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YouTube redesign greeted by shouts, groans

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(Read caption) YouTube is changed! I want my old YouTube back, right this moment! Please, YouTube. Please.

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In January, YouTube began beta testing a new site layout, which reps said would simplify the viewing experience, and strip the Google-owned site of all the noisy clutter it has accumulated in recent years. Today, the YouTube redesign was rolled out – and it's definitely a doozy, affecting everything from the rating system (the new YouTube replaces the star rating system with a simple thumbs up or down) to the recommended videos column.

"As you may know, we're in the midst of one of the largest redesigns in YouTube's history: we're simplifying the look and functionality of the video page," YouTube software engineer Igor Kofman wrote on the company blog. "That's the page you see whenever a video plays, and this redesign is about going 'back to basics,' focusing attention on the reason why you came to YouTube in the first place – the video – and all the ways you engage with content and creators."

Kofman said the changes were in large part spurred on by comments from regular users. "We know this is a big change, but we hope you'll find the new page to be an improvement to your YouTube experience and to be a reflection of what you've told us thus far through your usage of the site and your comments to us," he wrote. Included in the redesign: a new "highlights view" for the comments section, a fresh playlist interface, and improved embed controls.


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