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Weekly Update - April 14, 2018: Google Photos, YouTube, Facebook

It’s been another long week, without many updates. What we need is some music!
Coachella music festival is live this weekend on YouTube, with bonus features from Google Assistant and Google Home. Watch here: new YouTube metrics - Impressions, Unique Viewers, and Click Through Rate - are rolling out to more YouTube Creators. You can see if those numbers are available for your channel in YouTube Studio Beta ( on the Analytics Discovery tab.Google Lens in Google Photos on Android devices can now recognize (some) dog and cat breeds. Google Photos desktop backup tool will be shut down May 12th (as will the legacy Google Drive desktop sync client). The replacement is the Google Backup & Sync tool for Mac and Windows, which lets you backup both your photos to Google Photos and other files to Google Drive.Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified before the US Congress this week. Meanwhile Facebook is continuing to implement changes, i…

Weekly Update - April 7, 2018: #YouTubeStrong, Hangouts Meet, Google+ vs GMB

This has been a tough week, without many product updates.
My heart goes out to the YouTube employees affected by this week’s shooting at YouTube headquarters in San Bruno, California. It looks like they are staying #YouTubeStrong.There is a fair amount known about the shooter, at least her online activity, but I don’t think she should be given additional attention.Hangouts Meet, the video conferencing platform for G Suite, just added the ability to call US and Canadian phone numbers for free to bring audio-only participants into a video call.If you are a business owner confused by the separation of Google My Business from Google+, be sure to check out the new official FAQ for more information. Facebook is scrambling to recover from new revelations of privacy issues this week. It turns out up to 87 million users - nearly twice the number originally thought - may have have their data improperly obtained and used by Cambridge Analytica. But that’s a drop in the bucket. It turns out that…

Weekly Update - March 31, 2018: Google+, Tablets for Education, Picasa

March is done, and April is upon us. Happy Easter weekend to you who celebrate!  This week we said hello to new features in Google+ and YouTube, and goodbye to Picasa, plus much more.
Google+ introduced a new features that lets you subscribe to highlights from Communities and Collections. Instead of getting notified of all new posts, you will get a daily digest of the “top” new content. Google+ is also continuing to work towards making the same features available across all platforms. Both Android and iOS Google+ apps now let Community moderators remove, report, ban and optionally remove recent content with just a few clicks. YouTube will be launching an ads policy compliance confirmation checkbox for monetizing videos - no more accidentally (or “accidentally”) monetizing non-advertiser friendly content. This puts the burden on Creators to make sure that their videos follow the Partner Program policies, rather than counting on YouTube to not display ads on videos that shouldn’t have t…

Weekly Update - March 24, 2018: Live Streaming, Policy Changes, Facebook Privacy

Spring has sprung! Live streaming is easier, content policies are tighter, and more.
YouTube launched a new easy way to start live streaming on your desktop computer with just your webcam. You don’t need encoder software or special hardware. It’s great for Chromebook users, or anyone else who wants to live stream with just a few clicks. However, it is very basic - no event scheduling, screen sharing, lower third overlays, extensions or apps. If you want more features, you’ll still have to use the Stream Now option with encoder software, or a Hangout on Air.Up until now you could maintain two sets of channel subscriptions - one on “regular” YouTube, the other on YouTube Gaming. This week regular YouTube and YouTube Gaming subscriptions are being combined. If you notice new channels suddenly appearing in your subscription list, that could be the cause.YouTube also announced new policy around content featuring firearms and firearm accessories. Starting in mid-April, YouTube will no long…

Creating with a Chromebook: Live stream on YouTube using your webcam

You don't need any special hardware or software beyond a web browser and webcam to live stream on YouTube. A Chromebook and an internet connection is all the gear you need.

YouTube has two live streaming options you can use on a Chromebook or almost any desktop computer:  the new quick and easy "Webcam" option and the older Hangout on Air live streaming events. Which option you choose depends on the features you need.

FeatureWebcam StreamingHangout on AirSupported browsersChromeChrome, Internet Explorer, Safari, Firefox (may require plugin)Schedule EventNoYesSet custom thumbnailYesNoMultiple participantsNoYesManage live chatInside live stream window (or pop-out chat boxOn video watch page (or pop-out chat box)Screen sharingNoYesOverlays and appsNoYes, if the host has an associated Google+ profile (Hangouts Toolbox, Control Room, Camera Man)Share to social mediaYes, inside live stream windowYes, from video watch pageArchive of video recordingYes, up to 8 hoursYes, up to 8 …

Weekly Update - March 17, 2018: YouTube, Google+, AdSense

Happy St. Patrick’s day! I hope your beer is cold, your hearth is warm, and your music is lively.
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki was interviewed by WIRED Editor-in-Chief Nicholas Thompson at the SXSW Interactive Festival last week. She talked about fighting “fake news” and a new initiative that will link to Wikipedia on videos about popular conspiracy theories. Also touched on are the 10,000-strong human team that Google is building to review content, improving comments, and finding and promoting quality educational and news videos.You can listen to the presentation “Navigating the Video Revolution in the Digital Age” on the SXSW website or watch the video on YouTube.The Google+ iOS and Android mobile apps were updated to bring closer parity between the platforms. There aren’t any totally new features, but Android now has a white navigation bar, prioritized plus mention suggestions and the ability to “delete, report, and block” spammers or otherwise bad commenters.Google posted their revi…

Create a Custom "Page Not Found" for your Blogger Blog

If you have ever followed a bad link or typed in a URL incorrectly you have landed on a 404 "Page Not Found" Error page. For your Blogger blog, the default is a generic message:
Sorry, the page you were looking for in this blog does not exist. The format depends on your Blogger blog's Theme, but the message is the same.

But it's more common that sites use a custom error message, with a friendly greeting, navigation links or a search box, and funny, cute or interesting images.

How create a custom "Page Not Found" message for your own Blogger blog. Create your error page as a Draft Blogger Blog postCopy the post HTML Open your blog's Settings > Search PreferencesUnder "Errors and Redirections" click the option to "Edit" Custom Page Not Found Paste in the HTML of your Custom Error Page and click "Save Changes" Note that the HTML must be less than 10,000 characters.
You can test how your error page looks by trying to open a p…