Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Date set for moving all remaining old channels to new version

Hey folks - the remaining items on our to-do list for new channels have been taken care of (with a few remaining bugs expected to be fixed in the next two weeks), so we're planning on switching all user channels still using the older version on September 30 and all partners on October 14. Note that not all channels will switch over instantly; it'll take a week or two after the migration starts to complete converting all remaining channels.

We've addressed many of the items from the to-do list, including:
  • Fixing some browser-specific layout bugs (especially IE6)
  • Allowing you to default your channel to "grid" view
  • Allowing you to re-order your uploads and playlists
  • Adding transparency
  • Implementing fixes for a lot of other bugs you helped find, such as grid view not always working correctly
We've also:
  • Added the ability to right-click and open videos in a new tab or window
  • Added a full screen capability
  • Allowed transparency settings to go to 100%
We're excited to finally roll this out, and it's been very helpful to have your input from the past few months to help us shape and grow the product. And things won't stop here -- we'll continue adding new features and making changes over time based on your feedback. Please keep it coming and share links to some of your favorite channel designs in the comments below. We'd like to highlight them in an upcoming post on the main YouTube blog.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

New: Video reordering, plus default to grid view

Hello new channels users - we're more than overdue for a new blog post. We've been hard at work taking care of bugfixes & the other remaining items from our to-do list, and we've got a few new things out today:
  • Video & playlist reordering - you can now reorder your uploads, favorites, and list of playlists - just click on grid view in the upper-right corner of the video navigator, choose which set of videos you want to reorder (uploads, favorites, playlists), then click on the "arrange" link
  • Default to grid view - you can now choose to have your channel default to showing videos in grid view when viewers land on your channel. Things will switch back to player view as soon as users click on a specific video.
  • 9/1 update: The full screen button is now available
  • 9/1 update: Partners can now customize the height of their banner
And some of the more significant bug fixes we've pushed out in the past few weeks:
  • Things should now look much better in IE6
  • Fixed some ad box weirdness when there's no ad to serve
  • Took care of the "Unknown playlist requested, please try again" & "An error occurred while performing this operation" errors
  • Fixed a case where the scrollbar sometimes wouldn't appear in the info box
  • The handful of people with missing video navigators should now be fixed - let us know if you're not
  • Can now add a video to a new playlist
So when's the new final date to convert all remaining old channels to new channels? We're getting closer, but we still have a few more things to do. Stay tuned - and thanks again for continuing to share your feedback and awesome bug reports!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Okay - it's time for some quick updates. We're plugging away on the to-do list (plus other bugfixes in general), but here are a few new things released in the past few days:
  • Module transparency can now go all the way to 100% (though we cry just a little bit inside whenever someone puts fully transparent, hard to read text on a crazy background)
  • You can now right (or middle)-click on videos to open them in new tabs, or in new windows
  • Playlist titles were getting truncated a little too soon before - should be longer now
  • Grid view should now always work in IE
  • And a few other bugfixes
Also, as promised, we wanted to call out some of the more fun designs we saw using the new transparency settings. In no particular order:

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Release date changing

Time for another update on the upcoming new version of channels. We want to give you a heads up that we're changing the day on which we'll move all remaining channels over to the new version. Why? Well, July 15th is almost here, and we realized that we still have a few bugs and things left on the to-do list.

Specifically, here's what we plan to do before we roll the new version out to all remaining channels:
  • Fix some browser-specific layout bugs - in particular, IE6 has a few issues right now
  • Allow you to default your channel to "grid" view
  • Allow you to re-order your uploads & playlists
  • Some other small things, including fixes for some of the other bugs you've helped find (such as grid view not always working in IE)
So when's the new date? That part's a little trickier - rather than try to predict it, we'd rather focus our time on taking care of the above list. But we'll announce the new date no less than 2 weeks before it happens - and yes, it's still coming this summer.

Keep the bug reports and feedback coming...

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


Super quick update: We've now added transparency settings. Try it out under the "Advanced options" in the "Themes and Colors" section - and be sure to call out any designs you're particularly proud of in the comments. We'd love to show it off in the list of channels on the right hand side of this blog. In fact, you can now modify two different levels of transparency: One for the modules, and one for the wrapper. (The wrapper can even be completely transparent.)

Also fixed: The bug that occasionally caused Firefox / Chrome / Safari to crash.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

More channel updates

As you've probably seen over at the main YouTube blog, we'll be coming out of beta soon and moving all existing channels over to the new design. But that doesn't mean we're all done with updates and bug fixes yet. Your feedback and bug reports have been invaluable in our ongoing development, and it's about time for another round of "here's what's new, and here's what's coming."

So what's new?
  • Speed improvements - there were some reports of channels running a little sluggishly in a few cases. Let us know if you notice a difference. We might have a few other tweaks to play with here, too.
  • Fixed the bug where scrollbars would sometimes break when an ad appeared
  • The search box is now visible within the uploads section, no matter your background color
  • URLs are now autolinked in the video description (and still coming for all channel descriptions)
  • Lots and lots of other bugfixes
And what's on the todo list?
  • Transparency - yes, we've sorted through a few of the stickier issues, and we now expect to offer transparency options before we move all remaining accounts over to new channels
  • Custom ordering of uploads & your list of playlists
  • Letting you default to either player view or grid view
  • In-line branding options for partners (no need to go off to a separate page)
  • IE 8.0 bugfixes - some things look a little strange right now in IE8
  • Full screen controls
  • Showing the upload date in the video "info" area
  • Showing the video length in the thumbnail
  • Other assorted bugfixes, many found thanks to your reports
  • And more...
Thanks everyone - as always, drop us a line in the comments with your bug reports and feedback. Don't forget to mention your channel name if you have problems with your channel specifically. And for those of you in the US - happy 4th weekend!


Monday, June 22, 2009

Sorting, ads, and more

It's about time for another beta update. As emoes guessed in the comments of our last post, we're getting closer and closer to the full launch for all users - though we were surprised to learn that hundreds of thousands of users are already using the new version of channels. Once again, your feedback and bug reports so far have been amazing - you've helped make the new version of channels better, faster, stronger over the course of the beta.

So what's new this week?
  • Ads - partners, you've been asking for it: You can now have the full range of ads on your channel
  • Sort controls - sort by most viewed, date added, or highest rated (yes, this was buggy for a few days, but should be fine now)
  • Ratings stars can now be clicked
  • Counts for the number of videos in each section (when in "All" view)
  • When playing a video, the video title now links to the non-channel video watch page as well
  • And, of course, bug fixes - including one where thumbnails were "pushed down" and had some black borders, rating stars rounding down, and more
And what's still coming?
  • Ability to reorder your uploads, or your lists of playlists
  • Making URLs autolink (in both the video description, plus the channel profile area)
  • Showing the upload date in the video description
  • More bugfixes (including fixing the scrollbar when ads appear, turning the search box background white within uploads, and making sure "autoplay the next video" only applies when playing a playlist)
  • And more...
Keep the feedback & bug reports coming...


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Comments, featuring lists of playlists, and more

Hello, intrepid beta testers - we've been hard at work and have some updates to share. In no particular order:
  • You can now view a small number of video comments as well as leave a quick comment of your own - just click the "Comments" tab when watching any video
  • The font size is now a little larger when browsing through videos, thanks to your feedback
  • You can now make the list of your playlists your featured content set (e.g. the new White House channel)
  • New "share" controls underneath the video
  • Fixed the bug where you couldn't show certain playlists
  • The endless loading circles should now be gone (heads up, patrickometry)
  • There shouldn't be any more channels with messed up layouts - please shout if yours is still broken
  • There's now a search box when looking at "Uploads"
  • Lots of other bugfixes
And, of course, there's still plenty we're looking at:
  • Transparency options (still tricky!)
  • Advertisement support coming soon, of course (heads up, partners)
  • Ability to rate the video from the channel
  • Sort controls for uploads (especially most viewed)
  • Counts for the number of videos in each section
  • Order controls
  • Making URLs autolink
  • And other bugfixes (such as the list of subscribers / friends wrapping to an extra line in some browsers)
Once again, keep the great feedback and bug reports coming!


Sunday, May 31, 2009

Putting the "updates" in "here are some updates"

More channel updates have been released since our last post:
  • Honors are back
  • Video thumbnails are now a little larger based on feedback
  • More interaction options underneath the video player, including a more prominent link to the standard "watch" page
  • You can now feature a video by URL
  • Plenty of bug fixes (e.g. most people with buggy / broken layouts should now be fixed)
A few of the things we're looking at, based on your feedback:
  • Transparency options (this is a bit tricky to do, so no promises)
  • Ability to rate & comment on the video from the channel
  • Sort controls for uploads (especially most viewed)
  • Counts for the number of videos in each section
  • Letting you show the list of your playlists as your "Featured Content Set"
  • Order controls
  • Making URLs autolink
  • And, of course, lots of bug fixes thanks to your reports (including letting you go back to featuring your latest video once you've featured by URL, showing annotations in the featured video, and the "infinite circle" problem where videos don't load when you scroll down - thanks Chris, Patrick, muzik4machines, and others)
And, for partners that have asked - yes, ad support is coming soon too.

Keep the awesome feedback and bug reports coming,


Thursday, May 21, 2009

Changing the channel

Okay! Things are moving along - your feedback has been invaluable and we've made a number of changes to the channel beta over the past few weeks in response:
  • The subscribe button is now yellow again :)
  • You can now choose a featured video
  • Lots and lots of bug fixes (and slyth66, your channel should be good now!)
  • You can now link directly to a specific video & a specific playlist on your channel - just copy and paste the URL you see while playing the video you'd like to link to - here's an example from vlogbrothers' channel
Some other things that are coming soon:
  • Bigger thumbnails & fonts on the right hand side - we're going to try this out, thanks to your feedback that the list of videos might have been just a little too small
  • Honors
  • Some more interactivity underneath the currently playing video - we've especially heard your feedback that you'd like comments to be better integrated
  • Other minor bug fixes
We've also added a few more channels to our list of "Our favorite new channel designs" - check them out on the right hand side of the blog.

Finally, we're happy to announce that we're getting closer to a full release to all users - and you can now opt-in to the channels beta by simply visiting the old Channel Design page. So, the question is: What's left that you absolutely-must-have-on-your-channel-or-else-you'll-totally-lose-it?! Let us know in the comments!


Thursday, April 30, 2009

Pushing the boxes around

Hi everybody!

It's Nick again, the engineer. I meant to get this out yesterday in time for Brian's post, but it wasn't quite ready. You can now rearrange the boxes on your channel with little arrows. Up, down, left, right. You choose where to put stuff! There are some restrictions. You can't move the profile box or the big videos box up top. But the rest are mobile. Remember you can add and remove these boxes from the "Modules" tab up top.

Minor detail: you won't be able to see the arrows on a black background. I'll fix that soon, I promise!

Another detail: this is one of the few things that "auto-saves". As in, if you move boxes, no need to hit a save button, it'll save as it moves them.

Party on,

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

A few of our favorite things

What's up, channel beta testers? It's been a while since our last update - we've been hard at work behind the scenes adding new functionality, fixing bugs, and more. Here are just a few updates we released today or in the past week:
  • Backgrounds should now be fixed - yes, these broke for a short while - if your background isn't on your channel right now, try uploading it again
  • Can now message a user again
  • Can now delete recent activity items
  • Squashed the bug that prevented you from featuring a playlist
  • Subscribe button appears when you're looking at your own channel
  • UI improvements
  • Lots of bug fixes
Still have more to go - all your early feedback has been especially helpful here. (And yes, choosing which video to feature is coming!)

Also, have you noticed the "our new favorite channel designs" box on the right hand side? We're using that to keep track of some of some of the best channel designs we've spotted. Here are a few:
  • IceflowStudios' Channel - A great light blue theme (with some nice color contrasts) to go with an "icy" name
  • vlogbrothers' Channel - Love the lighter color scheme and the alternate font. If only you moved your modules around to fill in the large gap in the lower right. (Oh, can't yet. We should probably build that piece soon!)
  • mnathanielc's Channel - A darker theme with a great matching background that works very well - and a good use of switching the right hand side of the screen to show "Uploads" by default
We'll post on this blog every now and then to highlight some beta channels with great designs. Any out there that you've noticed?


Thursday, April 16, 2009

In ur tubes, fixin ur bugs

Hi everybody!

I'm Nick, your friendly engineer. I heard there were some bugs with the new channels. Michael and I pulled out some bug spray this morning and got the ones that were right in front of us. Sadly, we haven't quite killed them all yet.

Well, for now, we slipped the commas (or language-relevant separators) into the view counts on the videos. Sorry we forgot that the first time round! Also, IE users should be a touch happier now. We tried to clean up some visual issues there.

As I said, there are still a bunch of bugs to squash, so be patient with us. This whole public beta thing is a bit new for us, and so far I'm happy with how it's turning out. We're going to take your opinions into account as we tinker with this, and it'll turn out better with your help. A few of y'all might have noticed the super seekrit opt-in URL wasn't working for a couple minutes. Well, it's working now! If only you know the seekrit. :-P

Anyway, they're letting us engineers out of our cages to post here on the blog, so expect more from me and Michael (the other engineer) in the future.

Rock on,


Update: the whole "can't revert" thing was unintentional, I promise. SuperLuigi and Muddytrails, I reverted your channels by hand. It looks like a logic error in the code on my part; people who somehow hit the migrate function twice (maybe browser error?) lose the ability to unmigrate. I'll fix the logic for the future, and attempt to find all the other broken accounts.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Some known issues

Just a few of the beta issues that we're tracking (updated @ 10:27AM 4/16):
  • Layout is wacky in Internet Explorer - if you're using IE, some things may look broken
  • Sometimes the list of videos on the right hand side doesn't load
  • Can't delete items from your Recent Activity right now
  • "Send message" link not available yet
  • Can't move modules around (left, right, up, down)
  • No sort controls yet (e.g. Most Viewed)
  • Subscribe button currently doesn't display when you're logged out (and note that we don't show you a subscribe button when you're looking at your own channel)
  • Yes, EcoGeek, the view counts need some commas :)
  • Honors aren't shown right now - no, these aren't going away (thanks nerimon)
  • Can't choose your featured video yet
  • + a lot of little things
Update: Lots of great bugs in the comments below so far - keep 'em coming, guys. Some of these should be fixed later on Thursday (we'll give you a heads up). And lots of thoughtful, detailed feedback & suggestions too. We'll respond to some of the feedback soon...

Welcome to the YouTube channels beta!

If you're reading this, you've probably either switched your channel over to the secret new YouTube channels beta, or you've stumbled across a channel that has. Either way, welcome! We'd like to show you an early version of what we're working on.

Of course, keep in mind that our beta is very early. Things may change, or break, and we haven't finished building all the bells and whistles yet. For example, many of the editing functions aren't available yet, so you can't currently customize the order and selection of videos that show up on your channel (or choose which video is featured). And we'll probably tweak some of the UI as we go.

So why are we showing this before it's finished? Because we want you to be a part of it! If you're here, you probably care about what we build and what your channel looks like, and we want you to be involved along the way.

We'll use this blog to regularly communicate our latest channel beta launches, fixes, and releases - in other words, our release notes. And we'd like to hear your feedback in the comments section.

Why are we releasing new versions of channels in the first place? Well, here are a few reasons:
  • A better channel experience for your visitors - folks can browse through and watch your uploads, favorites, and playlists without needing to leave your channel
  • Help you enrich your channel - we'll help you customize and design your channel (and the videos on it) without ever leaving the page - and we'll give you some default themes to start with
  • A design refresh - yes, our corners are now rounded in many browsers, saving valuable pixels do things look so far? What do you like the most, and what do you wish was different? Let us know in the comments.

Enjoy the beta!

From the YouTube channels team,
-Nick, Michael, Gunthar, David, Holly, James, and Brian

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Hello, world!

This is our obligatory "hello world" first post.