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Google News has been redesigned, and its interface is sleek, clean, customisable and universally hated.
One of the main features Google News is touting is news from “diverse perspectives” — meaning that related articles will now feature news from both sides of the aisle. These articles are then grouped together in a card format.
— Bill Mitchell (@mitchellvii) June 25, 2017
But it seems this isn’t the biggest gripe users have with the change: many think the layout is slow, wastes space, and makes it more difficult to consume news quickly.
In the redesign, Google has changed the sidebar to a customisable navigation column so that the categories of news a user is interested are easily accessible. At the top is a new navigation bar with “headlines,” “local” and “for you” sections. The local section lets one add multiple specific locations through which to filter news. The “for you” uses customisable interests to show news best suited to the user.
‘OMG new “Google News” is horrible! Where’s custom search?’
Also included is a “fact check” block that features articles geared towards stories dedicated to finding the truth. These usually feature sources like Snopes and the US Politifact.
Videos and tweets have gained prominence, being labelled with “most referenced” and placed in related coverage cards.
The update works well with US news, but for locally sourced content “related articles” are poorly collected. As of writing, the top card for South Africa was one dedicated to the ANC — the ruling party that drives the majority of political news.
As is customary with any major interface change, users have taken to Twitter to complain about the update.
Some had constructive criticism.
— Fern Hill (@fernhilldammit) June 28, 2017
OMG new “Google News” is horrible! Where’s custom search?
— Jillian (@jilliancyork) June 28, 2017
#googlenews Not a fan of the new design scheme. Requires much more scrolling to get a sense what is happening over multiple topics.
— Jukka Heikka (@jeikka) June 28, 2017
— Richard Lavinthal (@PRforLAW) June 28, 2017
Others had only their anger.
Please give users the option to change to the OLD Google News format! The new one is AWFUL!!!
— onlyinvegas (@CantBeatTrump) June 28, 2017
Whoha Google news just switched layout on me big time,, not so sure I like it…
— Tom Brander (@dartdog) June 27, 2017
— Silvia A. Mansoor (@SilviaMansoor) June 27, 2017
Literally everything about the new Google News update is terrible and pisses me off in a different, but equally furious, way.
— M.T. Bade (@Green_Wolf13) June 27, 2017
Google News suddenly became useless. Everything that was good about it as a news aggregator: gone. Will never use it again. @googlenews
— Cornelia Ravenal (@CoCo2o2o) June 28, 2017