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Dark Patterns: how “Black Hat design” can influence behavior

13 April 2011 BY

Earlier this month I visited Brighton SEO, Annabel reported on that in two posts last week. There was one presentation at Brighton SEO which deserves a little bit more attention. Harry Brignull is in his dayjob Senior User Experience Designer at Clearleft. Outside of his job he started a website called On that website he ‘exposes’ design tricks.

We all know about Black Hat SEO, but did you know there was such a thing as Black Hat Design? You are probably looking at it every day and when you’ve seen Brignull’s presentation you will realize that you run into Black Hat Design every single day. And the frightening thing: it could indeed be useful for website owners…

Below you will find the presentation that Harry Brignull gave at Brighton SEO. Look and listen (it’s with audio!) to it and then let us know in the comments what you think.


Bas van den Beld is a speaker, trainer and online marketing strategist. Bas is the founder of -- You can hire Bas to speak, train or consult.

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