For the past several years, YouTube has used VidCon as a platform to share new industry findings, announce big ideas and innovations, and talk about emerging trends in the space.
This year was no different. CEO Susan Wojcicki took the stage Thursday afternoon to speak in front of a packed house. She broke this year’s Industry Keynote down into 3 categories: Community, Creation, and Creative Ambition.
The biggest community-facing announcements come in the form of comment system updates. Creators will soon be able to pin comments at the top of their comment sections, in situations where the creator may want to address an issue or propose a comment question for viewers to answer. Fans and creators alike will also be able to include animated GIFs in their comments.
Communities require fostering and moderation, mundane tasks that grow increasingly difficult as audiences scale up. YouTube understands that, and is adding the ability for creators to delegate moderation to trusted fans, which will give them the ability to remove inappropriate or particularly negative comments at their discretion.
It comes as no surprise that YouTube continues their push for total immersion on the platform – live, 3D, and 360 degrees – all of which have been common themes from sponsors and exhibitors this year. Just two months ago, YouTube hosted the first ever 360-degree live stream at the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival.
This year, YouTube has announced their entry into the mobile live-streaming game to compete with the likes of Periscope and YouNow, among other platforms that are be popping up in droves.
Straight from the YouTube app, creators will soon be able to hit the traditional red “upload” button and see the option to “Go Live.” Clicking this will allow you to take a quick thumbnail image, then go live in a very Periscope-esque format, with chat comments appearing on screen during the broadcast. If a subscriber has opted in to upload notifications, they’ll also receive a push when you go live. Live viewership statistics appear in a card at the end of your stream, and the recording can be saved and uploaded to your channel if you so opt-in.
The Creator Hub will serve to aggregate information from seven different information sources. The new hub will make it easier for creators to find the resources they need, and is localized in 23 different languages.
“My mother in France doesn’t have any excuse to not become a creator now,” teases Sebastien Missoffe, YouTube’s VP of Operations.
This one is huge. Wojcicki announced that every channel with monetization enabled (something available to every creator, provided you live in a Partner Program-supported country) are now eligible to receive email support, touting that every creator will receive a reply from humans within 1 business day or less.
Previously, email support was only available to creators that met a criteria of 15,000 watch time hours over the past 90 days.
YouTube Red has had a big presence at VidCon this year (quite literally; check out the giant banner ads hanging outside of the convention center), and YouTube is investing a huge amount in the production of premium content by some of the platform’s largest creators.
“Creators in YouTube Red see a boost in subscribers and watch time on main ad-supported channels,” said Susan Daniels, YouTube’s Global Head of Original Content.
This is verifiable, too; Joey Graceffa launched the first episode of his new Red series, Escape the Night, this past Wednesday. Subscribers peaked, resulting in gains nearly three times Graceffa’s normal daily gains.
More original programming will launch soon, and several popular shows are being renewed for new seasons. Dan Howell & Phil Lester’s touring live show will also be available on YouTube Red as a feature.
VidCon continues through Saturday, June 25 – stay tuned for more from the world’s largest online video convention.