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YouTube Moves to the Testing Phase for its TikTok-Like ‘Shorts’ Option



Back in April, The Information reported that YouTube was working on a new, TikTok-like, short-form video option that would live within YouTube, providing a new way for YouTubers to tap into the rising, 15-second clip trend.

Now, YouTube has released more information on the coming function. As reported by TechCrunch, YouTube has shared some new details on the option – which is reportedly called ‘Shorts’ – within its latest test notes.

As per YouTube:

“We’re testing out a new way for creators to easily record multiple clips directly in the YouTube mobile app and upload as one video. If you’re in this experiment, you’ll see an option to ‘create a video’ in the mobile upload flow. Tap or hold the record button to record your first clip, then tap again or release the button to stop recording that clip. Repeat these steps until you’re done capturing footage up to a maximum length of 15 seconds.” 

There’s not a lot of detail to go on, and we don’t know exactly what it will look like – and if, indeed, the UI will seek to replicate TikTok in any way. But the 15-second time limit, and multi-clip functionality, certainly sounds very TikTok-esque.  

In The Information’s original report on the option, it noted that:

Shorts will include a feed of brief videos posted by users inside the Google-owned app and will take advantage of the video service’s catalog of licensed music, songs from which will be available to use as soundtracks for the videos created by users.”

So 15-second clips, with a focus on setting them to music. It’s fairly clear that YouTube is eyeing TikTok’s core functions, and looking to negate the growth of the app. This also comes as Instagram expands its TikTok clone functionality ‘Reels’ into more regions, another move designed to halt TikTok’s expansion.

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What’s particularly interesting, in both cases, is that neither YouTube nor Instagram is launching a new, separate app for this purpose. Instead, both are using their biggest advantage over TikTok, in their massive audience reach. That could give each offering more traction, while also helping to keep users from being sucked into the TikTok vortex.


TikTok’s UI works particularly well because of its compulsion – once you’re in TikTok, it’s very easy to go through a stream of different clips, and drift down rabbit holes of hashtag trends, dragging you deeper into the app experience.

Both YouTube and Instagram are clearly aware of this – while keeping these new functions within their main apps will also mean that they can use their existing monetization tools as a lure to keep top creators from seeking to stay on trend by jumping over to another app for such – or maybe it will provide an avenue for repurposing TikTok content, maximizing upload opportunities. TikTok, as yet, does not have an advanced monetization offering for creators.

With such limited info, however, it’s difficult to say whether YouTube’s version will work. It makes sense, and it plays to YouTube’s strengths. But will users want to watch short clips in their YouTube stream? 

Time will tell. Right now, YouTube’s rolling out the test to a small subset of users on both Android and iOS, before deciding whether to move forward with the experiment.


Twitter adds warning labels to false Ukraine war posts



Twitter adds warning labels to false Ukraine war posts

Misleading tweets about Russia’s war on Ukraine will be hidden behind messages warning they could cause real world harm under a new Twitter policy. – Copyright AFP Asif HASSAN

Twitter on Thursday said it will put warning labels on demonstrably false posts about Russia’s war in Ukraine under a new “crisis misinformation policy.”

Tweets violating the new rule will be hidden behind messages saying that misleading information in the posts could cause real-world harm, said Twitter head of safety and integrity Yoel Roth.

Twitter users will then have to click on a link to see an offending post.

“While this first iteration is focused on international armed conflict, starting with the war in Ukraine, we plan to update and expand the policy to include additional forms of crisis,” Roth said in a blog post.

Examples of the kinds of posts that would merit warning labels included false reports about what is happening on the ground and how the international community is responding.

Twitter said it will make a priority of adding warning labels to tweets from high-profile accounts such as state-affiliated media outlets, governments, and users whose identities have been verified.


“Conversation moves quickly during periods of crisis, and content from accounts with wide reach are most likely to rack up views and engagement,” Roth said.

He added that the new policy will guide Twitter’s efforts “to elevate credible, authoritative information, and will help to ensure viral misinformation isn’t amplified or recommended by us during crises.”

The content moderation move comes as Twitter faces the prospect of being bought by billionaire Elon Musk.

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The controversial Tesla chief openly advocates for anyone to be able to say whatever they want on Twitter, no matter how untrue, as long as it doesn’t break the law.

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