Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Facebook’s GDPR-Related Dark Patterns

In a tweet, Francis Irving linked to Max Schrems’ complaint against Facebook (PDF):

[…] If the data subject has not consented until 25 May 2018, the whole Facebook account was blocked. [Facebook] used additional “tricks” to pressure the users: For example, the consent page included two fake red dots (violation against Article 5(1)(a) — neither “fair”, nor “transparent”), that indicated that the user has new messages and notifications, which he/she cannot access without consenting — even if the user did not have such notifications or messages in reality.

This is pretty sleazy, but also basically what you’d expect from a company that misleads users into accepting facial recognition, guilt trips users who try to deactivate their account, and places several other barriers to deactivation.