Eric over at backward five gives the new Lycos video playlist tool, “MIX,” a big “meh.” I do like having a bookmarklet to tag videos across sites for assembly into a sequence, if only as a personal tool. But there are plenty of options for that, and to my knowledge, MIX is the only one that’s caused problems with tabbed browsing in Firefox on Windows. But then, Lycos Cinema, their other broadband video offering, only supports Internet Explorer.
Lycos, which went from bearish to bullish on broadband content over the course of six years, is hoping to raise their profile as a destination portal. But how this ties into their deal with video search site blinkx is beyond me, since the search functionality isn’t plugged into MIX or Cinema.
You have to register with Lycos if you want to comment on, chat about, rate or ‘favorite’ mixes, which involves one of those “please sign up with our sponsors” pages that I’ve found infuriating since I started scanning the checkboxes to make sure I wasn’t opting into something since, oh, 1999. It’s easy enough to add the bookmarklet and bookmark videos to your library. But if you don’t already have a ‘mix’ set up, you can’t create one on the fly. In terms of playback, users need to click to progress to the next video in a mix, unlike in YouTube playlists that progress automatically.
MIX may be useful for putting together a single playlist with a bunch of friends, but I couldn’t find any other functionality that feels particularly original or easier to use, compared to our experience with vod:pod. Personally, I wouldn’t bank my business future on the technology behind putting New Wave music video compilations together. Though it did work for Lloyd Dobler.