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YouTube Creator Liaison Rene Ritchie smiling with creators at OpenSauce

Rene’s Top Five on YouTube: June 20, 2024 edition

It’s event season and that means your friendly neighborhood Liaison isn’t just scouring YouTube, X/Twitter, Instagram, Threads, and Discord for news and views, but zapping between cities, stages, and collectives, bringing YouTube and creators together to share ideas, inspiration, feedback, and best practices all in glorious service of letting the absolute toppest of notchiest cat videos flow! (And also vlogs, STEM, challenge, tech, travel, comedy, craft, and all the other videos as well, of course!) So let’s actually do this!

William Osman, Rene Ritchie and Amjad Hanif at OpenSauce

🤖 OpenSauce took over the Cow Palace in San Francisco, melding the best of Maker with the smartest of STEM creator resulting in dozens of panels, hundreds of exhibits, and thousands of delighted enthusiasts and fans! YouTube’s VP of Creator Product joined OpenSauce’s William Osman on stage with yours truly to chat all about building businesses and audiences on the platform, while Adam Savage tested, Mark Rober crunched, Nerds forged, Jacklyn Dallas collided worlds, Ludwig yarded, Safety Third put safety first (for once!), and in between the exoskeletons, battle-bots, lasers, lightsabers, hydroblades, and other assorted magics of science, we had one of the biggest and campiest #YouTubeCreatorCollectives ever! Sometimes — oftentimes! — when you’re a creator, even though you’re pulling thousands or millions of views per video, you can feel separated and alone. It’s events and collectives like these that really bring us together so we can learn, share, bond, and connect. They make literally all the difference. (We also recorded a bunch of new Creator Advice Shorts, so look for those soon!)

🏢 YouTube HQ hosted the OpenSauce organizers and friends, William Osman Kevin the Backyard Scientist, Allen Pan, Up and Atom, Michael Reeves, Emily the Engineer, and Tibees for lunch, a feedback session with our chief product officer Johanna, VP of engineering Scott, and head of creator product Amjad, and yes — a Creator Insider Podcast recording! Oftentimes YouTube knows what it builds but not how creators will really perceive or use it. And creators know what we use but not really how or why it was built. That can lead to a lot of assumptions, and there’s nothing like bringing the creators of YouTube together with YouTube creators to turn those assumptions into insights and opportunities. It’s just so beyond valuable for everyone!

🗞️ So much news! This week’s Creator Insider Newsflash has Conor bring us the latest updates, like the in-Studio editor now being available for 6+ hr videos, a new AI comment topics experiment for Shorts, multi-select for published comments, an update on Shorts titles on Android, and Shopping in Korea. The YouTube Creators Roundup has Daniel looping us in on Thumbnail Test & Compare, timestamps for Yellow Icons, Posts for more creators, and Studio payment info in all currencies. And the YouTube Blog details a new experiment around notes from viewers. So, for example, if someone makes a video reporting I was disintegrated by a freak comet strike in Abitibi-Témiscamingue, in the near-ish future a small handful of eligible contributors could offer up a note explaining I’m actually quite alive, safe, and never anywhere near there, and if the third-party raters and — importantly! — bridging-based algorithm all find it broadly helpful, clear, and neutral, those who’d have missed me could just eye-roll so hard and move on to their next watch!

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🙋Q&A: “Why is YouTube always rolling out new features ‘over the coming weeks’ and not just giving them to everyone all at once?” I can’t speak to every possible reason why staging feature launches makes sense but the one I’m most familiar with from a variety of places I’ve worked over the years is pretty simple — there is no amount of internal or even beta testing that can equal millions or more users hitting the code. So, by staging launches, you have the opportunity to watch, look for any unexpected issues or results, figure them out as early and as fast as possible, so that by the time more and more people get it, they have the best and smoothest experience with it possible.

📈 Tip of the Week: To really get the most out of your thumbnails across features and devices, you really want to make sure you’re uploading them at the highest resolution possible. 720p at the very least, 1080p ideally. If you’re using the new Thumbnail Test & Compare, you’ll want to make sure all the thumbnails you’re uploading, be it two or three, are all the highest resolution possible. That way, they’ll not only look great close up on a phone, but on big screen TVs as well. (Bonus tip: Always look at your thumbnails super small on the phone, and far away at TV distance, and if they’re not clean, clear, and legible, go back and make the simpler, bolder, and as glanceable as you possibly can!)

Now get back to the contenting!

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