The UX monthly newsletter by Tamara Sredojevic for people on a mission.

February 2021
(1,843,029,0942 million days to go until we can all get a vaccine)


Since dark patterns were made illegal in 2019, it appears to have lead the relationship between language and design to become even more sneaky and strategic. Graeme from Prototypr tells you all you need to know about that and even mentions Thea as the ethical creative collective to work with!

Speaking of Thea, we're working on our first official project involving no less than four of our freelancers: Natalia, Sasha, Coni & I. Time travel & fashion are involved, a lot of language switching between Russian, French & English as well as cultural differences clashing every day. It's like Sokurov's The Russian Ark, but more fun.

You know about Natalia, right? She's the magic hands behind Thea's collage illustrations and our special triple threat: great at graphic design, writing copy and creating visual and video content. She took some time to tell us all about the various Mexican jungles she grew up in on Insta.


Shit's broken: why we need mindful notifications

Push notifications disrupt our flow on a daily basis. You pick up your phone to check the time and the first thing you see is that you've received 9 messages from 4 different people waiting for your response. In this article, Clo is delivering her best methods for designers and users to take back control of their lives (and sanity).

Websites? Yep, they're bad for the planet too

Isn't it ironic as a digital designer that I'm here to tell you that digital isn't the answer to (all) our prayers? I know, I know. But what this article on digital sustainability means is that our work online does require some thinking before we blow up our carbon footprint (again). An interesting take for anyone designing or maintaining a website.

Not all disabilities are visible

When talking about designing accessible websites and products, we rarely think about invisible disabilities, those that imply mental health challenges. As Cat Noone says it best in this very personal article, "the real problem to fix exists outside of 'accessibility'. It’s the shame we put on others, the systems we build, and who we choose to truly see as human beings that exist on this planet and are no different than you."

UX tips

Don't bother copying other brands' design

It always sounds like a great idea at first. You see someone's website, it looks amazing and you want to be just as successful. But copying won't work unless you understand the psychology behind those design decisions. What you may do instead is understand the root cause of why something works (or doesn't) so you can adapt it to your problem and build great experiences. Tip: that's a UX designer job (wink, wink).

Don't (just) rely on your gut feeling

As an intuitive feeler, I rely on my instincts a lot. But that can only get me so far. If you really want to build something that solves someone else's problem, you have to prioritise being aware of those needs rather than what takes your fancy. Tip: that's a UX researcher job (I know a few if you need that sort of service).

Tell us what you do in plain language

Many brands I've worked with struggle to define what they do in plain language. It isn't to say that what you do is simple to explain, but who else is going to do that? You should know how to make it compelling for others to quickly figure out what's in it for them. Tip: that's a copywriter job (I also know a few).

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