2 added 21 characters in body
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No, it's not a dark pattern at all. NotNeither by definition, notnor by interaction. LikeAs JonW clearly said, nobodyno one is trickingcheating on you into doingto do something that will affect your intention.

However...

InAt UX, we work with data to create and improve user engagement. To do this, we use placementplacements, colorcolors, content hierarchies and other "tricks" if you want to call them like that. Those tricksThese tricks are based on cognitive and behavioral psychology and a deep understanding on userof the behaviors of users.  

So it's easy to see why you consider you arethink you're being trickedcheated: because they're using tricks to keep you engagedbecause they're using tricks to keep you engaged. And it seems it worksto work, but at the same time you're able to tell you'reyou can say that you are being manipulated by the site (and yes, you are, as well as everybodylike everyone else, that's the whole idea)  

But saying all of the above being said, this is not a dark pattern, because you'reyou are not being forced and there'sthere is nothing hidden. You'reYou are presented with a set of options with which you maycan choose to engage withparticipate. Or not. 

It's kind oflike presenting you with a table filled withfull of tasty food, and you're toldthey tell you that you're free to eat whatever you want. It's inIt is up to you whether to do it or not, there's no dark pattern whatsoeverthere is no dark pattern at all, but it'sit is a bit worryinglittle worrisome that you (and other peopleothers) find this as a dark pattern, because that involvesimplies one of the most important factors whenin measuring a site'sthe effectiveness of a site: trust.

Finally, going to the HNQ

they'reThey are doing this sofor you engageto get involved with other sites inon the Networknetwork. This way, thus "cloning" visitors are "cloned", thusand SE is able tocan show degrees of engagement values that are real forand important to advertisers and investors. The same unique userThe same unique user becomes a different user when interacting with different sub-sites, and re-targetingthe retargeting can be made baseddepending on the different sub-sites and interests for that unique user. we'reWe're talking traction and engagement here, and that defines the value of Stack Exchange as a business

No, it's not a dark pattern at all. Not by definition, not by interaction. Like JonW clearly said, nobody is tricking you into doing something that will affect your intention.

However...

In UX, we work with data to create and improve user engagement. To do this, we use placement, color, content hierarchies and other "tricks" if you want to call them like that. Those tricks are based on cognitive and behavioral psychology and a deep understanding on user behaviors.  

So it's easy to see why you consider you are being tricked: because they're using tricks to keep you engaged. And it seems it works, but at the same time you're able to tell you're being manipulated by the site (and yes, you are, as well as everybody else, that's the whole idea)  

But all the above being said, this is not a dark pattern, because you're not being forced and there's nothing hidden. You're presented with a set of options you may choose to engage with. Or not. It's kind of presenting you with a table filled with tasty food, and you're told you're free to eat whatever you want. It's in you whether to do it or not, there's no dark pattern whatsoever, but it's a bit worrying you (and other people) find this as a dark pattern, because that involves one of the most important factors when measuring a site's effectiveness: trust.

Finally, going to the HNQ

they're doing this so you engage with other sites in the Network, thus "cloning" visitors, thus SE is able to show degrees of engagement that are real for advertisers and investors. The same unique user becomes a different user when interacting with different sub-sites, and re-targeting can be made based on the different sub-sites and interests for that unique user. we're talking traction and engagement here, and that defines the value of Stack Exchange as a business

No, it's not a dark pattern at all. Neither by definition, nor by interaction. As JonW clearly said, no one is cheating on you to do something that will affect your intention.

However...

At UX, we work with data to create and improve user engagement. To do this, we use placements, colors, content hierarchies and other "tricks" if you want to call them that. These tricks are based on cognitive and behavioral psychology and a deep understanding of the behaviors of users.

So it's easy to see why you think you're being cheated: because they're using tricks to keep you engaged. And it seems to work, but at the same time you can say that you are being manipulated by the site (and yes, you are, like everyone else, that's the idea)

But saying all of the above, this is not a dark pattern, because you are not being forced and there is nothing hidden. You are presented with a set of options with which you can choose to participate. Or not. 

It's like presenting a table full of tasty food, and they tell you that you're free to eat whatever you want. It is up to you whether to do it or not, there is no dark pattern at all, but it is a little worrisome that you (and others) find this as a dark pattern, because that implies one of the most important factors in measuring the effectiveness of a site: trust.

Finally, going to the HNQ

They are doing this for you to get involved with other sites on the network. This way, visitors are "cloned", and SE can show engagement values that are real and important to advertisers and investors. The same unique user becomes a different user when interacting with different sub-sites, and the retargeting can be made depending on the different sub-sites and interests for that unique user. We're talking traction and engagement here, and that defines the value of Stack Exchange as a business

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source | link

No, it's not a dark pattern at all. Not by definition, not by interaction. Like JonW clearly said, nobody is tricking you into doing something that will affect your intention.

However...

In UX, we work with data to create and improve user engagement. To do this, we use placement, color, content hierarchies and other "tricks" if you want to call them like that. Those tricks are based on cognitive and behavioral psychology and a deep understanding on user behaviors.

So it's easy to see why you consider you are being tricked: because they're using tricks to keep you engaged. And it seems it works, but at the same time you're able to tell you're being manipulated by the site (and yes, you are, as well as everybody else, that's the whole idea)

But all the above being said, this is not a dark pattern, because you're not being forced and there's nothing hidden. You're presented with a set of options you may choose to engage with. Or not. It's kind of presenting you with a table filled with tasty food, and you're told you're free to eat whatever you want. It's in you whether to do it or not, there's no dark pattern whatsoever, but it's a bit worrying you (and other people) find this as a dark pattern, because that involves one of the most important factors when measuring a site's effectiveness: trust.

Finally, going to the HNQ

they're doing this so you engage with other sites in the Network, thus "cloning" visitors, thus SE is able to show degrees of engagement that are real for advertisers and investors. The same unique user becomes a different user when interacting with different sub-sites, and re-targeting can be made based on the different sub-sites and interests for that unique user. we're talking traction and engagement here, and that defines the value of Stack Exchange as a business