Dark Patterns on the Rise

I don’t know if it’s because the economic pressure that companies are under, if it’s because companies don’t get it that better user experience leads to customer loyalty or if it’s because users expect so little from the web that they tolerate so much. Whatever the reason, Dark Patterns still dominate most newspaper and a magazine websites.

This is a old ( 2010, ha! ) presentation by, Harry Brignull, but still incredibly relevant today.


  1. Definitely see the pressure to convert, even on small websites. Maybe it is also a bit about being lazy? It’s easier to trick people than it is to convince them about the value to them if they do opt-in.

    • Yup laziness or thoughtlessness plays a part too. A lot of people take their lead from some of the larger publications ( and worst offenders ) without thinking if or how techniques can be applied in a relevant way to their situation.

      I’d disagree on the “it’s easier to trick people” part though because dark patterns as just as well thought through as good patterns. They’re just more short sighted.

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