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User Inyerface – A worst-practice UI experiment (userinyerface.com)
757 points by maxime_ on July 3, 2019 | hide | past | favorite | 255 comments

We should make a website that does everything in the opposite way:

1) Require adblock

2) Banner saying the website doesn't use cookies, which goes away if you mouseover

3) If you're on mobile, show a banner saying the website doesn't have an app

4) A signup form, but when you try to focus it, it turns into a banner saying "jk this website doesn't have signup"

I like your idea, but it depends on what you see as "the opposite". There's already an opposite in existence:

1) Not complain about adblock (ie. silently allow it instead of moaning).

2) Simply don't use cookies.

3) Don't mention app (which is often just an Electron frontend anyway) in any way.

4) Allow the website to be used without signing up.

These 4 examples used to be the default back in the early days of the WWW.

I rather miss those early days. Web 1.0 is looked down on for its visual clutter (and definitely the hatred of image backgrounds and animated text was well-deserved), but Web 2.0 has just as much if not more clutter, and of a darker nature.

The current web isn't anything like Web 2.0. Web 2.0 never happened, except in tiny isolated pockets. It's a terrible name anyway - it indicates a natural progression (which never happened), a clear improvement (which didn't materialize quickly enough for anyone important to care) and incompatibility with the past (which was never necessary since semantic components can be embedded in a normal web site). We're currently at Web √(-2) alpha-Google-2-Facebook-4-patched-0af33cd.

It boggles the mind to think of how much resources (time and money) have been spent so that control freak corporations can control my user experience from the server when I have a rich client under my control.

The whole web is backwards these days; users should’ve able to download themes for different kinds of content and the content itself should be barely human readable self-describing text with no layout instructions, only hints (like title and h1 and p)- leave it to the client to choose how to display.

I think it's extremely important that the text going around on the web be human readable and notepad editable. It really lowers the bar to start creating content rather than just consuming it.

Obviously it's a minority that do, but the potential itself has value I think.

So, I'm younger, but there was absolutely a shift in thinking from web 1.0 to 2.0 in that 2006-2008 era. You could even call it the Ajaxian era. http://ajaxian.com/

I read that blog every day and the techniques and tooling (jquery/mootools/etc) absolutely shifted the thinking that birthed our "modern" react/vue style single page app.

This is like saying that Classical -> Baroque never happened because people still paint in a Classical style.

No, what happened was that a lot of people said "web 2.0!", a bunch of other people said "AJAX!", and only the AJAX thing actually happened. Web 2.0 meant the semantic web, not the asynchronously loaded web.

For as far as i remember 'web 2.0' meant replicating Mac OS X's Aqua on the web (very poorly, of course) with gradients and shadows (not necessarily through CSS, thanks to IE6, but it helped) and unnecessary javascript everywhere.

My favourite sites are Hacker News, and similarly reddit with the old design and custom themes turned off. Functional, clean, content focused, and high - but not too high - information density. There are changes I would make to both, but there are reasons I got addicted to them.

My kids always insisted on using the blink and marquee tags together :O

But how else could you make sure people knew your content was coming soon!?!

"Under construction" gifs of course!

Relevant website with most of the under constructions GIFs. http://textfiles.com/underconstruction/

I'm way too much nostalgic right now.

I'm feeling the same way

I’m not sure why the overlords of HTML had to remove blink in the first place.

I have a daily need for both tags.

5) High-contrast motion graphic ads right next to what you are trying to read.

maybe: 2) only works with cookies disabled for the site


5) works better with Javascript disabled

6) works better in Firefox than Chrome

7) doesn't work if it can read your referer

> 5) works better with Javascript disabled

Ironically, I find there's (broadly) two sorts of JS-enabled website:

- completely broken without (often just a blank canvas) - works better without than with

The most entertaining 'works better' example I've had is a site that gave me a free upgrade, because I was blocking client-side price manipulation.

Google Maps however: block canvas fingerprinting, and it's Goodbye CPU!

Google Maps uses the Canvas API to draw the map. If you disable it, what do you expect to happen?

It still works (perhaps only some of the API deemed 'fingerprinty' is blocked, I don't know) - slowly - it just shoots CPU usage up and battery down.

Server side map tile rasterization like the old days, maybe

And a mandatory "Please disable javascript"

How about having the Log In dialog prominent and the Sign Up dialog more in the background.

I sign up only once, yet every website makes it hard to find the login dialog which I use way more often.

5) Just sends you a newsletter

or is just stapled to the telephone pole on the corner

That country selector that is all the country flags of the world in greyscale with colours only shown on mouse-over deserves a special mention.

Not really a problem if you're just entering garbage information, but try to find the proper flag if you actually want the correct one. Bonus points if you are one of the many lucky citizens born under a flag that consists of three horizontal or vertical areas of equal size.

Even worse: several entries such as France, French Guyana share the exact same flag because they are, you know, the same country.

They are the same country

edit: Not sure why the downvotes. French Guiana is a region of France (the country): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Guiana

> > Even worse: several entries such as France, French Guyana share the exact same flag because they are, you know, the same country.

> They are the same country

> edit: Not sure why the downvotes. French Guiana is a region of France (the country): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Guiana

Maybe the downvotes (not from me) were because your post initially appears to be correcting your parent (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20346737), but is actually agreeing with it?

Well no, I think the parent is agreeing with the GP actually.

I have always dreamed of creating a country dropdown that was not in alphabetical order and contained historical countries/territories/empires that don't exist anymore. This is even better though.

And the months being sorted alphabetically was great too!

I got a good laugh out of this for a few seconds before getting actually frustrated with it. Mostly because my bank does a lot of these terrible things.

i gave up on the second screen...

I didn't, which to me says I've been trained very well by terrible design.

If you manage to actually 'sign up' it tells you are a legend and rewards you with a Dancing Carlton gif[0].

[0] - https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/carlton-banks-dance/

Really? I couldn't seem to prove that I was human. I thought it just threw you into an infinite "prove you're human" loop at the end.

There is a vertical scroll bar. You need to check them all because they're all checks.

In case anybody missed the humor in this, like I did the first time round: all of the pictures denote some kind of "check". Like with the bows.

There are pictures of people checking things – a watch, and something else I can't quite see.

There are games of chess in a state of check.

There are monetary checks.

There are check boxes.

I scrolled down and still couldn't see the checkboxes under the last row. Maybe it also doesn't work on Firefox, because as trivial as it is to make a site that works everywhere no one does. Normally this frustrates me, but if that's the case here it kind of makes sense.

The checkboxes are actually above all of the images.

I tried scrolling down, realized I couldn't, then scrolled up to find the unfilled row at the top...

I did exactly that as well. I’m also happy that there appear to be several different captchas, as others mentioned ones I didn’t see. The best one I clicked through was “select every picture with glasses” and every picture had either eyeglasses, drinking glasses or panes of glass.

I’m pretty sure the top row of check boxes doesn’t appear until you scroll back up.

facepalm this is even better.


Mine was "select all checks" and had plaid cloth, chess kings in trouble, checkmarks, x marks, bank checks, etc...

The one that almost got me was the popup with the timer that said "hurry up" but instead of a "go away" box it had a "full screen" box. I don't know how you are supposed to get rid of that box, I had to inspect element->delete node to get past it.

I did manage to finish in a little over 5 minutes.

> I don't know how you are supposed to get rid of that box,

The bottom-left corner of the box says something like "©lose 2019." If you click it, it closes.

The copyright symbol at the bottom left is followed by "lose". Very insidious.

    Array.from(document.querySelectorAll('input[type=checkbox')).forEach(e => e.click)

You need to check every box.

Wait, how do you get to the second screen?

> Please click HERE to GO to the next page

The word HERE is a link, with styling and cursor set to look like normal text.

My favorite part was how s-l-o-w-l-y the "How Can We Help?" dialog sank when I clicked Send to Bottom.

I also appreciate how it would reappear and block the interface.

But kind of disappointed it didn't instantly reappear if you moused over it. Or that it didn't randomly bounce for attention in my peripheral vision.

And to the person out there thinking of making a front end framework based on this, just don't do it man!

But if you do, I suppose you could call it BootAss or HateStrap.

I had this happen today, in the wild, after visiting a HN linked Wired article. A few seconds on the page, a banner appears, blocking about a quarter of the page. Close it, start reading the article. 30 seconds later, the original banner reappears, again blocking a quarter of the page, and I close it again. I continue reading, think I hit a "click to read more button", another click. Keep reading, maybe two thirds of the way through the article, get bombarded with a modal dialog asking me subscribe to an email newsletter.

Who the fuck is implementing these things and how do they justify this shit as contributing to the user experience? I came to your aite to read an article, not to be bombarded with ridiculously distracting prompts, banners and subscribe prompts - and this completely ignoring the intrusiveness of the ads with autoplaying video and audio.

Shit like this really makes me rethink visiting sites like Wired, though they are by far not the only ones doing this, just the one that happened to me today.

Why do web devs think this a good thing to do? Pull this crap in a desktop, sure as he'll would uninstall.


> Who the fuck is implementing these things

A developer being told by management that Optimizely showed this design gives a 20% boost in conversion.

I don't trust this tooling after creating 3 control groups, one A group, one B group and having the three control groups report different values (Control 1 was better than Control 3 but worse than A but better than B)

I actually thought the name 'Optimizely' was a hypothetical parody startup, haha.

Nope, it's owned by google and it's fucking expensive (surprise!)

when i see an interesting article, i just send it to Pocket (or Instapaper). I do this partially for time-shifting and/or text-to-speech purposes, but avoiding crap like this is a major benefit.

It's not "devs" -- it's shortsighted business staff focusing on short-term goals rather than longterm value and user happiness. Now that Wired is paywall and has been upfront about its shift to paywall and affiliate revenue, be prepared for more dark patterns like the ones you articulated.

Reminds me of Marc Canter's online social network "PeopleAggregator": "sort of like a MySpace in a box", "we support Facebook import/export!" -- aka "PeopleAggravator"!

Intro to PeopleAggregator (turn your volume down first)


Gnomedex 6.0: Marc Canter on People Aggregator (in which Marc explains why he doesn't have blue balls)



I like the chat help interface. It's almost as good as Asus', which I had the misfortune to be trying to use yesterday.


It's genius. It's got a little "online services" icon with a friendly smiley face with a microphone and headphones.

You click on it, expecting an interactive chat but what you actually get is a photo of someone smiling hugely with headphones on and a laptop open, and a sidebar where you can search their inadequate help documents.

I'm glad it's a parody or it would be really insulting.

Oh I definitely recognise this, it's using Microsoft's Bot Framework (https://dev.botframework.com/). I had to make a chatbot for a hospital during my end of studies internship.

I still don't get why people want chatbots as they're terrible UI, so frustrating to use even when they're made properly.

People don't want chatbots - businesses want(ed) them because they offer(ed) the promise of much cheaper support. Of course that's predicated on them working at all, which in practice they don't, obviously. Think that message has filtered through enough now that the hype surge that was in full swing a couple of years ago seems to have petered out again.

It seems to be a recurring pattern. Business introduce some new form of support that customers like because it means less waiting times and less automated gatekeeping, but then companies look to put that back in to save costs. Web chat was the previous quick way in, but now that's been automated and reduced to the same obtuse trees as phone or email support so now social media is the fast/less BS option. That too will pass.

"People don't want chatbots"

I'm working with a successful ecommerce company who have hugely improved conversions on their (high touch, bespoke but sold online) product by introducing a chatbot.

For some use cases, customers like them very much indeed.

I guess customers want them to the extent they help them achieve their task without hassle and/or them realising it's a chatbot, pretty much just as well as a human would.

In some use cases, I suppose this might be possible (though I've not ever seen this - would love to see your example if you can name it!) but in most it's not, yet.

Doesn't seem to have petered out if you look at freelance marketplaces—because you'll see a lot of chatbot writing jobs.

I wonder if I'm currently missing some slice of web life by not using any ‘support’ chat interfaces ever.

Come on, who doesn't want an interface that takes 5 times as long to use, misunderstands what you want most of the time, and trades clicking for typing and autocorrect fails? It's great!

I find it funny that stock photo with laptop have ASUS logo copypasted on it. https://icr-emea.asus.com/webchat/image/cover-photo.jpg

It appears that it isn't even aligned.

Asus definitely has the better cookies overlay at 80% of the screen on mobile.

I about fell off my chair laughing with how slow closing the "how can we help" popover was. If I had to write a backstory for this I'd say some dev was really proud of animating that and wanted to make sure everyone noticed it.

Right? Every new web developer that first learns how to do animations REALLY over does them.

It's like how elementary school kids write their "papers" in comic sans (and eight other fonts half-way through) and each word is a different color. Or they make a power point and every-single-dang-thing just HAS to spin into the slide.

> like how elementary school kids write their "papers" in comic sans (and eight other fonts half-way through) and each word is a different color

HA! I did that! I thought it made the essay more interesting to read, and it was a pain in the ass since I had to transfer the text by hand (ie rewrite it) in Deluxepaint on my Amiga 500, then print on our 9-needle matrix printer. Oh, how I miss the sound of that. Or do I?

Naturally, I was told by my teacher to never do it again.

Edit: I think I found the approx model: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_vXA058EDY

I wonder how much of this is related to how we teach kids initially -- everything is primary colours; schools value appearance of writing above content ('it's so neat'); it's all about big gestures, no subtlety; ...?

Press "help" in that popover and you'll be shown "Please wait, there are 459 people in line".

Oh god I’ve had this happen before. At my first job our CEO was so proud of the splash screen she designed that she asked me to slow down the apps loading time by three seconds.

I read your comment before doing it and still laughed out loud. I think that was the first time I’ve seen a web page provide actual physical comedy.

And it does not even being hided all the way down!

Seriously? There's tons of stuff missing, at the very least a cookie banner ("we value your privacy not") and "aw, snap, we're having probs to bla blah blah" and social media icons. Also, it's known that call-to-actions must come in a group of three, and have cute vectors. See [1] on how to do a website.

[1]: https://www.reddit.com/r/web_design/comments/9pmqxb/typical_...

I actually got a cookie banner, of course with the close button hard to find.

Yet the site of the people who made this (Bagaar) does not have a privacy banner but happily contacts Google Analytics, DoubleClick, HotJar and HubSpot.

This is pretty genius and has stuff that reddit video doesn't even try to show. Just a few:

1. Checkboxes ambiguously located.

2. Poor instructions in captchas.

3. Text field suggestions that persist when you click on the field.

4. Pointless validation on inputs


I'm very surprised there's no "sign up for our news letter" pop up and "hey don't go yet" when you move your mouse towards the close button.

There is a big red cookie banner showing up at some point though.

There is indeed a cookie banner, at least for me.

This was okay, but if you want to see how the pros do it, try to apply for a Russian visa on their Australian web site.

Things I remember:

- Not being able to enter my correct date of birth. At all. So you enter an incorrect date to get to the next screen, which is "I certify all information to be true and correct"

- Having to list the personal details of every relative living in Russia. Where do you stop?

- Having to list the details of every foreign trip you made in the last 10 years

And if you try to phone in to ask for help: you are advised that the phone is answered on one day of the week, between 9 am and 12 noon. You get that message until 8:59, from 9:00 you get "all the lines are busy, you have been placed in a call queue" which changes back to the original at 12:00.

> Age and birth date don't match

I hate you.

I have to admit I'm a little surprised the entire form wasn't cleared on a failure.

Don't give them any ideas

The slider that doesn't update until you let go of it is a nice touch.

My "favorite" is picking your address number by repeatedly clicking the tiny up arrow.

Ah, I had no idea what that was. I left it at 1


>Gender and Title don’t match

I actually appreciated this error because I couldn't figure out which color was the one selected.

I was impressed that it bothered to do the math, indicating a truly hateful UI.

It only goes back to 1901, so what are you supposed to do if you're 159 years old... Lie?

We should pool our money to get this guy: https://theuserisdrunk.com/ to test that site :D

I really like (read as: hate) the placeholder text not clearing out and then the user input text being the same color as the placeholder.

That's so typical of airline booking websites!

And then everyone crucifies Boeing for their user interface bugs...

This is incredible. Pleasantly surprised every 2-3 seconds by things I didn't even think of.

"Oh, it didn't mean whole email, just the first part"

"Hmm tab doesn't work"

"Oh, it didn't mean whole domain, just the first part"

"Where's .com, oh I see"

"Wait 'Next' isn't the big blue button?"

"Oh I see, that big red message means my password is good."

The 'How can we help' arrow just makes it grow slightly taller. Over and over. Heh heh heh.

And that was just the first page! This is fun, had me genuinely chuckling quite a lot.

Two that made me laugh and think were on the last page:

Choose images that contain a bow, where the images were of bows (archery), bows (ties), bows (hair ties), and bows (gesture).

But then they really got me with the checkboxes for those images. You think they're beneath the images, but they're actually above and the frame was just scrolled down. You don't realize until you get to the bottom row and don't see any checkboxes

> But then they really got me with the checkboxes for those images. You think they're beneath the images, but they're actually above and the frame was just scrolled down.

I saw that immediately, but it still got me, because I tried to scroll down, thinking the checkboxes were beneath.

The "Select All" box killed me

Same! Until I found the "Unselect All" box and was happy again.

Well, for me unselect doesn't actually work. To top it of I can't deselect some choices and no matter what it won't work. Stuck here.

I’m surprised the back button on my browser wasn’t hijacked. Too many mainstream sites do this.

This and URL rewrite !

Oh god the terms and condition ultra slow scroll got me to close the page. This is brilliant.

The cookie approval dialogue was quite snappy though. Better than most implementations I've seen. Didn't reload the page. Didn't display a large spinner once you made a choice.

You can't decline the cookies though, nice touch there.

"Holding ALT to scroll faster is cheating and not allowed." This is interesting, since ALT + scrollwheel on Firefox is supposed to move forward and backward in your page history, but in the terms and conditions, it helps you scroll at normal speed.

And the maximize button that maximized everything except the content

Brilliant! Captures every frustration I have ever had with stupid-ass, half-baked web forms. Is there a form in there that messes up with your autofill? That could be a nice addition. I couldn't make it past the 1st form. I could feel my heartbeat go up as I was trying to figure my way around it. I had to close it so that I could remain calm for the rest of the day.

You think that's bad, try downloading ST Visual develop IDE software from this stmicro site:


Silicon vendors are the absolute worst. Everything requires an especially arduous signup complete with employer, product usage grid, and favorite color and the websites are impossible to navigate because they were designed entirely by the marketing people.

I'd be tempted to switch to TI just for that website.

I laughed out loud several times during this. It just brilliantly captures so many of the ways Web developers screw up user interfaces.

Oh man, well played!

Gave up at the user agreement, where you can't "accept" or dismiss until (presumably) you scroll to the bottom. The scrollbar is screwed up so that (1) wheeling is super slow and (2) you can't grab the elevator and drag it to the bottom of the shaft.

Part of the user agreement, near the top, is "I agree not to speed up the scrolling by holding down alt"

You don't even have to do that step, just uncheck the I do not agree box.

On mac you can scroll to the end with Alt-Scroll (I use a mouse), it jumps right the bottom

Saved by a Logitech mouse with infinity-scrolling or whatever they call it

Upload profile picture area didn't appear correctly in Edge, had to switch to Chrome. Don't know if this is intentional but it's definitely accurate from my experiences, lol.

Reminds me of some old maths software we had to use in school which only ran in 'IE 6 or higher', but if you used IE 8 or above it would report the same 'use IE 6 or higher' message and not let you use the software. That software was also the only way to check whether your answers to the practise questions in the corresponding textbook were correct, which made revision pretty painful.

I had a similar idea to parody the irritating practices of some news sites, where they have five different headings/footers, some with auto-playing video (I'm looking at you independent.co.uk), others with cookie warnings which take 30s to close (AFAIK theverge does this), some that are static and don't move when you scroll, others that disappear in arbitrary random ways when you scroll and reappear when you move the page just a little bit.

I've seen websites that show so many that the news article is only visible through a tiny 10% sized crack. So frustrating.

Worst practice? Seems to be a pretty standard website ;-)

Alas, it was all terribly familiar.

“Your password can have at least one cyrillic character” WTF XD

Some time ago I tried registering an account on a site where the password policy was that you couldn't use special characters and that it would discard any characters you entered after the first 15 ones.

But you know what the worst part was?

They never bothered informing you about these limitations. The site just returned a generic error.

Not supporting special characters I can kinda understand but silently discarding characters from the password the user has picked is just evil. It took me LOTS of registration attempts and password resets before I figured out what the hell was going on.

I registered an account for some software company that was acquiring some other services, so the left hand wasn't talking to the right.

Sure enough, different parts of the site had different password requirements, and they enforced them on password change. So you could create an account on a sub-site that wasn't accepted on the main site, which was the only site with the password change page, but you couldn't enter the old password to fix it.

I think password reset did work, but I wound up creating another password that worked in one place but not another...

I once registered a password using a special character, but I could not get in. It turned out that they url encoded it, if I used %21 instead of "!" I could get into the site.

I'm guessing you're the only user who figured that out. I would definitely request a password reset.

I saw a screenshot of an error dialogue on Reddit once (so possibly fake, but still hilarious) that said something like:

"You cannot use that password, because it's already in use by user Kegstand360"

The discover card (As in discover credit cards) had a limitation of 15 characters for the password back when I first signed up for one out of college. Even back then I was using long complicated passwords. The "clever" thing is that they never told you about this. They just truncated it at 15 characters on both the sign up page and the login page. I didn't realize this for several years because their password entry field was so small.

> Not supporting special characters I can kinda understand

IIRC this is mostly done to prevent SQL injection attacks. In a modern system there is 0 reason not to allow any characters in the password (within whatever encoding you support).

My Bank has a password character limit of 32, which actually is a 31 character limit and I was the first person to notice.

Ha, bet somebody wrote < 32 instead of <=32

I bet they considered putting a secondary password confirmation field on the next screen, but that might have been too cruel.

missed a good opportunity to clear the form on every validation error

"Select all pictures with a bow"

Then you have an actual bow. Like in archery. Next to a bowtie. Ok fine.

"Select all pictures of glasses"

Now you have a glass window. And glasses, as in spectacles.

Holy crap, that triggers me.

Don't forget all the people who are, you know, bowing. Seriously, I'm pretty sure it rejects your captcha if you do. Sheer evil genius all the way through.

I liked the "checks" where there were chess moves.

Clever. I would have gone with 'Select all images related to set'. If I recall correctly, 'set' has the most definitions of any English word, plus it could lead to some interesting contradictions, paradoxes, and confusion - any answer could be right!


I'm pretty sure it changed relatively recently and is now "put", which has over 200 definitions (many of which overlap with "set")!

Only interacted with it for about 5 minutes and I already love it.

It needs an accompanying IRC channel where the devs shit all over you for not understanding how to use it.

Instagram does something similar if it detects that you are on mobile. A huge banner advertising their app is displayed, and the [x] in the top right corner is almost impossible to hit.

Player.fm has the worst of those I’ve seen, I can hit collapse HN thread reliably but their comparatively huge x takes 3-4 attempts on mobile.

I loathe it so much I stopped using it entirely and just book marked my favourite podcasts like a filthy savage.

Better than yelp (and some other sites I'm sure) which literally demand you install the app, ie provide little to no functionality on mobile web.

Facebook Messenger is the worst for this if you try and use the mobile site (which is otherwise quite capable).

That was at the same time surprisingly entertaining and frustrating. Well done!

I LOL'd when the Terms of Service came up and was scrolling at 1px per inch.

An underappreciated portion of this section is "expand to full screen," which expands the white space to full screen but keeps the TOS frame the same size!

Very commendable - it doesn't work at all without javascript.

The chat's "Send to bottom" button made my day. This is hilarious.

This is like the movie Brazil, no longer funny because it has come true. If I was sure it was intended as a joke instead of a showcase of "best practices" it would be funny.

This froze and then crashed my browser (Chrome on iOS) while I was trying to type in a password. I’m not sure if that was intended, but I would definitely consider it a “worst-practice”.

As an advertisement for a design company, this is top flight - these are people I could consider using. Every time I fiddle with the page I laugh.

I think this is how old people feel using computers.

Truly brilliant. I confess I had to view source to figure out how to get to the second page (which I supposed is a form of UI in itself).

Is it possible to get through the captcha? I had to open console & edit the validate function to get through it.

You have to scroll upwards to see that the checkboxes are above each picture.

But I still couldn't figure out which ones were "checks" or "light pictures"

They all are! That's the joke. They're all "checks" because you have to check a box, they're all "light pictures" because that's how a computer display works, they're all "glasses" because they all have glass of some sort in them...

You don't have to get all the picture choices right, you just have to select all the pictures on the last two screens.

So far I haven't seen anything on this site that I have not encountered on a real web site at one time or another (though this site is unique in bringing all these horrible design practices together in one place). This includes not being able to get past the captcha.

Not that I want to brag, but, you can get past the captcha. You just have to mindlessly click everything (at least it worked for me. And yes, I should probably get a life, but I made this passed as UX research.)

Ah. I was proceeding on the assumption that a bow and a bow tie were not the same thing. Silly me.

Still, nothing on this site was as bad as the "security questions" on the United Airlines site. All of their security questions are multiple choice. Here's an actual example:

What is your favorite sport?

Possible answers:

    Jai Alai
    Ice skating
Because obviously no one who flies United likes football or baseball.

The worst thing is that when you have to answer the question the answers are presented in a different order than when you set them up, so a simple hack like "just pick the third answer" won't work. It's genuinely more frustrating than anything on the parody site.

Nice. I quit before trying to put in a password. Point taken. Point proven.

A bad UI will be the end of your business.

Great. Love it.

"Your password must have at least 1 Numeral."

Please add: Your password must not end with a numeral.

"Your password can have at least 1 cyrillic character." got me for a few good moments.

Its so terrible I love it.

Oh my god, the captcha at the end is so good. Is it even possible to get through?

The trick is to select everything.

Thanks, I hate it.

It's like a horrible fractal, the closer you look at it, the worse it gets.

The "CAPTCHA" at the end is so on point. What exactly is a "bow"?

I got through in 2:45, and found myself very rarely surprised by any of the nonsense it pulled. I think that means either the people who designed the websites I use a lot are monsters, or I'm a monster, or maybe both.

This is amazing, hahaha, expert-level trolling! I'm impressed by the degree to which they managed to capture all of the insanely frustrating UI design choices made on countless websites and software products.

Man this was brilliant!

I was laughing, but i got ptsd'd hard lol.

I mean, you would not believe how _actually similar to this_ the websites of several, massive, especially state-run companies in my country are

Reminds me that recently Bitwarden has placed the logout button under the password field so if you don’t pay attention you’ll type in your long password and the click log out.

No idea why they’d do that (although now that I think of it I guess one possible reason is someone inside Bitwarden tries to send a subtle message that they cannot be trusted any longer, kind of like raising a flag upside down to signal distress.)

This reminds me of games like "Papers Please"

This made me laugh hysterically and gave me PTSD.

This is amazing...so often I get frustrated with real sites that I use which incorporate these 'worst-practices' but when I talk to non-technical folks about my issues, they don't understand 'dark patterns'.

I plan on showing this to family and friends to help them realize how common these anti-patterns are.

I really like this. If these guys are smart, they could use it as an experiment to isolate how much impact a given "bad practice" has on a user's ability to accomplish their goal. Then if they're REALLY smart they could monetize that knowledge in the form of a course...

[SPOILER] since you have to tick all the boxes on the captcha page, this piece of code is actually faster to type in than to click everything:

    document.querySelectorAll(".icon.icon-check.checkbox__check").forEach(span => span.click())

More concise to use an attribute selector: 'input[type=checkbox]'.

IIRC, the checkboxes weren't actual checkboxes. Yet another thing you can do wrong in UI.

I am a UX designer with 30 years of digital design experience, 20 of those in UX/UI design. In my opinion, UX is dead. Companies don't want it. They still think they want it from a competition standpoint, but in terms of what value UX brings, they don't care and would prefer not to have it. UX in corporations is purely a political thing now.

It used to be that commerical activity on the internet was not allowed. This was because, in part, we knew it would ruin the experience. Now, the internet is pretty much 100% commercialized. its a wasteland and it will only get worse.

I have an exit strategy in play to get out of UX and anything to do with working on the internet. UX and UI design will be rolled into "design" and eventually be automated. Same with coding. So, if you think you have a nice career ahead of you as a UX or UI designer or a web developer, think again. Your days are numbered.

Yikes. I see it the opposite way. My title has evolved from UX Designer to Product Designer. A lot of organizations have started to understand the value of design and are now giving us the power to think through everything, rather than just the optimization of a web form.

Technology is evolving and expanding so quickly that there's exponential need for good design. I'm happy to hear you're getting out of UX though. I wouldn't want to go to a doctor who blatantly calls the whole medical industry a sham.

That looks like a clone of most airline sites that I regularly have to endure.

Every developer should be required to use this site daily for a month, before they can graduate. Simply using it once isn't enough ring home what you'll put your users through

It’s not the developers, do you actually think they want this?

This is amazing. It took me 6:50, and I was laughing the entire way.

This was the most fun I've had while building a ton of anxiety

This is still better than certain news sites without an adblocker. At least it doesn't make my computer come to a screeching halt.

Consider adding a bitcoin miner?

Is it possible to get past the verification stage? It just keeps recycling the same images over and over...

Maybe I need to drink a verification can to help it along

You have to select every image. Because all of them match for some definition of whatever word you get.

Ugh, I thought there were a few in there to trick me. Like on the "check" one, there was a pen hovering over a checkbox but it was unchecked, so I didn't think that counted...

I only got through on the "bow" one, since it was very obvious that everything there was a "bow" of some kind.

Absolutely bloody evil. Deeply reminiscent of 90% of my web usage when I make the mistake of going anywhere other than my default 10 websites.

There were so many surprises in this, I love it!

Nice idea of hiding the top row of checkboxes for the human-verification step, I respect that evil genius :^)


I got as far as trying to fill in my house number, hit backspace and got dumped at the beginning. Couldn't bring myself to start over.

I did start over. But then the second round captcha did me in. Too real.


Beat it in 6:13! That was totally hilarious, the fake captcha was by far the hardest (just like the real deal).

OMG the captcha was the WORST

there should be a cheat/bypass link on each page so you see everything without having to suffer

so you can get passed it? I gave up after 5-6 screens.

Yeah. You have to check all of them.

This was actually fun :), and it demonstrates in exaggerated form so many of the bad features of most websites.

Lol, I couldn't even move further than the first step. Absolutely frustrating. Love it!

That cookie bar ahah, brilliant!

Can we hyperlink to specific features somehow? To explain specific bad behaviors by example.

Funny, brilliant and super frustrating at the same time. Nicely done!

Almost as infuriating as trying to cancel your Amazon Prime subscription.

Anyone else get a flashback to the old Moron Test flash games/apps?

Huh? The site did nothing in my Browser, no user interaction possible.

JS required

At least the text isn’t gray on gray!

Made it to the end in 03:39. Beat me.

(Also, clarification: This was my first try.)

Ok, if you say so. Swings a baseball bat at you

I was at 7min, the last part got me. My thoughts were.. Ok, it probably just means light, so I check a few. Fails. Let me try again... Nope.

Five minutes later... what if it's all. No, it can't be that dumb. Bingo. Wow. It was that dumb.

Gosh, now I feel special for making it in "only" 3:10... :P

On my second try, 1:58.

Haha, how did you manage to pass the 4th page (image verification)?

I initially tried selecting all of the boxes, and noticed the bottom row didn't have any boxes. So I scrolled up, saw some more checkboxes, and selected those. It worked.



Come on, at least give us a "skip section" button? :)

This is a work of art, and I enjoyed every second of it.

My favorite thing is the slow descent of the help chat hahaha

And the "raise" caret.


That's the most fun I've had in days. Thank you!

I've never yelled at my computer. Until today.

Doesn't work on mobile


Brilliant! Would suggest tick box part to not require all tick boxes to be ticked. So when user notices their wrong assumption with tick boxes being at bottom, they have to redo whole thing again

My touch screen does not click. You immediately lose.

Disappointed that it's not responsive...

got to the end in 8 minutes, pity the job spontaneous candidacy form doesn't show up -- is this the final ruse?

Reminds me of the Impossible Quiz[0].

[0] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxzGSHbr5CQ

Looks like some my states's webpages.

Good for you, expensive joke... So what?

I gave up at the fake captcha. Good job.

My head hurts.

i cant get through the first screen. As a previous big-corp ui developer, it looks so familiar.

I want a “.jpg” domain name now.


this is art.

Actually, it's advertising.

Honest question: Where do people think those cookie banners come from?

Because, they aren't a dark pattern. They aren't a sneaky way to try to juice your engagement numbers. They didn't show up everywhere because growth hackers started getting jealous of the other guy's cookie banner. They are literally required by law, or at least many lawyers interpret the law in that way. The designers at my work really didn't want to make one, and especially didn't want it added to our site.

Nobody likes them. They came from lawyers.

Cookie banners are only really required if you're doing things like using them for "personalizing ads" and the like. If your cookies just there to check if you're logged in and other essential functions, you don't need a banner.

Please tell that to my Communications department. If they believe you, I'll owe you lots of beers.

I'd guess the thinking is "Well, I don't really understand those requirements and it's hard to be sure if we meet them, safest just to put the banner on." And "Well, if we don't need it, how come all these OTHER sites have it? You really think they're all wrong and you're right? What, are you a fancy pants lawyer now?"

"Cover your ass" is the main driving force of most of America.

What about if you want to A/B test on a non-logged-in user?

E-mail them and ask them nicely to volunteer for your research study. Agency's a bitch when someone else has it, eh?

Email a non-logged-in user? No, thanks. Please respect people's privacy.

Well said. I think a lot of people aren't aware of this.

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