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  • Writer's pictureKaat Declerck

The shocking truth about cookie consents...

"Can you spot the dark pattern in this cookie consent?" we asked our colleague Elien Van den Steen.

"There's nothing wrong with it, is there?" she replied.

"Take another look very carefully..." urged Kaat Declerck and Renze Vuye.

"Ooooooooooooooooh!" 😮 😮 😮

Have you spotted the dark pattern yet?

Recently, we delved into the world of cookie consent pages for a project of one of our clients.

Their goal? To design a human-centric cookie consent that is ethical and converts.

So, we deleted all our cookies and scoured the web from cookie consent to cookie consent. Happily taking screenshots for our Miro board.

BUT, we soon noticed something...

Certain websites, including some we had a lot of trust in, showed their least ethical side when it came to collecting our data.

We were often inadequately informed, deliberately misled, and sometimes we simply had no choice but to accept the cookies without any explanation.

The deliberate unethical use of psychological techniques to manipulate users or steer them towards behavior that goes against their interests is called a dark pattern.

It made us realize once again how important it is to use our behavior design techniques in an ethical manner.

So, how should it be done?

We always ask ourselves these two important questions:

  1. Are we helping the visitor to feel successful?

  2. Is the outcome positive for the user and society?

If the answer to both questions is 'yes,' then we are at least on the right track. 💪

Oh, did you already find the problem with the cookie consent example?

Indeed! The way it is designed gives the impression that the button confirms your selection. But in fact it accepts all cookies...

How about the human-centricity of your cookie consent?

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