Some of you will by now have seen the new BBC home page with its movable and customisable sections which can be tailored to your preferences. Fiddleability rules!
When I first looked at the beta version I wasn’t convinced; it looked a bit “play-school” and some of the option weren’t too well thought out. But it’s now much better and if you reduce the text size a notch it fits together pretty well to give you a selection of news items of the sort you want without the stuff you dont.
I can see this becoming the defalt home page for a lot of people, and maybe not just those in the UK either! Depite the seemingly universal dumbing down all over the media the public still trust the BBC in a way that applies to very few other organisations. So the question is, will this take some traffic away from Google?
I suspect it might, particularly if the search facility was made more prominent and the “All the Web” option promoted a bit more. It’s ages since I tried any competitive searches on this engine – in fact I’d forgotten if it was still their own engine or if they were using someone else’s results – but I tried a few queries today and was quite pleased with the results. (they must be good, I was in the top ten for “search engine optimisation scotland” 😉 ) If I have time I’ll try and remember to do a few more and compare them to Google and Yahoo.
If the BBC really wanted to push this I suspect they could get a reasonable share of the market. Who do you trust more – MSN, Ask, or good old Auntie Beeb? Well, that’s third place pretty well assured then! Of course what they would be allowed to do with it is another matter; they can hardly start up a BBC adwords-style operation can they?