YouTube has announced that it is going to implement a lot of changes to its UI in the coming months, a process that the video sharing platform has called “spring cleaning.” Some of these changes are based on usage data and usability tests, but YouTube is also directly soliciting suggestions from its visitors on how to improve the end-user experience. Google is utilizing its Product Ideas app to collect ideas and filter them through collaborative voting.
The resulting list, which currently totals around 450 ideas, is so far dominated by numerous demands to ditch Flash in favor of HTML5 web video, with the most popular one receiving more than 4,300 votes of support. Why is open video so popular, surpassing even the suggestion to reorganize the cluttered YouTube home page? Because the idea got championed by an open source advocate, who rallied people up on Reddit .com. Still, the notion to support HTML5 isn’t completely lost on Google: YouTube started to experiment with playing video sans Flash directly in modern browsers last spring.
Other suggestions made by users include changes to YouTube’s ratings system, better protection against unwarranted DMCA take-down notices and an option to buy and sell downloads of clips streamed on YouTube. Users of the site have another two weeks to add their own ideas and vote on other people’s suggestions.