Changing Landscape of Design

India HCI 2021 workshop Nov 18th 2-5pm IST

The discourse of technological innovation - offering improved technology products at a lower price with a view to effect industry upheaval - is often understood in general terms of digital disruption (Skog et al. 2018). Particularly in the case of social media communication platforms such as WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter that constantly tinker with interface design, privacy features and expansion of utilities, such innovation to maintain market edge normativizes digital disruption. Trouble arises when such platforms, generally celebrated for their potential for advancing democracy through public discourse, are exploited as conduits for misinformation circulation, leading to anti-democratic consequences such as mob violence and politically motivated narratives. The circulation of misinformation by users suggests another disruption of the presumably virtuous uses of technological innovation aimed at improving the human condition and connection. When governments and regulatory bodies call on these platforms to trace the origins of misinformation by breaking encryption or compromising user privacy, such calls to weaken tech design explicitly goes against the security innovations that earned them their market share. What remains constant in this dynamically evolving landscape is the notion of disruption as integral to design, as constituting not its inventive potential but also its own undoing. Using the case of social media developments in India, we invite participants to explore this vital relationship between design and disruption, which may also be seen as an interplay of dynamic creation and destructive perversion of innovation.


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Workshop time and date

Tuesday Nov. 18 2021 14:00-17:00 IST (10.30-13.30 EET).

Workshop structure

Josy Joseph is an award-winning investigative journalist based in New Delhi. The Prem Bhatia Trust elected him India's best political reporter of 2010 'for his scoops and revelations, which include a list of scams that have become familiar names in the political lexicon'. In July 2013, the Ramnath Goenka Foundation run by the Indian Express group awarded him the Journalist of the Year in print media.

  • Workshop intro by Pawan Singh
  • Group activity and discussions

Target audience

  • IT professionals who are designing competitive products

  • Digital interface designers

  • Policy officials who deal with social media regulations

  • Activists and researchers who study the role of mis-information in the society

  • Consumers of social media platforms

Primary objectives

  • Understand the meaning of Disruption

  • Use different lens to unpack disruption

  • Understand spread of misinformation in/through social media

  • Role of design while designing social media platforms

  • Role of industry norms and regulations to tackle misinformation

  • Impact of misinformation on society

Take away

  • Ethics of designing a disruptive digital product

  • Check-list of what impact the product should have

  • Generate mind-set to understand the spread of mis-information