I’m always on the lookout for examples of horrible examples of interfaces, especially websites with terrible user interface. I hate terrible user interface, in fact it’s more perverse than that, I LOVE to hate terrible user interfaces.
Really bad user interface that’s actually intentional is called a dark pattern. This is something that’s deliberately intended to mislead the user.
A colleague of mine found this example of a dark pattern recently and screenshotted it:
Worst #UX #darkpattern ever trying to gift a @CosmopolitanUK sub. Maybe they don’t not not want people to subscribe? pic.twitter.com/MoTFIWvAtF
— Andrew Waite (@theandywaite) June 11, 2015
Constantly switching the context and switching positive and negative actions makes it confusing.
Here’s another with confusing negatives intended to catch you out:
Nice try, @RoyalMail – DON’T want marketing comms? Tick boxes. DO want marketing comms? Tick boxes. #darkpattern pic.twitter.com/am76Gx2gIm
— Tom Corser (@tomcorser) March 5, 2015
I think the worse example of a dark pattern is on the RyanAir website, where there’s a section asking if you want travel insurance. You don’t HAVE to buy travel insurance from them, but the way to opt-out isn’t all that obvious. You have to find the “Don’t insure me” option hidden amongst the countries of residence:
I wonder how many people have unnecessarily bought travel insurance because they didn’t know how to opt-out?
You’ll find more stuff like this tweeted as #darkpattern and I’m going to try and opost any I find here under the category dark pattern.