Facebook is life. So when you get a message saying ‘Your account is blocked!’ you will be understandably out of breath. Gasping, praying, eager to tell Facebook that its really You! Do not pull the plug! And you would want to do it in a millisecond.
But you are on mobile and your connection is slow, and the screens take ages to load (it’s not ages, but it seems so when you are fighting to stay alive). The worst possible thing that you can encounter is buttons designed for a calm and quiet scenario.
I was unfortunate enough just now to be in this situation. Why? because Facebook decided that my Mackbook Pro (which has FB integration, by the way) is a device that does not belong to me! No issues. I love a system that does recognise a new device and takes care of the subscribers. But as I explained, I had a millisecond to act.
I get a prompt on my mobile. And the screen said that if i wanted to start account recovery I must press “Continue”. Yes, yes. I want to. Get on with it… I pressed it. No reaction. I pressed it again. No movement. 1,2,3 Clear! Another press and I realised that all was lost! During my multiple presses the next screen had arrived confirming what had happened, with two optional buttons. One to say that I do not recognise the device in question, and the other to say that I recognise it, and Facebook should not go locking the account.
But it was too late. The button that said that I do not recognise the device was EXACTLY in the same position as the continue button on the previous, seemingly non-responsive screen.
Luckily there was a way out. I was provided one last chance to change my password and everything went quiet on the western front.
Lesson for UI designers – even the clever ones, such as those at Facebook – Put yourself in the shoes of those in a fix. Think about the spotty network. Think about a different screen layout. And help those who are so close to the end and bring them back to life…