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Creator Weekly: YouTube AI Labels, Yahoo Creator Program, Threads Federation

Creator Weekly March 23, 2024

Spring has sprung and there a updates sprouting all over.

New this week: YouTube labels for AI-generated and synthetic content, Threads federation, the Yahoo Creator Program for lifestyle and tech writers, and news and tips for YouTubers, SEOs, social media and more.

Top news and updates this week

  • YouTube videos with AI-generated content must now be labeled
  • Threads has joined the fediverse
  • Yahoo for Creators program for lifestyle and tech writers
  • Remix a Remix in YouTube Shorts
  • Tips for creating YouTube thumbnails and deleting old content (don’t!)
  • Twitch retires Watch Party
  • Google really wants web publishers and SEOs to create content for visitors
  • Bing Webmaster Tools has new Insights
  • X is showing posts “Pinned by people you follow”
  • Let Instagram and Threads recommend political content to you
  • Threads shows trending topics
  • Instagram improves hashtag search
  • Pinterest will be at Coachella
  • Facebook is boosting AI-generated spam image posts
  • Microsoft has a new Microsoft AI division headed (and staffed) by Inflection’s co-founders and staff
  • Google Calendar is going all in on appointment schedules (and will be removing the competing appointment slots)
Read on for details and additional updates!

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Disclose “altered or synthetic content” on YouTube

YouTube now requires creators to label “altered or synthetic” content. This includes some AI-generated content, of course, and also content created using other editing tools.

Here’s the kind of content that needs to be labeled:
  • You show a real person doing or saying something they didn’t do or say
  • You alter footage of a real event or place
  • You generate a realistic-looking scene that isn’t actually real
  • Synthetically generated music
  • Using someone’s cloned voice in a voice-over
Non-realistic or minor changes do not need to be labeled:
  • Fantasy or obviously fictional scenes
  • Special effects filters, like background blur or beauty filters
  • Color or lighting adjustments
  • Audio or video enhancement
  • Production assistance, using AI tools to write scripts, generate titles, and so forth
So using an AI-generated animation of a missile in a video does not need to be labeled, unless it’s a realistic animation of a missile fired at a real city. More examples.

The “altered content” setting is currently available in YouTube Studio ( ) on desktop. You can select this option during the upload process, or by editing the details of an already-uploaded video.

It is not required that your back catalog of videos be labeled, but you can do so if you wish.

If you use one of YouTube’s AI-generation tools, like Dream Screen or Dream Track, the video will be automatically labeled.

The label appears in the expanded video description, and some sensitive content (elections, ongoing conflicts, natural disasters, health, finance) will show a label on top of the video.
  • The label will not limit the audience of the video
  • The label will not affect monetization eligibility
And if you don’t label your new content as required:
  • YouTube may label the content with an non-removable label
  • If a creator frequently violates this policy, the content may be removed and the channel may no longer be eligible for the YouTube Partner Program.
More information

Announcement: How we're helping creators disclose altered or synthetic content
Examples of what does and does not need to be labeled

Fediverse Sharing on Threads

Meta’s Threads is now allowing some users in the US, Canada and Japan to opt in to fediverse sharing.

What does that mean? If you have this setting enabled, people using Mastodon or other platforms federated with ActivityPub can follow your Threads profile and see, respond to, reshare and like your Threads posts.

You can turn it on by signing in to Threads then going to Settings > Account > Fediverse Sharing > Turn on Sharing.

This currently does not include:
  • Threads Posts with restricted replies
  • Replies to non-federated Threads posts
  • Reposts of non-federated Threads posts
  • Posts with polls (but that will eventually be available)
It is also not yet possible to see fediverse posts or replies on Threads.

I’ve enabled it on my Threads account. If you are on Mastodon (and your server allows it) you can follow me at

But you will only be able to follow my Threads posts if you are on a server that allows federation with Threads. The Mastodon server I am on ( actually blocks Threads, so I haven’t been able to try this out.

You can see if your Mastodon, Lemmy, or other federated account allows federation with Threads at (which is strongly against this). The largest servers, such as and do allow federation, so most users will be able to see your federated posts.

More information

Engineering at Meta: Threads has entered the fediverse
Instagram Help Center: Turn on sharing to the fediverse on Threads
Be sure to link your Threads profile on Mastodon and vice versa for verification

Yahoo for Creators

Yahoo for Creators (no lie!) is a new program for writers who can share their content on the Yahoo News network. Yahoo News has more than 185 million monthly US visitors, which has some potential.

Yahoo News will be publishing more “lifestyle topics” (fitness, travel, home, wellness, technology and so forth), and they are looking for writers. Creators will have access to publishing tools and stats, and earn money with a 50/50 ad revenue share and affiliate revenue opportunities.

The requirements:
  • US Resident
  • over 18
  • at least 1000 followers on an eligible platform (Medium, Substack, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, TikTok, YouTube)
  • strong writing skills
  • written content in one of the target categories
Content does not need to be published exclusively in Yahoo News.

Currently the program is in beta and invite-only, but you can sign up for updates. If you click the “Alt Summit” link at the top of the page, it leads to an application form at that asks for your Brand name, website (required), social media links, and two links to writing samples.

(via Lindsey Gamble)

Video Creator and Live Streaming Updates

You can now Remix a Remix in the YouTube Shorts editor. Get the details from Creator Insider.

YouTube is testing allowing viewers to suggest corrections to English auto-generated captions. Creators will be able to view the suggestions in the transcript panel. Viewers can thumbs-up suggested corrections. Learn more.

YouTube Creator Liaison Rene Richie has a new series of Shorts on creating thumbnails: No views? Could it be your thumbnails?, LOCK attention, WIN the click, your thumbnail has to PAY OFF. It’s good info, but it always makes me anxious because I think my thumbnails could be much better, but it’s just one more thing on my todo list.

Todd B., YouTube’s product lead for Home Page and Recommendations says don’t delete your old videos (unless you have a really good reason)! Why? Because that deletes your channel’s connection to the audience that watched that video which will affect recommendations.

YouTube is rolling out the option to analyze retention by audience segments (subscribers vs. non-subscribers, new vs returning viewers, organic vs paid traffic). This was discovered by Mario Joos and confirmed by YouTube Creator Liaison.

YouTube Creators has a quick tutorial on how to overlay photos and videos in the YouTube Create app.

TikTok is offering voice clips from a selection of creators to brands in its Sounds for Business library. There’s something that seems so commercial about TikTok today, with creators in ads and so much promotion of TikTok shopping products.

Twitch is retiring its Watch Party feature on April 2. This launched in April 2020 as a way for homebound streamers and fans to watch a selection of Amazon Prime movies and shows together. Twitch says usage has declined over the years (probably because no one stays home for COVID-19 any more). Tubefilter has the story.

At SXSW Patreon’s Jack Conte talked about how platforms with algorithms like TikTok’s “for you” feed is “killing the traditional “follower” for creators. Watch the video. His argument is that platforms like Patreon allow people to build a community of true fans. Last year Patreon went through a redesign that lets creators set up a homepage with community space, where fans can join and interact without paying anything.

Web Publishers and Search

SEOs are making Google’s Search Liaison beg they focus on creating sites for visitors, not Google. Bing Webmaster Tools has new tools for website owners, including Top Insights and IndexNow Insights (with actionable suggestions), improved navigation, and faster updates. Ahrefs and its Yep search engine now support IndexNow (which pings them when a site is updated).
Photos and Image Design on the Web

Social Media

A new report from market insight firm Sensor Tower shows a decline in US social media use over the past year (January 2023-January 2024), based on mobile app use. While Snapchat use grew 8.8%, Instagram use is down 4.4%, TikTok is down 9.5%, and Twitter/X is down a whopping 22.9%. 

Andrew Hutchinson at Social Media Today has done some math and notes that ad revenue share payouts from X have been decreasing. It could be because fewer people are monetizing or it could be that ad revenue is decreasing, but it’s difficult to know why when X only provides dodgy stats.

X is displaying a “pinned by people you follow” shelf in the For You feed to all users. It’s not clear how X decides which pinned posts to display there, but pinning a post appears to be an opportunity to promote that post to your followers.

Be aware that scammers have figured out how to post links on X that display a legitimate website domain, but that redirect to a malicious site.

Back in February, Meta announced that they would not “proactively recommend content about politics” on Instagram or Threads. They define “politics” as content that includes laws, elections, or social topics, which is pretty broad. Now there is a setting in your Instagram and Threads accounts that lets you indicate you do want to have such content recommended. It’s turned off by default. To change this setting on Instagram: Settings > Settings & Privacy > Suggested Content . This option is apparently still in the process of rolling out. Source: micaelaloach via Mashable.

Threads also introduced a “Trending Now” feature, which shows 5 topics trending in the US. The topics are selected by an AI system, and then human “content specialists” review them to make sure they don’t violate Threads Guidelines and are not “duplicative, nonsensical, or misleading.” Meta makes clear that the topics are not selected by those humans and it’s not personalized. So far it hasn’t been particularly exciting (Ghostbusters Frozen Empire is currently trending), but it also doesn’t have the right-wing trends that I see on X.

Now when you tap on a #hashtag on Instagram, you see the search results for that hashtag. You will still be able to follow, unfollow and report hashtags. I honestly thought that’s the way it always worked, but previously it opened a “Top Posts” screen for the hashtag, rather than search results. The search results screen lets you filter by Accounts, Audio and Reels, which should allow more discovery. Maybe it’s time to add hashtags to your profile?

Pinterest is heading to the Coachella music festival (April 12-14 and 19-21) with a Coachella guide in the Pinterest app and an in-person Pinterest manifest Station with photo ops and “trending beauty and styling experiences.” What style trends do you need to know? “Lana Del Rey core”, “2014 core” (that makes me feel old), Fairycore, and “Dark feminine core”. If you don’t want to dress up or head out to the desert, you can watch the Coachella music festival live on YouTube.

Reddit has gone public. When the NYSE closed on Friday Reddit stock was trading at $46 pre share (down from a high of $50.44). You can follow investor news at the new r/RDDT subreddit.

Ryan Broderick speculates that LinkedIn might be the next best social network for news and journalism.

More AI Updates

Jason Koebler at 404 Media reports on how Facebook’s algorithm is boosting AI spam that links to AI-generated, ad-laden click farms. Do click the link to see the wildly bizarre images that are trending on Facebook. Why are they trending? It seems that if you engage with an AI-generated image post, Facebook will show you more AI-generated image posts, rather than related content. And engagement is high on posts with Jesus (made of shrimp!) with a request for an “Amen”. What’s the payoff? Many of the posts with AI images include a link to an ad-covered website or try to collect personal information. For more details, see the report by Renee DiResta and Josh A. Goldstein at Stanford’s Internet Observatory.

Elon Musk’s released the “base model weights and network architecture” of its Grok-1 large language model under an Apache 2.0 license (which allows business use). It does not include the training data though. Emilia David at The Verge has more context about the release and TechCrunch explains why it matters (and why it doesn’t). Currently only X Premium subscribers have early access to Grok-1.

Microsoft hired Mustafa Suleyman (founder of Google DeepMind and Inflection) and Karen Simonyan (co-founder and Chief Scientist of Inflection) to head up a new Microsoft AI division. Copilot AI, Bing and Edge teams will report to Microsoft AI.

Inflection is shifting its focus to training and tailoring its AI model (Pi) for businesses, and will soon have an API. It has a new CEO, Sean White, after losing its previous CEO, Chief Scientist, and a number of its employees to Microsoft’s new Microsoft AI division (see above). Devin Coldewey at TechCrunch suggests that this may be the beginning of the end for the company, which hasn’t been able to compete with the other big players like Google Gemini and OpenAI.

Tubefilter reports that OpenAI is working on convincing Hollywood film studios that its text-to-video AI model Sora could assist their work.

Mozilla’s dist://ed interviewed Professor Apryl Williams about What Are The Real Dangers Of AI For Black People?

Communication and Collaboration

If you are a Google Workspace user that uses appointment slots in Google Calendar, be aware that this will be replaced by appointment schedules in July 2024. Appointment scheduling has been available in parallel with appointment slots, and Google has focused on improving that experience. If you have a personal Google Account, appointment scheduling is available with Google Workspace Individual or Google One Premium (in select countries). Learn more.

There’s a new enhanced search in Google Drive that should help you find files faster.

More Reading

Astronomer Phil Plait’s Bad Astronomy Newsletter this week wrote about A sense of privilege. “We can make the world better. It helps to truly see the others who are in it.”

Nobel Prize-winning biologist Venki Ramakrishnan was interviewed by Wired Health about The Keys to a Long Life Are Sleep and a Better Diet—and Money

Thanks for reading! 🌼
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 March 16 edition here.

Image via Canva. Free for commercial use, no attribution required.


  1. I'm not sure deleting YouTube videos is a bad thing. You can always make them private instead. Depends on the type of video. If the information is no longer relevant I wouldn't leave it up for public consumption.

    1. It depends on your audience. If you think the same people who watched that original video, would appreciate your new videos, then it's probably worth leaving the the videos up. You can always add a card to the old video to link to a new video.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. ❤️ I hope this heart is red.


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