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Deceptive Design and Dark Patterns: What are they? What do they do? How do we stop them?

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Streamed live on Jun 25, 2019

Technology today offers ever more opportunities for personalization, engagement, and responsiveness, with platforms dynamically calibrating services based on individual user behavior. Engagement, however, doesn’t occur in a vacuum: drawing on behavioral psychology research, many technology platforms actively condition user behavior, designing (and refining) products to mislead, confuse or steer consumers.

The term “dark patterns” is used to describe interfaces designed to intentionally manipulate or trick users into taking actions they would otherwise not take under effective, informed consent. Dark patterns can take various forms. Some examples of such actions include: a sudden interruption during the middle of a task, repeating until the user agrees to consent; a deliberate obscuring of alternative choices or settings through design or other means; or the use of privacy settings that push users to ‘agree’ as the default option, while users looking for more privacy-friendly options often must click through a much longer process with multiple screens or confusing choices. Other times, users cannot find the alternative option, if it exists at all, and simply give up looking.

Please join us for a series of conversations featuring:
Tristan Harris (Co-Founder and Executive Director, Center for Humane Technology)
Rana Foroohar (Global Business Columnist and Associate Editor, Financial Times)
Amina Fazlullah (Policy Counsel, Common Sense Media)
Paul Ohm (Professor of Law and Associate Dean, Georgetown Law School)
Katie McInnis (Policy Counsel, Consumer Reports)
Marshall Erwin (Senior Director of Trust & Security, Mozilla)
Arunesh Mathur (Dept. of Computer Science, Princeton University)

And remarks by:
Senator Mark Warner and Senator Deb Fischer

Tuesday, June 25th from 12 – 1:30pm
Location: Russell Senate Office Building, Room 188 (SR-188)
This event is open to the public and will be livestreamed.

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