Posted:
Hello! Yesterday we had another release -- v38, if you're counting -- but if you've been reading this blog, you'll know that lots has happened between the last Release Notes post and today. We launched our RealTime beta, a new look for the homepage, a destination for TV and movie content, and CaptionEditor in TestTube. We try to be nimble and push out new features or fixes as often as they're ready. Let us know what you think of these latest updates:



* New Options for Uploaders: In our continued effort to give you ultimate control over how your videos are presented, uploaders can now tweak the appearance of their video when played on YouTube or in an embedded player. Just insert any of the hint tags below into the tags field of your video and voila!



yt:crop=16:9 (zooms in on the 16:9 area, removes windowboxing)

yt:stretch=16:9 (fixes anamorphic content by scaling to 16:9)

yt:stretch=4:3 (fixes 720x480 content that is the wrong aspect ratio by scaling to 4:3)

yt:quality=high (default to a high quality stream, depending on availability)



* HD Browsing Goes Global: Add Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain and U.K. to the list of countries where you can browse the most popular HD videos in the region.



* AudioSwap Adds Recommendations: If your video contained an audio track that was not authorized for use on YouTube, the Recommended Tracks feature in AudioSwap will help you quickly find fully licensed songs to replace your original audio track. Recommendations are based on a combination of popularity and, for audio-matched videos, similarity to the original track. The three tracks being used most often are "Bodies" by Drowning Pool, "Bring Me to Life" by Evanescence, and "Paralyzer" by Finger Eleven.



* Subscription Tab in More Places: We added a new "Subscriptions" tab to the top of the page a few weeks ago for anyone with an account who sets his or her country preference to "Worldwide." Starting today, the Subscriptions tab is available on any of our English-language sites, and we'll add it for other languages soon, too. Why is this important? Simple -- we hope to build stronger connections between video creators and their audiences by making subscriptions more prominent on YouTube. Please let us know if this change has positively impacted your viewership.



* Subscription Suggestions: Building on our new subscriptions tab, users without any subscriptions who visit the subscription center will now see some channel suggestions (a random set of popular channels) to help them get started using this key YouTube feature. If you already have some subscriptions, you can see the suggestions, too -- just click on "About Subscription Center" in the upper-right corner of the subscriptions center.



* Username Alternatives: YouTube is a big place these days and many channel names are taken. But starting today, if your desired username is already in use when you sign up for an account, we'll offer some alternates, hopefully reducing the head-scratching that can come from trying to figure out a handle that you like and is available. Right now this is in test mode, but we expect it to go 100% soon.



* A Tooltip to Help With Precise Seeking: If someone tells you to check out their video at two minutes, now it's easy to find that precise point. As you drag the thumb (what we call the little circle) back and forth, a shiny new tooltip will tell you exactly where you are in the video.




Always,

The YouTube Team

Posted:
Time was, Congress wrote legislation inside the bubble of Washington, DC, and tried their best to get back to their home states and districts to get citizen feedback. Now, your Senators and Congressmen can solicit your feedback instantly online -- which is just what Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND) is doing this week in his "Senator of the Week" feature on the YouTube Senate hub.









Head over to the Senate Hub and let Senator Dorgan know your ideas for the Energy Bill. As his video explains, the energy issue is critical to the long-term sustainability of the U.S. economy and to national security. Dorgan is committed to hearing your ideas and getting back to you, so submit your thoughts now and vote on the others that are there.




Yours,

Steve Grove

YouTube News & Politics

Posted:
In these early days of the swine flu outbreak, governments and global leaders are responding to the pandemic on YouTube - using video to reach citizens with information and instruction about the spreading virus. On our homepage today we're featuring some of the videos that have been making their way around YouTube, as citizens share clips with each other on how to handle the threat of the flu virus in their communities.




The Center for Disease Control's YouTube channel, which we featured a few days ago, has come out with a new video from Dr. Joe Bresee - this one outlines how to recognize the symptoms of swine flu. The Mexican Government is working hard to educate citizens as well, with PSAs like this one that help citizens understand how to prevent the spreading of the virus. In the U.K., Prime Minister Gordon Brown has been joining the international conversation, as has Ban Ki Moon, the Secretary General of the United Nations, who delivered this statement on the United Nations' YouTube channel, outlining the UN's work to fight the flu.




Stay tuned to these channels (and more) as governments and citizens keep each other informed with the latest information on the swine flu pandemic. You might also want to take a look at Google.org's experimental flu trends tool for Mexico, which is tracking the development of the flu based on search queries within Mexico.




Yours,

Olivia Ma

YouTube News & Politics

Posted:
We launched YouTube Insight a year ago to help you better understand your viewers and how they engage with your videos. Along the way, we've introduced features like Demographics, Hot Spots and Community to give you sophisticated ways of analyzing viewer data. Whether you want to know how old your audience is, how many times your most viewed video was rated last week, or which minute of your clip is most engaging, YouTube Insight can give you the answer. As we add functionality, we're careful to preserve YouTube Insight's clean and easy-to-use look and feel.



Throughout this process, we've realized that there are limitless ways viewing data can tell fascinating stories about your audience. As you continue to post videos, we will continue to make viewing data transparent and accessible for you.



Today, we have added a link that allows you to export your Insight data into CSV files. CSV files are open format files that organize data so it can be moved and analyzed using common spreadsheet software such as Google Docs and Microsoft Excel. Now you can view and manipulate your data any way you like.



Looking for ideas? Try comparing the view count for different videos side by side, mapping out where your viewers are coming from over time, or comparing discovery sources by country. As always, tell us about the interesting fun facts you learn in the comments below!



Cheers,

Tracy Chan and Kenny Stoltz

Product Managers

The YouTube Team

Posted:
The first three months of the Obama Administration have brought the new American President unprecedented challenges. Back in November, when he was elected, everyone knew the economy and the Middle East would be critical issues for Obama to attack early on. But like every president before him, he's had to deal with the unexpected as well: who could have predicted pirates off the Somali Coast or swine flu?




As citizens and pundits from all political perspectives analyze the President's first 100 days in office today, Obama himself will address the nation tonight on the 100-day anniversary of his inauguration -- and we're going to carry a live stream of the conference from the White House YouTube channel. Be sure to tune in at 8pm EDT to watch it live.




We're also featuring commentary and analysis from top news organizations on our homepage today. Hear Karl Rove grade the President on Fox News. Get a re-cap from Al-Jazeera on what Obama has accomplished in his opening act. Watch the Washington Post talk with Americans in DC about their early impressions of the new President.




You can join in the conversation by making a video: How is the Obama Administration doing, and what advice would you give the President moving forward? Upload your thoughts to YouTube and add them as a video response to this Citizentube video, and we'll feature some of them on our News page tomorrow.




Finally, don't forget to come to youtube.com/whitehouse at 8pm EDT to watch President Obama address the nation.




Yours,

Steve Grove

YouTube News & Politics

Posted:
The 2009 Tribeca Film Festival is in full swing in sunny New York City, showcasing some of the year's best independent films. With its reputation for high quality programming and cutting edge panels, the Festival has quickly emerged as a must-stop for serious film buffs.



Can't make it to the Big Apple? No worries -- you can catch 4 short films from the Festival's critically acclaimed 2009 Official Selection in the YouTube Screening Room. From a bitter man's 50th birthday party to a teenage boy's priestly penitence, these shorts epitomize the great, off-the-beaten-path stories for which Tribeca is known.



For more festival coverage, red carpet premieres and behind-the-scenes footage, check out the Tribeca Film Festival YouTube channel.



Enjoy,

Nate Weinstein

YouTube Film

Posted:
If you or someone you know has formidable dunking skills, the window of opportunity to be named "Best Dunker on YouTube" is closing quickly — the last chance to submit a dunk video to the YouTube Slam Dunk contest ends at midnight this Sunday, April 26.



We've seen some incredible submissions which you can view in the Gallery on the Slam Dunk channel. The judges for the contest — Chris Bosh, Jalen Rose and Team Flight Brothers — will select the top 20 dunkers to move on to the final round (May 6 - 24), when the YouTube community will vote on the winner.



Everything you need to know in order to submit is in this video:







Now get out there and show the world what you can do.



Best,


Andrew Bangs


YouTube Sports

Posted:
Today is the beta launch of YouTube RealTime, a new way of discovering what your friends are doing on YouTube. Through this persistent toolbar, which appears in the lower right corner of the page, you'll be able to see which of your YouTube friends are currently online and what they're watching; a history of their recent activities on the site; and real-time notifications when they perform activities like commenting, favoriting, and uploading.



Wanna try it? The first 100 people to say "Yes! Sign me up" in the comments below will get an exclusive invite to test it out. Please keep in mind that you will need to have friends on YouTube for this to work -- the more you have, the richer the experience, so be sure you accept friend invites and actively manage the list. Participants can enter feedback on RealTime in the forums or in comments below.



Regards,

Ryan Junee

Product Manager

The YouTube Team

Posted:
Today is Earth Day, and we want to help you take care of our great planet. It's not hard at all if you know where to start. Here are six things you can do now to make a difference:




1) Get a houseplant


This might seem small, but adding a little bit of greenery to your home can help remove harmful particles from the air.









2) Be vigilant of the faucet


We use far more water than we really need. Taking shorter showers, planting drought-tolerant plants, and only running the washing machine when it’s full are just a few ways to conserve this precious resource.









3) Call your energy company


Find out if they have a green energy plan or ask for an audit to see where you may be able to save energy.









4) Shop local


Buying produce from neighboring farms can help reduce your carbon footprint.









5) Change your commute


Try biking to work once a week instead of driving. It's better for the environment and better for you, too.









6) Turn trash into treasure


Before you throwing something away, stop: You might be able to turn it into something useful for your home.









Our Live Green channel has lots more videos with fun projects and ideas to help you to do more to green your lifestyle.




Happy Earth Day,


Sadia Harper


YouTube HowTo & Style

Posted:
Today we're excited to announce a new destination for television shows and an improved destination for movies on YouTube, where partners like Crackle, CBS, MGM, Lionsgate, Starz and many others have made thousands of television episodes and hundreds of movies available for you to watch, comment on, favorite and share. This addition is one of many efforts underway to ensure that we're offering you all the different kinds of video you want to see, from bedroom vlogs and citizen journalism reports to music videos and full-length films and TV shows.



To help you navigate through all this great content, we're introducing two new tabs to the YouTube masthead: the "Shows" tab allows you to browse shows by genre, network, title and popularity, while the "Subscriptions" tab will grant logged-in users one-click access to fresh content from their favorite creators.



Another change you'll notice today is the wider roll-out of in-stream ads, which we've been testing since October, to support our shows and movies content -- not unlike what you might see when viewing this type of content on TV.



While shows and movies are currently limited to users in the U.S., we look forward to expanding to other regions as soon as possible, and we're pleased to inform you that the "Subscriptions" tab will be available worldwide in the next few weeks.



We hope you enjoy watching shows and movies on YouTube. There's still work to be done and we look forward to iterating with you, whether that's rolling out new engagement features, expanding our content offering or improving your viewing experience. And, as with everything we do, we'll track your usage and feedback to preserve your fundamental YouTube experience while we take these steps to enhance it.



Yours,

Shiva Rajaraman, Product Manager, and Sara Pollack, Entertainment Marketing Manager


The YouTube Team

Posted:
Starting this Friday, President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will be participating in the Summit of the Americas - a meeting of diplomats and world leaders from the Western Hemisphere. At the Summit, leaders address key topics at the top of everyone's agenda: human prosperity, energy security, environmental sustainability, and poverty reduction. This year's Summit is in Trinidad and Tobago - and the State Department is letting you get involved by holding an online townhall in which Secretary Clinton (a YouTube veteran) will answer your questions.







One of YouTube's top DIY partners, Howcast, has worked with State to build an online platform for the event, here. On that platform, you can submit your question (in several languages) via this widget:







You can learn more about the Summit on the State Department's YouTube channel



Yours,

Steve Grove

YouTube News and Politics

Posted:
Starting today, India begins general election proceedings for the 15th Lok Sabha, the lower house of the Parliament of India. The elections will occur over the course of one month, with final results announced on May 16th.



The Election Commission of India expects 714 million people to cast their votes this year, and in anticipation, it has uploaded a number of videos in both English and Hindi about proper election administration to its YouTube channel. For example, this video trains election officials on how to be a good presiding officer.



If you're looking for tales from the campaign trail, NDTV has been covering the Indian election season closely on YouTube for the past few months, highlighting trends like the youth vote:







And if you're still hungry for information, please visit the Google India Elections Centre for the most comprehensive information about Members of Parliament, this year's candidates, development across parliamentary constituencies, and much more.



Happy voting,

Ramya Raghavan

YouTube News & Politics

Posted:
Today represents the final culmination of an idea many months in the making: a first-class global orchestra brought together by YouTube. This week, over 90 musicians from around the world -- including a Spanish guitarist, a Dutch harpist and a Lithuanian birbyne player -- have gathered in New York City in preparation for tonight's historic YouTube Symphony Orchestra performance at Carnegie Hall. And today on YouTube's home page, we are proud to present the world premiere of Tan Dun's composition "Internet Symphony, Eroica," as selected and mashed up from nearly 3,000 video submissions from around the globe.



Maestro -- the mash up, please!







Along with the "Eroica" premiere, we're also posting exclusive behind-the-scenes footage of the preparation leading up to tonight's performance. Learn more about the YouTube Symphony Orchestra by watching candid vlogs, early rehearsals with conductor and creative director Michael Tilson Thomas, and meet-and-greets between the musicians lucky enough to participate in this once-in-a-lifetime event. Many thanks to our "Vlog Squad" team of classical musicians (Caeli Smith, Jeremy Denk, and Eiko Sudoh), and to Harmony Films, who are currently putting together a full-length documentary on the YouTube Symphony Orchestra.



And for those of you who can't make it to New York in time for the big show, don't fret. We'll be posting the full performance from Carnegie Hall on YouTube tomorrow at www.youtube.com/symphony.



Symphonically Yours,

Michele Flannery

YouTube Music

Posted:
Here's what's been going on in the world of YouTube Nonprofits since we last spoke:



* Do Something released this video to raise awareness about the fact that 1 in 3 teens are abused in a relationship, after a New York Times article about Rihanna and Chris Brown's domestic violence incident quoted teens saying that dating violence wasn't a major issue. The video has received over 500,000 views and according to DoSomething's Chief Technology Officer, the organization has gotten close to 250,000 requests for dating abuse awareness bracelets.



* The Iowa Bicycle Coalition aims to educate citizens about the importance of bike safety and includes a number of helpful how-to videos like how to load your bike onto a bus and how to choose the right type of bike for you.



* Architecture for Humanity, citing the World Bank statistic that educating all children worldwide will require the construction of 10 million new classrooms by 2015, is inviting teachers, students, architects and designers to work together to design the classroom of the future. The ideal design will provide smart, safe and sustainable learning spaces for children.



* Special Olympics International has just launched a new "End the R-Word" campaign to end the use of the word "retard." This campaign video features various teens talking about how the word is offensive and needs to go.



Enjoy,

Ramya Raghavan

YouTube Nonprofits & Activism

Posted:
We're back with the final update for this edition of Adopt a Feature. Last time we spoke, we promised a home page takeover of some of the best videos submitted so far. On April 2, we did just that, and it generated enough awareness to spur on a few more fantastic entries, including incorporatedfx's QuickCapture song, amcclinton's thorough and enthusiastic dive into Insight, and a country pulldown gem from cowtipper11.



In sum, the 32 clips about the six features (you can see them all here) notched 818,698 views, 4,579 comments and 6,603 ratings -- that's a lot of people you helped to enlighten, people who might not have otherwise known that there is a whole library of audio tracks for your videos or that you can see what's popular in, say, Japan.



We crown thecomputernerd01 the king of all this: his zany explanation of how the country/language pulldown menus work was responsible for more than a quarter of all Adopt a Feature views. For that, he gets a (non-)lousy T-shirt (as does everyone who was featured), immortality in this blog and hopefully lots more subscribers.



So with that, we'll wrap up this edition of the program. Let us know in the comments below what you thought, and we'll be back in two months with a set of new features for you to cast into the warm glow of your video camera.



Thanks for adopting,

Hunter Walk

Director, Product Management

The YouTube Team

Posted:
In anticipation of Earth Day on April 22, we’re teaming up with Sun Chips to launch a channel devoted to all things green: Live Green is your one-stop-shop for videos from partners committed to helping you live a more eco-friendly life. For example, you’ll find:




• Architect Michelle Kaufmann innovating on items you might normally throw away:







Discovery Networks exploring sustainable urban agriculture:







Grist TV answering your environmental questions:







And that’s just a sampling of Live Green’s inspirational powers. Visit the channel every day to get your daily dose of eco ideas -- each one could make a difference.




Be back on Earth Day,


Sadia Harper


Community Manager


YouTube Howto & Style

Posted:
Not sure where to start today? Here are some highlights of recently joined or converted partners:



* smithsonianchannel tells America's stories. There's lots of video on Wanda Jackson, the first lady of rock 'n' roll, and riveting insight into turmoil among the Monkees.



* Encyclopedia Britannica leaps into the world of video: their YouTube channel contains vibrant footage of the internal workings of the human body, like this pounding heart (commenter BinkieMcFartnuggets is not far off when he says it looks like a chicken breast beating its head on the wall), cheese making, astronomy, and more.



* LibraryOfCongress has gems from vast archives, including the earliest Edison films. (More on government channels in a future blog post.)



* BlahGirls features sassy animated teens dishing on the week's celebrity gossip. From producer Ashton Kutcher.



* TotalBeautyTV specializes in helping you approximate celebrities' looks, from Gwen Stefani's signature makeup to Reese Witherspoon's clean and classic hairstyle.



* FixMyRecipe comes to the rescue when you and your kitchen are just not getting along. Chef Billy Parisi helps "fix" recipes on a daily basis. Send your recipe to chef@fixmyrecipe.com to see if it will become a "Featured Fix of the Day."



* paintinganddrawing offers instruction in watercolors, acrylics, oils, and pastels -- there are four new 24-minute instructional art programs uploaded every week.




Ciao,

Mia Quagliarello

Sr. Community Manager

The YouTube Team

Posted:
Today we are joining forces with Universal Music Group (UMG) to announce the launch of VEVO, a music and video entertainment hub that will feature UMG’s premium video content. This service will blend UMG's broad catalog of artists and content production capabilities with our video technology and user community -- in other words, we'll provide the technology infrastructure that will power VEVO and host UMG’s extensive library of professionally-created music videos on the new site. This content will be exclusively available through VEVO.com and a new VEVO channel on YouTube through a special VEVO branded embedded player. It launches later this year.



We're hopeful that this partnership will set a positive example of how the digital and music industries can work together. Moreover, VEVO gives users a deeper, more immersive music experience. As part of the agreement, we've renewed and extended our deal with UMG to allow users to continue creating and watching videos containing UMG sound recordings and Universal Music Publishing Group’s compositions in various territories around the world. You'll even be able to buy favorite tracks on the spot with our Click-to-Buy feature.



Best,

Chris Maxcy

Partnerships Director

The YouTube Team

Posted:



NEW YORK, NY and SAN BRUNO, CA, April 9, 2009



Doug Morris, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Universal Music Group (UMG), the world's leading music company and Eric Schmidt, Chairman of the Board & Chief Executive Officer of Google Inc., today announced that UMG and YouTube, a Google subsidiary, are working together to launch VEVO, a music and video entertainment service that will feature UMG’s premium video content.



In addition to VEVO, YouTube has renewed and extended its successful partnership with UMG that allows users to continue creating and watching user-generated videos containing UMG sound recordings and Universal Music Publishing Group’s compositions on YouTube through various territories around the world. The two companies will also share advertising revenue on YouTube and VEVO.



Launching later this year, VEVO will be a premium online music video hub built for consumers, advertisers and content owners that will blend UMG's broad catalog of top artists and content with YouTube’s leading edge video technology and user community. YouTube will provide the technology infrastructure that will power VEVO and host UMG’s extensive library of professionally-created music videos on the new site. On YouTube, this content will be exclusively available through VEVO.com and a new VEVO channel through a special VEVO branded embedded player.



“VEVO will bring the most compelling premium music video content and services to the world's single largest online video audience,” stated Mr. Morris. “We believe that at launch, VEVO will already have more traffic than any other music video site in the United States and in the world. And this traffic represents the most sought after demographic for advertisers, especially as advertising dollars continue their shift from old media to new. VEVO will be uniquely positioned to monetize this opportunity and a host of others as we grow it to become “the” destination for premium music video content online. For music lovers who want the best in music videos, the VEVO experience will be second to none. At the same time, VEVO will expand the premium video marketplace, generate new revenue streams for content creators, and provide brand advertisers an unprecedented opportunity to get in front of a highly engaged audience. We couldn’t be more excited about the huge potential we see in the VEVO service.”



“Technology has allowed fans to discover music in endless ways while creating new business opportunities for artists and labels alike,” said Mr. Schmidt. “At Google, we are committed to promoting greater innovation and choice and are thrilled to be working with UMG in what will surely be an exciting new service for consumers, advertisers, content creators and the music industry at large.”




At launch, people will be able to access UMG’s entire catalog of premium music video content, including professionally-created and full-length videos on VEVO, as well as artist-generated content and user-generated content hosted on YouTube. VEVO will also serve as a syndication platform, expanding the reach of the VEVO brand. This innovative platform is aimed at providing consumers the very best in digital music content while further extending UMG's lead in the direct-to-consumer market.



Presently, UMG's YouTube video channel has more than 3.5 billion views, making the UMG channel the most watched on YouTube.





About Universal Music Group



Universal Music Group is the world's leading music company with wholly owned record operations or licensees in 77 countries. Its businesses also include Universal Music Publishing Group, the industry's leading global music publishing operation.



Universal Music Group's record labels include A&M/Octone, Decca, Deutsche Grammophon, Disa, Emarcy, Fonovisa, Interscope Geffen A&M Records, Island Def Jam Music Group, Lost Highway Records, Machete Music, MCA Nashville, Mercury Nashville, Mercury Records, Polydor Records, Universal Motown Republic Group, Universal Music Latino, Universal Records South and Verve Music Group as well as a multitude of record labels owned or distributed by its record company subsidiaries around the world. The Universal Music Group owns the most extensive catalog of music in the industry, which includes the last 100 years of the world's most popular artists and their recordings. UMG's catalog is marketed through two distinct divisions, Universal Music Enterprises (in the U.S.) and Universal Strategic Marketing (outside the U.S.). Universal Music Group also includes eLabs, its new media and technologies division; Bravado, its merchandising company; Twenty-First Artists, its full service management division; and Helter Skelter, its live music agency.



Universal Music Group is a unit of Vivendi, a global media and communications company.





About YouTube



YouTube is the world’s most popular online video community allowing millions of people to discover, watch and share originally-created videos. YouTube provides a forum for people to connect, inform and inspire others across the globe and acts as a distribution platform for original content creators and advertisers large and small. YouTube, LLC is based in San Bruno, CA and is a subsidiary of Google Inc.

Posted:
Whether you come to YouTube to watch a specific video, discover related content, or engage and interact with people and videos from all around the world, our goal is to put you in control of your online video experience. This means making it easier for you to find what you're looking for (like dedicated channels for music or HD videos) and offering you new and innovative ways to engage with that content.



One way we already offer you this kind of deeper experience on YouTube involves music videos on the site: Click-to-Buy, our eCommerce platform, helps you find products (like songs and DVDs) related to the videos that you're watching. A recent study found that after watching a music video on YouTube, 50% of adult users in the U.K. then go on to purchase music from that artist. And we've seen these results for ourselves -- three of the four major music labels are Click-to-Buy partners and are already selling millions of songs a year from these links on YouTube.



We're excited to announce that today we're rolling out Click-to-Buy links on music videos in 8 additional countries: Australia, Canada, France, Ireland, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, and Sweden. Now Click-to-Buy partners can offer music downloads to hundreds of millions of people around the world.



We enjoy working with our music partners to provide them with these kinds of opportunities, and we look forward to further expanding the program in the coming months.



Best,

Thai Tran

Product Manager

The YouTube Team

Posted:
Congratulations to YouTube's most hyperactive star, the helium-voiced Fred Figglehorn, on the occasion of his Fred channel recording its millionth subscriber, the first YouTube channel to do so. What's even more amazing is that all this was accomplished in under one year.



A few Fred facts for the uninitiated (if there is such a thing): Fred is the creation of Lucas Cruikshank, a 15-year-old Nebraskan who was first spotted making videos with his cousins on the JKLproduction channel. His Fred channel is the fastest growing in YouTube history, featuring such smash-hit episodes as Fred Goes Swimming (23m+ views), Fred Loses His Meds (17m+ views), and Fred Goes to the Dentist (13m+ views).



Fred's high-pitched episodes chronicle the misadventures of a pseudo six-year-old, as he over-reacts to friends, family and schoolmates, events in his life, and the object of his non-reciprocated affection, Judy. Cruikshank releases his videos in traditional TV style, in 10-episode seasons that have become the schoolyard equivalent of must-see TV. His millionth subscriber joined the cult of Fred early in season three.



So congratulations Lucas/Fred on achieving this notable milestone in the history of online video. We're very impressed. Sadly, we can't promise that Judy will ever share our enthusiasm.



Best,

Mark Day

YouTube Comedy

Posted:
Today on the homepage, we're featuring a hot Oscar-nominated film set in the slums of India. No, not that one -- this film tells a real story. In honor of World Health Day, we're highlighting The Final Inch, an inspiring short documentary about a group of dedicated workers who are going door-to-door to give polio vaccines to children in the poorest areas of India:







Since polio no longer exists in the developed world, many assume that the crippling disease has been eradicated. Sadly, this isn't true. Polio is still a reality in the world’s poorest countries. Created by our friends at Google.org and Vermillion Films, this captivating 38-minute film brings to light the global challenge of polio eradication and tells the story of those who are on the front lines helping the most vulnerable -- children under five living in some of the world's most destitute regions.



We hope that the film will raise awareness about the existence of polio and encourage you to support the public health workers who are working so hard to bring an end to the disease. You can click here to learn more about polio eradication efforts or to contribute to the cause.




Yours,

Ramya Raghavan

YouTube Nonprofits & Activism

Posted:
As Congress considers this year's budget and the many areas that require funding -- health care, education, defense, the stimulus -- they're going to have some tough choices to make due to the economic crisis. That's why this week's Representative of the Week. , Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH), wants your input as to what Congress's budget priorities should be:







You can visit the YouTube House Hub now to offer your budget suggestions to Congressman Ryan. In addition, our Senator of the Week Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) has a video up on the Senate Hub, asking for your ideas on how to improve national service in the United States:







Last week, the Senate passed the Serve America Act, which calls for the most significant expansion of our national service programs in 16 years. Do you think national service should be a major priority for the country? Will it help our economy grow stronger? Make your voice heard now at www.youtube.com/senatehub.




Yours,

Ramya Raghavan

YouTube News & Politics

Posted:
We must admit, given all the trickery going on today we didn't quite believe it when we heard it, but it's true: YouTube has won a Peabody Award. The Peabody Awards recognize outstanding achievements in electronic media, including radio, television and cable.



Naturally, we are extremely honored to receive this prestigious accolade. But it goes without saying that this honor truly belongs to you, the YouTube community and everyone who contributes their hard work and creativity to the site every day.



Best,

The YouTube Team

Posted:
With things like Release Notes, we're focusing on sharing our philosophy behind changes on YouTube to give you a better understanding of why we make certain product decisions. We review the emails, blog post comments and Tweets you send our way, and want to thank all of you who wrote in to share your opinions. Today, we are beginning to roll out the new watch page. The update will begin with videos on the home page -- go to www.youtube.com, click on any video featured, and you'll get dizzy with excitement.



We think you'll find that the new watch page makes it even easier for you to view content while doing the Exorcist Walk or a headstand.
It also gives you even more control over picture quality -- our internal tests have shown that modern computer monitors offer better picture quality when flipped upside-down. Below are some of the features we're most excited about.



Real-Time Topsy-Turvyness



The biggest part of the new watch page is the real-time disorientation you'll get when you've clicked on a video from the home page. The new watch page lets you know what's happening right now in your world -- and it feels kinda funny. The page also makes it simpler for you to view content in the southern hemisphere (or, if you live in the southern hemisphere, then you should head north for the optimum viewing experience).



The Escape Route



One of the important things to remember about the page is that you might get a neck ache. That's why there's an improved Escape Route. It makes it easy to say, "Whoa, I prefer the old-fashioned layout!" So anytime your neck starts to hurt, you will know there's an out.



Discovering Fun



The final piece of the new watch page is the Laughs we get in confusing you on April Fool's Day.



Affectionately yours,

The YouTube Team