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Weekly Update - April 17, 2021: Blogger, YouTube, Chrome

Happy Earth Week! I hope you can take a little time this week to enjoy nature, if only in your backyard. This week Blogger announced its Follow By Email service will be shut down, YouTube announced “Shorts” are getting their own shelf on channel pages and is testing “dubbed” videos, and Chrome has a new and improved PDF reader with presentation mode. And while this week was short on updates, there are a few more tips and tutorials. New tutorial : Learn how to export your Blogger blog’s email follower list from FeedBurner . Use this to help you migrate your list to a different platform before FeedBurner’s RSS to Email service is turned off in July. Earth Day is April 22. This year’s theme is “ Restore our Earth ”. Events will be mostly virtual yet again this year. Here’s how you can explore the Earth from home: Google Earth now lets you see a timelapse of changes with satellite photos covering the past 37 years. Go to goo.gle/timelapse to view highlights an

Blogger Follow by Email widget is going away: export your email subscriber list from FeedBurner

FeedBurner has announced that it will no longer support email subscriptions as of July 2021. As FeedBurner powers Blogger's FollowByEmail gadget, that will also stop working.  FeedBurner is a free Google service that let you customize your RSS feeds. It currently also provides feed analytics and - notably - has an RSS to Email service, emailing new posts in your feed to your subscribers.  FeedBurner was founded in 2004 and acquired by Google in 2007, almost 14 years ago. The Blogger FollowByEmail gadget was launched in 2011. That means many bloggers have a blog email list that is decade old.  Some of you are reading this post in an email. I haven't figured out an alternative email platform, but I will make an announcement when I do and you will be given the option to re-subscribe. I expect it's going to be a painful transition to a new platform. Watch the video for a brief overview and tutorial on how to export your email subscriber

Weekly Update - April 10, 2021: YouTube, Webmasters, Clubhouse

I hope you all are enjoying Spring! My excitement for the week was getting my first COVID vaccine dose. If you are eligible, and appointments are available, I urge you to do it too. Otherwise this was a quiet week. There are a few updates for video creators, webmasters and more. Mark your calendar StreamYard’s Live Stream Success Summit is April 15. Register for free to attend the keynotes, visit the expo “booths” and network with other attendees. The event is on the Hopin platform, which acquired StreamYard in January . Google I/O is coming soon. Try the punchcard puzzles to discover the date, or (now) just visit the Google I/O homepage . It’s virtual and free for everyone. If you register, you will get access to live Q&As, reserve live Workshops and Ask Me Anything Sessions, and chat inside “I/O Adventure”. YouTube and Video YouTube is filtering potentially hurtful comments . They can be found on th

Weekly Update - April 3, 2021: Hangouts, YouTube, Meet

Happy Easter weekend! I hope yours is sunny and safe. No fooling!   Google and most other big tech companies skipped April Fool’s Day again this year, which was probably a wise decision. There were a few cute jokes , like this amazing Canadian Space Agency discovery . Google did post some - no joking - productivity tips . More content can be monetized on YouTube: Some content that previously would only show “limited” ads can now be fully monetized . That includes some content with moderate profanity, showing violent interaction with law enforcement, humorous adult content, educational content on drug use, or discussion of controversial issues. Free accounts can continue hosting long Meet video calls: If you have a free personal Google account you can continue hosting Meet video calls up to 24 hours long until July . Originally free accounts were to be limited to 60 minute calls starting March 31. Another step away from classic Hangouts: This week Hangou

YouTube Advertiser Friendly Guidelines update: more green $ on content previously with limited ads

YouTube has updated the advertiser-friendly content guidelines so that some content that previously would have limited advertising can now be fully monetized. That includes some content with moderate profanity, showing violent interaction with law enforcement, humorous adult content, educational content on drug use, or discussion of controversial issues.  More specifically, the following types of content may be fully monetized now:  Using moderate profanity (like "shit" or "bitch") in the first 30 seconds of the video.  Adult themes in a humorous context, such as dating or romance jokes with sexual innuendo. Educational, documentary or news content that includes violent interactions with law enforcement.  Educational, documentary or news content that includes drug-related content. It cannot "glorify" drug use. "Non-graphic, objective discussions" of controversi

Unlimited Meet video call length extended for free personal accounts through June 2021

Google announced today that free personal account users can continue to host Meet video conferences up to 24 hours long through June 2021. We’re continuing unlimited #GoogleMeet calls (up to 24 hours) in the free version through June 2021 for Gmail accounts → https://t.co/fqBTmoNPBW pic.twitter.com/Ax0fmbRvqr — Google Workspace (@GoogleWorkspace) March 30, 2021 Google Meet video calls were made available to free personal accounts in April 2020 . Free accounts have fewer features than business or education accounts, including meeting length limited to 60 minutes. However, to help people who were socializing, working, or learning from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, premium features were made available through September.  In September, Google announced free accounts would be able to continue hosting "unlimited" (up to 24 hour) video meetings through March.  And here we are in March, the pandemic is ongoing, and Google has extended th

Weekly Update - March 27, 2021: YouTube, Chat, Medium

Happy Holi to my Indian readers! Google has information, art and games at their Holi@Home portal . This week there are updates for bloggers, video creators, Meet, Chat and more. New tutorial: I’m still learning about social media Stories. This week I compared Story options for Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube . I also made a quick video showing the options to download your Story content on different platforms. Also be sure to vote in my YouTube poll on what type of Stories you use. YouTube and Video Creators When you upload a video to YouTube on desktop, there is now a “Checks” step that automatically scans your uploaded video for copyright claims and (if monetizing) ad-suitability. That review is usually complete within 3 minutes. Creator Insider answers user questions about YouTube Shorts (on YouTube). YouTube Creators has an overview of new features for Premieres, including Live Redirect (f

Compare Social Media Stories: A quick guide to Stories on YouTube, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Stories on different social media platforms have a lot in common: they are mobile-only, and include vertical images and video. They often let the creator add text overlays, stickers, and fun AR filters or special effects.  And, notably, social media Stories are temporary. They eventually disappear from public view The content is often more casual and personal (or promotional) than the creator's usual posts.  Note that social media Stories are not to be confused with Google's Web Stories  (or the similar  Pinterest Story Pins  and WordPress Stories) , which uses the Stories format, but are meant for high quality visual content .  These Stories won't disappear unless you delete them.  As a creator and social media user, it's a bit confusing that different social networking platforms offer different features in Stories and different lifespans for the content.  I've compiled a general feature list for myself, and though I'd

Weekly Update - March 20, 2021: YouTube, Chrome, Threadit

Happy Spring or Autumn, depending on what side of the world you are on! This week YouTube Shorts are coming to America, live captions (in English) are available for any audio in Chrome, and new web communications tool Threadit lets you easily send short video updates and screencasts to your teammates. Plus there are updates for writers, video creators, Meet, Chat and more. New tutorial If you are using YouTube Stories, there are two ways to save your Story videos : save shorting after recording, or download the video with stickers and text from YouTube Studio. Watch the video. Note that YouTube Stories are still in beta, and are generally only available to channels with at least 10,000 subscribers. Upcoming This Sunday, March 21, I’ll be hosting a Twitter Chat at noon Pacific time. Join me to discuss when and if it’s better to use audio, video or text. Or just follow the latest #OnEBoardChat . March 21 is

Save your YouTube Story video before it expires

Stories are everywhere, and usually ephemeral by design. But sometimes you may want to keep a copyof your Story or repurpose the content. YouTube makes it easy to save your Story video.  You can save your YouTube Story video immediately after recording, or download after the video is published, which includes any added text and stickers. You can then post the video to your favorite social media site, or upload the video to your YouTube channel or blog .  The catch? Stories expire after seven days, so you need to download the video before it disappears.  Watch a brief tutorial , or read on for detailed instructions. How do you enable YouTube Stories?  YouTube Stories are currently only generally available to YouTube channels with at least 10,000 subscribers.  Learn more. If YouTube Stories are enabled for your channel, and you are using a compatible mobile device, you will see the "Add to your story" when you click the + button at the bott

Weekly Update - March 13, 2021: YouTube, Meet, Chromebooks

Just over a year ago the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 to be a pandemic .It feels like we are finally slowly moving towards normal, or at least whatever the new normal will be. It’s likely many people will continue to work from home, and there will probably be ongoing travel limitations. But overall, I am hopeful things are getting better. On to news: As YouTube announced last November, changes in the terms of service mean that all YouTube Partners must submit US tax information in AdSense . If you don’t submit tax information, a larger portion of your YouTube earnings may be withheld. This is a complicated update, so if this may affect you check out the link. Google Meet is rolling out a number of new features. The best one? Tiled view in the mobile app . That’s available now for iOS and “coming soon” to Android. For education and business accounts, there’s a new option to schedule breakout rooms before a meeting in Google Calendar, and a new (paid) dial-in and
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