 2: How Do Consumers Respond to Dark Patterns?


Consumer advocates, user interface design experts, and analysts will speak about the impact of dark patterns on consumer choices and actions in terms of privacy, shopping, and content selection, as well as the possible harms of dark patterns and what makes a dark pattern misleading or unfair.


Panel 3: How Do Dark Patterns Affect Communities of Color in Particular?


Panel 4: How Do Dark Patterns Appeal to Children and Adolescents?


Panel 5: How Can We Best Address Dark Patterns in the Future? Dealing with Dark Patterns: Possible Strategies


The panel will address the existing legal framework and enforcement issues, as well as how to prioritize efforts to tackle dark patterns, as well as regulatory, educational, technical, and self-regulatory strategies for mitigating the negative impact of dark patterns on consumers.”


Considering the Full Range of Dark Patterns


Previous research (Deceived by Design) focused on the topic of privacy at companies like Google and Facebook. They found that they made it easy for users to behave against their own interests while also making it difficult to protect their privacy.


They expressed themselves as follows:


“Dark trends are deemed ethically objectionable since they deprive consumers of their agency and deceive them into making decisions that are not in their best interests.”


The FTC's investigation entails more than just consumer protection. They'll look at how people shop online and the psychological tactics marketers use to persuade them to make decisions that aren't in their best interests. This has the potential to change the way companies sell online.


Bringing Dark Patterns to Light: An FTC Workshop

FTC Releases Final Agenda for Dark Patterns Workshop on April 29

Shining a Light on Dark Patterns (Web Page Summary of Research)

Deceived By Design (PDF)


How tech companies use dark patterns to discourage us from exercising our rights to privacy


I am a professional and well expertise online/ digital marketer. I write blogs to spread information on different topics and many more and I am founder of feel free to share your views and thoughts on my blog.
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