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What are 'Dark Patterns' and Why Is Congress Trying To Stop Big Tech From Using them?

For big tech platforms, data is currency, and many aren’t afraid to use deceptive methods to get it. Now, Congress has introduced a bill that would stop big tech platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Google from gathering data through manipulative tactics. On Tuesday, Sens. Mark Warner (D-VA) and Deb Fischer (R-NE) introduced the DETOUR (Deceptive Experiences To Online Users Reduction) Act . The bill aims to prevent platforms with over 100 million monthly active users from utilizing “dark patterns.” The term was popularized by the website . Essentially, it’s a trick websites use to get you to sign up for or buy items you don’t want to buy. It can also be used to gather personal data. According to a press release from Warner , dark patterns draw from “extensive behavioral psychology research.” Warner also said they’re often implemented by social media platforms as a way to mislead users into “agreeing to settings and practices advantageous to the company.”...

Vanessa Taylor

Apr 10, 2019