Ethics and design isn’t new.

I’ve noticed a new trend recently in the design world, and it surrounds a fantastic new world of Ethics.

I’m stunned that everyone is talking about Ethics in design, like it’s somehow a new idea that has entered the consciousness.

I’ll stop the hyperbole for a brief second. When I first started down the path of User Experience, I looked to a mentor, named David Bozovich, who taught me the importance of accessibility, and not just from an ethical standpoint, but from a business standpoint. He had previously worked for the U.S. Copyright office, so he had a pretty good well formed opinion about the subject.

He taught me about why it was important to think about a design from the viewpoint of others. And not just from a user experience perspective, but the perspective from a socio-economic point of view. We were working at U-Haul, the world of moving, so how could you not think about people moving around, especially in the timeframe from 2008–2011, and the emotions involved?

Later in my career, I took on the task of rebranding the TSA because an image refresh wasn’t enough. To cause true scalable change, you need to effect the behavior of an organization.

If ethics are about the moral principles that govern behavior, then the fields of user experience, branding, and graphic design are inextricably linked.

I welcome all of my design colleagues that are finally arriving to this conclusion. Let’s improve this world, together.