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The Web Foundation Tries to Crack Down on Deceptive Web Design Practices by Major Corporations

Anyone that has tried to cancel an Adobe Subscription will probably know how frustrating this process is because of the fact that this is the sort of thing that could potentially end up making you pay a sizable cancellation fee. Adobe isn’t the only big company that uses deceptive design to trick users into signing up for services without fully informing them about the implications of doing so, with other huge companies like Amazon using similar practices.

With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that the Web Foundation is trying to crack down on this because of the monetary loss that so many consumers are going through as a result of these practices. These design choices are called Dark Patterns, and they are so pervasive that countless users have had to go through terrible user experiences, with one good example being that of the New York Times which actually forces you to call them if you want to cancel a subscription that you are paying for.

Corporations usually make cancelling a subscription difficult so that they can minimize the number of people doing so, but this is a deceptive practice because consumers should be able to stop paying for things that they no longer need. Other companies like Amazon take a different approach such as forcing their customers to sign up for Prime, and Indian company Byju does something similar too in that it makes its subscription seem like its free but it will actually end up charging you a certain sum of money.

The main issue with these practices is that they tend to impact the most vulnerable people in society such as those that are not all that tech savvy. The Web Foundation is trying to create new UI and UX tools that can replace such dark patterns in the long run, and while they will need to work really hard to truly fix this issue it is heartening to know that such a large scale collaboration is taking place.


H/T: TechCrunch 

Read next: According to new a study; Small and medium-sized businesses are more prone towards phishing attacks

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