I have noticed when websites change they almost always wreck things or make it more difficult for no real reason.
[Old man voice] I've been surfing the Internets since 1996 [/Old man voice] and in all that time I've never come across a so-called "improvement" to a website that has actually been an improvement. I've always found myself with lost functionality and lost efficiency. I get the feeling these changes are made by people who want to justify why they're being paid $50,000 a year, and for no other reason.
My only suggestion is bitch and complain as loudly as possible to Netflix. Websites have caved before. Huffington Post launched a new interface last week for Canadian IP addresses that forced us to view only the Canadian version of the site. People condemned it so loudly they made major changes within a few hours, most notably giving users the ability to toggle between the US and Canadian versions. And it's become something of a joke how Facebook often caves under pressure when it introduces a boneheaded "improvement".
But unlike Huffington and Facebook, Netflix relies on your money - tell them they won't be seeing any more of your money and they'll change things back (or do what Yahoo Groups did when it faced a mass mutiny when it changed its interface and give people the option).
Owain Taggart wrote:
Yikes, that is pretty terrible. The info serves as a way for the eyes to have somewhere to go. Without it, it feels like it's just a jumble on the screen. Definitely looks like a case of a redesign breaking usability. I've seen lots of this kind of stuff happen in the past, and it always makes me wonder if those who design websites these days know what they're doing and take into account the usability of a website. When I took webdesign in College, we were always told that usability was key, that without it, people would less likely visit again. Sadly, it seems like a lot of modern site designs don't take into account design rules. Time and again I see perfectly usable websites go through redesigns that make me shake my head. Lifehacker and the gawker websites come to mind; sites that have become too busy in terms of layout for their own good.
I'm a trained journalist, and I see a similar thing with these amateur news blogs. People think just because they can design a website or write news stories that they actually CAN design a website or write news stories. Just as competent journalists have to abide by the rules regarding libel and the use of reliable sources for information, so too there are design rules for layout - print or digital - that need to be followed otherwise it creates a mess.