In design trust is the active discussion. The user should be able to trust us, and they need to be aware they trust us since there has been a sense of lost trust in technology what with sneaky dealings with data. But all this desire to create trust, through transparency and empathy and all the other magical solutions that research through design will show us, it still appears to me as manipulative. What is more treacherous than building a trust that is formulated in the an aim of what is will give us (the producer) a better standing.
Take for instance, safety in construction. Over and over safety is listed as the number one priority for workers. There are training videos, seminars, lectures. But safety to one individual can be vastly difference from another. Safety can mean sacrificing one risk for another, say standing under a precarious object to escape heat stroke on a hot day. These specific situations seem to the moments of empathetic research design strives for. But when a company requires economic growth, is tied up in liabilities, and maintain a system, those individualistic reasonings become meaningless. Safety for the company over safety for the individual.
Designing for trust, but who are we trusting? Trust is meaningless without partnership, equal risk, and control. Because trust is representative of a gifted release of control. I trust you, and therefore I give myself up to you with a perceived notion you'll give me back something worthy.
Trust is a tool and it can be designed for, but to design for a lack of abuse for trust you need to design equity, balance and most importantly the opportunity to regain control.