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Using annotations to change the world

By Dror Shimshowitz

Senior Product Manager

The YouTube for Good team is always looking for ways to turn video views into action -- like dollars donated, petitions signed, and laws changed. So today, we’re excited to announce a new way to use your videos to spur action and give back.

In April, we announced the ability to crowdsource funds for creative projects with video annotations linking to Kickstarter and Indiegogo. Now we want to help you fundraise and raise awareness for causes you care about by teaming up with Causes,, RocketHub and You can now add annotations to your videos that send viewers directly to projects on these sites, which all use the power of crowds to create social change.

We’ve already seen some great YouTube creators do their part to give back. For example, the VlogBrothers (John and Hank Green) organize the YouTube community to upload videos and fundraise for their favorite causes every December. This event has become known as Project for Awesome because so many people participated that the videos actually took over the YouTube homepage in a "flurry of awesomeness." And YouTube comedian Kevin Wu, aka KevJumba, has been using YouTube to raise awareness and donating 100% of his Jumbafund channel’s ad revenue to build a school in Kenya with The Supply, a non-profit supporting education.

We hope annotations help you support the causes you care about, from encouraging services for veterans to helping Kenyan youth preserve wildlife to teaching students about electricity to ending seal slaughter. To use the feature, go to your Video Manager, select a video, click “Edit” and select Annotations. You’ll see the following screen, with an option to link to one of these sites. You can find more information on annotations in our help center.