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Weekly Update - January 27, 2018: YouTube, AdSense, Bulletin

This week there’s news for YouTube creators, AdSense publishers, and folks interested in recording local stories:
  • YouTube announced Official Artist Channels as a single stop for fans of music artists. If an artist has multiple official channels - for example a personal channel and a channel created by their record label - the content will be combined on the Artist Channel, and subscribers to the individual channel will be subscribed to that combined channel instead. 
  • YouTube also announced that the official Creator Community will be closing. The Community becomes read-only on January 30 and will shut down completely on February 28. They didn’t announce any direct replacement, but suggested people join the YouTube Product Forum, and follow YouTube Creators and Team YouTube on Twitter, and YouTube Creator Academy, YouTube Help, and Creator Insider on YouTube.
  • Facebook is taking on Twitch and YouTube Gaming with the launch of a Gaming Creator pilot program. Facebook says it’s working with gaming livestreamers to develop the program, and they are planning to “expand … fan support monetization initiatives to more gaming creators”. 
  • AdSense is now using machine learning to optimally format Native In-feed ads for your website. If you have been considering Native In-feed ads, check it out.
  • It’s the beginning of the new year, and if you are in the US, tax forms are arriving in the mail If your 1099 form from AdSense has the wrong information or hasn’t arrived, you can get direct assistance getting it corrected, voided or reissued, starting February 5th for the 2017 tax year.
  • Bulletin is a new Google app that lets users easily create “hyperlocal” stories with images, video and brief text content. It looks like an interesting way for people to share local events, news, or tell stories that might not otherwise be told. If you are in Oakland, CA or Nashville, TN you can request early access.
  • The annual US State of the Union address is January 30th. You can watch the speech live and get commentary in English or Spanish on one of the many news channels live streaming on YouTube.
  • Google Top Contributor Program posted the official 2017 Regional Top Contributor Summits recap video. There may be some familiar faces there (although I seem to have avoided the photographer). 
Plus there are tips and updates for webmasters, business owners, audiobook listeners, emailers and much more.

Image: Cats on a red cloth, by Franz Marc (~1910) Public Domain

Upcoming:

YouTube and Video Creation

Go Live

Google+

  • Google+ #Community Experts with Sonali Dalal

Other social media

Google for businesses

Bloggers and Webmasters

AdSense and advertising

Hangouts and Messaging

  • Hangouts Meet now available on tablets, new Meet metrics for G Suite admins (G Suite Updates)

Made by Google, Android, Project Fi

  • Smart Replies in Android Messages rolling out to Project Fi users (Project Fi)
  • Android Oreo 8.1 now shows WiFi network speed before you connect (Android)
  • Three new ways to manage files and free up space on your mobile device with Files Go (Google Blog)

Productivity

  • Audiobooks are now available through Google Play Books (Google Blog)
  • New Gmail Add-ons let you work with your favorite business apps directly in Gmail (Gmail)
  • Chrome for Android Update: Chrome 64 (Chrome Releases blog)

Privacy and Security

More around the web

Updated March 2019 to remove Google+ links

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