California bans companies from using ‘dark patterns’, a timid website design that makes it difficult to cancel subscriptions with frustration

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California bans companies from using ‘dark patterns’, a timid website design that makes it difficult to cancel subscriptions with frustration

  • California “Banning the use of companiesBlack pattern, “Or measures to use to sell information.
  • According to a 2019 study, one in ten e-commerce websites use black samples.
  • Members of parliament on both sides of the aisle are calling for more regulation on black patterns.

California on Monday announced new protections for citizens seeking to keep their personal information safe.

By March 15, California user Confidentiality The Act prohibits companies from using “dark patterns”, or website designs that may entangle or deceive consumers into selling their information. The law prohibits measures such as burdening users with confusing language or forcing them to click multiple screens during the process of avoiding selling their information.
California is the first state to ban dark patterns. Washington state senators introduced a similar bill earlier that year. Businesses that continue to use dark patterns will have a 30-day window to change the design of their website or risk further penalties. If a company does not comply, the law states that “an action taken by the Attorney General will result in a civil penalty under the Unfair Competition Act.”

Attorney General Xavier Besira said in a release, “California is at the forefront of the protection of online privacy, and this latest approval by the OL empowers consumers to exercise their rights under the California Consumer Privacy Act.” More obstacles have been overcome. ” “These precautions ensure that users will not be confused or misled when they try to exercise their data privacy rights.”

What are “dark patterns”?

The deepest pattern is the website design that companies use to manipulate user behavior. The term was coined in 2010 by user experience expert Harry Berginal.

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Brianel identifies a variety of patterns, including:

  • “Roach Motel”, or when the user easily signs up for a service but has a hard time canceling it
  • “Preventing price competition,” or when an e-commerce website makes it difficult to compare the prices of two products
  • “Wrong direction”, or when the website design focuses on one thing to remove the user’s direction from the object for design purposes.

“CCPA is a really positive step towards consumer privacy in California and we can expect other states to follow suit.” “It outlaws a range of dark patterns associated with privacy. These include certain types of trick words, hidden small print, misdirection and bait and switch.” According to a 2019 study by researchers at Princeton University and the University of Chicago, one in ten e-commerce websites use dark patterns. The researchers found that displaying a countdown timer to expire contracts and a strategy to hide items from “shy” customers in checkout carts, which benefit the retailer.

Retailers are not the only ones using black samples. In 2018, TechCanch reported that scammers used dark patterns to deceive iPhone users into signing up for expensive app purchases. A study by a Norwegian tech watchdog has found that Facebook and Google have used dark patterns to push users into making decisions that could compromise their privacy. UX experts recently said that Robin Hood uses dark patterns to trade consumers. Spokespersons for Facebook, Google, and Robin Hood did not immediately respond to requests for comment from readers on past studies or new concerns in California.

Guns Ecker, a former postdoctoral researcher in Princeton University’s information technology policy, previously told Insider, “It’s manipulating consumers to make decisions that they wouldn’t otherwise take and buy what they need.” do not have.” “Showing a timer and saying you only have 5 minutes left – there is a sense of urgency which is at best questionable.”

Members of parliament on both sides of the aisle are calling for more regulation on black patterns. In 2019, Senators Mark Warner, a Democrat, and Deb Fisher, a Republican, introduced a bill banning tech companies from using black patterns. Federal Trade Commission Commissioner Rohit Chopra, who has served under Trump and now Biden, has spoken out against the dark side.

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