Future Proof Methods for Measuring and Detecting Dark Patterns

The SIG ‘Governing the social media and data economy’ is organising the workshop


During this workshop keynote speaker Colin Gray will first give a lecture on the methodological landscape of dark patterns detection. In the second part of the workshop a panel will discuss the future proof methods for measuring and detecting dark patterns.

Mapping the Methodological Landscape of Dark Patterns Detection

Keynote speaker Colin Gray will describe their recent work to map out a preliminary methodology for providing a rigorous analysis of the presence of dark patterns, including a combination of metrics (e.g., clicks, number of elements in the choice architecture, interaction opportunities), heuristics (e.g., usability-focused, privacy-preserving, adaptive/situational friction), and elements needed to objectively describe the presence of dark patterns.

Systematic review

This work draws on a systematic review of over 100 published research articles from 2013-2022 that have empirically addressed dark patterns and evaluation of the historical progression of dark patterns categories and types. Based on initial analysis of this literature, Colin will describe a landscape of common methodologies used to characterize and/or detect dark patterns, common contexts for investigation (and important gaps), and the apparent strengths and weaknesses of various methodologies in describing the presence or potential impact of dark patterns on end users.This landscape will lay the groundwork for a trans-disciplinary framework and vocabulary to rigorously assess the static and/or dynamic presence of dark patterns.

After the keynote talk, there will be ample room for questions and dialogue, led by discussant Cristiana Santos (Utrecht University).

Panel discussion

After the break, the workshop will continue with a panel discussion entitled ‘Future Proof Methods for Measuring and Detecting Dark Patterns’

Moderator: Cristiana Santos
Q&A Moderator: Catalina Goanta (Utrecht University)
Online Q&A Moderator: Viktorija Morozovaite (Utrecht University)


  • 13:45 Walk-in
  • 14:00 – 15:00 Keynote Colin M. Gray: Mapping the Methodological Landscape of Dark Patterns Detection, followed by discussion
  • 15:00 – 15.15 Coffee Break
  • 15:15 – 17:00 Panel Discussion: Future Proof Methods for Measuring and Detecting Dark Patterns
  • 17:00 – 18:00 Drinks
Start date and time
End date and time
Hybrid: Vredenburg 19 (rooms 16-17), Utrecht & Online on MS Teams

Registration form // Direct Microsoft Teams link