Co-Speculating on Dark Scenarios and Unintended Consequences of a Ubiquitous(Ly) Augmented Reality

Eghtebas, Chloe and Klinker, Gudrun and Boll, Susanne and Koelle, Marion
Proceedings of the 2023 ACM Designing Interactive Systems Conference
The vision of a ‘metaverse’ may soon bring a ubiquitous(ly) Augmented Reality (UAR) delivering context-aware, geo-located, and continuous blends of real and virtual elements into reach. This paper draws on speculative design to explore, question, and problematize consequences of AR becoming pervasive. Elaborating on Desjardin et al.’s bespoke booklets, we co-speculate together with 12 globally dispersed participants. Each participant received a custom-made design workbook containing pictures of their immediate surroundings, which they elaborated on in situated brainstorming activities. We present an integration of their speculative ideas and lived experiences in 3 overarching themes from which 7 ‘dark’ scenarios caused by UAR were formed. The Scenarios are indicative of deceptive design patterns that can (and likely will be) devised to misuse UAR, and anti-patterns that could cause unintended consequences. These contributions enable the timely discussion of potential antidotes and to which extent they can mitigate imminent harms of UAR.
Association for Computing Machinery
DIS '23