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Weekly Update - May 18, 2019: Google Ads, Policy, Trips, Shopping

There are three spring events where Google announces its plans for new products and features: Google Cloud Next for cloud services, G Suite, business and education; the Google I/O developer conference, where new products, features and hardware are announced; and this week’s Google Marketing Live, which is all about ads. If you own a business, there are new opportunities for promotion. If you are a publisher or partner, this may affect your revenue. And if you’re a consumer it’s a heads up about the new ads you’ll be seeing (yay?).

But that's not all. There are new Shopping and Trips portals for your Google account, more details about getting your podcast in Search, opportunities for YouTube creators, the big tech companies signing the Christchurch Call to Action and working together against the spread of violent extremist content and much more.
At Google Marketing LiveGoogle presented the latest on their digital marketing products and advertising. If you are an advertiser, there …

Weekly Update - May 11, 2019: Google I/O, Accessibility, Search, Home

Happy Mother’s day to all you moms! I hope your loving children get you something nice, like a bouquet of flowers or a new Pixel 3a. This week was Google I/O, Google’s annual developer conference. Google announced new hardware, app features, upcoming changes to Android, and updates related to the Google ecosystem, including Search and Google Assistant. This year’s theme was “getting things done”, “for everyone” with an emphasis on accessibility, privacy and security. And there were updates webmasters, podcasters and other creative folks.

Read on for an overview of my top announcements this week. Be sure to also see all the links below for detailed information. And, of course, there are more updates outside of Google I/O for video creators, webmasters and more.
It’s now easier to access your Google Account settings from all major Google products on mobile devices, including Drive, Gmail, Contacts, Pay and coming to Search, Maps, YouTube, Chrome, Assistant and News. Just click your pr…

Weekly Update - May 4, 2019: YouTube, Hangouts Meet, Search Console

May the Fourth be with you! This week there’s updates for YouTubers, advertisers, webmasters and more. Plus there were big changes coming to Facebook and Messenger announced at this week’s F8 Facebook developer conference.
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki posted her 2019 priorities: “Living up to our responsibility”, taking strong action when needed, like turning off comments on blogs featuring kids; “Supporting creator and artist success” by better explaining policies, improving the copyright claim system, making sure there are more native YouTube videos on the Trending tab, and discouraging harassment; and “Improving communication and engagement” with creators. This week was YouTube’s Brandcast Event for advertisers, highlighting new advertising opportunities and assure advertisers their brand won’t be associated with unsuitable content.. By the numbers: viewers spend more than 250 million hours per day watching YouTube videos on TV screens, and YouTube now reaches more 18 to 49 year-olds…

Weekly Update - April 27, 2019: Google Earth, News on YouTube, Simplify Gmail

Earth Day was celebrated this week, and we have a better view of our home planet and - hopefully - better resources for keeping track of what’s going on in the world. There are updates on YouTube, Google Earth, Google Docs, Gmail and much more.
YouTube is expanding features in Europe to make authoritative news sources more prominent. Top News and Breaking News highlights videos from verified sources are available in the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Poland, and the Netherland, and will be coming to more European countries in the coming months. YouTube will also be adding publisher transparency labels to videos from news sources that receive government or public funding in the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Poland. Google is also improving the quality of news reports in Europe in Google Search and highlighting the upcoming EU elections in Google News. (Facebook is also making changes to protect the upcoming elections from misinformation campaigns.) YouTube wants your feedbac…

Weekly Update - April 20, 2019: Photobooth, YouTube Music, Google My Business

Happy Easter weekend to those who celebrate, and happy Earth Day to everyone! This weekend you can explore right from your desk or phone, visiting the US National Parks on Google Earth and, if you are in the mood for music, check out YouTube’s Coachella channel for curated and live performances.

This week there were updates for YouTubers, G Suite users, business owners, Pixel photo takers, and G Suite users. YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki is reaching out to creators and Facebook had another “inadvertent” privacy issue. Plus much more. Read on for this week’s news and updates.
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki has been in the news. She has been meeting with big creators to discuss their concerns, including Shane Dawson, beauty guru James Charles and Indian comedian Prajakta Koli (MostlySane). Meanwhile, the New York Times ran a profile describing her as “the most measured person in tech” who is “running the most chaotic place on the internet”. “Ms. Wojcicki said that seeing harmful videos and th…

Weekly Update - April 13, 2019: Cloud Next, Hangout Chat & Meet, Currents

This week was Google Cloud Next ‘19, a three day conference showcasing updates and features for G Suite, Google Cloud Platform, developers, businesses, and educators. It’s both promotional - look who’s using Google Cloud! - and informational. I was particularly interested in the updates for communication and collaboration, including Google Docs, Google+, Voice, Hangouts Meet and Chat. But that’s not all - there are updates this week for YouTubers, webmasters and more.
The successor to Google+ for G Suite customers is Currents. While G Suite users will be able to access their Google+ content in Currents, it will be something new. Google+ features like public posts, Circles, Collections, and even +1s will be gone. New features will include tags, topic streams, starred posts and more. Watch the presentation “Engage Employees with Currents” for a peek at what it will look like. It will be available by the end of the year.Hangouts Meet is rolling out automatic live captioning in English,…

Weekly Update - April 6, 2019: Google+ & Inbox RIP, YouTube Live, Gmail Birthday

No fooling, this was a brutal week for some of us Google users. Consumer Google+ with its passionate fans is gone and Inbox with its die-hard users is gone. I catch myself thinking I should check my Google+ notifications. I’ll have more thoughts about the Plus next week, but I feel like this is also a time of growth and new beginnings. There are updates this week, for video creators, live streamers, webmasters and so much more.
April 1st arrived with a few jokey videos and company announcements. It’s toned down compared to previous years. It may be that big companies like Google and Facebook understand that with privacy breaches, revelations that platforms often recommended extremist and fake news to maximize engagement, and breaking news when really bad actors (from pedophiles to terrorists) post content, jokes might not be that appropriate. Or maybe that’s just me. I do like fun updates, rather than “gotchas”, like Reddit’s collaborative GIF-based movie, the addition of Tulip-ese to…

YouTube raises eligibility requirement for mobile live streaming to 1000 subscribers

If you are a live streamer with fewer than 1000 subscribers, you can no longer go live from the YouTube app on your mobile device.

In 2017 YouTube mobile live streaming was made available to all users with a verified channel with no live stream restrictions in the past 90 days, so this is a notable change. We’re regularly reevaluating our eligibility requirements and decided to raise the threshold for live streaming on mobile. Creators who have less than 1,000 subscribers will still be able to live stream through desktop and webcam: https://t.co/c4JASS89hq — TeamYouTube (@TeamYouTube) April 5, 2019
YouTube hasn't explained why they made this change, other than that they are "regularly reevaluating our eligibility requirements and decided to raise the threshold for live streaming on mobile."

If your channel has fewer than 1000 subscribers, and live streaming is enabled, you will still be able to live stream on desktop and using your webcam.

Source: YouTube Help Center: C…

Hangout on Air apps Control Room, Hangouts Toolbox, RingCentral require a Google+ Profile

When consumer Google+ shuts down on April 2nd, consumer users running a Hangout on Air or Hangout video call from Google Calendar will almost certainly lose access to third party apps like Hangouts Toolbox and Control Room. It is not clear whether G Suite accounts will still have access to these apps.

While there currently isn't any notice inside the Hangout on Air interface, I've personally confirmed that deletion of the Google+ Profile on an account makes the apps disappear and the option to add new apps is removed..

In April 2017 Google stopped supporting the  Google+ Hangouts API. This removed most Hangouts video call apps, leaving only a few business and Hangout on Air-related apps running.
From the Google+ Hangouts API FAQ, regarding changes on April 25, 2017
Since 2015, these apps have only been available in Hangouts video calls launched from Google Calendar events or Hangouts on Air live broadcasts. And - notably - they require a Google+ Profile or Google+ Pageon the s…

Weekly Update - March 30, 2019: Google+, Gmail, Apple

So this is it, the last Weekly Update that I share on Google+. I started the Weekly Updatein January 2015 as a way to keep track of updates to YouTube, Google+, Blogger and other Google products and to organize links to my Google+ posts. I am grateful to all of you for reading and sharing! I hope those of you who read this on Google+ will continue reading here, subscribe to the feed or by email, or follow me on Twitter for updates.
So long, farewell
I hope all you Plussers have downloaded the data you want to save. If not, do it now using Google Takeout or the Friends+Me Google+ Exporter (which lets you export your data in WordPress or Blogger format). Note that the Google+ Exporter was just updated to improve video downloads - if you uploaded a lot of videos to Google+, be sure you have the latest version.If you have a Google+ Page, note you will need to download the Page’s data separately. Your data may be gone completely on April 2nd, so really, truly download it now. And if you wa…
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