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Weekly Update - December 9, 2017: YouTube and abuse, Chrome Apps unlisted in the Chrome Store, Android Go

The last month of the year is usually pretty quiet, but even so, there is some interesting news and some helpful tips this month for YouTubers, Chrome users, Android fans, webmasters, live streamers and more.
  • Starting off on a light note: if you watch a lot of YouTube videos, check out YouTube Rewind 2017 to see if you can spot your favorite creator or musician, and identify the popular memes. I recognized a few. And, yes, this is just a big ad for YouTube. 
  • YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki made two announcements this week. She explained how YouTube is expanding their work against content that may “mislead, manipulate, harass, or harm”. They are hiring humans “to address content” that violates YouTube policy (aiming for 10,000 across Google), improving machine learning to detect violent extremism, hate speech, and threats to child safety. Along with that, greater transparency around flagged content. 
  • Wojcicki also addressed the Creator Community, promising there will be improvements to the systems that determine which videos can be monetized. They will be applying stricter criteria and more manual reviews by humans. While more channels that violate the Community Guidelines may be demonetized, hopefully this also means that channels with advertiser- and family-safe content should be less likely to be affected.
  • There is bad news if you have an Amazon FireTV or Echo Show. Due to a dispute with Google YouTube will be pulled off the Fire TV and Echo Show as of January 1st. While it’s possible the two companies could come to an agreement before then, but I don’t think it’s very probable. 
  • Back in August 2016 Google announced that “in the second half of 2017” the Chrome web store would stop showing Apps for Windows, Mac, and Linux. This week they made good on that. Chrome will continue to load existing apps until “early 2018”. Chrome OS devices aren’t affected. In the mean time Google is working to bring bring Progressive Web Apps to the desktop. Along those lines, this week Google released the web app version of Chrome Remote Desktop (in beta).
  • This week Google started rolling out Android 8.1 Oreo and Android Oreo (Go edition). The Go edition is optimized for entry-level devices, with improved memory usage and specially optimized Google “Go” apps (Assistant, YouTube, Maps, Gmail, Play, Chrome, and the new Files Go). 
Southern California Fires: Resources
ImageThe Foothills of California, Tejon Ranch (~1929) byJohn Bond Francisco (Public Domain in the US)


YouTube and Video Creation

  • YouTube Rewind 2017 (YouTube)
  • How YouTube is expanding their work against abuse: more human reviewers, better machine learning, greater transparency (YouTube blog)
  • Susan Wojcicki: how YouTube is protecting the Creator Community (yes, they know you aren't happy about the yellow monetization icon) (YouTube Creator blog)
  • YouTube Reels is a new lightweight video format, now in beta (YouTube)
  • Google is pulling YouTube off the Fire TV and Echo Show (The Verge)
  • Patreon is shifting fees to patrons, and creators are worried about losing small donors (Engadget)
  • The scientist who spots fake videos (Nature)
  • Academy On Air: YouTube - How to Make Your Video Ad Creative Unskippable (Google Partners)

Go Live

  • Super Chat is now available in the iOS YouTube Gaming app (plus a few more mobile updates) (BarbaraEMac)
  • Live stream game play from Facebook Messenger via Facebook Live (Facebook Newsroom)


  • Google+ Post of the Week theme: #HolidayFestivities (McKenna Taylor)

Other social media

Google Photos and Mobile Photography

Google for businesses

Bloggers and Webmasters

  • Blogging Payola: how brands pay to get their sites mentioned on major websites (The Outline)
  • Google Webmaster Central hangout dedicated to Job Postings markup (Dec. 7) (Google Webmasters)
  • Embed HTML and JavaScript in the new Google Sites (G Suite updates0
  • Webmasters: check your Ad Experience Report in Google Search Console 

AdSense and advertising

  • Webmasters: check your Ad Experience Report in Google Search Console 

Hangouts and Messaging

Made by Google, Android, Project Fi


Privacy and Security

  • Security and fashion: An Etsy engineer made earrings to hold your two-factor security keys (Motherboard)

More around the web

Updated March 2019 to remove Google+ links