Ineffective Information Design using Youtube

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I decided for this exercise to use the vastly popular website, Youtube. For many years youtube's layout stayed static, changing very little. In recent years, however, they have changed their layout numerous times, and have come up with one most recently that I believe is a fantastic example of ineffective information design.

What I'll concede to youtube is that all of the information is there, somewhere, and if it's not you can search for what you're looking for, but I still suggest that the problem with the website stems from the designer and not the audience.

The prime flaw with the website stems from the hierarchy of information. Youtube allows users to search for videos using keywords or titles, and once they have found what they are looking for it shows them the author of said video, and other videos that this author may have. In addition, youtube offers a function that I find fantastic, and that is "Subscribing" to these video authors so that their newest videos show up on a list so that you don't miss them.

The most recent update to the youtube homepage starts users out (logged in ones that is) looking at a list of videos recommended for them by youtube based on their history of viewings. This list replaces the aforementioned list, comprised of individually selected "subscriptions", which is basically saying to users of the website that what you told us you want to see is not nearly as important as what we think you'd like to see. That's a huge designer flaw.




I definitely agree with you. I had never thought about youtube that way before, but I agree that they try to tell people which videos are important enough to be watched rather than letting us choose what we want to see and that is definitely a designer flaw.

Youtube problems

The problem with YouTube it is not categorized to filter all videos posted on the site. One may spend hours randomly searching for Youtube videos but not for accurate information. I agree, the data mining tactic to get match a users preferences is flawed, and is a marketing ploy to capture a larger audience for companies willing to advertise.