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2014 Year in Review: YouTube and Google+ closer than ever

In 2014 YouTube and Google+ integration really took off. On November 6, 2013 YouTube switched to the new Google+-based commenting system. Over the past year YouTube and Google+ became even more tightly entwined. YouTube and Google+ introduced a number of new features, while we said goodbye to others (RIP YouTube Inbox).

There was a change at the top for both products. At YouTube Susan Wojcicki - formerly Google SVP for advertising - took over from Salar Kamangar, while over on Google+ Vic Gundotra was replaced by former Google+ VP of Engineering Dave Besbris. I think it's still too early to say whether that represents a significant shift in direction, but their interviews at Re/code give a sense of direction things are heading:
New YouTube Boss Susan Wojcicki Talks Talent, Music and M&ANew Google+ Head David Besbris: We're Here for the Long HaulWhat was new for Google+ and YouTube in 2014? As YouTube and Google+ become more integrated, many new features are only available …

Import videos from Google Photos to your YouTube channel

Update May 2015: you can now import videos from Google Photos to YouTube, both regular videos and automatic "Creations", whether you have a Google+ profile or not.

Update June 2019: The new YouTube desktop video uploader (in beta) does not have the option to import videos from Google Photos.

Uploading video to Google Photos is easy, especially using the Auto Backup option on your mobile device or desktop computer. You can even use Google Photos to combine images and video clips into your own movie creation. And you can use Google Photos to view, organize and edit videos uploaded to Google Drive.

But Google Photos doesn't offer all the video editing, management and promotional tools you can find on YouTube. The solution? Import your videos from Google Photos to your YouTube channel.

Is your YouTube channel on your main Google account? You can import any video uploaded to your main Google Account's Google Photos, including automatic movie Creations and videos uploaded t…

Delete your Google+ YouTube Comments

Update March 2019: Consumer Google+ will shut down on April 2, 2019. All Google+ Pages and consumer Google+ Profiles will be deleted. This will not affect your YouTube channel or YouTube comments. However, if you are using an old version of the YouTube mobile app, from before September 2016, you will no longer be able to read, post or manage comments in the app - instead use m.youtube.com in your mobile device's browser.

If you posted a YouTube comment between November 6, 2013 and early August 2015, it's a Google+ comment. There are several ways you can delete Google+ YouTube comments on either your desktop computer or mobile device (deleting old pre-Google+ comments is a bit more complicated).

You can delete (or edit) Google+ YouTube comments in one of several ways: Delete the YouTube comment post from your Google+ Page or ProfileDelete the comment from the YouTube video watch pageUse the Google+ app or YouTube app to delete your comment on your phone or tabletDelete your enti…

Delete your old pre-Google+ YouTube comments

Have you ever posted a YouTube comment that you now regret? One you want - or need - to delete? As long as you can sign into the YouTube channel that posted the comment, you can delete it.

On November 6, 2013, YouTube switched to the current Google+-based comment system. That means that if you have been active on YouTube for more than a year, you probably posted comments using the old legacy comment system. Pre-Google+ comments cannot be edited, or directly replied to, but they can be deleted.
How to delete your pre-Google+ Legacy YouTube commentsYou can delete old YouTube comments from a video's "ALL COMMENTS" page, as long as you are signed in as the channel that posted the comment.

Just follow the step-by-step directions below on your desktop computer.

New YouTube Private Messages: old contacts, group messaging and more

Update August 2019: YouTube DMs will be going away on September 18, 2019 Update October 2018: consumer Google+ is shutting down April 2, 2019. This will not affect your YouTube channel.
Update July 2018: Messages has been retired and sort-of replaced by friend-based messaging.
Note: Old messages and contacts will be available until Dec 1st. 2014

The YouTube Inbox is going away, to be replaced with Google+-based "Messages". In a few days you will be able to download an archive of all your Inbox messages. But what about your Contacts?


View and archive your old YouTube contactsYouTube Messages: the new system to send or receive a private messageCreate a Google+ Circle from your YouTube ContactsSend a private message to a group on YouTube or Google+

How to get around YouTube: Creator Studio, Settings and Guide

What happened to my Settings, Playlists, Channel and Video Manager?Note: as of March 2019 this "old desktop experience" is still partially available, but is gradually being replaced by a newer layout. The account navigation links all still work. 

Last week YouTube made a significant change to navigation. Clicking your channel avatar used to display an extensive menu at the top of the page, but now all you will find is more simplified menu that lets you select Creator Studio, settings or switch channel identities. Several options - such as your Video Manager - are now several clicks away.
How to navigate YouTubeNew Navigation basics: selecting a channel identity, Creator Studio and settingsCreator Studio: Video Manager, Comments, Analytics, channel settings and creator toolsYour YouTube Account SettingsMy Channel - view and configure your channel layoutView and manage Playlists, Likes, Watch Later list and HistoryView and manage Subscriptions

Back up your YouTube videos!

NEW for February 2019: Get directions for backing up your Brand Account YouTube channel here. 
Do you have a backup copy of your YouTube videos?  If your videos are important to you, I highly recommend you keep an archived backup on your own hard drive, DVDs or other storage location. Fortunately Google Takeout lets you download almost all your content stored by Google - including your YouTube videos - quickly and easily.


Why do you need a backup? YouTube does not guarantee your videos will be accessible forever. Even if you keep the access details for YouTube account up to date, and keep your Google account secure from hackers your videos can be lost if:
you inadvertently delete your videos. Video deletions on YouTube are permanent!you inadvertently delete your YouTube channel or Google account. YouTube channel deletions and Google account deletions are also permanent!your video is removed because of a copyright claim or community guidelines violationvery occasionally there can be a gl…

Use Google+ without a Profile: manage Google+ Pages, YouTube channels and more

Google will be shutting down Google+ for consumer accounts on April 2, 2019

All personal Google+ Profiles and Google+ Pages will be deleted, along with Google+ posts, photos and videos uploaded to Google+. Any photos in Google Photos will remain there. This will NOT shut down your other Google products like Gmail, Google Drive or YouTube. Google+ features on Blogger  and YouTube will be will be removed in February 2019. Back up your Google+ photos and Google+ Page data before April 2nd!

Here is the bottom line, as of November 2018:
Your Google+ Profile is required for:
Google+ posting and commentingPosting comments on Blogger (or other sites) with Google+ comments enabledIf you use Google+ comments on your Blogger blog, managing those comments Using apps in the old Hangouts video calls interface and in Hangouts on Air (note: most of these apps were retired April 25, 2017)Managing who can contact you via Hangouts with Google+ CirclesIf you delete your Google+ Profile:
All Google+ posts, …

Google My Business for YouTube Creators

Update March 2019: All Google+ Pages will be deleted when consumer Google+ shuts down on April 2, 2019. That will not affect YouTube channels, Google My Business listings or Brand Accounts.
Update October 2017: Google My Business no longer creates a Brand Account along with a business listing, which means no way to connect Google+ or YouTube to a new listing.
Update May 2017: Google My Business no longer automatically creates a Google+ Page along with a business listing.
Update January 2017: Google+ Brand Pages are no longer supported on the Google My Business dashboard. 
Update August 2016: Google My Business Insights no longer include Google+ Page information, and the Google My Business app no longer supports Google+ Pages.
Update April 18, 2015: Google My Business gets a new icon 
Update September 2015: Google My Business logo updated with new "G"
Update October 2015: new Google My Business Pages dashboard launches
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Google has just launched Google My Business (GMB), a brand …

Blog as a Google+ Page: real name not required

Note: Google will be shutting down Google+ for consumer accounts on April 2, 2019. All Google+ Pages will be deleted at that time. Be sure to back up your Google+ Page data before then. Brand Accounts will not be deleted and you can continue to sign in directly if you have that set up.

Note: As of September 2016, it is no longer possible to set a password for direct sign-in to a Google+ Page or its Brand Account. If you have an existing Brand Account with a password set, you will continue to be able to sign in.

The alternative is to use a Blogger Profile for your Blogger Account.

If you have a YouTube channel, gamer tag, business or brand, you may want to blog using that identity, rather than your Google+ Profile's common name. If your Blogger account is connected with your Google+ account, you can associate you blog with a Google+ Page. But even after you've connected your Page, your Google+ Profile name will still be the author of your blog posts.

So what can you do if you don…

Convert a Google+ brand Page to a Google+ Local Page: Get on the map

Google will be shutting down Google+ for consumer accounts on April 2, 2019. All Google+ Pages will be deleted at that time. Back up your Google+ Page data before then.
Update November 2015: with the move to the new Google+, "Local" Pages no longer have any special business-related features. All Google+ Pages look the same.

Google+ Pages come in two main flavors: there are Google+ Pages for brands, organizations, bands, and online businesses and there are Google+ Local Pages that represent a business offline location.  Local Pages can appear on Google Maps and let customers post reviews.

So what can you do if you created the wrong type of Page for your business? Or you inadvertently ended up with both a Local page and a non-Local page?

While it is not possible to merge Google+ Pages, you can now convert a Google+ brand Page into a Google+ Local Page. 


Set a default YouTube Channel Identity for your YouTube account

Tired of selecting or switching YouTube channel identities every time you sign in? 
Now you can select any of your YouTube channels - either connected to your Google+ Profile or a Google+ Page you manage - to be the default when you sign in. After setting a default channel, the next time you sign into YouTube you won't have to select a channel identity to use.

There are two ways to set the default channel:
Select a channel when you sign into YouTube along with the option "Don't ask me again"Set a channel as the default in the channel's advanced settings (www.youtube.com/account_advanced) Note that this replaces the option to select a channel for "Signing into older apps" previously found on your Google+ Profile-connected YouTube channel's advanced settings page.

I can't sign in to my YouTube channel or Blogger blog! How to recover access.

Note: as of August 2014 the method described for recovering YouTube channels is no longer available. The Blogger recovery method still works.

Are you having trouble signing in to YouTube or Blogger? If you created your channel or blog long ago, you may have even forgotten the email you used to sign in to the account. That can be quite frustrating, because that email address is your account's username.

Fortunately there are options for recovering your Google account - and its associated YouTube channel and Blogger blogs - even if you don't recall your account's email username.
Recover access to your YouTube channelYouTube account recovery if you do not know the sign-in emailRecover access to your Blogger blogBlogger account recovery if you do not know the sign-in emailGoogle+ Profile and Google account recovery if you don't know the sign-in emailSet your account recovery options now!

Can I use that song in my video? Third party content, permission and copyright.

This useful article is by YouTube forum Rising Star Top ContributorLeo Wattenberg and was originally posted in the YouTube Creators help forum.  He kindly granted me permission to re-post it here. 

TOC preamble and disclaimer the most important rule about creative commons licences licence laundering links to materials see also footnotes

Set a password for your Google+ Page and connected YouTube channel

Note: on when consumer Google+ shuts down on April 2, 2019 all Google+ Pages will be deleted. This will NOT affect the underlying Brand Account or its YouTube channel.

Note: as of September 2016, Google no longer offers the option to create a password for a Google+ Page. You can check to see if you older Page and its Brand Account already has a password set:  

Sign in to Google as the Owner of your Google+ Page or YouTube channel's Brand Accountopen your Brand Account list  (myaccount.google.com/brandaccounts)click the Brand Account name if you see an Update Password button, you have a password set

The password should continue to work. You can re-set the existing password by clicking the Update Password button. 

Original article:
Have you set a password for your Google+ Page? If your primary identity is your Google+ Page and YouTube channel name, rather than your personal "real name" Google+ Profile, setting a password for your Page lets you use that identity across the inter…

Blogger Pages Gadget: Add a menu to your blog

The Blogger Pages gadget lets you add a list of links to your blog's static Pages, dynamic content or external websites. You can use the Pages gadget to add a menu at the top of your blog.

Blogger recently changed the way blog Pages are managed. Blogger has always offered two different options: create a static Page with your own content, or create a Page that redirects to a page with dynamic content or an external web address.

While management of static Pages with your own content is much simpler now, it's a bit more complicated to add a Page that's simply a link. But the option hasn't disappeared!

Now Link Pages are managed through the Pages gadget in your blog's Layout.

What type of links can you add?
your blog's static Pagesyour blog's dynamic content (such as all posts with a particular label)your YouTube channel, Facebook Page, ReverbNation profile or other social media siteyour Cafe Press or Zazzle storeany other external website you want to point your…

Who owns your business's Google+ Page and YouTube channel?

When consumer Google+ shuts down on April 2, 2019, all Google+ Pages and their content will be deleted. This will NOT affect your YouTube channel or the underlying Brand Account. Make sure to download a copy of your Google+ Page's data before April. Learn how to save your data.
This will not affect your YouTube channel or your YouTube channel's Brand Account.

Are you the owner of your business's YouTube channel and Google+ Page?  

Creating and maintaining a YouTube channel, Google+ Page and other social media profiles can require a significant investment in time, energy and expertise. It's natural that many business owners often delegate social media management to hired experts, employees, or even interns.
But what business owners often don't appreciate is that having someone else create your accounts can mean losing control if that employee quits, is fired, or doesn't keep a record of the account's username and password.
So how can a business owner ensure that…

Reply to YouTube and Google+ comments from anywhere online

Update March 2019: The Google-wide notification bell has been removed, however YouTube has its own notification bell on www.youtube.com where you can view and respond to new comments.

Did you know you can respond to YouTube comments from (almost) anywhere online with the Google+ Notifications Chrome extension?

Since YouTube switched to Google+ comments, comments can be viewed and replied to under the Google bell notification icon (also goofily known as Mr. Jingles).  The notifications bell is visible on the top right of the screen when you are signed into your Google account and using most Google products, including Google Search, Blogger, Google Drive, Gmail and (of course) YouTube.

But if you want the option to easily read and reply to YouTube and Google+ comments from wherever you are surfing on the web - and are using the Chrome browser - you can install the Google+ Notifications extension to immediately see new notifications from wherever you are online.

1. When you have a new…
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