I realize that these things are sometimes annoying, and that mobile users couldn't see them... but they existed, and were part of the content--in many cases I have seen, because the video publisher didn't know how to do editing and so used the annotation feature to do it instead--and now that content is going to be damaged, forever.
FWIW, this was effectively the only way to fix content after it had been posted without changing the URL... something you would expect to be a critical feature of any publishing platform, and one that Google themselves has used at times and offered to close partners because clearly they need that feature themselves, but which YouTube doesn't really provide and apparently has now decided to provide even less :(.
"Google Backup of annotations:
03:01-3:35 annotation text content"
I wonder if implementing something like that would be technically feasible.
The third common use that I've seen is linking to other videos, and that's the one that YouTube's replacements systems tackle.
Another somewhat noteworthy thing is that the annotation system is tied to YouTube's channel logo overlay. Once the annotations go, it's likely that the logo will not be hideable anymore.
Which is ENTIRELY on Google.
I don’t believe google could place them on a full screen video on iOS.
The YouTube app overlays all kinds of things over full screen video. Link boxes while ads play, for example.
This was more about suitability for the screen format - multiple boxes with small text just didn’t work too well on mobile.
(More towards saurik) Maybe it’s very noble to want to hoard annotations on 100 views cat videos from 2009, but I’m sure the amount of significant losses that won’t be solved by simply adding a comment to the video is next to nothing.
If Apple allowed browser competition then Firefox and Chrome would likely support fullscreen mode (like they both do on Android) and Apple would effectively be pushed to add it to mobile Safari or lose market share.
On the other hand I wish Google would give me the option to bake in the annotations if they're going to remove them. I have a few instructional videos with corrections in the annotations. Those will be gone and the videos will end up being wrong.
and just not leave everything up to Google to decide in the future IMHO.
EDIT: reading farther down, I see the answer to the latter half: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=18540470
For me the issue is time. Adding the annotation took 1-2 mins. Downloading the video on youtube (since I no longer have the source material), then loading that into some video editor, adding the annotations, rendering it, and re-uploading it would easily take 1hr per video. So IMO it's not really a good solution. I don't have the time.
Personally I think they should keep the annotations and keep the source video. When you change the annotations they can re-render the video on their end. Keep the 1-2 minute workflow
There is much more to the browser than rendering engine.
Don't reward their shitty dark patterns by installing their app. They have a site that is perfectly amenable to being consumed in a web browser on your phone. They're _already done the work_ to make it work well on your phone, but then they kneecapped it and turned the hard work of all those engineers and designers into lead-gen for their app so they can get your location data.
m.yelp.com: This page will open in another application.
me: tHiS PAgE wiLl OPEn iN aNOtheR ApPliCaTIon.
 You can only see the first few pictures, you can only read the first fifty words of each review, and every attempt to go beyond that is met with a redirect to the App Store app
 no, they don't make it clear that clicking that "read more" link is going to send you to another app.
we have PROTOCOL already. if i want it to open in yelp it should either start the link with yelp:// or food:// and my os should default to my default food app. if its https:// keep it in my damn browser. google should let me set link rewrite settings per site or type, if i say for example WANT https://youtube to be rewritten on the fly as youtube://filename
Because YouTube has entirely ethical and noninvasive reasons for needing access to contact data and unprompted file storage.
> Lightweight YouTube frontend that's supposed to be used without the proprietary YouTube-API or any of Google's (proprietary) play-services.
Contacts is probably for sharing videos and storage might be cache?
Is it not possible to re-upload a video to Youtube?
It's almost become the Google motto of late that they will break their own products and make your existing content unusable in some way.
But no. You can trim your video. You can delete it entirely, and suffer the consequences. But you can't simply fix and replace a video that may have had erroneous content and videos which had been "patched" by annotations in the past will now appear without context (aside from descriptions perhaps).
That's some impressively lousy product stewardship, and I say this as someone who mostly disliked annotations as most people
here seem to.
What's wrong with uploading a new video "Original Title [Update Nov 2018]", and linking to that in the description?
It would if done naievely; one seemingly-simple fix for all the problems I've seen in this thread: have multiple video versions as an explicit part of the API. You can link to a specific version, youtube can clearly show a flag saying "there's a newer version of this video available, do you want to watch that instead?", it can show comments and likes for all versions in one place (with a badge saying "this comment was made on an old version" if appropriate), etc
In the context we're talking about, do you believe the comments on video A (10 minutes of maths lecture with a typo in one of the digrams) would be hugely different from the comments on video B (10 minutes of maths lecture with that typo corrected); so much so that it's worth throwing out all the early comments and starting from scratch? Or are you thinking of some other use-case?
> I don’t want to additionally have to pay attention to whether we watched the same video or not.
Good news for you then! Making "video version number" part of the API means that you can filter those out programatically too :)
If it happens anyway, view counts could be disaggregated into "total" and "since last update".
I've seen a number of social network groups being sold for their audiences and then rebranded to sell questionable things. I've even seen something similar done to some YouTube channel I once subscribed to: its owner (new or not, can't really tell this time) changed its name/images/whatever, removed all the videos and started publishing things that I never wanted to be in my feed. Things will only get worse the moment YouTube allows to change videos under the same URL.
And if one's reaction is, "re-uploading a video should reset all views and likes to zero", then re-uploading now has little advantage over making a new video.
On the other hand I don't see why Google couldn't just disable adding new annotations but left old annotations in peace. Maybe there is some underlying technical reason why they don't want annotations.
Personally, I think maybe they could flatten all annotations into a single non-interactable layer and keep that instead. That would require a lot less code and do most of the job it needs to.
YouTube is already pretty fragmented as it is, with each device having a different experience. Since viewing is increasingly a mobile thing, and the mobile site sucks, I would be more than pleased to see some consistency coming across their platform.
That's most limiting factor for such an hobby weekend side project of one lonely developer which we all know YouTube is.
I understand what you're saying but based on what we've heard from ex-Googlers about user interface/experience design within the company, that people who've not got the first idea about good design are thrust into the role of designing user interfaces and user-facing features, I think it's a minor miracle we have what we have already — and what we have isn't great.
Plus, look at the variety of users and devices on YouTube. From those who watch 5K video on 27" high-resolution monitors backed by grunty graphics and powerful processors, to cheap $29 Android phones that barely keep the battery from draining to zero within a couple of minutes just showing a 360p video, and all the devices in between.
Between Google's issues with user interface/experience design on a company level and the fact that YouTube needs to cater to so many different kinds of people and devices, there's clearly more than meets the eye when it comes to the hidden scale of YouTube.
Since Google basically prints money, I don't think money could be the issue. Since Google is overflowing with engineers, I don't think throwing more engineers at the problem would help. Rather, I think that removing annotations is a good sign that Google is trying to do something smarter: manage the scale of YouTube.
The removal of just one feature, like annotations, lifts a heavy burden from the main site team, the mobile site team, the mobile apps teams, and everything else. It brings platform consistency, meaning some actually new and innovative features can finally get some of that precious engineering time, rather than the inelegance of supporting what was always a janky feature that could only become jankier as devices became more diversified.
That's why Google Reader is gone, I suppose. Google just couldn't save it, no matter how much money and engineers' time was spend on it. And we all know how much exactly it were.
> Rather, I think that removing annotations is a good sign that Google is trying to do something smarter: manage the scale of YouTube.
Consistently removing the features which is not popular among majority of users is not smart at all. That's the dumbest way to manage the scale actually.
This means streamlining platforms and trimming excess/old code.
I've seen 'code debt' and 'technical debt' mentioned more than a few times in this thread and I think these are why Google is so aggressive about dropping support for things. They don't have time, and the engineers don't want to be forced into someone else's pet project (face it, that's where a lot of these platforms and features come from).
So they cut their losses and rise.
From the other thread, pretty usual recently
> I considered working at Google last year after a recruiter reached out to me, but their decision to backtrack on their promise in China changed my mind
Maybe it's not about rising anymore.
To borrow a famous quote, Google is like an ship with a hole in the bottom, leaking water, and they seem to be trying to get the ship pointed in the right direction.
Still, whilst the ship's not yet overrun, I can't blame the individual teams for trying to throw as much water back overboard as they can muster.
In general people just mention that there's an updated video in the title or description and you can redirect yourself there if you want. A bit lo-tech but it works well in practice IMO.
but you can edit posts on reddit...just not the title
This is a very useful feature for people since it would give creators the ability to fix errors in their videos without creating the confusion that happens when creators try to do this currently.
Every single time when I saw a reupload it had tons of comments saying something to the effect of "Didn't I see this before?" or "Didn't you upload this Yesterday?" and the creator commenting X times: "Sorry it is a reupload to fix Audio/Editing/Facts"
Can you then replace a John Carmack tech talk with a Amway recruiting video? Yes, but there was nothing stopping you right now from uploading that Amway video and simply calling it "John Carmack tech talk" anyways.
Both are minor things, but I am in favor of creators being in control over their videos. Especially since it would get used to correct accidental misinformation and things like that.
I just don't see much harm in the ability even if the video creator could completely switch content.
I think it would be nice to see a middleground feature, to facilitate these cases, whilst not being as easy to abuse as video annotations were.
It's really confusing if the voice in the video says one thing, and an annotation is displayed that says "this is not actually correct ..."
It would be much better if the video creator spent five minutes to actually fix the video and reupload it.
In addition to that, re-uploads are annoying enough as is because content creators constantly need to upload old content due to changes in Youtubes policies or enforcement. New revisions for any minor mistake instead of an overlay would properly ruin the subscription page imho.
I think you would have to try quite hard to be confused about something like this. Also, frequently used for self deprecation comedy.
The typical Google is the decision to delete annotations instead of just turn it off by default.
Honestly Google is better than most digital file lockers out there.
Same with Vimeo - the numbers have got to be astronomically slanted in favor of a cataclysmic loss of data at some point, or simply a policy of deleting things 10 years old (deemed no longer relevant). The internet archive is going to have its hands full if it's trying to back this thing up.
Do you? Considering it was removed as a feature 2 years ago? I've not seen any in a long time. Yes if you go back and watch old videos, but as time pass, the % of people watching such videos will keep on shrinking, especially if you add the fact that views are increasingly moving to mobile anyway.
The code complexity on the player will stop being worth it at some point, just to serve 0.01% of views on annotated videos.
It sucks for creators who legitimately used it as corrections for videos but all in all, I think doing away with annotations is a net positive for the user experience.
Same here, 99% of the time it's just a big annotation that covers the whole video that says something like "click here for my latest viral video" or "get [brand name] shoes 50% off" and so on.
Again google goes after spam with a bazooka instead of a scalpel - collateral damage - meh. The spammers will just edit the video before uploading and those who don't won't get the annotations.
But I get it, at that scale it's probably impossible to one by one surgery the issue.
Perhaps a link to offer information to see annotation that were removed (and the time stamp) in case important info conveyed is being removed?
Random example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C4wgFn8WW5c
Still, I see lots of new videos with annotations. Is it really impossible to create new annotations?
Yes, and that is only by accident because I couldn't fucking click on the X because you put it on the corner on purpose. I'm really glad they will go away!
Although it has a valid use case, most of the time I interact with annotations is when trying to pause a video and ending up being redirected to some other video or a 3rd party site.
> This means you can no longer add new or edit existing annotations, only delete them. Existing annotations still show when using a desktop computer.
I guess everyone's known about this for a while. I guess it's a shitty move for the users, surely most channels have been sufficiently warned since they started removing the feature so long ago
They are buttons that fwd or rwd the video to a point where the white strobe flash matches the text on the button, doh, I mean annotation.
Note: Only works on desktop YouTube.
What good is a "delete" button if the data is inaccessible otherwise and will just be deleted later anyway‽
Please, if anyone knows how to just download the text, I'd appreciate it. I'm one of those people who used annotations to add corrections and clarifications to educational videos…
>> With 60% of YouTube’s watch time now on mobile
That surprised me at first, though upon reflection, it aligns with my own use I think.
But yeah, mobile devices are not really computers for doing things. They are screens for consuming media. It makes sense for people to use them this way.
It also makes sense for google to have trouble with them because they are all very crappy at being computers.
It's just a shame google has decided to target such a gimped platform primarily. A shame, but inevitable.
So, is there any tool to dump these annotations for later use?
Basically you upload your videos, and meta data for what they call reference files. Which I doubt are publically viewable.
Plus if it automatically matched videos already uploaded would cause a mess because so many channels use royalty free music or content library... So then everyone would claim they own music they don't really own.
Fuck Google by the way, I know of many videos that will lose their meaning without annotations.
Of course this shifts incentives a lot but it gives you some ground to be legitimately angry.
If users were paying for video hosting with specific features, then legacy support would likely be a higher priority. Different customer, different concerns.
Content creators aren't the customer, they're more like contractors.