Towards the end of last month a report came through which suggested that YouTube was about to get a lot more social. That is, YouTube was planning to introduce new features which would allow YouTube channel owners and their viewers to engage beyond the medium of video. At the time, the reports were just reports with no firm confirmation coming from YouTube. Although that has now changed.
YouTube has indeed now announced the launch of a new feature dubbed ‘YouTube Community’. In line with the previous report, the idea behind YouTube Community is for YouTube channel owners to engage with their viewers by the use of additional ways and means. This means that YouTube Channel owners can now use “text, live videos, images, animated GIFs and more” to engage with their viewers. One of the benefits put forward by YouTube for this new feature is that channel owners will be able to offer more frequent engagement with viewers, in between video uploads.
Unfortunately, it seems that this is only initially being rolled out as a beta feature and so it won't be available to all YouTube content providers immediately. YouTube has stated that they have been testing this feature with a select number of content providers already and according to the details, those YouTube Channel owners will now see a new ‘Community’ tab showing up along with the other YouTube tabs. Adding content to here, be it text, images or whatever, will be the primary way to share non-video content with their viewers. Likewise, viewers of these select YouTube channels will begin to see the content showing up as part of their Subscription feeds and will also be able to receive push notifications (if they want) via the mobile app version of YouTube.
YouTube has not provided any detailed information on when the new feature will be more widely expanded, although they do state it should start to happen over the common months. In the meantime though, you can see an example of how the new YouTube Community tab will look and work in the image below. You can also find out more about the new feature by heading through the source link below.