In the podcasts the guys have spoken a lot about how things like infinite scroll, and slowing down scrolling speeds could introduce enough friction to encourage people to turn off an app like Instagram. Which is a superb idea.
I’ve started to notice this feature (“anti-feature”?) appearing on mobile websites, but in the wrong places.
I’m in the UK, where GDPR requires websites to make us agree to cookies. A lot of these websites just have a button for opting in, but quite a few let you go into the settings to turn them off; either reject all but essential cookies, or turn them off individually.
It’s here that I’m noticing that they’re deliberately adding friction to the UX in an effort to make disabling cookies an unpleasant experience. For example, the buttons feel unresponsive when you opt to tun cookies off (or to “Reject All”). It takes several seconds for toggles to work, or there’s no visible feedback that the “Reject All” button has done anything. And the buttons will often be placed at the bottom of a lengthy page where momentum-based scrolling has been deactivated; it’s an incredibly jarring, punitive experience and you genuinely wonder if you can be bothered tackling it for the sake of a few cookies. Which means this kind of anti-experience design really works!
There are other things, like ambiguous button and link labels (“Leave” instead of “Save” after rejecting, which is alongside an “Accept” button that resets all your options to accepting cookies before immediately taking you back to the page you were accessing before you realised you’ve agreed).
It’s a superb example that shows how this kind of design friction really works. If Facebook or Instagram worked like the GDPR cookie selection pages did, you’d turn them off after a minute! Just a shame that it’s being employed in exactly the wrong places!
Just wanted to share this observation, and wondered if anyone else had noticed these great, humane-tech ideas being put to dark, nefarious use anywhere else?