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YouTube

  • Ellen DeGeneres, Katy Perry and other stars debuting free YouTube shows

    YouTube, seemingly reinvigorated by its website's visual refresh and the ridiculous advertising potential of its platform, has announced a slew of "exclusive" shows with pop culture's top brass. "We’re thrilled to announce that beginning later this year, some of the biggest YouTube creators and Hollywood names will be featured in seven new series on YouTube -- bringing more can't-get-enough-of and can't-find-anywhere-else shows to everyone, everywhere," explains Robert Kyncl, YouTube's chief business officer. The company's planning an initial run of seven series, starring cultural superstars, people you might've heard of, or Katy Perry. Ellen DeGeneres will host a "twice-a-week series built just for...

  • YouTube’s website is a-changing: here’s what you need to know

    YouTube is finally polishing its dated, tired and inflexible website layout to better suit the needs of its more than one billion users. The company updated the world in a blog post this week, detailing its "redesign of the desktop experience that highlights your favourite videos and creators while making YouTube easier and more fun to use". If you're pining for an interface change this very instance, you might need to take a seat. The Google-owned company is only rolling out these chances to select individuals during a feedback and bug-quashing stage. You might be able to access a few features,...

  • DaddyOFive owners lose custody of two kids following child abuse claims

    After YouTube channel DaddyOFive, owned by Mike and Heather Martin, was accused of child abuse and deleted its entire video history, many probably thought that that would be the end of the story. But nope. On Monday, a video emerged on YouTube announcing that two of Mike and Heather Martin's children featuring in prior DaddyOFive videos, namely Cody and Emma Martin, were handed back to their biological mother, Rose Hall. The video also features Hall's lawyer, Tim Conlon. "Emma and Cody are with me," Hall announces in the video. "I have emergency custody. They're doing good. They're getting back to their playful selves,"...

  • YouTube puts LGBTQ+ content back on Restricted Mode

    Last month, YouTube's family-friendly Restricted Mode caused an uproar after YouTubers realised it was blocking LGBTQ+ content. The mode is meant to be used as an option for schools, libraries and parents who don't want children accessing "mature content." But YouTube's algorithm blocked out makeup tutorials by trans-women, and period education by bisexual women. On Friday, YouTube put those videos back in Restricted Mode's good graces -- along with 12-million others. "We were unintentionally filtering content from Restricted Mode that shouldn't have been," VP of product management Johanna Wright writes in a blog post. "On the engineering side, we fixed an issue that was...

  • Pranking YouTube family ‘DaddyOFive’ accused of child abuse

    YouTube channel DaddyOFive has deleted all its videos after accusations of child abuse. The channel, headed by dad Mike Martin, consisted of videos in which the parents "pranked" their five children -- often pushing them to the point of mental breakdown. It accrued 765 800 subscribers. In the most talked-about video, Martin and his wife spilled invisible ink and accused Cody, their son, of doing it. Cody grew visibly upset as his parents screamed and cursed at him, until his face was bright red and he screamed at them to stop. Only once he'd calmed down did Martin let him know it...

  • April the giraffe finally gives birth and the internet loses its mind

    On 10 February, educational animal park Animal Adventure began a livestream of its pregnant giraffe. It soon went viral as viewers from all around the world tuned in, hoping for a glimpse at the glorious miracle of life. While the stream spawned theories of an April Fool's hoax (Animal Adventure were pulling in a lot of cash and also no good thing in 2017 is to be trusted), it turns out our worries were for naught. On Saturday, April gave birth to a healthy baby boy -- with more than a million people watching. It all started on Friday when April began pacing,...

  • Muzikifi: the story behind South Africa’s top trending YouTube video

    South Africa's most watched video on YouTube this week isn't a movie trailer, a snapshot of Pretoria's anti-Zuma protests, or even the latest episode of Skeem Saam. Nope. It's a mesmeric short of a man experiencing Soweto's cultural and musical delights for the first time. Random? Definitely. A remarkable watch? Oh yes. "Did she REALLY put a spell on me?">Did she REALLY put a spell on me? was published over the weekend and took South Africa's YouTube charts by storm. It steamed to the top of the trending list within three days, and remained there for much of the week. At present, the...

  • Why PewDiePie doesn’t care about free speech [Opinion]

    Felix Kjellberg, better known as PewDiePie, has made it his mission to fight The Wall Street Journal (WSJ). The Swedish YouTuber is consistently posting videos for his 54.6-million subscribers attacking WSJ for reporting news. But nothing Kjellberg argues ever holds up, and it's a damning representation of where his priorities lie. For those blissfully unaware, back in January PewDiePie posted a video in which he paid Indian men to hold up a sign promoting Jewish genocide. WSJ wrote an article on it, and contacted Disney for a statement. Disney was producing Kjellberg's YouTube Red show Scare Pewdiepie at the time, and...

  • YouTubers fight back as LGBTQ+ content is blocked

    YouTube is blocking LGBTQ+ content in its restricted mode, and content creators aren't pleased. According to the platform, the mode is used to "screen out potentially objectionable content that you may prefer not to see or don't want others in your family to see on YouTube." "We use community flagging, age-restrictions, and other signals to identify and filter out potentially inappropriate content," it writes. Tyler Oakley -- one of YouTube's most popular creators with over eight million subscribers -- was one of the first to pick up on the censorship. until we hear back from @youtube, please actively check on all LGBTQ+ creators you're subscribed...

  • YouTube is killing annotations, and the community isn’t well pleased

    Thanks to internet users' gradual but constant move to mobile, YouTube is killing its video annotations editing tool. The tool, which launched in 2008, allowed users to "layer text, links, and hotspots over your video. They help you enrich the video experience by adding information, interactivity and engagement," YouTube writes in its Help section. But the company feels there just isn't any place for the tool in 2017, with more than 60% of the company's watchtime residing on mobile devices. "Effective starting May 2, you'll no longer be able to add new or edit existing annotations, only delete them. Existing annotations will...

  • YouTube is bringing live TV channels to all devices

    YouTube announced yesterday that its live TV service, set to take on cable, was officially a-go. "It's live TV designed for the YouTube generation -- those who want to watch what they want, when they want, how they want, without commitments," reads the blog post. Working with networks and affiliate partners, YouTube has found a way to live stream from channels like ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC and ESPN -- meaning that viewers will be able to watch live as soon as a new episode of shows like Empire, Scandal and The Big Bang Theory airs.  "Christian Oestlien, Product Management Director, recently used YouTube TV to watch 'The Oscars' live on...

  • People watch one billion hours of YouTube every day

    YouTube revealed in a blog post yesterday that its users are watching a billion hours of YouTube every single day. A few years ago, the company decided that instead of focusing on complete video views, it was going to look specifically at how long viewers stay tuned to videos -- something that Facebook has picked up with its own videos recently. By focusing on time, YouTube is able to provide more specific data to advertisers and content creators, making it easier for them to understand what keeps viewers interested in their content. "We thought it would help us make YouTube a more engaging place...

  • YouTube reportedly ditching long, unskippable ads

    YouTube's in-video advertising will undergo a transformation in the coming months, this according to a new report by Campaign. The report suggests that the Google-owned video powerhouse is looking at a new advertising strategy, and will ditch its 30-second unskippable ad format looking instead to more user-friendly, bite-sized ad snippets. The company has "decided to stop supporting 30-second unskippable ads as of 2018 and focus instead on formats that work well for both users and advertisers," according to a Google spokesman quoted by Campaign. According to a new report, YouTube will be ditching longer advertisements on its platform in favour of more...

  • Update: Now YouTube scares PewDiePie by dropping his show

    Hours after Disney announced they would no longer be affiliated with PewDiePie (AKA Felix Kjellberg), YouTube announced that they had cancelled his show and removed him from its premium advertising program. Last month, Kjellberg released a video that was both antisemitic and abusive. Paying for young Indian men to hold a sign reading "Death to All Jews", the millionaire claimed he meant to highlight how far people will go for US$5. Disney's Maker Studios were involved in the production of his YouTube Red show Scare PewDiePie, in which Kjellberg is placed in game-like situations meant to frighten him. The second season had been...

  • Disney ditches YouTube star PewDiePie over antisemitic videos

    Disney announced yesterday that they would no longer be working with Swedish YouTuber PewDiePie -- real name Felix Kjellberg -- after it was revealed that he had paid two men to pose with hateful imagery in the name of a joke. In mid-January, Kjellberg used an app called Fiverr that allows users to pay five dollars for anything to pay two Indian men to hold up a sign reading "Death to All Jews". The men claimed that they did not understand the term "Jews" and so were ignorant as to what they were promoting. Kjellberg was not able to make the same...