“The Internet’s broken and that’s bad news, because everything we do today involves the Internet and everything we’ll do tomorrow will require it. But governments and corporations see the net, variously, as a perfect surveillance tool, a perfect pornography distribution tool, or a perfect video on demand tool—not as the nervous system of the 21st century. Time’s running out. Architecture is politics. The changes we’re making to the net today will prefigure the future our children and their children will thrive in—or suffer under.”
ConveyUX is pleased to feature author and activist Cory Doctorow to close out our 2017 event. Cory’s body work includes fascinating science fiction and engaging non-fiction about the relationship between society and technology. His most recent book is Information Doesn’t Want to be Free: Laws for the Internet Age. Cory will delve into some of the issues expressed in that book and talk about issues that affect all of us now and in the future. Cory will be on hand for Q&A and a post-session book signing.
Dark Patterns and Bad Business Models
There are lots of ways to think about computers: as communications devices, as data-storage systems, as computational engines. The underlying technical reality is that they’re all of the above. It’s fine to treat a computer as an appliance as a matter of convenience. But we cross a line when our design goes just a little further, and threatens the restrictions imposed by giant multinationals. This design pattern treats the owners of computers as adversaries of their devices. This Bad Idea makes a small group of people very rich, and bites the rest of us in the ass.
It doesn’t need to be so. Giving users the right to configure their technology to suit their needs — and not the needs of incumbent tech companies — is good for your business and for our democracy. Learn how we can use design for the better to benefit our products, and society.
novelist, blogger and technology activist