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Twitter Adds New Prompts to Get More Users Adding Alt Text Descriptions to Images

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Twitter Adds New Prompts to Get More Users Adding Alt Text Descriptions to Images

Hey, are you adding alt text captions to your uploaded images on Twitter?

You should be, and now, Twitter’s going to prompt you to do exactly that, with new pop-ups being shown to some users alerting them to the benefits of alternative text summaries within tweets.

As you can see in this alert, Twitter’s looking to get more users to consider adding alt-text, by providing an explainer on why text descriptions of images are important, and how they can help more people engage with their content.

Text descriptions are a key tool for visually impaired users, with screen readers able to communicate these descriptions to add relevant context. Twitter users are able to add text descriptions to any uploaded image or GIF, but it requires manual effort – hence these new prompts.

Twitter’s been working to improve its alternative text descriptions for some time, as part of its broader efforts to improve accessibility in the app.

Twitter added a dedicated ‘+ALT’ button, displayed on the image itself, back in 2020, in order to encourage more awareness of the option. It updated the feature in March this year, with a new ‘ALT’ badge now automatically added to images where alternative text descriptions are available.

Twitter’s also expanded its text description window to make them more accessible.

Twitter alt text update

In combination, these have put significantly more focus on alt text for tweeted images, though Twitter could go further, by adding auto-generated text descriptions where alt text content is not available for an image.

That’s what Facebook now uses, with its Automated Alt Text (AAT) process facilitating the identification of objects within posted images via machine learning process.

Facebook Automatic Alt Text

It’s not perfect, but it helps to provide a better experience – and rather than hoping that users will add their own info when prompted, it ensures that there will be text descriptions available for all content.

Twitter’s prompts may help to provide more accurate descriptions (maybe), but they won’t be available at scale, as users can easily ignore the prompts and move on.

Maybe, the next stage then is to move into line with Meta’s approach, in utilizing automated object identification, which can also have expanded benefits in a range of additional applications and processes.

Whether that’s a focus for Twitter or not is hard to say, as no one really knows what the key developmental strategy for the app will be moving forward, given the current ownership confusion.

But if Twitter wants to take its accessibility tools to the next level, this seems like the obvious step.

Twitter’s new alt text prompts are being rolled out to a small group of users on iOS, Android, and web from today. Twitter will expand the prompts to more users over the coming weeks.

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YouTube Shares the Top Creators, Clips and Ads of 2022

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YouTube Shares the Top Creators, Clips and Ads of 2022

YouTube’s has published its listing of the top trending videos and creators of 2022, which provides an interesting overview of the year that was in online entertainment.

Starting with the most viewed clips, the top video was posted by gaming legend Technoblade, in which his father shares Technoblade’s farewell message that he composed before passing away due to cancer.

Technoblade’s final upload has been viewed over 87 million times, which is a testament to the influence the creator had within the broader gaming community.

The second most viewed clip was Will Smith’s infamous confrontation with Chris Rock at the Oscars, followed by another gaming streamer, Dream, and his face reveal clip.

The influence of gaming on online culture is once again on display in YouTube’s top performers, with several of the top channels and clips having links to gaming trends.

Prank videos are also prominent, which is a potentially more concerning trend, with some pushing the boundaries and leading to harm, while the Super Bowl halftime show also makes the top 10 list.

In terms of creators, it comes as little surprise to see MrBeast topping the list:

US Top Creators

  1. MrBeast (114M subs)
  2. NichLmao (18.7 subs)
  3. Airrack (10.7M subs)
  4. Ryan Trahan (11.1M subs)
  5. Isaiah Photo (8M subs)
  6. Brent Rivera (22.3M subs)
  7. Dan Rhodes (18.8M subs)
  8. Luke Davidson (9.31M subs)
  9. CoryxKenshin (15M subs)
  10. Ian Boggs (8.07M subs)

Jimmy Donaldson has become YouTube’s biggest success story, overtaking PewDiePie to become the most subscribed creator, and parlaying his YouTube success into various other business streams, including BeastBurger restaurants, Feastables chocolate bars and more. Donaldson has even outlined his longer-term plan to run for President. Which is probably not a genuine target, but then again…

YouTube has also provided a listing of Breakout Creators for the year, which includes various Shorts-focused stars.

Breakout Creators

  • NichLmao (18.7 subs)
  • Airrack (10.7M subs)
  • Jooj Natu ENG (6.03M subs)
  • Shangerdanger (4.03M subs)
  • David The Baker (2.47M subs)
  • Kat (5.2M subs)
  • Dayta (4.39M subs)
  • Devin Caherly Shorts (3.61M subs)
  • MDMotivator (4.17M subs)
  • Charles Brockman III (TheOnly CB3) (2.41M subs)
     

As noted, it’s an interesting overview of the year that was, though from a creative perspective, it’s hard to take many hints from what these top stars are doing and apply it to your own approach.

MrBeast generates most of his viral traction by undertaking ridiculously expensive stunts, while gaming creators are obviously gaming-focused, which is not overly helpful in determining the next big trends.

The majority of the top creators focus on big challenges, like surviving on 1c per day, or living in the Metaverse for 24 hours.

I guess, if you were looking to tap into such, that would be the key lesson, big-time challenges and grandiose projects that generate viral traction through people sharing the clips with their friends.

YouTube’s also shared the top-performing ads of the year:

Global Top Ads

  1. Amazon (US)
  2. Telecom Egypt (Egypt)
  3. Clash of Clans (US)
  4. Apple (US)
  5. Hyundai Worldwide (US)
  6. Imagine Your Korea (Korea)
  7. HBO Max (US)
  8. Netflix (US) 
  9. Chevrolet Brasil (Brazil)
  10. Squarespace (US)

That provides some more specific perspective for marketers, with examples of how other brands are generating traction with their promotional clips – though most of them are celebrity-led, big-budget productions, so again, there’s not a heap for smaller creators to necessarily take from these trends.

I mean, two of the top ten ads feature K-pop megaband BTS, while others have stars like Scarlett Johannsson and Zendaya.

But at the same time, that doesn’t mean that creativity can’t win out.

This ad from Telecom Egypt, second on the above list, uses bright colors and music to sell the brand message.

And really, if you need creative inspiration, you can check out YouTube Shorts and TikTok to see the latest trends that top creators are leaning into with their video approach.

Overall, it’s an interesting perspective on the year, which may help to guide you towards the top stars in the app. But maybe not overly instructive for your own creative approach.

You can check out YouTube’s 2022 year in review here.

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