New YouTube layout, no thumbnails

About a week ago, YouTube suddenly stopped showing thumbnails for the videos in the search list and for the boxes embedded in video at the end of a clip.

This is affecting Windows, Linux, Android and Android TV (the last 2 the YouTube app).

I’m guessing they had some sort of re-design and they have moved the video previews/thumbnails to a blacklisted domain. Not sure which one though.

The videos themselves still play.

Google is well known to roll things out selectively and/or to do A/B testing. I have experienced that they have changed the landing page, with fewer larger icons (not the right name when they’re this large). I haven’t noticed any changes elsewhere.

Not that it will help, but here’s what I get in Firefox with some privacy enhancing plugins. (I don’t have a YT account, so I obviously never log in, and I clear my cookies and such often.) This is Firefox running full screen at 1080p (I resized the images down a bit to make the fit better here)

YTLandingPage

YTSearchTWiT

Seems to be fine for me. I’m still getting thumbnails in search and the links to other videos at the end of videos.

It seems to be a change in the domain that is issuing the thumbnails, which seems to be blacklisted by my DNS. Unfortunately, the sourcecode for the site isn’t that easy to decipher, to work out which domain they are using.

I think it is probably “i.ytimg.com”, I’ll have to have a look this evening. Not sure which malicious site list the site is on.

Speaking of new YouTube design, I wish I could switch off the auto play of the thumbnails on my Fire Stick and Android TV box whenever I highlight a video. It’s very annoying.

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You get the same Korean video popping up when I search for TWiT. I don’t have the TWiT suoer feed subscribed so tend to search for twit live whenever I want to watch live.

Is there a reason why you don’t just bookmark https://twit.tv/live ?

I use the app on my phone or TV

I don’t know enough about YT to know how often the URL’s for live streams change, but I guess you’d have to bookmark the live feed and look it up again if it ever changed. Right now it’s https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VLdakuogviE

I say that simply because I find YT search is frequently abysmal.

Easy enough to search. The searches are cached so it’s a couple of taps on phone. Can then play in the background too as I have YouTube Premium. Sometimes I listen on TuneIn.

Perhaps swapping to a DNS that doesn’t block and using a HOSTS list you can manage would be a better option.

Also for a more private YT on android
https://newpipe.schabi.org

I use Pi-Hole with about a dozen blocklists. I just need to whitelist the domain, once I’ve found it.

Now that it is added, it works again. It would be interesting to know if Google changed something and started using a domain that was on my blocklist or whether Google has been using it for extra tracking and it has landed on a blocklist…