RUX May – The Ethics of User Experience: Empathy or Exploitation?

Date: Wednesday, May 28th, 2014, 6 PM to 8:00 PM
Location: Water Coastal Kitchen, 3411 W. Cary Street, Richmond, VA (map)
As usual, please RSVP via our Meetup page for this event.

This month, we are trying something new: a book club without a book. There will still be a reading assignment, and we are still planning on a lively and engaging discussion, but we will be asking you to read a few articles rather than a book. To give credit where it’s due, we are adapting this idea from IxDA Boston’s April event on ethics and UX (we have kept two of their articles but added our own).

The Ethics of User Experience: Empathy or Exploitation?

Given our empathy for and understanding of the user for whom we are designing, how do we leverage that knowledge responsibly? Can we design experiences that generate value for our stakeholders while still serving the best interests of their audience? Is there really a dilemma?

At our May meetup, we will discuss the ethics of user-centered design and the User Experience. As food for thought, we ask that you arrive having read the following four articles:

Towards an Ethics of Persuasion by Stephen P. Anderson

The Ethics of User Experience by Bill M. Gribbons

Ethical Breakdowns by Max H. Bazerman and Ann E. Tenbrunsel

Ethical Design by Ashley Karr

Richmond UX Planning Committee Member Hope Norman will facilitate the discussion. Since we’d like folks to engage and interact, we are limiting this month’s event to 20 attendees. If this subject piques your interest, you may want to check out the following links as well (though they are not “required reading”):

Design with Intent: How designers can influence behavior by Robert Fabricant

User Experience’s Dark Side Raises Ethical Stakes by Jim Griesemer

The Perils of Persuasion by Cennydd Bowles

Is there a UX practitioner’s code of conduct/ethics guide