New YouTube Layout Now Universal: Users Not Pleased

    March 8, 2012

User reaction has been tepid, at best, to YouTube’s across-the-board implementation of its new page layout. In a blog post, the online video website announced that starting March 8 all YouTube homepage and channel pages will be converted to their redesigned page layout.

The company cites this data as supporting the new layout:

  • Daily unique visits to channels have increased by 60 percent since December 2011
  • Daily net subscriptions are up 50 percent since December 2011
  • Before we look at some of the feedback, here’s a brief overview of the new changes to YouTube channels.

    First off, every channel will now be organized into one of four templates. Page creators can choose from among Creator, Blogger, Network, or Everything template options.

    YouTube has also updated its Channel Feed, similar to the Facebook newsfeed. With this update, all the videos uploaded to a channel will show up in the Channel Feed, so potential subscribers will get a full preview of the channel’s content before they decide whether to subscribe. And if you do subscribe, feeds from your subscriptions will show up on your homepage. Stalking videos has never been easier.

    Also included in the latest slew of updates are an improved Featured tab with a search feature and even more templates, as well as increased customizability of the Favorites feature. Users can also now link their +Page or Google+ profiles to their YouTube channels.

    Despite the data indicating a positive user response to the new layouts, YouTube users on Twitter have been vocalizing their largely negative impression of the mandatory new update.

    Some have mixed feelings:

    I have mixed opinions on the new YouTube channel layout. There are certain features I like, and some I don’t. #YouTube 11 minutes ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    And others are embracing the new layout’s ubiquity:

    Welcome to your new YouTube channel < new layout for everyone 1 hour ago via Buffer ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    But the majority are criticizing its appearance, its functionality, its general bugginess, or the lack of user choice in keeping the old layout.

    The new youtube layout is ugly and confusing and it scares me 26 minutes ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    I applaud YouTube on their new channel layout. All that pesky customisation was getting in the way of having a lifeless, generic page. 1 hour ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    Whoever thought of the new YouTube channel layout has the creative mind of an infant. Also it is as functional as a COD game. 1 hour ago via TweetDeck ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    New Youtube layout has hit my channel in the end: settings lost, hidden data displayed & the playlists order is all messed up. This is awful 1 hour ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    WOW i have to change everything on my new stupid #YouTube layout!! #FML All my information is messed up and is totally Fucked!!! Lame! :( 21 minutes ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    @YouTube The new layout is terrible! Why not give us an option to keep the old layout? #Fail #EpicFail #FacePalm #Smh 5 minutes ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    @YouTube why do we need to have the new youtube layout, it should be chooseable between the old one and the new one ! i hate the new one 1 hour ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    It should be chooseable, indeed.

    Of course, unhappy people are often more vocal than people with unruffled feathers, and users do tend to react negatively when a change first appears. But it will at least be hard for YouTube to ignore the relative lack of enthusiasm for its latest update. Will @YouTube listen to the complaints of its followers and restore freedom and order to their channel pages? Who knows.

    I bet the negativity tapers off as YouTube fixes a few bugs and people learn how to navigate the new layout. Come next update, they may even want to hold onto the layout they hate so much right now. Only time will tell.

    Until then, maybe resignation is the best medicine for these unhappy users:

    Well, just going to have to make the best of this new YouTube layout. 31 minutes ago via Mobile Web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

    For news on another recent YouTube update that’s not so controversial, click here.