In what’s deemed as yet another typical YouTube “If it’s not broken, let’s fix it” move, the folks in the video universe have decided to bring in some changes. These changes are expected to drastically change the equation between the content creators, the viewers and YouTube. For starters, gone are the days with fancy background designs, instead YouTube has opted out for a simpler layout. The rationale is that the new layout will present a uniform look for a channel, irrespective of the kind of screen the viewer might be using. This makes perfect sense since more and more viewers access YouTube though their smart phones than any other device.

The changes are more than just superficial. YouTube is trying to leverage on the Comscore metrics which show that while total views have dropped from the highs of last year, the amount of time spent on YouTube has increased. So the focus has changed from garnering more views to getting more subscribers which is happy news for any channel. So they have added the subscription guide to be displayed on all the channel pages in the hope it’ll convince the viewers to stick around longer. YouTube might also be looking to share its advertising revenues with content creators, with the payment being dependent on number of views and subscribers.

While it might keep the content creators happy, we can hardly say the same for viewers. The channels may charge for access to special content, early access to videos or subscriptions for video access.  YouTube better be set for some major rants coming their way with this controversial move i.e. paid subscription channels. The common opinion seems to be that unless the quality of content improves drastically (enough to compete with TV), it would be hard pressed to convince anyone to pay for watching YouTube. We’ll just have to wait and see how things pan out.