Why You Should Never Use Pure Black for Text or Backgrounds (uxmovement.com)
almost 5 years ago from anthony thomas, ux designer
almost 5 years ago from anthony thomas, ux designer
Pure black text and backgrounds with white can cause discomfort for the eye when users read the text over an extended period of time, leading to eye strain.
There are so many factors that dictate contrast ratio, including display technology (IPS vs TN vs OLED etc), screen brightness, screen colour profile and abilities, as well other features like True Tone, automatic brightness adjustment (which can alter more than just brightness), and accessibility settings. You can’t really know how colours are going to look on someone’s display, and that’s okay. There is no one black. There is no one white.
Here’s a good reason to not use pure black: OLED displays have slower response time for pixels that are completely off — changing from off to a colour is slower than changing from one colour to another. The lag is very pronounced on current OLED displays, including the iPhone X and Pixel 2. It’s just how the display tech works. If you scroll a list of black and grey items on a white background, the black items will be out of sync with the grey items.
Can...can I just subscribe to this guy’s comments?
Ha! Thanks. I write articles here. I tweet here.
I am not!
This post is sponsored by Squarespace. A great way to build your new website today. With 24/7 support, there’s always someone on hand to help. Squarespace powers millions of websites across hundreds of industries for people just like you. Use offer code “SELLOUT” for 10% off your first purchase.
/ Podcast Teaser
Interesting, didn’t know about the response times on OLED, do you have a practical example of that? Like a site or app or something where you can see that happening? Obviously i’ll check it out on an iPhone X and an OLED TV :) Thanks!
"Our articles are based on research..." Hmmm...
You're promoting an article (that you wrote yourself) that does not cite ONE scholarly article and you think its OK to have a title as demanding as "Why YOU Should NEVER Use Pure Black for Text or Backgrounds"?
How much time did you spend on your literature review, given that your "references" only include an uncorrelated survey, an ambiguous wiki page, a broken link, and a color contrast tool and spec? Your conclusions are based on nothing but speculation. Why should anyone accept your non-peer-reviewed blog post as scientific truth?
I don't plan on reading your 234 articles, but after reading the latest few, I am actually concerned that there are "UX Designers" in the world using your website as guidance. In my opinion, this website has been developed to clickbait/drive traffic to its 32 sponsors — not to provide real research for the UX Design community in general.
EDIT: I'm curious, after writing 234 "research-based" blog posts, how many HCI experiments have you conducted and/or how many publications have you authored/co-authored? Your name/work did not appear in ACM or IEEE after performing a quick search.
I'm also curious as to why your posts are not categorized using the'Show DN' tag when you're clearly promoting your own work.
Great questions, but first off I can't help but notice the great pain and suffering you are enduring from my article. You said that you're concerned about the well-being of UX designers in the world. Well, I'm concerned about your well-being. I'd like to know what specific ailments my dangerous article has caused you. If you are feeling faint or dizzy please call 911.
There's a rise of virtue signalers who masquerade as phony moral crusaders today, so I want to make sure you are not one of them. Many of these types like to compete and bash other people's accomplishments to boost their self-esteem. This is not cool and it hurts the community. We are all designers who should be supporting each others work, not competing with each other to make ourselves feel more superior than another.
Since my articles aren't very good, perhaps you could show everyone the far better articles you've written so we can see how a true guru master writes like. Please post it soon, as I'm eager to learn from you.
Anthony's infantile reply has been reported. FFS
Is not that you are a bad person Anthony. It is that you just, people who write these kinds of articles, do clickbait stuff. My boss or my employee will find it on google after a 5 minutes search. He will think this is a breaking problem-solving for his designer or the design team and will make a better product if we follow along. He will share with me, the designer. Or with us, the team. And then tell us to do the same. "Follow the articles boys they have the research, we do not have to do it."
I like how your 'Popular Articles' content uses pure black for their titles.
I use #000 all the time. This article is not informative enough to stop me. Sounds like speculation
I copied Google and use #212121 for my black text. Good enough for them, good enough for me. :)
Where the design community meets.
Designer News is a large, global community of people working or interested in design and technology.
Login to Comment
You'll need to log in before you can leave a comment.Login
New accounts can leave comments immediately, and gain full permissions after one week.Register now