If you've been listening to the news lately, you might have heard that Facebook is now a conduit to fake news, and that Grindr has shared HIV data of their users with third-party companies. You might have also heard about how SESTA/FOSTA can lead to internet censorship. Maybe—if you're lucky— you've also caught wind of the sexual harassment reports that we've been hearing from people working at companies like Uber and Google.
I know. It's pretty shitty.
In Our Responsibilities, I wrote out a list of resources to remind us that being good at programming or designing is not enough in our industry—we also need to be able to take responsibility and to be aware of how our work and actions can affect the world around us.
As the Designer's Code of Ethics puts it:
A designer is first and foremost a human being.
Before you are a designer, you are a human being. Like every other human being on the planet, you are part of the social contract. We share a planet. By choosing to be a designer you are choosing to impact the people who come in contact with your work, you can either help or hurt them with your actions. The effect of what you put into the fabric of society should always be a key consideration in your work.
So here are some things that I've been reading and listening to so far to get a better sense of our impact to other people. It's not much, but I hope you get something out of them. If you have any resources yourself, feel free to share them with me and I can add it to the list!
- Technically Wrong by Sara Wachter-Boettcher (book)
- Weapons of Math Destruction by Cathy O’Neil (book)
- A Designer's Code of Ethics by Mike Monteiro (article)
- Diversity & Inclusion Post-mortem by Erica Baker (video)
- Note To Self by Manoush Zomorodi (podcast)
- IRL Podcast by Veronica Belmont (podcast)
Anyway, tell me what you think!