Collection of Dark UX Patterns

This post documents a collection of dark UX patterns that various products and services have implemented. Design is a powerful skill that could either improve the world we lived in or make us miserable. Dark UX patterns are designs that focuses on commercial benefits over the users, using persuasive or unethical methods to make us do the things we don’t want.

UXPin cancellation

I subscribed to UXPin recently just to test out the features and see if it could be of any good to projects. Turns out I don’t really need it and was looking high and low for the cancellation option until I spot it hidden as a fine print, in super light grey text that no one can see. I wonder how ethical is this by making it difficult for people to cancel their subscription. Well, I cancelled anyway.

oBike – Cancellation Refund

oBike cancellation refund

Saw this on Linkedin some time back. Once again, hidden refund text that’s no one can see. Compared to UXPin, oBike made it worst by adding a huge call-to-action (CTA) button to “Be an oBike VIP”.

If you manage to spot the first “Continue to refund” link, how about the second “Confirm” button that’s again styled in the light grey text.

Seriously, if people want to leave, they want to leave, no matter how hard you try to stop them, they’ll leave. Leveraging on behaviour psychology to cheat the user in pressing the wrong button, shame on you.

Learn more about Dark UX and see the Hall of Shame

The dashboard for Bus Drivers

I’ve been taking bus more regularly now that I’ve sold my car and I can’t help but to observe how bus drivers have been using this complicated looking 2 piece screen device that appears in-front of them.

On closer look, it seems like the top screen tells is “touch screen” enabled where the driver can tap on the various icon such as the microphone to make an announcement and also see various information about the trip like what is the next stop.

The bottom screen however looks non-touch screen, where buttons on the sides are there being configured for a particular purpose as shown on the screen. E.g. button “0” is meant for “End Trip”.

I wonder how long did it take for Bus Drivers to master the usage of this 2-piece dashboard and how often do they make mistakes when using this seemingly complicated device?

Which also leads me to wonder, how can we simplify the design and make it easier to understand?

The Chronicles of Lift Buttons

As some may know, I am quite interested in the lift buttons. Yes, you read it right. Lift buttons are such interesting component of our every day life but many don’t pay much attention to it. Here, I collate a list of interesting lift buttons that I see and also from others. If you have an interesting lift button to share, send it to me 🙂