10 min read · Apr 1st · How design can manipulate and coerce you into doing what websites want.
The big pop-up window urging you to sign up for a website’s newsletter with a big red “Sign Me Up” button, while the opt-out button is much smaller and passive-aggressively implies that anyone who clicks is a bad person who doesn’t care about saving money or staying informed
“Regulation works,” Brignull said. “It can really turn the internet into somewhere that’s nice to be instead of like a complete Wild West environment. And we need it.”
Companies whose revenue relies heavily on user data don’t want to make it easy for those users to refuse to provide it.
7 min read · Jun 2nd · Three-dimensional human beings can’t thrive in a one-dimensional space
There’s a line that Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian used to repeat back in the halcyon days of 2012. It went something like: ‘The world isn’t flat — but the world wide web is.’
The internet facilitates these powerful, complex parasocial relationships but, at the same time flattens everything that makes the messy, human elements of relationships possible. It flattens audiences, it flattens time and it flattens a lot of nuance.
It’s called context collapse, which is when a piece of information intended for one audience finds its way to another — usually an uncharitable one — which then reads said information in the worst possible faith. (For that piece, I spoke to Elle Hunt, a journalist whose movie opinion tweet exploded into a culture war argument as result of this audience switching.)
~20 min read · Jul 14th · Too often dealing with filters can be frustrating. Let’s get them right. That means never freeze the UI on a single input, provide text input fallback and never auto-scroll users on a single input.…