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Creator Weekly: YouTube Channel Design; Tumblr Development; Chat's New Look

There are tons of new features and announcements this week. For video creators there are updates this week for YouTube (lots!), TikTok, Twitch, and X; for bloggers there are updates to WordPress and Tumblr; plus updates for Instagram, Facebook, and Google Chat. And if you are interested in generative AI there are new options to try and policy issues to think about.

Top news and updates this week

  • New quick video tutorials for monetizing your website or YouTube channel.
  • You can now customize the new “For You” section of your YouTube channel.
  • YouTube is removing the “About” and “Channels” tabs on channels.
  • YouTube’s simplified ad settings are rolling out to channels in the YouTube Partner Program.
  • YouTube is testing generative AI features in comments: summaries and questions.
  • TikTok is shutting down its Creator Fund in favor of its new Creativity Program.
  • Facebook creators can now offer a 30 day free trial for paid subscriptions.
  • Instagram adds sharing of comments to Stories.
  • Automattic is cutting Tumblr’s team but will continue to develop the site.
  • Google Chat has updated navigation and a new logo.
  • Google Slides lets you easily add GIFs and Stickers to your presentation.
  • Google’s Search Generative Experience is now available in 120 countries and 5 languages (but still not in Europe).
Read on for details and additional updates!

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Two short new monetization tutorial videos

Enable and change the frequency of AdSense vignette ads on your website. These are AdSense’s “best performing” ads.

Do you know what YouTube is telling advertisers? As a YouTube Partner, you need to be sure to follow the advertiser-friendly guidelines, in part because Google promises advertisers that their ads will only display next to advertiser-friendly content.

Note that both of these Shorts are based on clips from previous weeks’ Creator Weekly Live streams. Join me live on Sunday to get the low-down on this week’s updates.

YouTube and Video Creator Updates

You can now customize the new For You section of your YouTube Channel. This highlights content on your channel personalized for the viewer. You can do that in YouTube Studio > Customization > Layout > For You Settings. Viewers will see this section of your channel starting November 20. (More info from Creator Insider)

YouTube is “cleaning up” channel tabs, and will not display tabs without content. (So if you have no live streams, there won’t be a Live tab). The About tab is removed entirely, but a preview will appear on every other tab, and clicking pops up all the same information. The Channels tab is also removed, and the information will be shown on the channel homepage. (More info at Creator Insider)

YouTube Shorts is adding a new “Collab” remix feature, that lets you create a split-screen with another video. This is currently rolling out in the iOS app. (More info at Creator Insider)

YouTube is testing two AI features in comments: comment topics summaries (running on a small number of videos in English with lots of comments) and the option to ask the AI about a video or be prompted to take a quiz. YouTube Premium members can opt in at Note that these are limited tests, in English, and not available on all videos or locations.

YouTube’s “simplified” ad formats are rolling out over the next few weeks If you enable monetization on a long-form video, you can no longer turn off or on pre-roll, post-roll, skippable or non-skippable ads. YouTube shows whichever ads it thinks are best. Note that ad choices before this change went into effect are being maintained, unless the ad settings are changed. More information about advertising formats.

YouTube is also testing search shortcuts in comments. Clicking a search shortcut in comments will start a new YouTube Search for that term. This is being tested on a small number of channels and is visible on Android devices.

Videos uploaded to X can now have linked timestamps to let people jump to a specific point in the video. While anyone can see the timestamps, for now, they are only clickable in the iOS X app.

X also announced that you will be able to view the live chat on the same screen as a live stream playback. Social Media Today points out that it’s pretty basic looking, and nowhere near the “parity with YouTube” that Musk seems to think X is approaching.

TikTok is shutting down its Creator Fund on December 16, in favor of its newer Creativity Program. Gizmodo notes that the Creativity Program emphasizes longer content (at least one minute long) to encourage advertising. It supposedly pays much better than the Creator Fund.

Twitch is removing Hype Chat, a feature that lets people pay to have their comment pinned to the top of a live chat. Instead “viewers will be able to pin Cheers with Bits in the coming weeks.

All Twitch Affiliates and Partners now can upload Follower Emotes, even without Instant Upload eligibility.

Web Publishers

Matt Mullenweg, founder and CEO of Automattic (WordPress’s parent company) did an AMA on Tumblr in response to a leaked memo about staff there being moved to other areas of the company. After several years and a substantial investment they haven’t been able to “turn the site around”. Mullenweg noted “We spent a lot of time and effort on things that weren't well received, and neglected some core functionality and stability. In 2024 we'll try to hone in on making the core parts of Tumblr that people love really hum and work well.” It was also noted that the Tumblr user base has aggressively attacked some efforts to monetize (like the patreon-like Posts+) and they are working to reduce that. Tumblr has been passed through multiple owners and Automattic is the first owner in years that really cares about the site, and they will continue to develop it with a much smaller team.

Google Search is rolling out the November 2023 Reviews Update. They say they will be updating the reviews system (to better reward high quality reviews) on an ongoing basis, and there will not be updates on their status dashboard.

WordPress 6.4 “Shirley” is now available, with an improved Command Palette, Block Hooks (insert dynamic blocks at specific content locations), preview images in List View, image placeholder aspect ratios, set custom names for Group blocks, incorporate buttons into your navigation and more.

WordPress offers two free webinars this month: how to customize your theme with Block Patterns, and How to Pick the Perfect Plugin.

There is now a Bing Webmaster Tools app for Android devices.

Social Media

“Select creators” on Instagram in the US, South Korea and Japan may be eligible for an invite-only holiday bonus that rewards creators for sharing creativity in Reels and photos.

Meta lets creators offer paid subscriptions on Instagram and Facebook. They just reached the milestone of 1 million active subscriptions on Instagram, and opened up the option to creators in more countries. They are adding more places the Subscription button shows on Facebook, including Reels and Stories. And now creators can offer a free 30-day trial subscription to fans.Is this the future of monetization?

Fans on Instagram can give “Gifts” (purchased with “Stars”, but worth real money) to their favorite monetizing creators. This option has been expanded to 33 new countries in Europe and Asia. Creators who are at least 18 years old, have 5,000 followers and have a professional account may be eligible to receive “Gifts”.

Creators who “allow brand partners to boost” their Instagram Stories will now see prompts to fix any ad eligibility errors when creating the Story.

On Instagram everyone will be able to share comments to Stories.

Elon Musk’s xAI launched its first chatbot Grok. According to Social Media Today, what makes it different is that it is designed to be “anti-wok” and be a better representation of the “truth”, trained on the content posted on X. They note that “Grok is likely to be a right-leaning misinformation machine, basing its responses on Elon’s army of “citizen journalists”, who now share whatever they want in the app.” The chatbot will be available to X Premium+ subscribers.

Snap’s Lens Fest 2023 was a meetup (and celebration of) Snap AR Lens developers. Check out the recap for a look at winning Lenses and get updates on Lens Studio.

Tumblr just made it possible to reply to a post from a secondary blog. If you do that, your primary blog remains hidden.

You can now create shareable public User Lists on Bluesky.

Starting December 14, LinkedIn will remove all carousels, profile videos and clickable links in images and videos.

More AI Updates

According to Android Authority, a teardown of the latest version of the Google Photos app appears to show that the new Magic Editor won’t edit photos of ID cards, receipts or some other documents; images with personally identifiable information; human faces and body parts or large selections of the image. These limitations are likely in place to prevent violations of Google’s Generative AI ToS.

Google’s Search Generative Experience is now available in 120 new countries (although not Europe yet), and in four additional languages (Spanish, Portuguese, Korean and Indonesian). Also new: easier to ask follow-up questions, see translation context, and definitions for health and coding information. You can opt in to the experiment in the Search Labs settings:

Advertisers can use generative AI tools in Google Ads Performance Max to create and edit images and headlines. Created images will have an invisible Synth ID watermark and open standard metadata identifying them as AI-generated.

OpenAI’s GPT platform lets you create custom ChatGPT-based agents without having to code. It’s available with a ChatGPT Plus subscription.

Wired reports on how AI algorithms are biased against skin with yellow hues and what companies are doing to try to mitigate that.

This is bad: Adobe sells fake AI-generated Israel-Hamas war images – then the news ran them as real

Finally, Kali Hays at Business Insider reports on the reaction of venture capitalists to new copyright rules that could be applied to AI training. “Andreessen Horowitz is warning that billions of dollars in AI investments could be worth a lot less if companies developing the technology are forced to pay for the copyrighted data that makes it work.”

Communication and Collaboration

Google Chat has a brand new logo that now matches Google Meet’s multi-color logo.

In addition to the new logo, Google Chat has updated navigation with a new “Home” tab that shows new activity in all your conversations and spaces and a Mentions tab that just shows @mentions of you.

The Google Drive app for iOS and Android has an updated homepage to make it easier to find files, including an updated “suggested” tab with recommendations from recently opened, shared or edited files.

Google Drive also has a new search filter that lets you easily find files shared with a specific person or group.

Date+time Smart Chips in Google Docs are finally getting timezone support.

Google Slides now lets you easily add GIFs and stickers to your presentations.

Timeline view in Google Sheets , an “interactive timeline view that allows you to track projects” is now visible in the Android and iOS Sheets app.

Microsoft Teams now has a Meet app that lets people “discover, prepare and recap meetings”. This is available in the “new Microsoft Teams” experience. It looks pretty useful as a hub for meeting information, past and future. But it’s pretty confusing that they went with the Meet name + video camera icon, which looks a lot like Google Meet.

It’s now easier for Google Workspace users to schedule large scale meetings (with up to 100,000 guests) in Google Calendar, including an associated Meet meeting.

Google Meet launched the Google Meet API through the Google Workspace Developer Preview Program. Developers can create and configure Meet calls, retrieve meeting information, access transcripts and video recordings and more. This allows third parties to integrate Meet with their own apps and services. An example is Brandlive integration that uses Meet for breakout sessions.

More Reading

At The Verge: Nilay Patel interviewed former president Barack Obama about AI, free speech and the future of the internet.

At 404 Media: Advertisers Don’t Want Sites Like Jezebel to Exist: “The 'Brand Safety' and 'Suitability' industries have financially crushed the news business by keeping ads away from articles that its 'sentiment analysis' algorithms think will make people sad or upset.”

From MIT Technology Review: How a tiny Pacific Island became the global capital of cybercrime

From Wired: The Bizarre Cottage Industry of YouTube Obituary Pirates

From Ars Technica: The Humane AI Pin is a bizarre cross between Google Glass and a pager

A new way to think about personal websites from Maggie Appleton: A Brief History & Ethos of the Digital Garden and Digital Gardening for Non-Technical Folks

From BBC Future: The surprisingly subtle ways Microsoft Word has changed how we use language
Beyond Identity: The History and Future of Passwords

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 the November 4 edition here.


  1. The Adobe fiasco is definitely bad. AI is going to be a big problem and the government has stepped in to regulate it.

    1. I'm not sure it can be regulated though. I wish news organizations were more careful.

  2. I have it all set up, but I haven't really actively used it since they migrated to GA4.


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