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Last updated: January 2019 with new logos
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Weekly Updates - August 17, 2019: Tumblr, YouTube, Back to School

This week students started heading back to school, with Chromebooks, laptops and all their other electronic devices in hand. There are plenty of updates to help them along. Plus news for YouTubers, bloggers, webmasters and much more.
Social blogging platform Tumblr is finding a new home with Automattic, the owner of WordPress. Yahoo originally bought Tumblr in 2013 for $1.1 billion (with a b). Verizon purchased Yahoo in 2017, acquiring Tumblr and other assets like Flickr. Verizon didn’t seem to know what to do with Tumblr, beyond implementing a controversial and not-particularly-successful ban on porn and adult content. The sale price was reportedly for less than $3 million, a tiny fraction of Tumblr’s original (likely inflated) value.
Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg told The Verge he appreciates Tumblr’s unique and devoted community, and sees it as an opportunity to bring back some of the feel of old-school blogging, with a solid mobile app and social features. “The people who love Tumb…

Copyright holders can no longer monetize manually claimed videos with unintentional use of music

YouTube announced an update to to make the copyright claiming system a bit fairer: YouTube's new policy forbids copyright owners from "using the Manual Claiming tool to monetize creator videos with very short or unintentional uses of music."

Note that this does NOT mean you can use copyrighted music without permission:
This change only applies to manual claiming, not YouTube's automated Content ID system.Copyright holders can still prevent the creator from monetizingCopyright holders can still block the video from being viewedAn exception to this policy is "a compilation of short clips primarily containing audio content" such as "Top 10" lists of music or audio content or "Compilations of short clips from music-focused social media apps" The policy change goes into effect in mid-September. And YouTube says there will be penalties for violating the Manual Claiming policy:
Once we start enforcement, copyright owners who repeatedly fail to …

Weekly Update - August 10, 2019: YouTube Studio, Webmaster Tools, Podcasts

This week Google is rolling out new tools to help you plan your next vacation. There are also cool updates for bloggers, webmasters, podcasters, YouTubers and much more.
YouTube Studio Beta is now the default, and direct links to the classic video manager, analytics or dashboard will redirect there. But not to worry, if you are missing features from “classic” Creator Studio, you can switch back - for now.Twitch is making it easier to “go live”. Twitch Studio (now in beta), has guided setup of your live stream, customizable templates, built in chat and more. If you’re interested, sign up for the beta.If you are a blogger, video creator or journalist in India, Indonesia, and Nigeria, check out Google’s Question Hub to find questions that people want answers for. You can browse by keyword or category, review unanswered questions, and expand on them when creating content. Once you create an article or video, you can submit it to Question Hub where you can review performance metrics. Learn…

YouTube Studio Beta is now the default - but you can (for now) switch back to Classic

Starting this month, YouTube Studio Beta ( is now the permanent default for your channel. That means if you use a link to the Classic Video Manager, Analytics, or Dashboard you will be redirected to Studio Beta.

As Studio Beta is still a work in progress, not all Classic features are available yet. That means - for now - you can switch back to the Classic version of Creator Studio.
Find Classic features missing in Studio BetaTemporarily switch back to Creator Studio Classic But before you do that, give Studio Beta a serious try. The Classic version will be going away later this year, and YouTube really wants your feedback. You should see a banner at the top of your dashboard with a survey link. As it says, don't hold back!
Note that if you are having trouble getting Studio to load, the problem may be that your web browser is out of date. You should see a message if that's the case. You can use current versions of Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Opera and Safari. For …

Weekly Update - August 3, 2019: YouTube Studio, Hangouts Classic, Webmasters

This week Hangouts on Air were discontinued (boo), but classic Hangouts was updated so that you can report spammers and harassers when you block them (yay). There were also some small updates to YouTube, info for webmasters and more.
Goodbye this week: Hangouts On Air were discontinued and Feedburner users can no longer add new domains to the MyBrand serviceClassic Hangouts actually got an update this week. Now, on desktop, you can report people to Google when you block them in Hangouts conversations. Google reviews the last 10 posts that person made. So yes, this means Google can read what you’ve posted in Hangouts.New YouTube features for Creators: YouTube Studio Beta is now the default, and links to Classic now redirect there. You can still switch back to Classic if you need to. YouTube Studio dashboard now has a card showing stats for your latest postThe YouTube Studio mobile app is getting new snapshot report.YouTube Analytics will have a new Monthly Revenue Insights reportIn th…

Now Report users when you block them in classic Hangouts

Now when you block someone in classic Hangouts on desktop you can choose to also report them to Google. When you choose to report someone, When you report someone for abuse, a copy of the last 10 messages of your conversation is sent to Google for review.

There are two ways to report someone in Hangouts:
Block and report someone when they send you an unwanted Hangouts invitationBlock and report someone in a 1:1 Hangouts conversation There are a few limitations:
Reporting is only available on the web at and in GmailYou can block, but not report, someone in the Android and iOS Hangouts appYou can only block someone in a group conversation using the Android or iOS Hangouts appBlocking someone means you can't chat in a 1:1 conversation, but you will be able to participate in the same group chat. Learn what happens when you block someone in Hangouts. Note that eventually Google will migrate users from classic Hangouts to the new Hangouts Chat, which is currently only…

Weekly Update - July 27, 2019: Gallery Go, Super Chat, #AskGoogleWebmasters

Summer temperatures have been sizzling this week. While heat makes me a bit cranky, at least it makes my tomato plants happy. This week there is news and updates for YouTubers, webmasters, and much more.
Reminder: Hangouts on Air are going away August 1st. If you have a HOA scheduled after that date, you’ll need to reschedule and use a different service.Google Photos now has more than one billion - 1,000,000,000+ - users . But it’s not for everyone. This week Google introduced a new app called “Gallery Go”, which can be used offline and is more lightweight than the Photos app for use on entry-level phones. It joins YouTube Go and the rest of the Android Go suite of apps, designed for Google’s “next billion users” who may have phones with limited storage, slow or unreliable internet connections and low processing power.If you are interested in a bit of history, Fast Company takes a look at how Google Photos got to where it is today, starting with its split from Google+. I think it’s p…