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Weekly Update - July 16, 2022: Google One perks, Meet AR, Twitter unmentions


Amidst all the bad things happening in the world, it was a joy to see the first images from NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope showing distant galaxies and the birthplace of stars. The universe is vast and beautiful!

This week there are updates for Google Meet, YouTube, the usual Social Media sites and more.

Did you miss this week’s live Tinkering with Tech show featuring a panel of Google Product Experts (including me)? Watch the video.

If you would like this newsletter in your email inbox, subscribe here.

AR effects in Google Meet on the web

Many of the AR effects available in Duo and Meet mobile apps are now available on the web.

Check the technical requirements here.

Premium Google Meet features with Google One

Google One is a Google paid subscription that includes storage for Google Drive, Photos and Gmail, direct support, advanced Google Photos editing tools and other perks.

Now Premium 2 TB and higher plans include “Google Workspace premium” features.
  • Google Meet group calls for up to 24 hours (rather than 60 minutes)
  • Google Meet smart background noise filters
  • Google Meet meeting recording
  • Eventually additional premium features for Gmail, Calendar and other Google products
This is currently only available to Google One subscribers in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Japan, Mexico and the United States. But more countries are “coming soon”.

The cost in the US is currently $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year.

If you are currently using a personal Google account for your business, you might instead consider subscribing to Google Workspace Individual, which includes additional premium Meet features, appointment scheduling in Google Calendar, customized email marketing features in Gmail, and eSignature in Google Docs.

Ev Williams steps down as Medium CEO

Ev Williams is the co-founder of Blogger, co-founder and former CEO of Twitter, and founder and (now former) CEO of Medium, and so has helped shaped the web of today. That means it’s news that he’s stepping down as CEO of Medium.

Casey Newton documents the many many pivots Medium has made in order to try to support and promote high-quality content. It turns out, that’s not what brings in the money.

From a former Medium employee:
“I think he was trying to solve a really hard problem, it kept not working, and he screwed a lot of people over to varying degrees by continually changing his approach,” the employee said. “But he really did try a lot of things, and it wasn't necessarily obvious that they'd fail until somebody with a ton of money tried it.”

It’s not clear where the new CEO (Tony Stubblebine of plans to take Medium or what Williams’ next venture will be.

YouTube and Video

Creator Insider reviews new features in the YouTube Shorts editor (use clips from other videos with Cut, Green Screen for iOS, multiple drafts) and answers questions about Shorts. If you are interested in producing Shorts, it’s worth watching.

Picture-in-picture YouTube video is rolling out to iPhone and iPads, letting you keep watching while using other apps. This is already available on non-Android devices. Note that outside of the US, you need a YouTube Premium membership to use PiP. US viewers can view non-music content with PiP for free.

This is the 10th anniversary of the launch of the smash YouTube music video Gangnam Style, the first video that hit one billion views. Since then a number of other music videos have hit that milestone, including some classics like Cyndi Lauper’s” Girls Just Want to Have Fun.” Click the link to learn more about the most popular music videos on YouTube.

Instagram’s new Live Producer lets you go live on Instagram using streaming software like OBS or Streamlabs. It opens up new features for fancier livestreams, like additional cameras, external mics and graphics. Live Producer is currently limited access.

Twitch is lowering their minimum payment threshold for Partners and Associates to $50 (formerly $100).

Web Publishers

If you upload videos to your own site, the new Google Search Console Video Index Report lets you see if Google has identified and indexed your videos, and helps you fix any indexing issues.

If you are a publisher who uses Ad Manager to manage the ads on your site, Google has best practices to remain policy compliant.

Google’s Ads Creative Studio is now globally available to businesses. This is a “creative management platform” to build video ads (with Director Mix), organize your creative assets (with Asset Library), and create Interactive HTM5 display ads. Projects can be exported to Google Ads, Display & Video 360 or Campaign Manager 360. Learn more and get started.

Social Media

Twitter now lets you “leave a conversation” with Unmentioning. Untag your username so that you no longer receive notifications. 

Instagram has added several new features to Subscriptions. Paid Subscriptions (available to select creators in the US), now offer subscriber-only Chats, subscriber-exclusive Posts and Reels (in addition to Stories and Live broadcasts), and a profile “Exclusive” tab for the Subscriber-exclusive content.

Reddit has made inline GIFs in comments available in all communities (plus a few other new features).

TikTok now lets you filter out selected hashtags from your home feed and is building a system to organize content based on “thematic maturity.

One year ago Pinterest banned weight loss ads. This week they published a report on what has changed since then. The result? Searches for “weight loss” are down 20%, while searches like “quick and healthy meals” and “love your body” quotes are up several fold. It sounds like a positive result.

Tumblr launched TumblrMart, a storefront for gifting Ad-Free browsing or Summon Crab! Button for 24 hours (originally an April-fools gag).


Google Meet will now show people invited to the meeting in Google Calendar, but who have not joined the call. Those invitees can be easily contacted via Google Chat. This is available to most Google Workspace Business, Enterprise, Education and Nonprofits customers. Learn more.

Google Meet is now integrated with Miro, the (non-Google) collaborative whiteboard app. You can sign up for Miro for free, but no account is needed for boards saved up to 24 hours. To get started, click “Activities” at the bottom right of the Meet meeting window, then select Miro.

Zoom Apps now offer “Immersive Experiences” and are available for Zoom Webinars. These can add fundraising, translation, collaboration tools, games and more.

Microsoft is designing hybrid meeting rooms, optimized so that both virtual and in-person attendees feel like they are in the same space. These look much better than the traditional long meeting table with the video screen at the far end.


Appointment scheduling in Google Calendar now lets you easily share your appointment booking page or embed the booking page on your own website. This is available to most Google Workspace plans, and probably also Google Workspace Individual.

That’s all the updates for this week. Subscribe to get the Weekly Update in your email inbox or favorite feed reader every week. Miss last week’s update? Get it here.

Image: NASA’s Webb reveals “Cosmic Cliffs”, glittering landscape of star birth in the Carina Nebula. Available on Flickr under a CC BY 2.0 (Attribution 2.0 Generic) license.


  1. Hi, Peggy, some news from They haven't announced it publicly, but now there are also three addons for free sites: no ads, CSS and premium themes. Each of them for only 20 dollars a year.

  2. See this:


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