Pet Please #116: YouTube’s New Cinematic Format

The first time, I barely noticed. I honestly have no idea when YouTube switched to their new format. I probably thought I had clicked a button to reformat the screen and that it would go away the next time.

The second time, I liked what I saw, but again, I had my doubts that it was permanent.

The third time, I realized that the new format would change the way I interacted with YouTube from then on in a really, really good way.

In case you haven’t noticed, YouTube’s new cinematic format gets rid of pretty much everything that used to make YouTube annoying. No more needless white space around the screen. No more small screen by default. No more recommended videos (i.e., ads) on the right of the screen.

Now pretty much all you get is video. Big, brilliant, easy to interact with video. I love it.

Here’s how I really knew that YouTube was on to something: A few days ago, I realized that I no longer watched embedded YouTube videos. They seemed insubstantial compared to watching the video on YouTube itself. My instinct had changed such that I clicked on the “take me to YouTube” video every time I started to watch an embedded video.

This is brilliant for YouTube. Instead of relying solely on ads playing at the front of videos, they now give people more of a reason to click through to watch videos on YouTube instead of where they’re embedded, meaning they can sneak in other ads on the screen.

Perhaps this is a sign that I watch too many YouTube videos. But regardless, I’m glad YouTube made the change. Glad enough to make it an official pet please.

What do you think of the new format?


3 thoughts on “Pet Please #116: YouTube’s New Cinematic Format”

  1. Jamey, I think this is because YouTube remembers you watching videos in Theater Mode since you signed in for your Google account. If you are not sign on and clear Cookies regularly, this mode will not stay. Google knows you through the Cookies. Anyway, I feel with the new format I’m being “forced” to watch a whole clip of something and not get distracted by other pictures of videos. Definitely more focused and the video seems “bigger”.


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