Inclusive user account playbook

Most people know that digital platforms, such as Facebook, collect personal data about their users. When setting up user accounts, platforms ask users to choose various preferences which are not necessarily inclusive. These options often misrepresent gender and sexual orientation of users, which disproportionately affects the LGBTIQ+ population. Three researchers tackled this issue and came up with an inclusive user account playbook.

Creating a user account is one thing, creating a profile is another. A user account has demographic information about the user’s preferences or interests. This can apply to user groups as well.

Two rainbow flags indicating the LGBTIQ+ community.

The User Account Playbook is structured as an online learning tool on “how to”. It begins with instructions on how to use the guide followed by an overview of the content. There are three key ideas underpinning the guide. Understand the social issues related to LGBTIQ+ and user accounts; design with these in mind; and implement inclusive practices across the organisation.

This Playbook will equip you with knowledge on creating Inclusive User Account Experiences for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning+ (LGBTQ+) Community .

Banner for the Playbook to be Proud of. Pale purple with white text.

The problems the playbook aims to solve are related to how data is collected and used, and not relying on LGBTIQ+ co-workers to “educate” them. It also aims to challenge industry norms and design with and LGBTIQ+ users. The video below does not have captions.

The playbook is the result of a study of digital platforms such as Facebook. The title is, A Playbook To Be Proud of: LGBTQ+ Inclusive User Account Design Guide.

From the abstract

Digital platforms utilize data collection processes to assess demographic data about their users through user account creation. These platforms require users to select preferences that provide options which oftentimes misrepresent gender and sexual orientation identities of users. This disproportionately affecting the LGBTQ+ population.

This research uses academic literature that focus on LGBTQ+ inclusivity, and surveys and interviews from LGBTQ+ technology users. The authors detail their thoughts on a Facebook user account case study.

Product team experiences about work flows surrounding inclusion informed the creation of the digital playbook that rests at the following link: Implications for this work lie in the possibility for impactful industry change within company cultures and individuals for the benefit of LGBTIQ+ users of technology.

Accessibility Toolbar