Everything AOL touches turns to crap.
I think that the idea behind AOL is simple: make things easy to use and available to everybody. That’s not a bad thought in general, but AOL manages to do it in a way that ticks me off… every time.
So now that Google and AOL are moving past first base, some of the ugly details are starting to come out. For example, this post on Slashdot that suggests that they will be adding logos and graphics to a lot of the advertising that is shown on the Google sites.
This concerns me greatly. I don’t care for advertising any more than anybody else, but I recognize it’s value and understand that in today’s society it is essential to sell products. However, Google has always done it so much better with the text ads. They’re non-obtrusive, easy to deal with, and sometimes very useful. I can pay attention to them or not, and I feel like I get a choice.
Now, I don’t want to start knocking on this change until I see it go live, but I will say that I’m worried about the direction this is going. Yes, Google is a public company now, and they need to increase shareholder revenue… but, try and do so without ticking off your core user base… please?