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Google Video Replaces Google Groups

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Google Video Replaces Google GroupsRemember Usenet? If not, ask your father and he'll tell you that Usenet was (and still is) the NNTP-based technology used to post messages online. For many years it operated much like the old bulletin boards. I would use my character-based terminal to post and read messages. Then a colleague of mine introduced me to Dejanews. Realizing the eclipsing nature of the Web, Dejanews had created a Web interface to interact with Usenet. Once I got on it, there was no going back.

A few years later Google bought Dejanews, and Dejanews became Google Groups. I liked it even better now. If I were searching for something on Google I could quickly click on the "Groups" link to search Usenet for the same term. But all that changed a couple of weeks ago when google started to peddle its new Video service and Groups was relegated to a new javascript box to appear when someone clicks on "more". Now going from Web search to Groups search takes two clicks.

Yes, I am whining, but why not? Two clicks is twice as many as a single click and over a period of time they add up. Plus I'm still trying to deprogram myself from clicking on the position where "Groups" used to be. Why take that convenience away from us to push some new service?

Google claims that placing the "Video" link on top has brought their video site a great deal of traffic. I don't dispute that, I count myself as one of those people who visited the video site and watched a few clips, but that's hardly a reason to alienate users of their other services.

I have to assume that Google's rationale of booting "Groups" from the top links arise from their goal of keeping their pages as clean and tidy as possible. But now they are sacrificing function for form and that's hardly sane. Let's face the reality Google guys. You are expanding your services and garnering new users fast. You are building a mega-site in Oregon to handle all the traffic coming your way. It's okay to have a few more links on the your pages. Don't go getting bashful now. Bring back the "Groups" link. Really, I don't mind it at all.

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