Word of the moment: "captology"

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Financial Times is reporting on laws intended to crack down on manipulative tactics used by Facebook and other companies to confuse, trick and addict users. The UK is talking about banning "Likes" on Facebook. The US Senate is going after "dark patterns" design -- software designed to make choices beneficial to the company much more likely.

The article uses a word I hadn't heard before: "captology," defined as persuasive technology that exploits human psychology for commercial gain.

Common Sense media lists some of the techniques social networks, games and other sites use to hook kids.

The Financial Times piece is really about legislation. How do you ban persuasion — especially when the techniques are as subtle as a “Like” button or a simple notification?