Sunday, December 30, 2012

Why managing a YouTube playlist is painful

YouTube recently changed their web UI - with a cleaner look and emphasis on recommended content and they do a good job of highlighting new features during your first visit.  However, when it came to finding my playlists, that was unnecessarily challenging.

Despite there being only two choices in the left navigation (Guide and More Results), I didn't expect my playlists to be located in a 'guide' and I had to expand the area to see them - I think this area (left, especially given only two items there) should be expanded by default so I can see all of the options right away. 

When I eventually navigated to my Playlist 1, I wanted to delete a few videos but that took seriously too much time.  The visibility of the Edit Playlist button (below) was poor - placed above a brown deleted video notification and the playlist header AND it was colored in black on a dark gray/black gradiated background (there should be more contrast!).  After clicking the button to invoke the edit mode, I had to select checkboxes for each video and then locate a Remove option in an Actions dropdown.  This was too many steps for a simple and frequent task.
The Edit Playlist button (top left) is too hard to find.
I expected hover functionality (a Delete link, since there were some hover options already there) on each of the videos to quickly delete one at a time. And to support multi-select, rather than a trite Actions dropdown, a simple, visible Delete button above the entire list.  The other Actions dropdown options (move to top, move to bottom) can be removed - users can already quickly change the order of videos by way of the useful drag control which also shows up on hover. 

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