Extraneous labels, ignored conventions

Signs of Bad Design

A big part of content design is labelling interactive elements. But you don’t always need labels.

This is one such interactive element” from the real world. You’ve probably locked hundreds of doors with this kind of latch without the help of a label. That’s because you’ve internalized a design convention found in most locks, perhaps without even realizing it:

So why the labels? Because this lock was installed poorly. When execution of a design bucks established conventions, it jostles user expectations. It takes an extraneous (a sign, if you will) to smooth over the experience.


More Signs of Bad Design